WHY BLACKS NEED TO RETHINK THE HOLIDAYS
BLACK/AFRIKAN PEOPLE AND EUROPEAN HOLIDAYS
Holidays are an important part of teaching cultural values but Black people are learning
to embrace European values. A holiday is a celebration of an event that is valuable to use
by a collective group of people. Through celebrating holidays, children learn what is
valuable and correct as well as what is not. African people in the United States (or people
of African ancestry whether called Black, African Americans, Afro-Americans, Colored, or Negroes) have been celebrating European/White holidays and rejecting Black holidays. Celebrating European/White Holidays is a direct consequence of being removed from our native land-Africa, and being prevented from maintaining our cultural ties with Africa. Caucasians/Whites have colonized almost every country in the world and brought with them
their beliefs and holidays. What many people do not realize is that many of the European holidays have been built around untruths or lies. This miseducation has hurt all people, including Caucasians/Whites, and has been at the root of racism-creating propaganda to
shape the beliefs of the masses.
As a child, I enjoyed the European holidays but once I started reading and learning about the origins of holidays in the United States, I had to rethink my own behavior and what I
was going to teach my children. I decided that teaching truth was more important than repeating lies. Why would I want to tell my child that a fat Caucasian/White male comes
down my chimney and gives my child gifts? If you are on a tight budget, which I was when my son was young, you really do not want to tell your children that a Caucasian is able to
buy things that perhaps you could not afford. The interesting process of teaching these holiday lies is that when children are assessed by a psychologist for social maturity,
believing in these lies-Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, etc. are used as indicators of socially delayed functioning. Psychologists label Black children with deficits because Black children believe the lies about the holidays long past the age Caucasian children believe the lies.
Let us look at some of the romanticized holidays:
Independence Day (4th of July) – People commonly refer to this day as the day “we” won “our” freedom. The 4th of July was the day the Europeans, in what is now called the United States won “their” freedom from their European relatives. Africans were still enslaved by these same free Europeans. Indigenous People in America (commonly referred to as
Indians) were being pushed off their land and those who were not killed by bullets or
biological warfare (smallpox was intentionally given to Native Americans- to kill them) were forced onto reservations.
Columbus Day – Anyone can tell you “Columbus discovered America.” However, very few people can tell you that this Italian Jew was lost and just as his crew was about to mutiny,
he sighted land. Not America, but Espanola, now called Haiti and the Dominican Republic. You cannot “discover” a land already inhabited. You can be an invader. Reporting that Columbus discovered America is like me finding your house and “discovering” it and
claiming it as mine. Columbus never set foot on North or South America and when he
talked to the people native to Espanola, he was told that black-skinned people had been
there trading with them for many years. The queen who approved his stealing for her, imprisoned Columbus because he was also stealing from her-a fact that seldom makes it
into history books. He did contribute to the beginning of the slave trade. Columbus was a thief, rapist, and mass murderer.
Thanksgiving – Described as the day the Pilgrims, “Sat down in peace with the Native
Americans and ate a turkey dinner.” Thanksgiving is a holiday created in response to the massacre of the Indigenous People (referred to as “savages” by the Pilgrims and in the Constitution) by the Pilgrims and the deliverance of a new homeland from the “heathen
savages.” This is a “National Day of Mourning” for Indigenous People who were tortured, raped, massacred, broken treaties, and forced assimilation through boarding schools that committed many atrocities.
Halloween – “Trick-or-Treat” and dressing up in costumes. Halloween is the holiest day
for Satan worshippers. It is the day of “blood and sacrifice.” The razor blades placed in
candy and apples are consistent with the true purpose of this evil holiday. In the field of psychology, dissociative identity disorder (formerly called multiple personality disorder) has been linked to satanic rituals-many of which are performed on Halloween.
Christmas-The day of the savior’s birth. Well not quite. Christmas is actually the day Nimrod was born (Read your Bibles!). Jesus was not born in December. Nimrod was wicked and promised to return. He commanded his followers to place lights on the evergreen tree
and to bring him presents. Nimrod vowed that with his return would come grief,
selfishness, greed, and a preoccupation with the material. Does this ring any bells?
(No pun intended).
Valentine’s Day – Valentine’s Day is the day we give a heart to the one we love. Giving
hearts is a tradition that was started by the Roman Emperor Constantine who had a preference for male lovers and forbade any marriages. St. Valentine was secretly
performing marriage ceremonies. Once Constantine learned of this violation of his orders,
he demanded that St. Valentine be killed and that his heart be brought to him. Constantine reportedly ate St. Valentine’s heart!
Washington’s Birthday-The first president of the United States and the “Father of
American Freedom.” Washington was a slave owner and fathered many African children.
He caught pneumonia while exercising his “slave master’s rights” to sexually abuse an
African woman he had as a “chattel slave.” Washington later died from pneumonia, and
that’s no lie!
