28 Days of Black History

Black History Month begins today. This is the title by which I have always known February. Now I hear the term African-American History Month thrown around. To me the prior is more poignant. Colored, Negroes, Black, African-American – what shall be the next politically correct term? “African-Americans” excludes many that fall under the “Black” umbrella – those from the West Indies, Trinidad, Jamaica, etc., are considered black and have contributed to this country, but are not officially African-American. I hate that Black History Month excludes anyone that is not black. However, since black and white are still terms that are used, race obviously persists to be an issue. This month represents a move towards instilling pride in one’s “blackness” as well as a move to raise awareness of the contributions made to North America by “blacks”. Being Indian, and extremely lucky to have avoided racism for most of my life, I wonder if my life would improve if more people knew about “my people”. I have come to the conclusion that while I do not want people to judge me based on my culture, I am proud that I am noticed for my ethnicity, and I love educating others about my upbringing. I do not know that a nationwide awareness campaign about my culture would be favorable.

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