‘African American’ just does not invoke the same bold pride as Black does. (And I’ve always suspected that was one of the reasons we’ve been encouraged to use it). During the heights of Black consciousness and the Black Power Movement throughout the 60s and 70s, when everything black had previously been associated with inferiority and despair, our people began redefining and embracing it as a means of identification. It took on a spirit of self-pride, self-love, dignity and even resistance. And we began opting out of terms that had been previously imposed on us such as colored and negro.
Black connects me with that struggle. Black also connects me to my people throughout the world, whether they are in South America, the Caribbean, Africa or elsewhere.