Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Why February?

For years it bothered me that black history was only focused on for one month. All the contributions that black people made are contributions that changed the entire country, and even the world. 

So why it's not considered American history and not focused on all the time, as oppose to just in February, is crazy!

In helping myself better understand the origin of Black History Month and why it's celebrated in February, I did a little research. I found out that Black History Month actually started out as a week long celebration called "Negro History Week." This event was created by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, who's parents were former slaves. The week long event started in 1916 and took place in February because February is the birth month of Fredrick Douglas and Abraham Lincoln. It wasn't until 1976 that the week long event grew into a month long celebration.

Read more about this: Here

I appreciate the fact that the event was started and was expanded from a week to a month. Back then that was a big accomplishment and advancement for black people. But today, limiting black history to only one month really needs to stop. It's something that should be focused on all the time. But I doubt this will ever happen, so learning our history is something we have to do for ourselves.

There is nothing more important than knowing where you come from. Do your own research year-round, don't wait until February when you're taught about it in school. Learn about the important contributions that black people have made because those contributions impact everyone.

"I don't want a Black History Month. Black history is American history." - Morgan Freeman

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