2/16/2007

Black History Month

We are halfway through Black History Month, and admittedly I haven’t been updating you on tributes to African-Americans as much as I should.

The Democratic National Committee has a section on its website dedicated to this month, featuring bios of prominent African-Americans, among other things.

The future of this country, like the inextricable threads of history, is linked to the condition of its entire people. As we commemorate and celebrate and look to the contributions of African-Americans, Democrats will continue to work to fulfill the unfinished promise and ensure that the rights and privileges and opportunities of our nation are accessible to all Americans. We honor the accomplishments of our great African-American innovators and challenge the world to remember, daily, that black history is American history.


Here's a blurb from Mark Brewer and the Michigan Democratic Party:

“It is vitally important to remember the struggles of the past to thrive in the future. While the United States has made great strides since Black History Month was first celebrated, we must not go backwards,” said MDP Chair Mark Brewer. “Unfortunately, Michigan took a step backwards last November by passing Proposal 2. This month is the perfect time to reflect on civil rights accomplishments and on a strategy to overcome Michigan’s current challenges.”

Michigan has had many civil rights pioneers and prominent African American leaders throughout its history. From civil rights icon Rosa Parks to the first African American in Michigan to hold statewide office, Secretary of State Richard Austin, to current leaders such as Congressman John Conyers, Chair of the Judiciary Committee, Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks-Kilpatrick, Congressional Black Caucus Chair, and Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

The importance of black history has been recognized annually since 1926 when "Negro History Week" was instituted. Dr. Carter G. Woodson, a Harvard scholar, is recognized as a primary reason “Negro History Week” came into existence. Woodson was a man who devoted his life to furthering the knowledge of Black people as a participant in history as opposed “to a lay figure.” He chose the month of February because it contained the birthdays of Fredrick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. “Negro History Week” later evolved into “Black History Month.”

1 comment:

Tim said...

I dislike celebrations like black history month. Why, only once a year, do we honor blacks, raise money for HIV/AIDS or cancer research? Why do we (many teachers) only focus on black American history this month? MLK deserves to be mentioned in February and every other month. We mention black history, cancer and other things for one month then forget about it the other 11.