I don't know what ticked me off the most, McDougal's stereotyped view of Africans or the media hype USA for Africa has turned African famine into.

Typical of most Western journalists, the tone in McDougal's writing is that the Africans are primitive people, doomed to death, disease, and poverty because of their backwardness and incompetence. But not one word about centuries of colonial oppression, the slave trade or the fact that most African countries have gained independence only within the last three decades.

Still, McDougal's report does a service by raising questions about the money that groups like USA for Africa and others are raising in the name of hunger. How is it being spent? Who gets what? What impact is the aid making on African lives?

Hopefully, USA for Africa will announce its plans for spending the money now that they have "gathered the facts." We are waiting.



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