Ali’s death today only serves to remind us of the pain of White supremacy and that we need to be militant in our own Black struggle for liberation. We must not get comfortable when one or two laws or social norms change. Strike the iron while the iron is hot, Bob Marley said. He is a prophet. He is talking about it us, about now. We must stay militant in upholding Black self-love, Black love, Black unity, Black peace amongst each other, Black healing and unity so we can grow together spiritually, emotionally, socially and politically and economically. So we can create laws and a system that looks out for our best interests, as human beings with every right to a just and equal life.
We must push the envelope against white supremacy. We must topple it over, because as long as white supremacy is in place, we are not winning. We are settling. We must look at everything from a Pan-Afrikan perspective, and shun everything Euro-centric. We must build ourselves up apart from them because we don’t want integration if it means assimilation. We don’t need equal if our history tells us we are worth so much more. Don’t get comfortable because you discovered Black love and Black knowledge. My brothers and sisters, you’ve only just discovered a few weapons. We haven’t even started yet.
Consciousness is not meant to be trendy or comfortable. To have a higher understanding of self is to constantly push the limits and defy societal boundaries that have inadvertently been put into place. It is uncomfortable, painful and can be unnerving but in order to transcend onto a higher level, it is necessary. To be unwaveringly proud of your African roots and to support the Black Code is a political, societal, cultural and personal revolutionary statement. Stand by the Code, stand by your People.
In one account of Queen Nzinga’s life, she writes, “…Friends may betray you, mansions and servants may go; but zai (Knowledge) is forever”. This is true, what you learn cannot easily be extracted from your mind and it is up to us as Black adults to teach our young queens and kings to love themselves and to know their history, before they learn to hate themselves and take part in a prevailing culture that downplays, ignores or misrepresents the Black people’s contributions and rich history.
It is imperative to provide literature for our young queens and kings that represent their history, culture and faces. I did not grow up reading Rachel Isadora or books about Africa. I grew up reading Madeline and Caillou, and then series like Sweet Valley High. So, I’ve begun to stockpile dozens of Afro-centric children’s books for my son to cherish and read on his bookshelf. Knowledge is power.
Knowledge is power, and books are weapons. This may very well be why these books were kept out of our libraries. What will happen if a Black boy or girl reads empowering books and gains knowledge of how beautiful, strong, resourceful and intelligent Black people really are? That they can accomplish anything? That they do not have to accept the things they cannot change, but change the things they cannot accept? It will be nothing short of a revolution, and we owe it to our children to implant the seeds of knowledge and inspiration in their minds. For they will move mountains.