Ok, so maybe "always" is a bit strong.
I watched District 9, a compelling sci-fi flick, over the weekend. I was enjoying the movie until they got to a scene about gangs running scams in a Johannesburg (South Africa) slum. Turns out they were Nigerians. I tucked this nugget of info away and proceeded to finish the movie. (It was pretty awesome and has a lot of parallels to today's world.)
For some reason, the scene with the Nigerians kept gnawing at me. The more I thought about it, the more indignant I became.
I thought about another one of my favorite films, the Bourne Identity. The deposed African dictator Jason Bourne is sent to kill is also Nigerian. How do I know this? He spoke Yoruba (my other language) in the film.
Granted, the fact that you've received emails from some supposed Nigerian prince or businessman who wants to share $5 million with you hasn't helped our case.
(That people still fall for those scams baffles me. Sometimes, you just can't fix stupid. But I digress.)
To make myself feel better, I did a quick Internet search for native-born Nigerians or folks of Nigerian descent who have not only brought a good name to the West African country and its people but have also contributed something good to the world.
Here's what I found (an incomplete list, of course):
-- Bobby Ologun (TV personality in Japan and mixed martial artist)
-- Chinua Achebe (writer. Did you read Things Fall Apart in school?)
-- Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy (Royal portrait artist)
-- Chiwetel Ejiofor (actor)
-- Hakeem Olajuwon (basketball player)
-- Sade Baderinwa (TV news anchor)
-- Seal (musician)
-- Wole Soyinka (poet, playwright, novelist)
Take that, Hollywood!