What Does Black History Month Mean to You?

February 17, 2017


Photo by Matheus Viana from Pexels

Black History Month has many different meanings for different people.

In 1926, African-American historian, author, and journalist Carter G. Woodson established Negro History Week in order to remember all that African Americans endured in order to achieve respect in American society. America has become one of the most diverse countries on the planet, and Woodson set the pace. That one week is now a month. February is a time to honor all black people who played a part in designing the history of America. The Blaize interviewed several students and staff members here at Round Lake High School to get their opinion on what this month means to them.

“Black History Month is a memory about African-American civil rights and what [African Americans]went through [to obtain them]. I learned about this topic in about Elementary school. I also understand we celebrate it for the fact that African-Americans gained social equality. To remark, they went about this in nonviolent acts. This marks a time where everyone finally became equal. They were just like anyone else and everyone is equal.” Brian Bouxsein, sophomore

“Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by Black Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of African-Americans in the United States history.” – Nicole Cruz, sophomore

“I learned about Black History through the Internet. As half African-American, I feel like Black History Month is a necessity to remember why we should always look out for the minorities. I believe this month is celebrated to honor the people who fought for equality, died for equality, and those who died before they had the chance to see it.” – Shantel Ax, sophomore

“Black History Month is a time where we can dedicate our studies and energy towards understanding where people come from. It is a time we can look back into United States history and reflect on the injustices that we as a nation experienced. It is also a time to reflect on how black history has been written. We can look over inaccuracies in our textbooks that we are sharing with our students and correct the wrong interpretations.’ –  Julieann Beal, History student teacher, 23

“To me Black History Month means a month of remembrance of all the things that African-Americans had to deal with and what they went through to not be discriminated against.” – Lizbeth Tinajero, sophomore

“Black History Month is a month where we celebrate how Black Americans fought for equal rights, so that everyone in the United States could be treated equality. Now thanks to those people, many Americans are not looked down on [because of]their race and physical appearance.”- Vanessa Jimenez, sophomore

“Black History Month honors and recognizes the struggles and accomplishments of African-Americans throughout American history. From slavery to civil rights’ movements including, George Washington Carver and Martin Luther King are recognized for their courage and their influence on our society.” – Larry Arnold, substitute teacher, 71

“Black History Month stresses the importance of the historical figures that made a big difference in the world. It changed the way people think and how they treat others, including: abolishing slavery and blacks standing up for their rights. It celebrates how everyone became equal, produced a change and helped one another.”– Courtney Greenwood, sophomore

“Black History Month basically is a time to look back at all the achievements that African-Americans did in the past even though racism and prejudice were all around them. It is to celebrate the abolishment of segregation and racism through black ethnicity.” – Brian Raygoza, sophomore

“Black History Month is a time to recognize and celebrate the many accomplishments of African-Americans in this country. As a nation founded on equality it is important to realize African-Americans have been vitally important to the United States in the areas of civil rights, business, technology, culture, agriculture, Healthcare, etc. It is a good time to reflect on the contributions of African-Americans.” – Matthew Zidron, English teacher, 34

While many students and staff know what Black History Month is, many do not know how to celebrate Black History Month. Here are some ideas to celebrate that recognize the heritage, accomplishments, and culture of African-Americans in the United States. Bake sweet potato biscuits, as these are traditional soul food. Trace the history of the blues from its beginnings in the fields of the South to its global impact on today’s music. View an artist who depicts the migration of slaves from the South to the North in search of a better life. Make a batch of sesame seed cookies, as in Africa, sesame seeds bring luck said scholastic.com. As those are just some ways Black History Month can be celebrated, share your way of celebrating this month by tweeting  #rlhstheblaizeBlackHistoryMonth, we would love to see other opinions of what  Black History Month means to you!

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