St. Patrick’s Day- St. Pat was famous for killing snakes in Ireland. Scientists have documented that there is no history of snakes ever inhabiting Ireland. St. Patrick actually killed African
people who wore the symbol of snakes on their heads like the ancient Kemetans/Kmts (Egyptians).
Good Friday – The day Jesus died for our sins. Jesus was an Abyssinian. Abyssinia is Ethiopia. Jesus was Black and an African. The persecutors of Jesus were the Romans, who were Europeans (Whites/Caucasians). There is a saying among racist Europeans, “The only good nigger is a dead nigger.” Thus, we see why the day Jesus was murdered was a “good” day. Shouldn’t the day Jesus was resurrected be the good day? Think about it!
I could go on but space does not permit. I am sure you get the message. As one of my
heroes, El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz (Malcolm X), stated, “The language and logic of the
oppressor cannot be the language and the logic of the oppressed.” So, what can we as African/Black people celebrate? Our African heroes and sheroes such as Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr., Queen Nzinga, Harriet Tubman, Nelson and Winnie Mandela. Celebrate
them by continuing the work of those who are now our warrior ancestors and supporting
those who are still living and need our help.
Celebrate the following Black Holidays:
January 1 – Emancipation Proclamation-Lincoln revealed on September 22, 1862, that he would free those African people in the 11 states that seceded from the Union if these
states did not rejoin the Union by January 1, 1863.
January 15 – Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Birthday-Third Monday in January – National Martin
Luther King Jr. Holiday.
January 31-13th Amendment-On December 6, 1865, Congress abolished slavery in all
February-Black History Month-The “Father of Black History”, Dr. Carter G. Woodson started with a week in 1926. It was increased to a month in 1976. Black history must be taught every day in every school and business.
February 21 –Assassination of Malcolm X- El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz (Malcolm X) was
assassinated in 1965.
May 19 – Malcolm X’s Birthday-Born on May 19 in 1925. He was murdered on February 21, 1965. He spoke out against racism and urged Blacks to work together to create Black sufficiency and to heal from the effects of racism.
May 25 – African Liberation Day-A day to remind us that all Blacks on the planet have the same struggle against racism (white supremacy).
June 19 – Juneteenth-Also known as Emancipation Day, Jun Jun, and Freedom Day. When
Blacks in the United States heard the news of freedom from slavery in June 1865.
November 28-Umoja Karamu-Unity feast celebrated the 4th Sunday of November to
promote family unity.
Dec. 26 – Jan. 1 – Kwanzaa. A celebration of our African roots, present accomplishments,
and future goals.
Learn more about your African Heritage. For example, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day,
from an African perspective is the day parents bring a child into the world. This means that
if you have 5 children, you celebrate their birthdays as Mother’s, Father’s, Grandparent’s, Aunt’s, and Uncle’s Day. It makes a lot of sense. Doesn’t it? Read more in Afrikan People
and European Holidays: A Mental Genocide, book I and II by Rev. Ishakamusa Barashango,
and African Holidays by James Anyike.
Harambee! Harambee! Harambee! (Let us all pull together).
Hotep (Peace and Blessings)- Ayo Maria Gooden, Ph.D., ABPBC, LLC
Guest Contributor- DeBorah Gilbert White, Ph.D.
The second week in November is designated National Hunger and Homelessness
Awareness Week. The week is a time to bring focus and promote advocacy for social
change regarding poverty through educating the public and garnering support for local anti-poverty groups and agencies. During this week, across the country, groups generate
publicity about hunger and homelessness by holding events that engage the wider
community in addressing the issue of poverty, with special emphasis on hunger and homelessness. Since 1975, the National Coalition for the homeless, and the National
Student Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness has worked collaboratively to
promote this week on college campuses and in the wider community. HerStory Ensemble,
the community-based organization I founded, has sponsored awareness and educational events across Delaware in the years preceding Covid-19.
The Covid-19 pandemic provided an opportunity for many people to understand how
fragile maintaining their own income and housing could be. People were forced to think
about meeting their basic needs of food and shelter, who never had to before. However,
there were many whose constant struggle to do the same, became more evident. Hunger
and Homelessness Awareness Week is designed to educate the public, draw attention to the problem of poverty, and obtain more volunteers and supporters for local groups and
agencies working to eradicate it. Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week is a time
to lift various equity and justice issues connected to poverty and housing in the United
States. People identified as immigrants, LGBTQA, children, poor, and the many individuals
and families without safe, secure, permanent housing can be counted among the most vulnerable in this country. Counted among them are people identified as Black/African American, Indigenous, and other people of color (Melanics) who historically have endured systemic oppression impacting owning housing and other opportunities that support
economic growth and generational success.
