Should we have Black History Month?

Inching my way to 60 followers, it’s hard to believe that for a long time I had 2 or 3. Thanks to all of you who decided to support this blog.

Sometimes I wonder why, when my blog is a lot less flashy and techy then most of the other ones out there, and most of my posts are just my thoughts about things.

But I think it’s great that blogging is one of the few places left n society where people actually seek out each other’s opinions and read them, and hopefully discuss them in a healthy way.

So let’s jump right to the controversial stuff.

My YouTube bar is reminding me it’s Black History Month, and I see it on TV too.

Since I’ve never been to school, these special months or weeks of study devoted to one group or subject are pretty foreign to me (pardon the slight pun) but I do  have some thoughts on just the concept of having a Black History Month.

I’ll preface this by saying I think Black History is an important part of our past, and also highly interesting to delve into. Blacks played a key role in all our Wars, and in plenty of our other movements, most notable the Civil Rights one. None of that is dispensable history.

Bu-u-t, that’s actually the problem. How on earth is Black History a separate thing from White History? OR vice versa. Doesn’t having a whole month devoted to it imply that it’s different somehow? Like they were another set of people in another place doing other things?

It’s like separating World History from American history. You can do it for a while, America is a young country, but sooner or later you have to include it because it became one of the principle countries in world affairs.

I happen to believe that blacks and whites have intermingled pretty much ever since their origin, maybe not all in Africa, but in other places. I think history itself shows it. (There are paintings of darker skinned figures on Egyptian wall accounts.)

But okay, maybe the idea has merit. ATtleast, when it was conceived. Back in the 80’s a lack of black history curriculum was a problem. At least if I can believe the TV shows account of it.

I have nothing against blacks themselves ( a term I am using because it is Black History Month for crying out loud) but I do have a problem with segregation.

As a white girl, it’s awkward for me when all this race stuff comes up. I didn’t used to give a rip what color someone’s skin was. I don’t really when it comes to people I know. But I hate how “minorities” (barely small enough to be that anymore) are pitted against each other.

The way I see it, setting aside a whole month to Blacks, even if it’s in name only, is more likely to promote envy and jealously among whites, or other races, then it is to promote understanding. In a perfect world maybe everyone would get it, but that’s not this world.

I think history should be taught as it happened. Mingling different aspects of it as the topic calls for. The best history books I’ve read have covered various parts of it, and how it affected various peoples.

You can’t study the American Revolution with any thoroughness unless you also learn how France and Germany were involved, how slaves were affected, and how the Spanish came in at one point. The Native Americans were a part of it too.

And it’s unfair to disregard all that. No country is, metaphorical, an island. Other countries are always involved in their affairs. Much like in person to person interactions.

I think one objection that might be made to not having a black history month is that black pride would not be raised, because our history would be taught as primarily white in important figures.

Well firstly, that’s not true, as I said.

Secondly, if that was how it actually had happened, then…that’s the history isn’t it?

Even if blacks had had  nothing to do with this country until recently, the history still matters.

Besides, if we are all equal, why doe sit matter what color someone is? Can’t we still learn from their life?

Can’t I be inspired by Harriet Tubman as much as by Harriet Beecher Stowe? Or maybe more.

Would you tell me that black Americans are incapable of being inspired by white historical figures.

What does that sound like to you? Equality?

Give me a break.

Now hold on, I am not saying I think black Americans are incapable of being inspired by white ones. I am only saying that would be the implication if we used color as a measure for how crucial it is to learn about a person.

Which is the problem with Black History Month. I want to be inspired by all worthy people, but in the proper context. Not separated as if I have to feel differently about each one depending on their race.

I may make someone mad by saying this, but I don’t give more credit to Martin Luther King Jr. for his stance against bigotry then I give to George Washington for his fight for freedom.

Because both are important. Yet in our public school system, Martin Luther King Jr will be given his fair share of attention, but Washington will likely be misrepresented or swept under the rug.

Why should white students be made to feel excluded? Why should any students?

You see how it comes full circle?

Well, If there’s a point I didn’t cover, feel free to comment below and share your thoughts.

Until next time–Natasha.

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