In recent times, Africans are turning away from a ‘seemingly’ Western culture and gradually embracing their so called ‘Afrocentric’ side. These days, almost everyone prefers to be addressed by their native names. Interestingly enough, some parents are trying to outdo each other for the award of “Never before heard” names like Scholastica, Shanniqua and others that will take your phone’s auto correct some time to get used to. Choices.
On one hand, African women are “going” natural by the dozens every day; young ladies have exhausted their data downloading tutorial videos of how to take care of their natural hair and skin. Cosmetic companies have quadrupled their sales over the past few years, thanks to naturalisters. Ironically, most SHS leavers can’t wait to get their first perm. Choices.
Being a natural hair girl with a native name, I am proud of my African identity. It’s ok to want to keep your Afro hair and use your local name. It’s definitely NOT ok to expect everyone else to tow that line just because you feel like doing so. Everybody has a choice, and every choice has consequence(s). It’s up to the individual to accept the pros of their decision or otherwise. Choices.
Social media has been rife with back and forth banters between girls with natural hair and those with permed hair. Honestly, some girls with permed hair have had just about enough of girls with natural hair condemning perming their hair with chemicals. And though my hair is natural, I am also very sick and tired of that line of argument.
With the exception of bleaching, drug abuse, alcoholism, I think everyone is entitled to their choices (my opinion).
If you want your hair permed, go ahead and do it. Wear makeup if you want to: you won’t go to hell for that. By all means, go ahead and give your child a name you made up, never before heard of. (S)he’ll decide whether to continue using it or not when (s)he is older. But please please please don’t try to force your ideologies on someone else just because you think you are right. Present your opinion, if they agree with you, fine. If not, it’s ok just let it be, even if you disagree.
Life goes on…
A Ghanaian Story By: Baaba Ennin