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by Paulo Montimor
If you’re asked to name famous black Americans, how many could you list?
With U.S. History comes great names such as Martin Luther King Jr., Harriet Tubman and Rosa Parks, but could you name any beyond that?
Black History Month takes place in February of every year in the United States. This month is dedicated to celebrating achievements by African Americans and recognizing the central role of black Americans in U.S. History.
“Black history is American history, without black history, there’s no American history at all,” said GHS science teacher Aaron Willis.
“Black history tells the story of who we are, and the accomplishments that we’ve done for the country,” said Willis. “Especially a country that sometimes seems as though it doesn’t want us here, and it may not like us.”
For many black Americans, their ancestors’ arrival to the United States was not a voluntary one.. Eventually, slavery was outlawed, but the mistreatment of black Americans and other people of color continued. The Civil Rights Movement happened within the past 100 years. The Voting Rights Act which prohibits racial discrimination in voting happened just 55 years ago.
“Black History Month is a good way to recognize black history, to recognize significant people in black history,” said GHS teacher Shaun Hill.
Black History Month should be celebrated by all people, not just people of color. Without acknowledging the vital role Black Americans have played in the United States becoming the country it is today, people are losing out on an important and undeniable part of history.
So, how can you celebrate? Do some research. Learn the names of historical figures that brought about change or helped better the world we live in. Most of all, remember that, as Mr. Willis said, “Black history is American history.”