Black history is Americanism

By Rosemarie Gonzalez
February 6, 2003

Lauren Joseph

What does Black History month mean to me? When I first thought about this, I can honestly say that I did not know what to write about.

In being one-third Puerto Rican, one-third Ecuadorian and one-third Panamanian, which makes me completely Latina and not a descendant of an African-American, I thought it would be hard for me to talk about the importance of Black History month.

What the African-Americans went through since first stepping foot on this soil has been horrendous. Growing up, I remember learning about slavery and the Civil Rights Movement, which included the likes of Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King, Jr. They helped in molding present-day America.

These people opened up the doors of opportunity for all African-Americans, and most importantly, to other minorities. If it were not for them, I probably would not have gotten this far in life.

I have not lived through times of war or depression, but the battle for equal and civil rights still rages on. I have seen that through affirmative action, all minorities have been able to pursue their dreams and be successful in life.

There have been debates about whether or not affirmative action is fair to the majority, and whether or not it should be kept as a law. I think that this is a vital issue that should be taken seriously because it is the key representation for all minorities in giving them a chance in the real world.

If our rights are taken away from us, we will not be treated equally or allowed to get a post-secondary education. Affirmative action allows for us to have a diversified environment, so that we may learn from each other instead of being afraid to be open or willing to new people and cultures.

In essence, Black History month shows us that it is an important time of the year. It is not only natural to commemorate the memories of those who died to give us our rights, but to remember that we are all one people, equal in all that we do or say.

Not only do we discover who we are as Americans through our history classes, but also in our celebration of Black History month.

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Rosemarie Gonzalez

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