The Importance Of Black History Month


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Malcolm X involved in a discussion with a group of women before 1963.

Black History Month is an annual celebration every February to bring attention to commemorate black accomplishments in the United States. As time passed, there is a lack of knowledge or attention to this month, and it stems more from ignorance than apathy.

Black history month was thought of by Carter G. Woodson, as well as members of the Study of Negro Life and History, and soon became a celebration in 1976 (Black History Month | Description, History, & Facts | Britannica). Many people know of Martin Luther King, the face of the civil rights movement who led to the freedom and desegregation of black and white people, or how Malcolm X represented a more radical approach to the Civil Rights movement.

What most don’t know are the lesser-known faces and their contributions to how our society functions today as a place with diversity and equality.

Of course, racism is still alive and well in the US where states like Florida are censoring AP African American History in schools. This specific issue gets addressed in an interview with the world religions teacher, Kellie Orth, and a representative of the black student Union, Camille Jackson so be sure to check it out on the Viper Times podcast. When school systems and workplaces are still censoring and harming African American communities it’s important to spread awareness and the accomplishments that they have achieved.

Black history month encompasses both black struggle and victory. Up until 2019, African Americans were discriminated against for racially based hair texture and protective styles like braids, being deemed unprofessional in the workplace and public school The Official CROWN Act ( The Crown Act was established “in 2019 by Dove and the CROWN Coalition, in partnership with then State Senator Holly J. Mitchell of California to ensure protection against [this] discrimination” (The Official CROWN Act). Of course, the black celebration is an important part of Black History month because this holiday is an awareness, and that includes the bad and the good.

Many people love the NFL with players of many different backgrounds and we have Fritz Pollard who was the first, specifically the first black man. He had the grit to encourage the inclusion we see today and make room for many stars in the NFL like Aaron Donald from Los Angeles. Common use items have been invented by African Americans, like how potato chips wouldn’t have been made without a black man named George Speck, or home security systems created by Mary Van Britten Brown. These people have helped shape and revolutionize how society functions today but there are so many others with stories untold, while others are in the making. African American influence is all around us and there’s no better way to show appreciation than to celebrate Black History Month.