The Tiffany Haddish Story and Its Implication to Diaspora Eritreans
The best way one can describe Tiffany Haddish’s commitment to her heritage is, “Inspirational.”
Majority of the Eritrean youth and young adults in their thirties forties in the Diaspora today were raised by parents that came to the US and other countries in the eighties and early nineties. Their parents came from Eritrea through Sudan and other places escaping death, imprisonment, torture and hardship from the hands of Ethiopian military.
These Eritreans expressed their love for Eritrea in their daily lives. They lived, breathed, sang and played Eritrea every day. They gathered in Eritrean events, honored Eritrean heroes and supported Eritrean struggle for independence financially, morally and advocated for the Eritrean cause every day. Eritrea was in their heart. It was and remains their purpose, mission and life. They are dedicated backbone of Eritrea. They support their families and Eritrea at the same time equally. Eritreans have demonstrated to the world what it means to love a country, family and community as one.
The kids grew up in these environments and were influenced by it. They knew Eritrea emotionally and grew up loving Eritrea as their parents did. Their houses were decorated with Eritrean arts, souvenirs and memorabilia. They ate Eritrean food, listened to Eritrean music and grew up with Eritrean families in Eritrean communities. They went to all Eritrean events and wherever they travelled Eritrea travelled with them.
They grew up understanding their obligations-aware of their responsibilities and know what it takes. They know it takes their commitment, time, dedication and sacrifices. They have learned that their heritage is extremely important and they are dedicated to lift and honor Eritrea.
Eritreans have been enjoying these children flourish and bring Eritrea to the forefront lifting it like the EriAm sisters Haben, Salina and Lianda did when they burst to the seen in America Got Talent in 2009. These kids went as far as Sawa Eritrea with their parents and expressed their love for the people with music before they became the sensation the world knew them to be.
Nipsey Hussle is thriving, Layne Tadesse is keeping reggae alive and relevant everywhere he goes. The late Sandman Negus left indelible impression. Who can forget Shannon-Ogbani Abeda who made history as the first Eritrean from Africa to compete in Winter Olympics PyeongChang in 2018. There are more than can be mention here. These children are flourishing with Eritrea in their heart and mind. And their need to promote Eritrea is having impact on the life, perception, image, mood, self-esteem, pride and inspiring others. It is a great example how one can do good for the greater good.
The Tiffany Haddish story is no different from the stories above. What makes here story unique is that she elevated it to a new stratosphere. She took it to a level that is undeniable. She did it with pride, gleeful pride that is infectious. She did it with love and affection for her heritage. In one night, Tiffany brought Eritrea to the world. She inspired millions, particularly her peers. She placed Eritrea in Hollywood’s radar instantly. In doing so she aroused curiosity, interest about Eritrea.
In the last 20 years, Eritrea received unprecedented undeserved negative attention. The vilification campaigns waged against Eritrea has been relentless. Major part of the campaign was directed at Eritreans in the Diaspora. It was meant to cripple their resolve. However, the long struggle for independence is foundation impossible to nudge.
The Tiffany Haddish story therefore, is the untold story of Eritrea that the world is yet to see, hear and experience. It is the story of resolve, resilience, perseverance, struggle and victory. It is the outcome of a struggle that Eritreans waged from all around the world as one. It is an example that the world can learn from. That is, when people are connected by a cause; no distance, time or obstacles can stand on their way.
Tiffany Haddish is a blessing, inspiration and incredible talent. Her late father Tsihaye Reda Haddish must be beaming with happiness knowing that he bestowed the love for her country, people and heritage. It is obvious that he loved Eritrea and expressed it with incredible affection that motivated Tiffany to travel all the way to Eritrea. Her Eritrean dress in the Oscars was the icing that seared her queenly image.
Thank you Tiffany for the smile you bring to the world.