The Importance of February

Black+History+over+the+years

South Carolina State Library

Black History over the years

Jordan Doss, Alum

February is known around the country as “Black History Month.” Black History Month was officially recognized by President Gerald Ford in 1976. The month of February is used to celebrate and recognize those in the black community who have impacted the way our lives are today. The month is in honor of those who lost their life fighting for their rights, and in empowerment for those who still face inequality struggles today.

While many individuals have been acknowledged for their contributions to black history, others have been forgotten by the majority of society.

“All [people] talk about is the famous faces not, Marsha P. Johnson who started stone wall, or [before previous elections], Ben Carson who is the world’s best surgeon, and black,” said sophomore Iyanna Pugh.

To many black citizens of this country, this month is one of the most important holidays.

“To me, it actually established the foundations of my life and helped me realize there was nothing I could not do just because of my race,” said African American history teacher Michael Hunt.

By failing to recognize some of those who have changed the ways of society, simply because they have not been taught about these members of history, is sending a negative message to the members of the black community and the citizens of this nation. It is saying that the popularity of the person’s actions is more important than the effect it had on the nation.

“I think it is important for people to know what others had to fight for. Right now, this holiday focuses too much on the ‘popular’ people instead of some of the most influential,” said junior Jacob Litchfield.

Black History Month is more than just a holiday one celebrates amongst family and friends, for some it has helped define who they are today; and better yet who they strive to be tomorrow. Instead of recognizing the popular faces of the media for this month, pick up a book or read another article, so you too can understand the significance of this month, and more importantly of Black History.