There is so much that has been going on within the Black communities lately. It is enough to make people begin to question everything around them. Instead of the nation moving forward it seems to be taking steps backwards. So, what we as Black people have to do is remind ourselves who we are and that we always have to keep pressing forward. We owe it to the generations to come to show them that we are a group of people who will never be defeated. The more you push, try to humiliate, and break, the stronger we rise. Let’s take time to affirm ourselves and others with this….
1. Black is Beautiful
We come in various shades of beauty. From light tone mother-of-pearl to black-blue. We are lucky and some older people like to say blessed to not show the stress, trials or tribulations on our face. Our skin retains its youth like no other group on the planet. We enjoy straight, and kinky tresses. Our bodies are curvaceous, muscular, and thick in all the best places. From the switch in a mother’s hips to the swag in the Black man’s stride. Everything about us is beautiful, smooth, strong and gracious. Remember the words of Ruby Dee: “The kind of beauty I want most is the hard-to-get kind that comes from within—strength, courage, dignity.”
2. Black is BRILLIANT
So much talent consumes our race. Look around at all the accomplishments within our group. We hold claim to our own people, Harriet Tubman, Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, James Baldwin, W.E.B Dubois and many more of their time. Now, move into our time and we have had Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Maya Angelou, Aretha Franklin, Beyoncé, and who is in now sitting in the White House, President Barack Obama. We identify with none other than brilliance. Generations to come will have to huge shoes to fill.
3. Black is ENTERPRISING
It is all about making those Benjamin’s within our communities. From the beginning of time until now, men have been all about making that money. Regardless, of what other groups want you to believe, you know that on any given day strolling through black communities, you will see men out on the street turning a profit. Whether they selling bottled water or lemonade, they making that money. Then there is the black woman sitting on the stoop braiding hair for $150 a head, figuring that $18 beats minimum wage any day. She about making that money too. However, the media will make you think that everyone in the Black community is unemployed, living on welfare and public housing. However, Black people know differently. You know that it extremely rare to catch a Black man or woman with a dime in their pocket.
4.Black is PHENOMENAL
Nothing stays the same in the Black culture. From the way we walk, talk, look and dress, we are always switching things up a bit. Just when society thinks it has us figured out, when our styles and ideas are already on the cultural copier, we switch it up. Black people are both the noun and the verb of this affirmation. We are not only just constantly undergoing change, progressing toward destiny, ever evolving.
5. Black is RESOURCEFUL
You think MacGyver was resourceful, well guess what? He does not come close to Black people. You need a hair bow for your daughter? Go over there and get a ribbon off the Christmas package, that don’t work? Take that fancy shoestring and tie it in a bow. Got a squeaky door hinge, but no WD-40? Hey, there’s some Vaseline in the closet, give that a try. Don’t even talk about stretching a paycheck. Black folks can live off of $20 for a week and possibly longer. You got a problem, a Black person most likely know a solution
6. Black is PASSIONATE
It does not matter what we are discussing or watching, you can believe you are going to get an earful from one of us. We have to share our experiences and let you know how we feel about the ordeal. You can sit in any barber shop, beauty salon, church or family gathering and you will find Black people having profound, and well some no profound conversations. We can’t quench our enthusiasm or spirit.
7. Black is VIGILANT
We have one another’s back. We watch, listen, and stand guard. Generations through generations have been rooted with this from our ancestors. We are watchful and attentive to the needs of our people. We commit and recommit if we have to. We protect what we believe in and what is ours. We matter to one another. The struggle is not just one persons it is everyone’s within the circle.
8. Black is CREATIVE
Black people have been creative since the beginning of time. We can take rags and turn them into a complete Sunday outfit. We can take pen and paper and turn it into a best-selling novel. We can take music and moving our hips to a brand new genre and dances that sweep the nation. If there is an area where Black people have been free to explore and make their mark, it has been done. Again! We are some of the most creative people you will ever meet.
9. Black is POWERFUL
We have Black people have the power to be and do anything that we set our minds to do. The worst thing is to think that you do not have power, when in actuality you have just as much as anyone else. Whenever in doubt of our abilities, all we have to do is think of where we come from as a people, to where we are standing tall now as a people. As one we are strong, as two we are might strong, but as a nation of Black people united we are Powerful!
10. Black is RESILIENT
As a people here we are still standing. We have been beat, enslaved, segregated and here we are still standing. There is nothing that you can be done that will keep us down. As the late Maya Angelou would say, “And I Rise,” that is us. We keep pressing forward and on. Even now, with so many of our young men and women being killed, we keep moving on. Another thing that Maya Angelou taught us, “We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated.” And we won’t be. We are here. We won’t die. We are resilient!