DAKAR. Africans say they have little hope that Europe will ever become civilized, after a week in which Spain’s King Carlos went on an elephant-killing spree and the Swedish Culture Minister was entertained by a racially offensive cake. “You can take the European out of the jungle, but you can’t take the jungle out of the European,” sighed one resident of Kinshasa.
August Mwanasa, of Libreville in Gabon, said the latest atrocities didn’t surprise him as Europeans were still “savages”.
“I don’t want to sound racist, and some of my best friend are white, but let’s be honest: violence is hard-wired into their DNA,” said Mwanasa. “I mean, Europeans killed over 20 million other Europeans in the 1930s and 1940s. That’s barbarism on a scale unprecedented in history.”
Jenkins Odumbe, a Nairobi milliner, bemoaned ingrained attitudes of entitlement in Europe.
“If they’re not going on the dole they’re asking for bail-outs,” he said. “Why can’t they just get up earlier and work harder, that’s what I want to know?”
Liberte Aidoo, a Ghanaian travel agent, said she had been “shocked and disgusted” by what she found on her first trip to Spain.
“The brochures promise sea and sun, but they’re still incredibly backward in Spain,” she recalled. “Basically they all live in mud huts called haciendas, and they sleep for two hours in the middle of the day. In Europe they call it a ‘siesta’. In Ghana we call it ‘being fucking lazy’.”
But, she added, this kind of “depressing inertia” was to be expected in a country with more debt than most of Africa combined.
Meanwhile, most Africans have dismissed calls for Swedish Culture Minister Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth to resign following the debacle in which she was photographed eating a cake designed to look like a racist caricature of an African woman.
“The only people calling for her to resign are European liberals hiding behind a thin veneer of civilization,” explained Burundian sociologist, Descarte Tugiramahoro. “We Africans are not shocked in the slightest.
“All she’s doing is engaging in two ancient European rituals: giggling at people who look different, and symbolic cannibalism, as introduced by the Catholic Church. It’s all completely normal.”