Zariah Roberts – Mustangs Ahead
(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – February is not only the month of Valentine’s Day, when people shower loved ones with gifts to show love, but it’s also Black History Month, when they remember the important people and events in the history of African diaspora.
Black history was first acknowledged in 1926 when historian Carte G. Woodson announced that the second week of February to be “Negro History Week.” The second week of February was chosen because Frederick Douglass’s birthday (Feb.14) & Abraham Lincoln’s birthday (Feb.12) coincide in the week.
Leaders of Black United Students at Kent State University first presented the expansion of Black History Week to Black History Month in February of 1969; a celebration of Black History Month was in 1970 at Kent State University.
“Black History Month is one of the most important months to me not only because I’m an African American but because I feel It’s good to know about all the important black people that made history or change,” LRHS sophomore Kylee Jefferson said.
Senior D’Quawn Montgomery said, “I feel Black History month is a month where we learn about people and the things they accomplished that we didn’t even know about and if we really get into it we can find out that things that we thought in history was correct was actually wrong…it’s like finding out the truth of history so It is necessary”
In 1976, the expansion of Black History week to Black History Month was recognized by they U.S government. In 1987, the United Kingdom adopted the celebration of Black History Month. Eight years later Canada did the same.
Black History Month has critics. Some debate that it’s unfair or even unnecessary for a month to be dedicated to the history of one race.
“When I think of black history month I think of the three main people I learn about almost every year (Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman) and I honestly feel there is more great African Americans that made history that we should learn about and schools shouldn’t limit who they teach us about,” senior Mariana Balderas said.