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Shirley Chisholm for President! #Throwback Black History Month Post

Hello All! I found 3 posts of Shirley Chisholm on my blog and chose this one as my favorite one as they each highlighted different accomplishments. I literally love her and her tenacity, it reminds me of me; which is why many people told me to run for Congress. As we move forward as a people, it is women’s voices and actions that will elevate us. It will also be men, but it will be in unity with Black women. We will lead some battles and some men will lead others, but we will no longer erase Black women from history. Enjoy my favorite activist “auntie”, Shirley Chisholm! Happy Black History Month! I look forward to continuing to create Black history with you all, all year round.


Shirley Chisholm, a descendant of Bajans (Barbados) born and raised in New York City, is the first Black woman to ever be voted into United States Congress in 1968. She is a woman of many firsts. As the first Black Person and First Black woman to ever run for president of the United States, as well as the first woman to run for the Democratic Party; she was “Unbought and Unbossed” as she titled her first published book. I resonate with her so much because I have the same sentiments, everything I do doesn’t need sponsorship or censorship, I move according to conviction on what’s right. Ms. Chisholm did the same.

Like many of us with parents from other countries, Shirley Chisholm spent time in Barbados which she credited for her strict education and structured upbringing. She credits her grandmother for giving her a sense of pride in herself that she didn’t need from others.

Prior to entering politics, Ms. Chisholm worked as a teachers aide until gaining her masters degree in early childhood education. While directing a daycare; she became well known for her advocacy on early childhood issues. She had a spirit of advocacy which carried her through her time at the New York State Legislature & all the way until her time at Congress. She helped create many policies that directly affected disadvantaged people, such as the SEEK program (Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge) to the state, which provided disadvantaged students the chance to enter college while receiving intensive remedial education.

Ms. Chisholm ran for Congress with the slogan “unbought and unbossed” as she campaigned to women voters due to strong opposition from men. Her election to congress made her the first Black woman and only woman elected that year. She played a critical role in the creation of the SNAP food program for women and children, and expanded the food stamp program. As a member of the education and labor committee, she was the third highest ranking member. Half of Ms. Chisholm’s staff was black women, while she only hired women as staffers. She was also a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Later in her career, Shirley Chisholm decided to explore the option of running for president. She became the first black personality to run for presidency as part of a major party. Although criticized, she understood the dynamics of what she was running up against so it did not discourage her; she ended up finishing in 7th place. She is also the first woman to ever appear in a presidential debate.

The reason I look up to Ms. Shirley Chisholm is because like many Black women, she led the way. She kept herself high and did not let the discouragements of a majority stop her. Everything she did was to uplift and create change for underprivileged people, and she was not there for just politics. She stood her ground and even though the works may not talk about her much; she created a legacy that any Black woman who wants to be a politician can look up to. She shows us that it’s possible to be genuine and not follow the clear set rules; but break them in a good way to create lasting change.

I plan to follow in Ms. Chisholm’s footsteps; thank you for layout out the blueprint for young change makers like myself!

~Ndidi Love~

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Jumping the Broom, no, Crossing the Sticks? Or Both! #Throwback Black History Month Post

Hello All! This blog post featured below is probably the shortest blog post I’ve ever written, but not much explanation was needed. I’ve often had to challenge myself when it comes to Black history. Something that seems so small usually means something so big, but the narrative having been watered down doesn’t always allow us to fully appreciate it. Just as any other culture who has customs, when it is told in it’s original form, not downplayed by outsiders, it can be authentically passed down to generations. Well, considering the great value Africans held for nature, I am pretty sure this crossing sticks custom held much more meaning outside of slavery, but when that communication was cut off, we had to reinvent many traditions, however, we’ve always found a way to remain African. That is why for us specifically, who have had our cultures robbed and forced to replace with others, being African is in spirit! I remember once meeting a woman who had love for basketweaving, and she told me that once she did her ancestry test, she found out that the tribe she is a descendant of from in Ghana was famous for basketweaving. I mention this because, melanated gems, we may have love for something that may mean so little to those around us, but it tells a greater story of our ancestry than we ever knew. Wow! This excerpt is longer than the original blog post, enjoy below!

