KWANZAA: DAY 1, UMOJA

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“Community involvement.”


Yesterday was day one of the celebration Kwanzaa. Day one focuses on Umoja, which is the community, familial, and ethnic unity. For those of you that don’t know what Kwanzaa is as a holiday, it was created back in the late 1960’s as a celebration to acknowledge those of African heritage. There are seven core principles, and yesterday was the day of that principle Umoja. And if you are African American, what does Umoja mean to you? I grew up in a predominantly African American family, but we celebrated Christmas my whole life. Now that I am an adult, I more and more lean toward the celebration of Kwanzaa. One of the reasons is because of the capitalist view of the holiday that is Christmas. But that is just a small aspect of the Christmas holiday. A second reason is that when you come from such a dismantled community, a holiday celebrating the uplifting of you becomes quite important.

And what I have noticed about the holiday is that it has grown year by year in popularity. More people are joining and leaving Christmas in greater numbers. Because of what it promotes, which brings me to day one. The community, family, and ethnic group’s togetherness. Nothing else in America is designed to uplift Black people. So with an introduction of Kwanzaa, it becomes very special. Bringing together friends and family, members of the community, working on a common core belief. And that belief is to take care of the people around you. Not just the ones who you share a kinship with, but the ones who live right next door. And with so much fragmentation, who could blame anyone for not wanting to take part in the festivities.

Day one is very important, if not the most important day because without that close bind between friends, family, and community, it becomes impossible to have the other six days that lead up to the last day. So I say Umoja, build relationships and get o know those around you. As well as strengthen the ties of kinship that already exist.


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Author: faheemjackson44

I am from Racine, Wisconsin where I was raised until I graduated high school back in the year 2006. That entire time growing up in my mother's house, I was a student athlete. My goal was to embark on a general business career or athletics. But injuries through sports stopped a sports path, so I decided upon business with a focus in marketing. While attending undergraduate school at University of Wisconsin-Parkside, I began to write screenplays in my senior year. At first it was for fun, but I quickly learned writing allow me to transfer negative energy into characters I created. This led to a decrease in depressing mood swings, which in turn boosted my quality of life. After undergraduate school in May of 2011, I move to New York City for graduate school. While pursuing my MBA, I continued to write screenplays, but always wanted to write novels as well. I finished graduate school back in the year 2014, but wrote screenplays until I began thinking of my first short film, first First Day Fears. While finishing my fifth feature length screenplay, I started to write my first novel this year. So far, I have finished my first short film and working on my next one (Freedomless Speech), and recently self published my first novel (The Boy Who Could Talk To God) and short stories book (Faheem Jackson Short Story Collection Volume 1). My feature length screenplays have been put on temporary hold to finish my short films and books, but I am making good progress on my sixth feature length screenplay. With year 2017 ending, I am currently writing my novel Precinct 86 and Faheem Jackson Short Story Collection Vol. 2. I have started teaching myself photography and will pursuing that by summer of 2018, along with my videography, podcast later on, and more research for my documentary.

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