In keeping with this issue’s theme of Black History Month, I would like to state my opinion on Black History Month as an idea. Black history is not something that should be celebrated in one month out of the year. To celebrate the history of any race or gender in a single month is not only unrealistic; it is wholly unfair to anyone pursuing a valid account of history. This idea that black history should be studied and taught as a focus only in the month of February is ridiculous.
As Morgan Freeman has said: “Black history is American history.”
By relegating all of black history to one month out of the year, the shortest and coldest of months, we as a society are saying that this part of history is an extra or an afterthought. In reality, black history had a major part in the history of our nation, and celebrating anything less than this at all times is simply unacceptable.
When asked how we would get rid of racism, Morgan Freeman replied, “Stop
talking about it. I’m going to stop calling you a white man. And I’m going to ask you to stop calling me a black man.”
Not only does Black History Month limit an educational understanding of history, but it is also segregation. Society is saying that black history gets to sit in one spot and only in that spot. Throughout time we have found that when you give a people only a fraction of what other people are given from birth nothing good can come from it. If all men are truly created equal why should anyones’s history be any different? Is the struggle of a black man any less educational or historically significant than the struggle of a white woman or Latino child? Furthermore, why are we qualifying human history in terms of race or any other factor that is not choice based? Every month should be about the history of all people, as there is
only one real race, the human race.
This is a large issue because it is a large contributer to the fact that racism is still so alive in this country. Continuing to talk about history in terms like “black history” causes a cultural divide. When we begin to speak about things as they occurred, and not in small parts that only pertain to a race or another class of people, we will begin to break down the walls that we have erected between people of different skin tones. When history is taught as human history every day people will stop seeing everyone as so different from themselves and realize that it took all people to contribute to our history.