Happy Kwanzaa Black Trans Style-The 2011 Remix: Kuumba

TransGriot Note:  On each night of the Kwanzaa celebration, just as I did last year, I'm going to write about each one of those principles and explain how it applies to the chocolate trans community and our cis African descended brothers and sisters.


Kuumba (Creativity): To do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.

Haban gari    What's The News?   

It's time to light the sixth candle on the Kinara and ponder the sixth principle of the seven celebrated during Kwanzaa.

When I wrote about this principle last year it was more in terms of what I had done as an individual to live up to the kuumba principle.   This year I'm focusing more on what the African descended trans community does and can do collectively to live up to this principle. 

So let's repeat the question.  What can we do as a community to leave it more beneficial and beautiful than when we inherited it? 

First of all, the word beautiful just doesn't apply to art works or the physical features of other human beings.. It also means of a very high or excellent standard.

So what can we do to strive for and achieve that excellence?      

We can start by doing what we can where we are at that given moment to uplift the African American trans community.  It can be as small as organizing a once a month gathering of friends.  Resolving to get to know five African American transpeople you don't know and promising to yourself by the end of the year you'll form solid friendships with them. 

It can be you going back to school to further your education or encouraging someone else to do so.  It can mean that you strive to take better care of yourself and the people around you.   It can mean you become more involved not only with our community but step up to a leadership position and become a more vocal advocate in the communities we intersect with. 

Collectively, fulfilling the kuumba principle can mean we trans African Americans do a better job of working together to formulate policy that benefits all of us.   It means we redouble of efforts to achieve the social and political goals of our community.   It means we work harder to make and keep those connections between us strong.  It mean we strive to be finer specimens of humanity with each other and everyone else we come in contact with inside and outside our community.  It  means we strive to build community with our African American cis brothers and sisters and our cousins across the Diaspora.  

It also means we never stop trying to reach for and achieve excellence.  Remember, we have young African American transkids not only watching us, but counting on us to do what we need to do in a morally upright and ethical manner to leave the world better, more beautiful and more beneficial for all of us that it was when we first encountered it.

We must strive to leave it in the best possible condition for those transkids so that when they reach adulthood and it is time for us to rest after laboring to build that better world for them, they can use the kuumba principle and the examples of our ancestors as a roadmap to build upon our work.