I Tell My Daughter About These 5 Teens to Teach Her About Black Excellence
Black excellence is a phrase used in the Black community to acknowledge the accomplishments and actions of Black people that uplift and instill pride in our community. From activism to entrepreneurship, Black excellence is real, tangible, and interconnected to our Black identity.
As a family, we talk a lot about Black excellence, referencing examples of the past and present. With my daughter, I intentionally choose to amplify and celebrate the Black excellence of kids and teens. I do this so that my daughter knows that she, too, is Black excellence, and that she is never too young to make a difference. I believe in her and want her to know that she can pursue her aspirations, leave her own mark in the world, and live out our ancestors' wildest dreams.
Black excellence is all around us — and lives inside of her, too. Black excellence is an attitude, a swagger, a part of our cultural DNA where we can make, as my grandmother would say in AAVE (African American Vernacular English), "somethin' outta nothin'." Black excellence forges new paths to victory, where despite the forces around us, we keep rising to the top, celebrating the Black joy of all that we are and all that we will become. Here are five teens who exemplify Black excellence 365 days a year.