Originally Posted by Romy
This. It's not a self identification based on skin color as plenty of brown people in North America aren't of African descent, and plenty of people with African ancestors are pretty light skinned. It based on the fact that their ancestors were brought here from Africa.
The reason caucasian Americans don't typically self identify as "European American" is because most have the luxury of being able to trace their ancestry to country of origin, or retain direct links to their ancestral land. I look at my family and we're still participating "members" of the same family clan that's been around for over 2,000 years.
A lot of people of African descent living in North America don't have that luxury. Their ancestors were brought here, they were forced to learn whatever language their master wanted to them speak and not allowed to practice family or cultural customs. They weren't allowed to teach them or pass them down to their descendents. If they had, you'd probably see a lot more people identifying themselves with a specific tribe or geographic area their ancestors came from. If things were reversed and Europeans were brought to Africa in slavery and their culture forcibly erased, you'd probably have people calling themselves European Africans.
when that happened they amalgamated w/ a turko-slavic nation originally from the caucusus mountains residing in egypt & called themselves mamlukes.