Biden hailed African leaders on Tuesday with praise for the “limitless” potential of “the nation of Africa” — appearing to forget that Africa is a continent containing 55 separate nations.
The latest vice-presidential gaffe took place at the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington D.C. “If Africa’s governance and institutions can put its people in a place commensurate with their possibilities, the sky is the limit.” Biden asserted. “I mean, it is limitless.”
“There’s no reason that the nation of Africa cannot and should not join the world’s most prosperous nations in the near term, in the decades ahead,” he continued. “There’s simply no reason.”
Some Africans seem to take this common Western mistake personally. Former President Bill Clinton was called out in The Guardian last January for this tweet:
— Bill Clinton (@billclinton) July 31, 2013
The author called the message “as meaningless as announcing that he landed between Calgary and Buenos Aires.”
If Biden can’t discover how to distinguish between nations and the continents upon which they reside, perhaps he should just stick to speaking to Australians. Keeps it simple.