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Refuting Afrocentrism Part 2: Are Italians Black?

1400 words

Afrocentrists like to say things like ‘Italians were black’ and ‘the Romans were black’ and ‘The Moors were black’. All of this is based on shoddy evidence and uneducated people not knowing what they’re talking about.

In this article by an Afrocentrist, he claims that ‘Italians were black’ and talks about ‘dark-skinned Sicilians’.

Southern Italians were considered “black” in the South and were subjected to the Jim Crow laws of segregation. They weren’t allowed to marry “whites.” It was difficult, damn near impossible.

They were designated as “black” on census forms if they lived in the South and that is because the majority of them were dark-skinned Sicilians.

No idea what he’s talking about. In America at the time, Northern Italians said that Southern Italians were of a different race due to a slightly different look. Well, genetic testing shows similarities between the Northern and Southern Italians which I will get to later.

First off, it’s not only Sicilians who are ‘dark-skinned’. It’s all of Southern Europe.

UV rays

The map seen above is a map of UV rays that Europe and parts of North Africa get. Notice how North Africa and Southern Europe get the same amount of UV rays. That’s the cause of the difference in appearance between the North and South of Italy.

Mass lynchings happened to them often.

Mass lynchings happened to everyone often, not just blacks and Italians. Lynchings happened to anyone who raped, murdered, or did any other heinous crime. 27 percent of those lynched between the years of 1882-1968 were white. It wasn’t only a ‘black problem’.

One of the biggest mass lynchings happened to Italians in New Orleans when they thought that a Italian immigrant had killed a “white” police officer.

Right. It was the biggest mass lynching ever in the history of the US, 11 Italians got lynched. But, what he says about the cause being ‘killing a “white” police officer’ is unfounded. They got lynched for killing the police officer, not because they were of ‘another race’.

The very few Northern Italians that immigrated here perpetuated the myth that Southern Italians and Greeks were of a different race than them in order to save their own asses. This wasn’t true, and there are actually dark-skinned Italians all over Italy, not just in the South, as well as light-skinned Italians all over Italy.

But it is true. The differences between Northern and Southern Italians are embellished due to political reasons. There are dark-skinned Italians who live in Italy but are not genetically Italian/Greek. Yes, light-skinned ‘all over Italy’, those in the North are more Germanic, while the South has slight admixture  from North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. Though, some from the South migrated to the North and vice versa. The amount of non-white admixture in Italians is less than that of the average for Europe:

Combined data from two large mtDNA studies provides an estimate of non-Caucasoid maternal ancestry in Italians. The first study sampled 411 Italians from all over the country and found five South Asian M and East Asian D sequences (1.2%) and eight sub-Saharan African L sequences (1.9%). The second study sampled 465 Sicilians and detected ten M sequences (2.2%) and three L sequences (0.65%). This makes a total of 3% non-white maternal admixture (1.3% Asian and 1.7% African), which is very low and typical for European populations, since Pliss et al. 2005, e.g., observed 1.8% Asian admixture in Poles and 1.2% African admixture in Germans. (Plaza et al. 2003; Romano et al. 2003)

Similar data from the Y-chromosome reveals Italians’ even lower non-Caucasoid paternal admixture. Both studies obtained samples from all over the mainland and islands. No Asian DNA was detected anywhere, but a single sub-Saharan African E(xE3b) sequence was found in the first study’s sample of 416 (0.2%), and six were observed in the second study’s sample of 746 (0.8%). The total is therefore a minuscule 0.6%, which decreases to 0.4% if only Southern Italians are considered and 0% if only Sicilians are considered. Again, these are normal levels of admixture for European populations (e.g. Austrians were found to have 0.8% E(xE3b) by Brion et al. 2004). (Semino et al. 2004; Cruciani et al. 2004)

An analysis of 10 autosomal allele frequencies in Southern Europeans (including Italians, Sicilians and Sardinians) and various Middle Eastern/North African populations revealed a “line of sharp genetic change [that] runs from Gibraltar to Lebanon,” which has divided the Mediterranean into distinct northern and southern clusters since at least the Neolithic period. The authors conclude that “gene flow [across the sea] was more the exception than the rule,” attributing this result to “a joint product of initial geographic isolation and successive cultural divergence, leading to the origin of cultural barriers to population admixture.” (Simoni et al. 1999)

These studies show the opposite of what Afrocentrists, and even Nordicists say.

