Tag Archives: black children

Martial Arts for Black Kids

My almost four-year-old son is enjoying his second week of martial arts. It’s one of the few places and times that he is focused, disciplined and strives to try harder. In general, my son is boisterous and confident–and martial arts is a great way to channel that energy! Bruce Lee himself was a defiant, strong-willed kid, and he grew up to become a legend.

We need outlets for our Black children, and the opportunity to let their personalities shine. We cannot squash their strong-will and defiance–indeed, these are qualities that can prove to be beneficial when given the right conduit. The most courageous, impactful leaders did not arise from timid, perfect children. I am not a perfect parent, and I’m often exasperated and at my wit’s end with my headstrong boy. I’m glad martial arts can provide an avenue for self-discipline and focus.

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The Lion’s Mane

  Greetings! I have not posted in a bit which means I’m acquiring knowledge, or, more likely, busy washing dishes and doing laundry. Tomorrow is African Liberation Day, and in celebration I’m locking my 2 year old’s hair, using the freeform method. I did that 2 years ago and loved my freeform locs and the journey of healing and patience that it came to signify for me. However, my hair now is unlocked, and I wear my hair natural although recently I started wearing a crown.

  

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  My son (in yellow, with a Rasta friend) likes his Rasta friends’ locs and responded in the affirmative when I suggested he loc his hair, too. While I’m not a Rastafarian, I do accept many Rasta ideologies in my own lifestyle and beliefs–particularly the Afro-centric and political views. The only thing that I do not agree with, apart from worshiping Haile Selassie, is the patriarchal dominance. I believe a liberated Black woman’s role is as important as a liberated Black man’s role and we should not be placed on a pedestal and worshiped; but seen as equals and comrades in the fight against Babylon and the unity of the African people.

    So, back to the hair. I am excited to begin locking up his hair and to see the transformation because it is always a spectacular (and slow) process. Although for the next few weeks his hair will look like a bird’s nest. But it’s not just a hair “style”, it is a daily visual reminder of our African roots and a beautifully aesthetic way to reject the Straight Hair Ideal of the dominant culture.

   

Black Extinction

Africans can only rise when we cease self-loathing and return to Ubuntu and self-love -Ama Biney

I recently perused through an Instagram account of unbelievably beautiful children from a Mixed Babies Contest page that had over 75,000 followers and various parents vying to get their cute kids featured for hundreds, likely a few thousand likes.

And, yes, biracial and multiracial children are beautiful. So are White children. And Aboriginal children. And Hispanic children, too. You know what other children are beautiful? Black children are beautiful. And if we think we are doing our children a favour by making them less Black, well yes, life will probably be easier for them with Europeanized features and silkier hair.

But that’s not the point! If I had my son after I became consciously Black, I’d have the Blackest, most African kid out there. My child would be Black mixed with Black as F#@%. We all seem to think lighter is better, but if all our biracial children choose non-Black partners…what will happen to the Black race in just one or two generations? We will cease to exist, and no KKK had to put a rope around our necks.

  I’m not saying divorce your White husband and go find Djimon Hounsou, and have 6 babies. I am saying that the Black family is dysfunctional and we need to come together, have our Black children and raise them proud of their deeply rich, hued skin. We need to stop fetishizing biracial children and start paying attention to the beauty of our own selves and the beauty of Black children. All love is beautiful, but if you want to continue having the opportunity to marry a Black woman or man, you’ll need Black women and men around in the future.

    We need to love ourselves, and teach our children that Black is Beautiful. So they can marry whoever they fall in love with, and not rule a Black woman or man out.