Pride in black history


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“For there is no respect of persons with God.” — Romans 2:11

There are those who say there is no such thing as Afro-American or black history because the past has become so interwoven in the whole fabric of American culture. I couldn’t disagree with that perception more. There are many branches of American history, all of which can be viewed from different perspectives. Black history happens to be just one of them. We must realize that no matter which sector or segment of American history comes under scrutiny or surveillance, opportunity is provided to fill in missing pages, to restore lost boundaries, and to come closer to the truth of the past. I agree with Melba Patillo Beals that our challenge will forever remain that we cope with our interdependence, that we see ourselves reflected in every other human being, and that we respect and honor our differences. That is indeed a challenge worth taking!

I am often reminded of some profound words that came from John Hope Franklin, a professor of legal history at Duke University. He said:

“There is nothing inherently wrong with being aware of color . . . It is only when character is attached to color, when ability is measured by color, when privilege is tied to color, and a whole galaxy of factors that spell the difference, between success and failure in our society are tied to color . . . that it becomes a deadly, dreadful, denigrating factor among us all . . . that we have two nations black and white, separate, hostile, unequal.”

So let us all make note and take pride in the successes, accomplishments, inventions, and positive strides of black Americans during Black History Month this year. Remember God does not value one class of humanity as inherently superior to another! So why should we?

 

This column is the opinion of Ann Wells of Eagle River Missionary Baptist Church.

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