Kwanzaa Day 6: Kuumba

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Today we are observing the sixth principle of Kwanzaa: Kuumba – Creativity.
The goal is to do as much as we can, in the way we can, to leave the community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it. 
Now this principle is very important in light of the decaying neighborhoods many of us are trying to live in. Since it is usually Black women that are being conditioned to hold the ‘community’ together and rally against white racism to their detriment it’s time for other people – the men – to step up. 
Until then I think the heart of this principle needs to be followed: leave the community. Perhaps once it’s been restored there can be a reunion. Hanging on the roof while a tidal wave is raging doesn’t offer the opportunity for community development though.
Now back to our scheduled message of the day. The History Channel has a society and culture section with a video on Kwanzaa traditions.

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Kwanzaa Day 5: Nia

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Today is the celebration of Kwanzaa principle five: Nia – Purpose
To goal is to make a collective vocation, building and developing the community in order to restore Black people to their traditional greatness.  (That’s a tall order!)
On this day a Zawadi (gift) that is meant to be educational, cultural or made by hand is exchanged. 
Did you know there’s a film about Kwanzaa titled, “The Black Candle” directed by M.K. Assante Jr., narrated by Maya Angelou and featuring Chuck D? You can rent it on Netflix or purchase it directly from the filmmaker at the link provided.

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More Celebrations

I forgot to include an oldie (circa 1996) but goodie from the UK group St. Etienne, “I Was Born on Christmas Day”, featuring the ethereal vocals of Sarah Cracknell.
Today is the 3rd principle of Kwanzaa: Ujima – Collective Work and Responsibility
The goal is to build and maintain a community. This is where it is imperative that people financially support those entities and companies that don’t harm the Black community, especially Black women and girls. 

For example, if a large consumer products company such as Proctor & Gamble is paying for advertising on shows that degrades the image of Black women then we should NOT lend our tacit approval by purchasing their products. If a certain music artist displays skin-shade racism don’t buy their music! It requires making informed and deliberate choices. Stop blindly supporting churches, Civil Rights organizations and even your neighborhood store if they don’t offer reciprocity in turn. We can demand equal access and fair representation by using our collective bargaining power. 

It’s like holding a large voting block on the board of a company where you can easily wield influence. It is time for people to begin strategizing and planning a long term goal and an overall course of action for the uplifting and care of those who show themselves to be allies and recognize and protect each other from the enemies. 

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