While Black History Month is in February for many historical reasons, the accomplishments of black Americans need more than 28 days of recognition.
Ignoring the greatness that black Americans provided in history for eleven months out of the year is absurd.
Free and enslaved African Americans, Native Americans and those who emigrated to the United States in its early years laid the foundation for what our country is today.
Slave labor propelled the US towards becoming an international superpower. It gave rise to companies such as JP Morgan and universities such as Yale. The National Archives state that around 400 slaves were tasked to help build the White House. Free and enslaved African Americans fought in the civil war — all these accomplishments were made by black Americans before most had their own freedom.
Before anyone says it, yes, this is about race. If people actually ‘didn’t see color’ as much as they say they do, we wouldn’t have to explain why black history is important to college students.
If high school students learned as much about black history as they do about William Henry Harrison, who died just 30 days into his presidency, then maybe Black History Month wouldn’t need to be a thing.
This country wouldn’t be what it is without the people of every color who fought with everything they had to make it great. Ignoring the contributions of one community to praise the achievements of another isn’t how history works. It’s all of it or it’s nothing. Facts and figures can’t just be removed.
The point is, black history doesn’t need to be celebrated in February — it needs to be celebrated and recognized all of the time like ‘textbook history’ is.
February is a great time to acknowledge what African Americans have done to move the world forward, but this can’t be the only time that black excellence is noted.
Black history is history, period, and it needs to be treated as such.
The editorial board that writes editorials consists of the editor-in-chief, the managing editor, the copy editor, and the news editor. These opinion pieces are written separately from news articles. They draw on the opinions of the entire writing staff and do not reflect the opinions of any individual staff member. The Jambar’s business manager and non-writing staff do not contribute to editorials, and the advisor does not have final approval.