Using Kwanzaa to take inventory of America

Kwanzaa, the African American holiday, provides a much-needed framework and mechanism for evaluating American society.  The holiday call for a serious assessment of what we have done and what our practice has been over the past year, measured against seven principles: Unity, Self-determination, Collective Work and Responsibility, Cooperative Economics, Purpose (collective vocation of nation-building), Creativity (continuous improvement) and Faith.

Survey after survey indicates that most Americans believe that the country is on the wrong track. A review of the headlines in major daily newspapers reaffirm the beliefs of many of these Americans and reveals:  Our real guiding values and type of society we are and are becoming: violent, Fort Hood and Orlando shooting, the gang rape in Richmond California, indifferent, intolerant, xenophobic, selfish and self-centered, callous and insensitive, scapegoat-focused and celebrity-focused,  health care paraded as a debate but resembled   more WWE Smackdown, the daily gang shooting of innocent youth, the demonizing of President Obama and Speaker Pelosi and health care legislation, the mud slinging and name-calling that passes for punditry and commentary, and the “Celebrity of the Month misdeed and misbehavior.

All of this stands in stark contrast to what we profess to be and what we have become and are becoming.  The general welfare, for example has become an empty statement in the American Constitution.  The general welfare means the well-being of Wall Street. The mythical “melting pot” has now reached a boiling point where hostility and blame are heaped upon immigrants of color.

From now until the end of Kwanzaa, we will use the Kwanzaa framework to evaluate news events, and offer commentary on the state of the nation and political process.  Surely, there are examples of everyday people and high profile celebrities and political leaders who are exemplars of the seven principles listed above.  We will highlight these persons as well as those who have passed before us.  The imperative of now is to set forth a set of governing principles that will inform and guide our personal and political practice.  It is no longer a matter of which political party you support or what the political parties are saying, namely the Democrats and Republicans- it’s now what they practice and what values or principles guide their practice.


Tags: , ,

2 Responses to “Using Kwanzaa to take inventory of America”

  1. Don Williams Says:

    The Principles of Kwanzaa are so important to the survival of Black People in America. My fovarites are Umoja & Ujamaa.

    • kwanzaaguide Says:

      I agree; in today’s context, they are essential to African American to rebuild thier familes and to refocus the direction of black males.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: