Stop saying we need to get rid of Black History Month when white history happens every day. While in school, all we are forced to read about is how America was created and how “amazing” it is. They tell us our Founding Fathers cared about all Americans, but did they really? America was built on the backs of slaves; people not even considered “people.” The White House, the Capitol Building, even the Lincoln Memorial, were built by slaves, but did you know a black man designed the capitol?
This month highlights the amazing ideas and inventions black people contributed to America and always made me feel I could be something one day.
Carter G. Woodson is the creator of Black History Month. While in school, he recognized the lack of black history in textbooks and how they truly made a large contribution to society but no one knew about them. He began an organization called the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, (ASALH). The organization was meant to help study and shed light onto the accomplishments African-Americans have contributed to society.
Woodson and ASALH launched a “Negro History Week” in 1926 to help schools understand what their mission was. This was celebrated during the second week of February. It was not until 1976 that the week expanded into a month, and now Black History Month is being supported throughout the nation and promotes Woodson’s bigger vision- not letting black history die.
Now that I have explained a little history, I want to explain to you why this month is important to me.
Recently, the movie “Hidden Figures” hit the big screen, and everyone loved it, right? Why is it we are just hearing about this story? Because no one particularly cared to tell it, or address it? Yes, Rosa Parks said ‘no’, Martin Luther King Jr. promoted peace and Malcolm X literally fought for his rights, but why is it we are just hearing that three black mathematicians were pretty much the reason Americans got into space when this happened 53 years ago?
People argue this month is useless, but it is not. Black people created many of the things people commonly use today. However, we would most likely not know about it because of white people either stealing the idea or just not documenting the information, and that is extremely sad.
Inventions were not the only thing that was stolen or taken; recently, many black people have begun accusing major award shows, like the Grammys, of not awarding the dubbed “urban artist” with the highest honor even though the artist’s album was more critically acclaimed then the artist who won. See: Adele winning for best album over Beyoncé.
Beyoncé’s reaction to Adele’s speech is so heartwarming✨❤️ pic.twitter.com/ezbs2YuIpM
— BEYONCÉ CAPITAL (@BeyonceCapital) February 14, 2017
Black History Month is important in many ways, most notably because important black figures are hidden from view in a world that celebrates white history above all.