Editorial: Black History Month is invaluable
Since its creation in 1926, Black History Month has been a staple to the black community. Every year, elders, teachers and churches educate younger generations on the importance of pride in the black community. However, the impact extends further than a single community.
During Black History Month there is always a discussion on the displacement of Africans into American slavery and how it took centuries- and one of the bloodiest wars in history- to achieve freedom.
In 1915, Carter Woodson and Jesse Moorland founded the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. Woodson began the yearly celebration of black history as a week-long observance in the second week of February, to pay respects to the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Fredrick Douglass.
Woodson and Moorland witnessed the lack of African American history and culture in schools and sought to rewrite the history books. Countless men and women before them fought persecution and gave their lives for the fight for human rights. Woodson and Moorland recognized this and continued the fight for a celebration of the strength of their ancestors.
These ancestors include Richard Allen, a black Christian activist who was born into slavery and purchased his freedom. In 1816, he and other Christian activists established the first national African American church, the African Methodist Episcopal Church, of which he was he was consecrated as Bishop.
They include Granville T. Woods, the first African American electrical engineer, was a brilliant man who fought for his recognition despite prejudices.
Selma Burke was an artist and sculptor, who served as one of the first African American women to enlist in the Navy. While enlisted, Burke painted a portrait of Franklin D. Roosevelt, which is featured still today on the U.S. dime.
All of these people should be included in not only black history, but American history in general. Black culture is American culture. Black history is American history. It should be taught by all elders, in all churches, and especially in every school.
We should not only highlight slavery as a struggle, but as a beginning to one of the most revolutionary, life changing Cinderella stories.
Though often written by a single member of the board, editorials reflect the opinion of Pacer Times as an organization and the leaders that manage it. Letters to the editor may be emailed to Editor-in-Chief Cecilia Maddox at firstname.lastname@example.org and will be published at the editorial staff’s discretion.