I have been pondering this question for a while, So on the first week of Black History Month, I’m putting it out there.
Does Black History Month matter?
I’m sure by now everyone has either seen the interview with actress Stacy Dash on Fox news or read about her statement that Black History Month and BET should exist. In her words “…since they further divide us. I feel like it’s hypocritical to say that we’re all the same, but then to self-segregate into little enclaves of society.”
Does Black History Month Matter? Do we still uphold the celebration for the reason it was created in 1926 by historian Carter G. Woodson? From the initial phase,when it was called “Negro History Week” the primary emphasis was placed on encouraging the coordinated teaching of the history of American Blacks in the nation’s public schools. I’m not even sure if that’s still happening. I’m looking forward to see what projects my children will bring home this year. Maybe our school will really focus on the history of Black’s or maybe we’ll just have International Night like we did last year, and the years before that.
When Negro History Week launched, Woodson contended that the teaching of black history was essential to ensure the physical and intellectual survival of the race within broader society:
“If a race has no history, it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated. The American Indian left no continuous record. He did not appreciate the value of tradition; and where is he today? The Hebrew keenly appreciated the value of tradition, as is attested by the Bible itself. In spite of worldwide persecution, therefore, he is a great factor in our civilization.”
The 21st Century has afforded us many tools for education, from online sites to digital books etc. there is no lack to our means of leaning something new. That said does dedicating one month (the shortest month of the year at that) really make a dent on the lack of knowledge of Blacks in America?
In all honesty what have you done in years past to ‘celebrate’ Black History month? In my opinion Black History should be celebrated EVERYDAY! 365 days of the year should be a celebration of our culture, endurance, spirit of entrepreneurship, diverse religions, increasing financial power, our music, our beauty or resilience and so much more. 28/29 days isn’t enough time to fully pay tribute to the individuals who have made history. Just yesterday I know some type of history was made by a black american. Do we wait until he/she is dead to celebrate their achivements?
So what say you? Does Black History Month matter? Let’s talk about it.
Until next time…