May 24, 2024

Why Do We Have Black History Month?

February is the start of black history month. But why do we have it? Well, this is a month dedicated to uplifting black voices and its an opportunity to learn about what black went through and still have to experience as we have progress to make our community whole. The American Civil Rights Movement was a political movement and campaign for the duration of 1954 to 1968 and the goal was to abolish institutional racial segregation and discrimination. Some important individuals that influenced the civil rights movement were Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Malcolm X.

Civil Rights Movement
Civil Rights Movement Protest

its important to note that segregation didn’t occur all that long ago. This was the 60’s and 70’s when the movement started to take place and in fact many people are still alive today that went through the trauma of fighting for justice and equality.

Martin Luther King, Jr. | Biography, Speeches, Facts, & Assassination |  Britannica
MLK giving a speech.

Born Michael King (soon later changed to Martin Luther in honor Martin Luther, the German priest) worked hard in his 39 years of life to fight for the rights of black people and the injustices that they have been experiencing for centuries. He was one of the well known leaders of the Civil Rights Movement.

Opinion | The Real Rosa Parks Story Is Better Than the Fairy Tale - The New  York Times
Rosa Parks mugshot

Rosa Parks, after a long day of work, sat in the front of the bus and when she was told to move, she stayed put. A few months after this incident, she was arrested for her act. Prior to this, Claudette Colvin did the same thing at the ripe age of 15 years old. She too was arrested. This occurred nine months before Rosa Parks. Not that many people people are aware of the Claudette Colvin case since she was a child and also due to the fact that Rosa Parks was involved in the NAACP (The National Association for the Advancement placement of Colored People.)

Educators Get in 'Good Trouble' During Black Lives Matter Week of Action |  NEA
Black Lives Matter Protest art

With this in place, you would think that black and white people are now equal but unfortunately, this is still far from the truth. Police brutality and racism still very much exist today and these are just a few examples: George Floyd, Emmet Till, Breonna Taylor, Dauente Wright, Elijah McClain and Tamir Rice.

Below is a list of unarmed black people who died at the hands of the police.