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Black History Month is a particularly contensious issue for many for various reasons. While I am sure some of these reasons may be legitimate, I can't think of too many. So, I made this discussion thread for the simple reason to find out just what are some of the legitimate issues people have with Black History Month. I want to go beyond the more banal ones articulated, as I think that what's at issue is so much more than what the basic reasoning expresses.

To that end, I'd like to first try to dispel, as quickly as possible, the more common, and uncompelling, arguments I hear:

1.) "Its unfair that only they get a month and not other people."

FALSE. I can't put it any more simply than that- its patently untrue that there is only Black History Month.

2.) "But Morgan Freeman/Bill Cosby/ etc. don't like it..."

Sorry- I guess only the black people got the memo wherein a hollywood actor was designated as the sole authority on all things black.

3.) "They just want me to feel bad as a white person."

So, just what is it that 'makes you feel bad'? Is it the sheer act of someone restating past racial attrocities comitted by white America? is it that you believe, from the outset, that someone, by telling you of mistakes that only barely have a thing to do with you intends to make you feel guilty? Or is it that there is some sort of conspiracy you just feel exists against white America that makes itself known during Black History Month? Either way, it's just silly.

So, I hope I have fleshed out some of the more basic responses with a view to move past them and to start getting at the much deeper issues that Black History Month taps in to.
Considering that the majority of American history taught in schools is white history I think we can spare a month. rolleyes

I would personally prefer black history, as well as the history of other minority groups, becoming integrated more with the current curriculum, rather than being given a few months out of the year.
I think the real complaint shouldn't be the sadly sensible fact that a nation where blacks only recently started to assert themselves has less of their history in it's outward basic overview...

Is that World History needs to be more than Western Europe after Antiquity ends.
Because we pretty much learn nothing about anything not European and Catholic/Protestant past Ancient Greece.
Maybe if you're lucky you get some China, Eastern Europe, and Arabia thrown in.

I'm sure black people would agree that some genuine African history in our schools would be a great thing. Aside from Egypt of course.
low iq 111's avatar

Familiar Friend

btw i don't necessarily agree with those pics. i think the cops need to be studied more before you can say they are either racist or not racist. but it's pretty interesting.
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I'm cool with Black History month. Most of the history taught in schools focuses on white people. I think this comic illustrates my point:

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marshmallowcreampie's avatar

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funwithforkz
Considering that the majority of American history taught in schools is white history I think we can spare a month. rolleyes

I would personally prefer black history, as well as the history of other minority groups, becoming integrated more with the current curriculum, rather than being given a few months out of the year.


Agreed. One of the things I liked about my college professor for pre-Civil War US history was that he gave near equal time to what blacks and Native Americans were doing and dealing with.

low iq 111


On that part about the lions... "Despite being a sub species they can successfully breed together". I don't know who wrote that but whoever did clearly doesn't understand that "species" and "subspecies" are two different things. The Asiatic Lion and the African Lion ARE the same species, meaning that they can breed together to produce fertile offspring. That's the very definition of a species.

As for humans... There's not much genetic variety in Homo Sapiens Sapiens. Europeans and Africans, or any other race in the human species, do not have enough genetic differences to classify as different subspecies. So the informal term of "race" is attached. The differences between the races, though, are purely phenotypical.

Whoever wrote that needs a lesson in biology, and especially taxonomy.
Soselo's avatar

Hilarious Prophet

There has got to be more to my history than slavery.
Jacque De Molay
There has got to be more to my history than slavery.

There is. You should read a book or two.
Soselo's avatar

Hilarious Prophet

Riviera de la Mancha
Jacque De Molay
There has got to be more to my history than slavery.

There is. You should read a book or two.
What books do you recommend?
Jacque De Molay
Riviera de la Mancha
Jacque De Molay
There has got to be more to my history than slavery.

There is. You should read a book or two.
What books do you recommend?
Anything on ancient Egypt? (I am almost 100% certain they had more melanin in their skin then the people in Egypt right now.) I wonder if they have history about the aboriginals in America and their tribes before the Europeans came over. Seems all we hear is about cowboys and indians just like we only hear about Africans after slavery.
Soselo's avatar

Hilarious Prophet

YahuShalum
Jacque De Molay
Riviera de la Mancha
Jacque De Molay
There has got to be more to my history than slavery.

There is. You should read a book or two.
What books do you recommend?
Anything on ancient Egypt? (I am almost 100% certain they had more melanin in their skin then the people in Egypt right now.) I wonder if they have history about the aboriginals in America and their tribes before the Europeans came over. Seems all we hear is about cowboys and indians just like we only hear about Africans after slavery.
Aren't the Ancient Egyptians descendants of the Mesopotamians and not Black Africans? I don't think the ancient Egyptians looked like me at all.
Jacque De Molay
YahuShalum
Jacque De Molay
Riviera de la Mancha
Jacque De Molay
There has got to be more to my history than slavery.

There is. You should read a book or two.
What books do you recommend?
Anything on ancient Egypt? (I am almost 100% certain they had more melanin in their skin then the people in Egypt right now.) I wonder if they have history about the aboriginals in America and their tribes before the Europeans came over. Seems all we hear is about cowboys and indians just like we only hear about Africans after slavery.
Aren't the Ancient Egyptians descendants of the Mesopotamians and not Black Africans? I don't think the ancient Egyptians looked like me at all.
Wait you're right. I had to look at the art of the time back then... I could have sworn they were darker then that... Well then hmmm... There has to be books about Ancient Africa right?
I hold the same views as Morgan Freeman.

No, I do not pretend that he speaks for all Black people.

I simply agree with what he has to say.

I would prefer that the current history curriculum is schools is expanded to do away with the focus on great-man White person history and focus on history as a global subject, one in which all people take part.

This is far from the only thing needing change in education right now, but it would help.

Ending racism should not entail dedicating one time period to discussing one race and their history. Ending racism is mixing the stories of all peoples into one fabric called "History"; this does away with petty differences that are perpetuated by calling one group Blacks and another one Whites and then giving each their own separate times in the spotlight.
Soselo's avatar

Hilarious Prophet

YahuShalum
Jacque De Molay
YahuShalum
Jacque De Molay
Riviera de la Mancha
Jacque De Molay
There has got to be more to my history than slavery.

There is. You should read a book or two.
What books do you recommend?
Anything on ancient Egypt? (I am almost 100% certain they had more melanin in their skin then the people in Egypt right now.) I wonder if they have history about the aboriginals in America and their tribes before the Europeans came over. Seems all we hear is about cowboys and indians just like we only hear about Africans after slavery.
Aren't the Ancient Egyptians descendants of the Mesopotamians and not Black Africans? I don't think the ancient Egyptians looked like me at all.
Wait you're right. I had to look at the art of the time back then... I could have sworn they were darker then that... Well then hmmm... There has to be books about Ancient Africa right?
The knowledge is out there but it's difficult to find. I know that much of African history has to do with griots and migration. It's the lack of writing that makes information hard to find.

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