Thursday, January 04, 2007
some "final" thoughts on kwanzaa
I'm still a little surprised by the Kwanzaa backlash (e.g. Jerry Falwell's War On Kwanzaa or Ann Coulter). The holiday period has apparently gone from being an obscure cultural nationalist celebration to being a dangerous threat to the right-wing. I'm honestly not sure where this over-reaction is coming from. Sadly, the most common anti-Kwanzaa argument found in the blogosphere recently is also the least logical (i.e. an ad homiem attack on Karenga, the founder of the holiday). What the critics don't seem to realize is that Kwanzaa is not intended as Maulana Karenga Day. In my opinion, its validity as a holiday has more to do with the value of Pan-Africanism and the specific principles of the Nguzo Saba. Even if you want to argue that Karenga was a bastard, the important issue has to do with the values of unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.