Dear Senator Rafael Edward "Ted" Cruz,
It is with dismay and disappointment that many Nigerians and Americans alike have come to learn about your callous, inappropriate and insensitive remark about Nigerians in relation to email scammers. Whatever may have driven you to insult a whole nation of at least 160 million people may likewise drive you to ignore or even condemn this piece. Yet it is from a place of reason and with a sense of hope in human decency that I write.
Prejudice, ignorance, and the opportunity to know the true facts:
Being that you are of the caliber of a United States Senator, one wonders if you did consider the implications of your disparaging remarks and knew of such implications before making such remarks, or if your remarks were simply guided by prejudice, ignorance, or lack of information. "Prejudice" is defined by the dictionary as "an adverse judgment or opinion formed beforehand or without knowledge or examination of the facts." "Ignorance" is defined as "the condition of being uneducated, unaware, or uninformed." Regardless of which applies, it is my intention to reach out to your good nature and to urge you to promptly withdraw your callous statement and apologize to all Nigerians for the undeserving remarks from you. It would be pertinent at this point to bring to your attention the fact that several polls and statistics out there depict Nigerians in positive light contrary to what you may have picked up from negative media, forums, or propaganda instruments. Nigerians are amongst the most hardworking people in the world. Nigerians are the most educated block of recent immigrants in the United States. Nigerians are amongst the most hardworking, disciplined, loyal, and productive employees worldwide.
Verification of facts:
You may not need any reference on the above facts about Nigerians. Simply go to Texas or any other state or city in the United States with good recent immigrant population such as New York, New Jersey, Chicago, Maryland, DC, Connecticut, California, Atlanta/Georgia, Pennsylvania, Florida, Delaware, Boston/Massachusetts, etc, and type in any common Nigerian name in your state or city employment data or address book, and see how many Nigerians will pop up. Check out how many of them are graduates and experts in some of the most competitive fields such as Law, Medicine, Accounting, and many others. Also ask around about how hardworking those Nigerians are who have no certificate or are simply doing menial jobs. Either way, you will find a law abiding people with integrity who work hard in all spheres of life towards making a living and positively contributing to the American society and beyond. A people so hardworking that they abhor begging or dependency as only a last resort to be avoided at all cost.
Doing the math:
I would now urge you to then consider the percentage of Nigerians who are into generally unacceptable ways of life such as scams, fraud, and corruption. In the end compare the percentage and see if it is fair for you to condemn and insult the greater majority of an entire people because of the crimes or behavior of a very minor percentage. And this is even without raising the argument that every society (not just Nigeria) has its percentage of "bad eggs" amongst its population.
Reflection and Implications:
One wonders if you realize that Nigerians are also Africans, and to disparage the people of the most populous African nation (a leading African nation) is to disparage most other Africans. One wonders if you found wisdom in disparaging an entire nation just to please a minority base or gain support of a constituency. One wonders if you realize that Africans are fast becoming a significant part of the American electorate and that some Africans are Republicans and could have been Tea-party sympathizers just until your insulting remarks. One wonders if you realize that you may have created or enhanced a coalition of Africans and other Americans sympathetic to African issues to join any opposition against whatever agenda you may have. One wonders if you realize that comments that seem to insult President Barack Obama's African ancestral lineage would not help the argument that you are a prospective national leader without bias or contempt for blacks or other minorities. The preceding among other reasons abide for you to grab this opportunity to withdraw your disparaging remarks and offer an unreserved apology to all Nigerians without further ado.
Oliver Mbamara Esq.
October 24, 2013