The reason I say very few is because over 80% of Italian immigrants were from Southern Italy (Sicily, Abruzzo, Calabria, Campania, Sardinia, Naples, etc.)

Correct, and as seen above with those 3 studies, neither of them are ‘African’. My grandmother was born in Calabria. She looked like any other normal Italian woman you see on the street. These people take their ideas from movies, take genetics information from a movie like True Romance and attempt to say that all Italians are ‘black’ or ‘African’ or ‘Moorish’.

It was highly unlikely (damn near impossible) for a Southern Italian to own a slave because they were seen as the same as blacks, and at the time, they were the second (right behind blacks) most discriminated against group.

Too bad Italians started coming to America in the 1870s. What he states doesn’t even make sense because blacks owned slaves way disproportionately than whites. 4.8 percent of Southern whites, along with the North, being 1.3 percent of all whites in America in 1860 owned slaves. There are reports from New Orleans from their 1860 census that showed 3000 freed blacks owned slaves, accounting for 28 percent of the city’s population.

In 1860 Louisiana, at least 6 blacks owned more than 65 slaves, with the biggest number of slaves being 165 slaves who worked on a sugar plantation. So even if Italians were looked at as ‘black’, as you can see, blacks themselves had no problem owning slaves, and actually did it more than whites did right before slavery ended.

A lot of this confusion comes from the race of the Moors. The Moors are a Caucasoid Muslim group from North Africa. People hear ‘Africa’ and automatically think sub-Saharan Africa. Well, the Moors were Cacausoid for one. 2, as I have shown above, the amount of Moorish/Berber admixture is minute in Italians. 3rd, I will show now that the Berbers are not sub-Saharan African.

You have other Afrocentrist websites who talk about so-called ‘black Moors’. Well, the Moors were Berbers and Arabs, who are Caucasian.

Berbers live in groups scattered across NorthAfrica whose origins and genetic relationships with their neighbours are not well established. The first hypervariablesegment of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region was sequenced in a total of 155 individuals from three Tunisian Berber groups and compared to other North Africans. The mtDNA lineages found belong to a common set of mtDNA haplogroups already described in NorthAfrica. Besides the autochthonous North African U6 haplogroup, a group of L3 lineages characterized by the transition at position 16041 seems to be restricted to North Africans, suggesting that an expansion of this group of lineages took place around 10500 years ago in NorthAfrica, and spread to neighbouring populations. Principal components and the coordinate analyses show that some Berber groups (the Tuareg, the Mozabite, and the Chenini-Douiret) are outliers within the NorthAfrican genetic landscape. This outlier position is consistent with an isolation process followed by genetic drift in haplotypefrequencies, and with the high heterogeneity displayed by Berbers compared to Arab samples as shown in the AMOVA. Despite this Berber heterogeneity, no significant differences were found between Berber and Arab samples, suggesting that the Arabization was mainly a cultural process rather than a demographic replacement.
Above are pictures of modern day Berbers.
Here is what Afrocentrists would like you to believe they looked like:
Which has no basis in genetics or history. The Moors were Caucasoid and not African.
In conclusion, Italians aren’t black, nor were they ever looked at as black. Southern Europe getting the same UV rays as Northern Africa explains the slight appearance differences between Northern and Southern Italians as well as being greatly embellished due to political reasons. Genetic testing shows lower non-European admixture than average for Europe.
On the Moors: Genetic testing shows North African admixture, as well as Arabization being a cultural process and not a demographic replacement.