WHY DO WE CELEBRATE BLACK HISTORY MONTH
why do we celebrate black history month – BLACK HISTORY
If you do, then this book “Black History Facts” holds a satisfactory answer to your questions, and will not only present the cold truth, but will also uncover:
- How slavery was abolished
- How “Affirmative Action” program was one important step in lending the African Americans a fair chance at jobs
- An effective way to celebrate Black History
- How has Black History Month impacted our society
- Important names in Black History – (both black and white people)
- The meaning of “The Underground Railroad” movement
Ladies and Gentlemen,
My wife, Dr. Catherine Kannenberg, and I welcome you to our home this evening to celebrate Black History Month, and to honor the enormous contribution of African Americans to the advancement of civil rights in the United States.
In doing so, we also want to honor the work many of you are doing to advance human rights here in Uganda. Many of you here tonight have dedicated your careers to promoting freedom of expression and assembly; rights of women, children, and the disabled; and access to health care and education. Others struggle for the freedom of the press, the right to a fair trial, and the rule of law. And some of you are fighting for the right to simply live as you are.
What brings all of us together, the bond we all share, is our dedication to the principles of universal human rights. According to the United Nations, human rights are "inherent to all human beings, whatever our nationality, place of residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, language, or any other status. We are all equally entitled to our human rights without discrimination. These rights are all interrelated, interdependent and indivisible." Let me repeat, "These rights are all interrelated, interdependent and indivisible."
We are here tonight also to remember one of the great American heroes in the fight for human rights, Dr. Martin Luther King, and to celebrate his accomplishments and those of others who changed and improved the lives of millions around the world. When President Obama inaugurated the Martin Luther King National Memorial in Washington in October 2011, the President said: “Our work is not done…Change has never been quick. Change has never been simple, or without controversy. Change depends on persistence. Change requires determination.”
President Obama noted that Dr. King “would not give up, no matter how long it took, because in the smallest hamlets and the darkest slums, he had witnessed the highest reaches of the human spirit; because in those moments when the struggle seemed most hopeless, he had seen men and women and children conquer their fear; because he had seen hills and mountains made low and rough places made plain, and the crooked places made straight and God make a way out of no way.
And that is why,” said President Obama, “we honor Dr. King, because Dr. King had faith in us.”
And Dr. King’s work continues in all of you. In your own ways, you are all heirs to Dr. King’s legacy. Although you may not speak to a multitude like Dr. King in 1963, your voices matter, and each determined small step brings all of us closer to the goal of freedom and equality.
Since I arrived in Uganda on September 10, 2009, I have met many of you, and admired your strength, your perseverance, and your cohesion. I have learned as Dr. King noted, to succeed we must work together, because a threat to the rights of one of us is a threat to the rights of all.
In the speech you will here tonight Dr. King point out that: "…many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today,
have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and they have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.”
This passage is particularly relevant for us tonight, except it is no longer merely a question of black and white. We live in an interdependent world, one where we are inextricably linked to one another. Whether we live in the United States or Uganda, whether we are Christian or Muslim, whether we are in the majority or minority,
we all share the same earth, breathe the same air, are afflicted by the same illnesses, and face many of the same challenges. For one group to be free, we must all be free.
After Dr. King was murdered in April 1968, his wife, Coretta Scott King, continued to fight for equal rights, justice and racial equality. She also became a leader in the fight for the rights of gay and lesbian individuals.
“I believe,” she said, “all Americans who believe in freedom, tolerance, and human rights have a responsibility to oppose bigotry and prejudice based on sexual orientation.” She noted that “some people say that I should not be talking about the rights of lesbian and gay people and I should stick to the issue of racial justice. But I hasten to remind them that Martin Luther King Jr. said in his famous essay entitled “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” that ‘injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
Tonight I know there are many who face injustice, not just gays and lesbians, and not just in Uganda, simply because of an accident of birth. In some countries it countries it might be albinos, in others, it might be people with disabilities, and in still many countries even women, although they are usually in the majority. The famous African-American Congresswoman from New York
My fellow citizens:
I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.
Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.
So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.
That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.
These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land – a nagging fear that America’s decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.
Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America – they will be met.
On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.
On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.
We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.
In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted – for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things – some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.
For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.
For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.
For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.
Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.
This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions – that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.
For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act – not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. And all this we will do.
Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions – who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many
why do we celebrate black history month
Booker Taliaferro Washington (April 5, 1856 – November 14, 1915) was an American educator, orator, author and leader of the African-American community. He was freed from slavery at the age of nine, and after working at several menial jobs in West Virginia, he earned his way through an education at Hampton Institute and Wayland Seminary. Upon recommendation of Hampton founder Sam Armstrong, as a young man, he was appointed as the first leader of the new Tuskegee Institute, then a teachers’ college for blacks. Washington filled this role from the opening of the school in 1881 until his death in 1915. – Wikipedia