People who are identified as poor in the United States of America live with a continuous social stigma. Social psychologists explain stigma as having a “spoiled identity” that is reflective of both extreme negative perceptions and social rejection. It is believed that
among those identified as poor, that people identified as homeless are the most
stigmatized. This is nothing new and unfortunately will most likely continue to be so until
we as individuals, society, and nation stop the perpetuation of erroneous beliefs, myths,
and stereotypes connected to poverty; specifically homelessness. As we watch the
country’s legislators regarding the Build Back Better Plan go back and forth about free community college, affordable childcare, free universal pre-K, paid family leave, the environment, and increasing housing affordability and access, we are reminded that we
have yet a long way to go. However, we are encouraged that the conversation is happening and that people are fighting to do what is necessary and for what is just.
As advocates for people facing hunger, and experiencing homelessness, we often
encounter challenges to policies, practices, and legislation that can move us toward more equitable responses to poverty issues. Equity translates to providing people with what they need. Something the Build Back Better Plan aims to do. Those among us with less, those among us who walk through life differently, and those among us needing to ask for help should not have their dignity, humanity, and existence hanging in the balance every day,
and at every turn.
As we near Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week 2021, and enter the time of year
where much focus is given to those among us who do not have enough food, clothing, and
are unhoused and identified as homeless, let us continue to support and meet immediate needs, but also push forward to address those things that make and keep people poor, such
as the lack of a living or housing wage, affordable childcare, and access to low-income affordable permanent housing. Let this not be another season where we seek to feel good
by doing good, but let it be one where we connect our charity to justice and become advocates for change. Advocacy is a frustrating process, but a necessary process for transforming circumstances. Connect with groups and organizations locally and nationally
that are doing advocacy work addressing poverty, by preventing and ending homelessness.
Let our pledge as individuals, organizations, society, and a nation through our actions
reflect the belief that everyone should have enough to eat, and that housing is a human
right. Let this be a time to promote equity, justice, food security, and housing for all.
To learn more about Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week 2021 and to register an event visit:
To learn more about the Build Back Better Plan visit https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/07/22/fact-sheet-how-the-build-back-better-plan-will-create-a-better-future-for-young-americans/.
DeBorah Gilbert White is a social psychologist and community advocate working with groups and organizations addressing issues of housing and homelessness. She is the founder of HerStory
Ensemble LLC; an organizational member of the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH) and
currently working with their national Bring America Home Now campaign, and an individual member
of the NCH's Faces of Homelessness Speakers Bureau. Dr. Gilbert White is the author of Beyond Charity: A Sojourner's Reflections on Homelessness, Advocacy, Empowerment and Hope. Visit www.herstoryensemble.com to learn more.
The Ballard Of The Landlord-
My roof has sprung a leak.
Don't you 'member I told you about it
Way last week?
These steps is broken down.
When you come up yourself
It's a wonder you don't fall down.
Ten Bucks you say I owe you?
Ten Bucks you say is due?
Well, that's Ten Bucks more'n I'l pay you
Till you fix this house up new.
What? You gonna get eviction orders?
You gonna cut off my heat?
You gonna take my furniture and
Throw it in the street?
Um-huh! You talking high and mighty.
Talk on-till you get through.
You ain't gonna be able to say a word
If I land my fist on you.
Come and get this man!
He's trying to ruin the government
And overturn the land!
Headlines in press:
MAN THREATENS LANDLORD
TENANT HELD NO BAIL
JUDGE GIVES NEGRO 90 DAYS IN COUNTY JAIL!
Join Us for our next MBONGI during the month of November titled
Food and Mood Natural Treatment of Stress
presented by Dr. Faruq Iman and Dr. Tashekah Smith
Date and Time to be announced. Please visit the DVABPSI website for updated information.
The Black Health Trust presents every Sunday 12:00 pm PDT/3:00 EDT
Visit https://www.blackhealthtrust.org/ for updates and more information.
Opportunity to Advertise in DIRECTIONS Newsletter
Advertisements can be submitted for review and publication at least three weeks before the next month's issue along with a check, money order payable to
Delaware Valley Association of Black Psychologists (DVABPsi), or online payment. Advertisement rates are as follows:
Full Page: $100.00
Half Page: $50.00
Quarter Page: $25.00
Business Card: $15.00
Mailing address: DeBorah Gilbert White, Editor
Delaware Valley Association of Black Psychologists
P.O. Box 502
Westtown, PA 19395-0502
Members of DVABPsi are encouraged to submit articles, poems, announcements, quotations, employment opportunities, and information related to undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate programs in psychology. Currently, we are seeking Guest Contributors for our 2022 issues. Members of DVABPsi are invited to be
Guest Contributors. Submit articles along with a short bio and headshot. Pictures
and graphics can also be submitted with articles.
Contact the DIRECTIONS Newsletter team for additional information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2021, Delaware Valley Association of Black Psychologists