WHAT’S SO BAD ABOUT KWANZAA?

I guess it is because the “War on Christmas” was such a dismal failure. Television specials featured Christmas song both religious and secular, not one Islamic “carol” was sung, the “Muslim” president of the United States wished us all a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday, people of different religions and cultures wished me a Merry Christmas and a coffee cup is still…a…freeking…coffee cup. With such a ringing defeat it is inevitable that the internet trolls would move on to attack something else…Kwanzaa.

Kwanzaa is racist. It is contrived. SOME PEOPLE are trying to replace Christmas. The founder was a 60’s black militant with ties to the Black Power Movement and not even African. Most of these arguments are made by very “hard right” publications like…well all of them.

Is St. Patrick’s Day racist? It’s no longer a religious celebration I would say. There are a lot of racist Black Irish I would think. Wait, even Irish Black Irish are white. Okay, is Cinco de Mayo racist. It celebrates a great victory over the French…in Mexico. There are dozens of other ethno-cultural celebrations, mostly white celebrations, so why pick on Kwanzaa? Are our racist petticoats still showing?

Kwanzaa is contrived. All holidays are contrived. When Adam and Eve were created or our forefathers learned to walk on two feet, did they have a holiday to celebrate? I don’t think so. I don’t know when the celebration of Christmas first occurred. I do know there was no biblical mandate to celebrate the Birth of Christ at all. Does that detract from its importance? To learn about the origins of Christmas celebrations you might like to visit the following site: http://www.simpletoremember.com/vitals/Christmas_TheRealStory.htm

Again, why are we picking on Kwanzaa? If you are going to pick on a contrived holiday pick on St. Valentine’s Day. A former religious celebration it has become an observance of guilt for the purpose of lining the pockets of candy makers, jewelers, and florist. Kwanzaa begins on December 26 and ends January 1 and is not a religious celebration at all. It is a celebration of family, community, nation and race that competes not only with Christmas but with dozens of other end of year or New Year celebrations. Why not pick on them?

I cannot deny that Kwanzaa’s founder, Maulana Ndabezitha Karenga (born Ronald McKinley Everett) was a Sixties Black Power militant, who at the time had never set foot in Africa. He even served time on what seemed to be trumped up and politically motivated charges. He is now Dr. Karenga and teaches African Studies which I guess makes him even worse…a liberal. The Sixties were a time of social strife. Civil Rights, the War in Viet Nam, gender inequality, the Native American movement and the Chicano movement were just some of the social issues championed by people like Cassius Clay, known to us now as Muhammad Ali, or Tommie Smith’s and Juan Carlos’s Black Power Salute at the 1968 Olympics. Let’s not forget that this was just two years after the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and just two years before the assassination of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy. African-Americans might be forgiven for wanting something positive to hang on to…and still might.

To say it is not African is absurd. There are over fifty countries in Africa and some three thousand tribal units. Many of the countries did not exist at the time Africans were being shipped to the New World. Each probably has a somewhat different culture. Kwanzaa is a blending of those cultures. Many African-Americans do not have the luxury of knowing the country or tribe of their origin, so Kwanzaa is not culture specific. Whoopty doo dah! I would say celebrate to your heart’s content.

If you would wish to learn more about Kwanzaa, History.com, connected to the History Channel, has a link: http://www.history.com/topics/holidays/kwanzaa-history you might want to visit. I would say “Don’t let the facts confuse you.”

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