Acknowledging and celebrating Kwanzaa was once a mandatory for me. I would literally get upset if a friend would not revel in the teachings with me. Even more disappointed if a friend displayed a hint of ignorance pertaining to Kwanzaa. Consequently, I believed it was necessary for people to know that Dr. Maulana Karenga was a FBI snitch during his reign as a Black Nationalist. That piece of information is not highlighted to discredit Karenga. I share it so that we are fully aware of what we support and hold in high regard.
The wandering of my spirit and excitement for Kwanzaa or any other black empowerment tool began its disappearing act years ago. Slowly, but surely I have begun an emotional detachment. A detachment that has intensified by simply watching the news or reading the metro/urban news sections of local newspapers.
Understanding that black life has become one of constant chasing e.g. sad seekers of a faded Greatness, I have become insulated and jaded by the reality that we, as a collective, refuse to position ourselves to be more than a politician’s rarely utilized utensil.
Our disappointing newsworthy occurrences are littered with heartbreak after heartbreak. Every single effort of The Collective is lost. It is gone. Washed away by and with the most popular pain medication of all, Christianity or some other form of mind-numbing spiritual generic.
Those of us who want something more than what we have produced for and introduced to the world undeniably try our best to remain optimistic. That futile attempt has become a waste that leads to more anguish for those men and women who continue to extend faith in a rejuvenation of The Greatness…
Take some time reviewing what once elevated us to The Greatness, the Principles of Kwanzaa. Think about Dr. Maulana Karenga’s objective. Think about how and why he became an FBI informant…a used utensil for the purpose of violently dismantling The Black Panther Party.
The last fearless assemblage of black leather jacket wearing elites that boldly rebuked what has permanently destroyed Black Americans, Integration.
Then see yourself for what you might be…a Turncoat. Many of us have put on coats that are nothing short of heritage assassination.
Umoja (Unity): To strive for and to maintain unity in the family, community, nation, and race.
Kujichagulia (Self-Determination): To define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves.
Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility): To build and maintain our community together and make our brothers' and sisters' problems our problems, and to solve them together.
Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics): To build and maintain our own stores, shops, and other businesses and to profit from them together.
Nia (Purpose): To make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness.
Kuumba (Creativity): To do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.
Imani (Faith): To believe with all our heart in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.
Now, I ask, what purpose is there in celebrating and acknowledging something so ancestrally sacred when we –black people- truly do not reflect what makes up our original existence?
Note the words/phrases in the principles’ descriptions: collective, we, our people, community, together, and own.
We are so far away from those words/phrases applying to us…let alone describing us. And, if I am wrong/off-base help me consider another truth…and if your response is, ‘This is what Kwanzaa is for...the principles are meant to guide us/to get us where we need to be.’ – please know that you are in a fairytale! You are among the confused Christian-hopefuls that believe Jesus is coming back…
We are the only group of people on the face of this earth still trying to ARRIVE…the only people trying to ARRIVE with the help of a repressive religion, Christianity. If we treated Kwanzaa as a religion…as Christianity - we would have been returned to The Greatness without a longing and desperation for Jesus!