Is it OK to call someone "black"?

I mean "African American" seems like pandering. Like a PC accommodation to racial awkwardness? I don't mind being called white, in fact it would sound a little funny to me to be called "Caucasian American" or "European american" which wouldn't even be accurate because I was... show more I mean "African American" seems like pandering. Like a PC accommodation to racial awkwardness?

I don't mind being called white, in fact it would sound a little funny to me to be called "Caucasian American" or "European american" which wouldn't even be accurate because I was born here.

I ask because at work I made a casual reference to someone being black and everyone got all awkward and someone asked me "Is black a country? Where is that?"
Update: Right but I couldn't think of the person's name, and was trying to come up with descriptive characteristics of the person to help my co-worker identify the person. That's why I mentioned that they were black.
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