By: Malika Angaian
From Martin Luther King Jr., Oprah to Obama, many are honored during the month of February in recognition of Black History Month.
February is dedicated to honoring African-Americans and recognizing their central role in America’s history. Beginning in 1915, 50 years after slavery was abolished, it started as only the second week of February and was reffered to as “Negro History Week.” But after overwhelming support and lasting celebrations, “Negro History Week” became Black History Month.
In 1976, President Gerald Ford made it official saying it was a time to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” Since then, people have come up with creative ways to honor Black History including donating to a African-American run organizations such as Black Lives Matter, an international activist movement that’s main goal is to eliminate unnecessary violence and racism against African-Americans.
Major businesses have also found ways to take part. Google aired an ad titled, “The Most Searched. A Celebration of Black History Makers.” The 90 second clip included the most searched African-Americans who made history. Target and Coca Cola have also commemorated the occasion. Target is offering customers a collection of 100 assorted items with the theme, “Black Beyond Measure”.
In the Sharon Public Schools community, there are many people who feel very strongly about Black History Month.
Earlise Fergus, a freshman at Sharon High School and an active member of the Black Student Union (BSU), says that she is proud of her identity. “I’m black and I’m proud.”
She includes that it’s important to keep this topic relevant in the school setting because, “There’s a lot of people of color at our school.”
Vice principal Ms. Gavin also adds that there are many things that can and need to be done to honor Black History Month as it recognizes the diversity present in our lives.
Several important colored figures are recognized by many; such as, Muhammad Ali, Harriet Tubman, Maya Angelou, and Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr. is a very popular individual that is honored by many, throughout the duration of this month. As a well-known civil rights activist, his beliefs and movement sits right at the core of Black History Month. He expressed his beliefs that all men were created equal and shouldn’t be discriminated against based solely off the color of their skin.
The month of February, is an important time for many as people of color are rightfully honored and celebrated for their achievements during Black History Month.