Monday, June 1, 2015

15 years in the Light of a Humble Lion-Panama- Etnia Negra

15 years in the Light of a Humble Lion

Panama- Etnia Negra

"It is important to know that you are walking in the footsteps of lions." These were the words of Baba Askia as he spoke to students rallying for their professors and the Africana Studies Department at UMass Boston. 

These words resonate as we celebrate 15 years of the law that recognizes and honors the plight of people of African descent in Panama. I walk closely in the light of a humble lion that fought diligently for the recognition of our people and our community. Since I met him and he took me under his caring wings, we have had a tradition to reflect on his journey. 

‘We were not dropped off as a whole family. Every Afro descendent should be seen as a family member.’ Mr. Richards said this to me many years ago. I move through this journey with the sound of his clear voice and the knowing of his long fight to bring Black Ethnicity Day to Panama. His patience and resiliency are noticeable but his humble light shines brighter as I sit in awe of his knowledge and wisdom. Today, as we close out this special month for Panama and for Afro Panamanians, I say Thank you Mr. Richards. Gracias, for your words and for allowing me to walk in your light. Your humble lion spirit are a guiding force and a reminder of purpose. 

To my Panamanian familia, may we continue on a path of full inclusion. To my Afro Panamanian family, may we continue to uplift the light of our ancestors, speak our truth and wear our birth given crown. To my Colon family, my wish is that we pause before the mirror to see the beauty in who we are as a people, that we will see that we are a crucial part of the fabric of Panama and that we step into our birth given light to shine. Proud today and everyday to be Afro Panamanian.!

Alaafia, Blessings, Much Love

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