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 “A man without any history is like a tree without roots.”  - Malcolm X


The story of Black History Month began half a century after the 13th Amendment abolished slavery in the United States. Recognizing the dearth of information on the accomplishments of Blacks, in 1915, Dr. Carter G. Woodson, a Harvard-trained historian and Rev. Jesse E. Moorland founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, now called the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH). The organization is dedicated to researching and promoting achievements by Black Americans and other peoples of African descent. The group sponsored a national Negro History Week, choosing the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. The event inspired schools and communities nationwide to organize local celebrations, establish history clubs and host performances and lectures.

A man without knowledge of himself and his heritage is like a tree without roots. -Dick Gregory

In the decades that followed, mayors of cities across the country began issuing yearly proclamations recognizing "Negro History Week." By the late 1960s, thanks in part to the Civil Rights Movement, and a growing awareness of Black identity, "Negro History Week" had evolved into Black History Month on many college campuses.

President Gerald Ford officially recognized Black History Month in 1976, calling upon the public to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”

The thing about Black history is that the truth is so much more complex than anything you could make up. - Henry Louis Gates

Yes, there has been progress. Black Americans made significant advances in business, law, education, entertainment, and professional sports. Black homeownership and entrepreneurship have increased as well. There have also been many “firsts” in our history, most notably Barack Obama, America’s first Black President and Kamala Harris, America’s first woman of color Vice President. While we should acknowledge these “firsts,” we must not become complacent or satisfied with the “first” recognition. Recognition should be the norm, not the exception. Black Americans have been elected to offices at all levels of government – federal, state, and local across the country. As if in direct response, however, egregious voter suppression laws have been passed. White supremacists have boldly come out of hiding; gun violence and hate crimes have increased at an alarming rate. 

The state of Florida has attempted to ban AP (Advance Placement) African American studies because the course, according to the governor, “lacks educational value.”  Florida may be just the tip of the iceberg, opening the door to the enactment of federal laws restricting/prohibiting African American history being taught in schools across America.

White America is attempting to whitewash slavery to assuage their conscience and shield their children from the brutality enslaved people suffered at the hands of their white slave masters.    According to one candidate running for the highest office in our country, “slavery benefitted and helped some African Americans develop skills such as being a blacksmith.” Civil rights leaders, clergy, and politicians have called this outrageous assertion offensive and racist. The Washington Post slammed this candidate’s view noting that “…enslaved Africans were already skilled.” 

Won’t it be wonderful when Black history and Native American history and Jewish history and all of U.S. history is taught from one book. Just U.S. history.   - Maya Angelou  

While campaigning in New Hampshire, another candidate, who is also running for the highest office in the land, could not or would not state that slavery was the root cause of the Civil War.  Ironically and by way of an explanation stated, “it always comes down to the role of government and what the rights of the people are., …they need to make sure that you have freedom.”  Obviously, enslaved people were not part of the population who needed to ensure their freedom.

“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.” -  New York Essays

The phrase "stay woke" has long been used in Black communities to indicate staying alert to others' deception--especially law enforcement--as a survival mechanism. In 2014 "stay woke" became common usage among Black Lives Matter activists after the police killing of Michael Brown, bringing it into the wider lexicon. In Florida, WOKE is used as an acronym for “Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees.”  The Anti-WOKE law was enacted to combat “woke indoctrination” in Florida businesses and schools by prohibiting instruction that could make some parties feel they bear personal responsibility for historic wrongdoings because of their race, sex, or national origin.  “Stay Woke” has been distorted and turned into an anti-Woke campaign bumper sticker.

Black history (a/k/a American history) is being rewritten. So, what will Black History be like in the future? Will there even be Black History Month? Now, more than ever we must use every tool in the toolbox to stop the forces of evil from stripping away the freedoms so many have worked and died for. We cannot allow the blood, sweat and the tears our ancestral warriors shed to have been in vain. We must not allow our history to be erased from history books. We must not allow the evil plans of some to write our history and dictate our future. We must STAY WOKE & VOTE.





What is, The Future, Black History, Vote


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