December 4, 2008

Speaking of Christmas, I don't like much Kwanzaa either

Okay, I'm going to just whisper this entire post so lean in close to your screen. Good? Okay.

I already did my Christmas hate post and I was going to leave it at that, but frankly I'm no where near done with the Holidays. Come see me at Easter and Lent.

So anyway, I've drank a lot of Kool Aid and eaten far too many cookies for a healthy person (I swear I'm older than 10) so rather than bouncing off the walls and out the window, let me talk about Kwanzaa.

I first learned about Kwanzaa in 2nd grade as essentially the black alternative to Christmas. To me it sounded a whole lot like Hanukkah and I actually voiced this opinion but it kinda fell on deaf ears. So in elementary school to...well about middle school I guess all I knew of Kwanzaa was that it was the Black Man's Christmas. Under this guise I couldn't figure out for the life of me why blacks needed a separate Christmas/Hanukkah hybrid.

My other memory of Kwanzaa was...well, I was in chorus for two years and we did a holiday special that included Christmas, Hanukkah and yup, Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa was flippantly mentioned after Hanukkah (again, I'm puzzled) and we even had the girl in the "typical" African garb. Then we did a Hanukkah song that is still the talk of the family to this day (you just had to be there, it was flippin' hilarious).

So as I said, I went most of my life just knowing that Kwanzaa was the black alternative to Christmas and not much else. It wasn't until later that, through a series of circumstances I don't remember, I just got on Wikipedia and looked up the damn holiday.

What I saw confused me even more. Guess what, Kwanzaa isn't JUST the "black alternative" to Christmas, it's more than that. But also, my mother is older than the celebration of Kwanzaa. Yes, I'd also gone around thinking it was an ancient holiday turns out it's probably about 50 years old. Well, that was shattering.

I know Wikipedia isn't the most trustworthy source out there but it actually helped me understand the basics of Kwanzaa and led me to do my own research. That's how I found out I really don't like Kwanzaa, and that's why I'm still whispering this whole post *is hoarse, takes a drink of water*

I, T R Xands, of questionably sound mind and body, do solemnly declare that I think Kwanzaa is silly.


Yes, I said it and I'm not ashamed! Well, I am a little. "Silly" is really too flippant a term, I don't think it's so much silly that I just disagree with it is all. I'm not quite sure how to put this without sounding all self-loathing or offensive to people who do celebrate Kwanzaa. I guess I should say, I like the concept of Kwanzaa but I've never truly understood why, like Christmas or Hanukkah (I had to even it up a little even though Hanukkah is a little different) these principles (the 7 principles) are relegated to a week or so of "celebration". That just seems odd. Give presents and be a decent person all year round; likewise, live out these 7 principles all year round.

I'll have to pick on Kwanzaa some more because I don't hate it for religious reasons like Christmas, it mostly just seems to be political/personal reasons that I just find the whole thing a little weird. I feel a little jilted because I don't think I've ever met anyone that seriously celebrated Kwanzaa (now I have seen people that half ass it for whatever reason they feel the need to). So...yeah, there will definitely be more holiday hate coming up.

Alright, let me stop whispering.

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