CULTURE TUESDAYS

We’ve all heard of the wedding tradition of jumping the broom, but what about crossing sticks? Crossing sticks is a tradition that dates back to the slavery era where African-American couples demonstrated their commitment by crossing tall wooden sticks. Crossing the sticks, represented the power and life force within trees which, for the couple, symbolized a strong and grounded beginning.

❤️

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We Are Making Black History #SoulfulSundays

Hello All! It’s the last day of Black History Month but we all know DiasporAfri celebrates the Global Black Diaspora all year long. I want to let you, Melanated Gem, know that we are making Black History, and we’ve always made it. We’ve been put in a unique position where just coming out of our house, being ourselves, wearing our hair the way it was created, and being unapologetically us is an accomplishment. Not that I like us to see it that way, but the reality for many Black people is that we are waking up everyday and learning to love ourselves. When I say waking up, I mean waking up to the oppressive ways and brainwashing that taught us to hate ourselves.

Because of you, Melanated Gem, your children and grandchildren will love themselves too, that is why you’re making history. We literally had the whole world screaming Black Lives Matter less than a year ago, and we still manage to overcome in an area where we don’t even feel safe, an area that’s laws are built against our very existence. Consider yourself a history maker, trail blazer, creative thinker, and movement maker. You are it, Melanated Gem, you are rare, and you are the one to make change in your generation. Each day you wake up and decide to be your unapologetic Black self, you make history. Others are looking at you, kids are looking at you, older people are looking at you: anyone can pull from your strength. Then your strength begets strength and we build up that unity we’re looking for in the Global Black Diaspora. Well at least that’s how my life works.

Be proud of yourself, Melanated Gem, whether you impacted your neighbor or impacted the world, your impact is felt and is worth you continuing to wake up everyday. Continue to be unapologetically Black on March 1st, and forever. Black History Month just highlights a very few greats, in comparison to what we do everyday. We are the culture, we set the trends, we create the standards, even if we don’t get the credit, we are Black history.

Well, Melanated Gem, I have something just for you, authentic and handmade by me, Ndidi Love; waist beads, headbands, and bracelets with powerful messages to speak to who you are. You guessed it, it’s called Melanated Gem! Check out this blog post I wrote on the history of African Waist Beads, then check out a few pictures from the collection below and I’ll notify you in a few days when they begin to go on sale!

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Siddi People of Pakistan: #Throwback Black History Month Post

Hello All! I can see that you really like these throwback Black History Month posts. I have been posting most of them to my twitter page (are you following me yet?), and sharing one a day with you all to respect your inbox. Since there is only 3 more days in Black History Month, in which I’ll only be posting 2 of those days, I decided to give you a little treat. Yesterday I posted on twitter about Afro-Palestinians that live in Palestine. Today I want to feature a throwback post about the Siddi people who live in Pakistan and have lived there for the past 600 years! They are descendants of the Bantu people of Africa, unfortunately they arrived in Pakistan through slavery. Enjoy the post, and check out more information on the SIddi of Pakistan, here, The Siddi Project, which highlights South Asia’s African Diaspora.

CULTURE TUESDAYS

Check out this article on the Siddi people; the Black population in Pakistan who have lived there for the past 600 years!

“Even though it is well-documented that Africans gave birth to the world, it is generally little known that the Siddi or Sheedi people, who are descendants of the Bantu people of Southeastern Africa, have lived in rural India and parts of Pakistan for the last 600 years.

The Siddi arrived to the aforementioned regions under orders from Arab and Portuguese merchants to work as slave laborers. And today, the Siddi community is numbered around 20,000 to 55,000 persons across the region with the majority of them being Sufi Muslims. There are also practicing Hindus and Roman Catholics as well among the number.”

Read the rest of the article here: http://tinyurl.com/hfwxn5r

Enjoy Loves! ❤️