the question has been batted around this month... "Is Black History Month Still Revelant?"
I always ask, relevant to whom? still waiting on a response to that.
Seriously... who was black history month created for, and is it still relevant to those people? I did a little research, checking biographies of Mr. Woodson, the founder of the weekly observance that eventually became Black History Month. All I can find is that he felt it was important that "black studies" should be taught in schools and colleges. What high schools? What colleges?
Now, so you know, the people asking this poignant question are black. This in itself, fascinates me. Assuming that Woodson's focus group was blacks, what would make black folks honestly believe black history month has become irrelevant.... unless of course, they don't actually know any black history. Anything is possible.
On the other hand, there are non black people of various sorts who "tolerate" this esteemed month of regiritation of all things King, X,Tubman, Douglass. I had a white student of mine, seriously ask me... what's so damned important about Black History Month? (yes, she cursed... yes, I reprimanded her). I told her simply, BHM is important because it is part of the history of this country, same as all the other "histories" of this country.
Its important to understand that nothing happens in a vacuum. Perhaps, that's why, in the minds of some, BHM has become irrelevant. They can no longer see it as part of the big picture. Few see how Harriet Tubman's work with the Underground Railroad was just part of her glorious life... because of her lurking around behind Confederate lines during the Civil War, she was able to be a spy, one of the few women that were able to help the Union Army. No vacuum there.
Few get how Martin Luther King resisted the desire to become the spokesman of his people, but had preachers who came before him (including the one that stood in the pulpit at Dexter Avenue just before him) helped him see how his words could bring about change.
There are so many stories... of how the little people, us... who will never have our names in histories books, had, have and will change history in the small things we do daily. One day a child I've taught might find a cure for a disease that has eluded doctors for decades. That would be ME... making BHM relevant to me.
Which begs the question... how are you making BHM relevant? What have you done, do, or will do in the future to make history come alive? What will you say to change the history of this country, this world?
Is Black Hsitory Month still relevant? Only if you think you are relevant...