Monday, December 15, 2008

The Truth About Kwanzaa

Greetings all.

If there's more to come of last night's showing of "D.L. Hughley Breaks the News" on CNN, then the controversy that Sierra Henderson of the Clark Atlanta University Panther recently wrote about stands to increase.

Yesterday I took my children to the African American Cultural Center to enjoy the Children's Kwanzaa Workshop, which features a lot of educational yet fun activities.  There was arts and crafts, reading, music and dance.  But most of all, they learned about the principles of Kwanzaa, why Dr. Maulana Karenga created it and how the principles can help them in their everyday lives. 

Ms. Limbiko Tembo coordinated the workshop.

According to the founder, Kwanzaa is a time of ingathering of the people to reaffirm the bonds between them; a time of special reverence for the creator and creation in thanks and respect for the blessings, bountifulness and beauty of creation; a time for commemoration of the past in pursuit of its lessons and in honor of its models of human excellence, our ancestors; a time of recommitment to our highest cultural ideals in our ongoing effort to always bring forth the best of African cultural thought and practice; and a time for celebration of the good (of life, existence itself, family, community, culture, the awesome and ordinary, good of the divine, natural and social).

After watching Bro. D.L. Hughley's segment about Kwanzaa on CNN last night I thought it was too bad that I didn't take him and his producers with us.  I understand the nature of comedy skits but I thought it was tragic that we have Dr. Karenga and many of the Brothers and Sisters of the Organization Us walking among us, as well as many of our other great warriors in the struggle, but we'd rather fumble around in the dark for a few dollars instead of contacting them for the basics about Kwanzaa and using the time given to really help inform our people. 

After the misinformation, it would have been nice to have the founder of Kwanzaa either in studio or on the phone for his view and analysis of what he created in 1966.
But really, CNN's real motive for the show is materializing and I believe that's to ultimately use our brother as a comedic attack dog in this changing political climate to say what network officials really want to but will not be able to.  It's an old trick but we keep falling for it.

Besides, can't we have two recurring black shows on CNN, or any other mainstream news network for that matter, at once?   I don't believe that people want to see Bro. D.L. lose his show with CNN because more opportunities for Blacks in major broadcast television is crucial, especially now.  When it's your time, it's your time and no one can take that away from you. But we have to ask why this type of content and why now?   

Where is Roland Martin?  What about Donna or Jamal or even Amy?

One Clark Atlanta student said she thought that the show concept was a good idea and at least D.L.'s getting exposure.  Yes, but exposure for what?  

The segment involved creating a song for Kwanzaa and culminated with a songwriter singing his rendition of why Blacks celebrate Kwanzaa.  

The truth is there are already several songs for Kwanzaa, created by Charles Mims, Patsy Moore and Greg Martin, in the spirit of its seven principles:  Umoja (Unity), Kujichagulia (Self Determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity), and Imani (Faith).  

The CD consists of original music and songs and is titled, "Kwanzaa for Young People (and Everyone else!)."  


Know4LIFE said...

Thank you for this article Sis Charlene. I posted your article on and on the

The enemy to Black progress and liberation is wise and knows how to use media to manipulate the minds of the masses, particularly Blacks in America. Put a popular Blacks man face in front of the screen and make Blacks think equality and fairness has arrived when the opposite is true.

D.L. Hughley Breaks the News is a joke and slap in the face of Black people. The title alone is disrespectful to Black intelligence and a misnomer. CNN would like Blacks to believe that what they are receiving from D.L.'s show is news but it is not and he is not a journalist, he's a comedian and that is what you get when you watch his show; comedy, pure and simple. They use 'News' in the title for the less informed and educated among Black (and white) people.

While I agree with you that "Blacks in major broadcast television is crucial, especially now." But as far as D.L. Hughley Breaks the News or nothing - I choose nothing. I honestly can't take another Amos & Andy Show on TV.

Charlene Muhammad said...

Bro. K4L thanks for visiting my blog and for being a follower. I understand your sentiments. Peace.