Black History Month empowers African Americans

Image+from+campusdata.uark.edu.

Image from campusdata.uark.edu.

Caitlin B., Editor-in-chief

February is often pegged as a month for romance alone. With Valentine’s Day in the middle of this cold and barely exciting month, it can be difficult to think about anything else. February, however, is also known as Black History Month–a month centered around the impact African Americans made on our society.

According to mentalfloss.com, Black History Month originally began as just a week in February, as the week containing both the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, who fought for racial equality. What was a week eventually turned into the whole month of February in 1976.

Black history has a strong relevance in today’s society. According to Journal of Adolescent Health, up to 25% of minorities experience interpersonal discrimination due to race. During February, some students at Ashland High School like to celebrate Black History Month by learning more about freedom fighters and social pioneers in the Civil Rights movement. According to Jaden S. (10),”I like to celebrate [Black History Month] by reading books about the people who came before me and how they did what they did so that I can do what I do today.”

Black History Month isn’t simply constricted to February, though. In many AHS social studies courses, such as Western Civilization and American History, African American achievement is highlighted all throughout the year. Western Civilization alone covers the African slave trade, Haitian Revolution and other African American impacts on society (such as war and slavery).

According to Krieger, “”It’s always good to highlight minority groups throughout history that might otherwise get overlooked…[minorities] all help make up the experience of humanity.”

Though well-known, the Ashland community may be falling behind in its celebration. According to Jaden, “I know that there’s more we can do to celebrate the month in Ashland.” Students can take initiative to celebrate African American accomplishment by learning more about such things. According to Krieger, “If you’re curious and want to learn more about the people groups, investigate it.”