Celebrating Black History Month

Emmy Russ, 10th Grade BC ECHS

ECHS writer
ECHS Sophomore (Emmy Russ)

Every February, people across the United States celebrate Black History Month. This month is a time for everyone to recognize the significant contributions of African Americans in history. The event started being celebrated in 1915 and originally was only a week-long, but it has been expanded to a full month. 

The month is used by many to honor the work of black people in history and the current day and recognize their accomplishments that have been overlooked. Ways that people celebrate are by supporting small, black-owned businesses, donating to charities or signing petitions that promote equality for the races, and educating themselves on important black figures. Some names that are often heard throughout the month are Harriet Tubman, Martin Luther King Jr., and Rosa Parks.

However, it is important to mention the people that have been overlooked, such as Jimmie Lee Jackson, a man whose murder by a police officer led to the “Bloody Sunday” march during the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. Another figure is Bayard Rustin, who organized the March On Washington and fought for equality not just among races but also for all sexual orientations. Ella Baker is a black woman, sometimes known as the mother of the civil rights movement, and was a mentor to many well-known activists. Jane Bolin was the first black woman to join the New York Bar Association and the first black female judge. The list of people we often overlook is very long, but it is important to know about them and credit them for all they have done. 

Every year, a theme is designated for Black History Month. Last year it was Black Health and Wellness, and focused on contributions that black people have made to the medical field, along with inequality that has been seen in medical care. This year it is Black Resistance and will focus on black people’s fight against oppression.