Black History Month: Honoring Native and Foreign-Born Brothers and Sisters

BY: - 1 Feb '13 | On the Web

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Photo Credit: Aberdeen Proving Ground via Flickr

Photo Credit: Aberdeen Proving Ground via Flickr

Today marks the beginning of Black History Month, the month in which we celebrate our culture. While many of us celebrate our history and the lives and advancements made by black people throughout the year, it is the month of February when much of the nation stops to join us in the acknowledgement of our history.

An article featured at Time Ideas poses the question of whether or not Black History Month represents all blacks. While much attention is given to well known historical figures such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks, the black culture’s demographics include “African and Caribbean immigrants.” Many of these men and women also played pivotal roles in the advancement of our people, individuals such as Shirley Chisholm and Stokely Carmichael. Some are individuals who many of us may have no idea who they are, simply because their names were not integrated into our school curriculum growing up nor were community celebrations, like parades, held in their honor. Even so, they are deserving of our recognition too.

According to Time Ideas, during the early days of Black History Month “less than 3% of the blacks living in America were foreign-born African-Americans, according to the U.S. census. Today, census numbers show that 12% percent of blacks in the U.S. are from Africa or the Caribbean.”

As writer Christina Greer points out,

“As we remember the civil rights activism of Judge Constance Baker Motley we can also include the freedom fights of Marcus Garvey from Jamaica.”

For more on this story visit Time Ideas.

BMWK — Do you celebrate both “native” and “foreign” born African-Americans during Black History Month?


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