Black History Month-Still Needed?

Is Black History Month Still Needed?

In the United States, February is designated as Black History Month, you can read about the origins and history here. Every February, someone ask the question, in some form or another, if Black History Month is still relevant, or still need, or if it is too divisive.

Growing up the celebrations where much more cultural and true to the intent or spirit of what Dr.  Woodson envisioned, but we live in a Capitalistic society and as more and more people sought to capitalize an monetize a great deal of the significance was lost.

Race Is No Longer Significant

Some believe that the Race problem is no longer significant. It is 2014 and we have a Black President, there are Black Football Coaches and Quarterbacks, Black golfer(s), even a Black billionaire-ess, officially the only Black Billionaire.

So what is the problem, most of the people belong to the unofficial one and only club, there seems to be an unwritten, but widely accepted rule, “there can be only one” when it comes to Blacks, some would say this of true of all Minorities, but Blacks are the quintessential minority in most of the world. If you were to view any main stream show or movies, there will be only one Black and in most case, their character will be dubious at best, sub-servant, incompetent, or some other non-flattering description, when compared to other Races.

Compared To Other Races

Compared to other races, African-American, formerly Negros and or Coloreds, are in a precarious position. Some African-Americans, have made great strides in all areas of life, yet overall, we see African-Americans doing worst than most other Races, especially in business and education.

 

More To Come…..

The Black National Anthem – My Thoughts

I first heard this song back in grade school, at Oak Park Elementary School, formerly Oak Park Vocational High School, Laurel Mississippi. Oak Park lays claim to a strong Black Heritage.  Leontyne Price , widely regarded as the first African-American singer to earn international acclaim in opera, graduated from Oak Park.

I first heard the song, mostly during Black History Month and was a bit shocked to learn that there was a Black national Anthem, since  I had only been taught the National Anthem for as long as I could remember,

The music teacher sang the song with passion, that give me chills, and after a few weeks of training, our class, sang with just as much passion. Oak Park was still pretty much an all Black schools unofficially, so many of the teachers there still emphasized the need for excellence based on the responsibility of developing our race. today, many people hold to the belief, that we should abandoned, that philosophy since we are all Americans, we should be all be accepted equally.  man y feel that, holding on to those ideas, foster the attitudes that maintains the race/class based  discrimination that we are experiencing today. Perhaps  i will share my thoughts in another post. Today I would like to talk about the poem/song.

When I first heard the song, I knew very few White people, a few teachers and TV /Movies personalities. I rarely ventured across the track and when I did my interaction was very limited. But when the music teacher sang the song, I felt something,  My favorite lines has always been:

Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,
Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;

Something about those lines struck a cord within me, during my early years i did not experience all of the bitterness and hate that less sheltered children did. My parents where separated, My mother worked most of the time, Church and school, all of the bullies I knew looked like me. But just hearing the emotions in the teachers voice, made me know that those words were powerful.

Some years later, I entered the 6th grade and crossed the tracks, White people everywhere, up close, just like on TV. It was not until years later, after moving to the “country” did i began to realize the wonderful gift I had been given by attending Oak Park and having  bee n taught by Black teachers that knew the fufilling of the dream was staill a long way off.  One day, probably in February, some one asked about the Black national Anthem, as soon as the music started to play, all of the words came back, and I was surprised at how may of my Black classmates had never heard them.

More Info About The Song

 Lift every voice and sing, till earth and Heaven ring,
Ring with the harmonies of liberty;
Let our rejoicing rise, high as the listening skies,
Let it resound loud as the rolling sea.

Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,
Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;

Facing the rising sun of our new day begun,
let us march on till victory is won.

Stony the road we trod, bitter the chastening rod,
Felt in the days when hope unborn had died;
Yet with a steady beat, have not our weary feet
Come to the place for which our fathers sighed

We have come over a way that with tears has been watered
We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered

Out from the gloomy past, till now we stand at last
Where the white gleam of our bright star is cast.

God of our weary years, God of our silent tears,
Thou Who hast brought us thus far on the way;
Thou Who hast by Thy might, led us into the light,
Keep us forever in the path, we pray.

Lest our feet stray from the places, our God, where we met Thee.
Lest our hearts, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget Thee.
–~~~~
Shadowed beneath Thy hand, may we forever stand,
True to our God, true to our native land

N.A.A.C.P.

On March 15, 1933 The National Association for the Advancement of Color People,
( NAACP ) began a coordinated attack on segregation and discrimination, filing a suit against the University of North Carolina on behalf of Thomas Hocutt. Case was lost on a technicality after the president of a Black college refused to certify the records of the plaintiff.
The struggles continues today…Keep Hope Alive !

MARY ELIZA MAHONEY

Little Known BLACK HISTORY fact : MARY ELIZA MAHONEY was the first African-American nurse to be licensed in the United States.

It took MAHONEY 15 years of working at the New England Hospital for Women and Children as a cook, janitor and washwoman before she could work as a nurse’s assistant – unofficially.

At age 33, MAHONEY was finally admitted into the program by Dr. Marie Zakrzewska, one of the first female doctors in the country. MAHONEY worked 16-hour days in several wards. She – and only three of the other students in her entire class of 40 – graduated in 1879. SHE WAS THE ONLY BLACK.

In 1908, MAHONEY co-founded the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses, which eventually merged with the American Nurses Association. In her lifespan, she served as director of the Howard Orphan Asylum for black children in Long Island, New York. As a fighter in women’s suffrage, she was among the first women to vote in 1920 in Boston, Massachusetts.
Hats off to MARY MAHONEY ,my NURSE Friends for all you do.Thanks and much LOVE to You ♥

Resources:Mary Mahoney

http://www.blackpast.org/?q=aah/mahoney-mary-eliza-1845-1926