Celebrating Black History for the Month of February
As the days whisk past and we find ourselves still experiencing the multiple impacts of the Covid virus, many of my friends and neighbors here in Bandon are talking about how the fatigue of the pandemic has reduced their ability to pay attention to the things that were once so important to them. Of course, our values remain the same, while perhaps we are too tired to focus and act on them. We can all relate to these feelings.
Bandon Inclusivity Group has these simple but effective ideas for refreshing your social justice values:
First, know that our group has members who are still demonstrating for Black Lives Matter and social equity. We ask for your support of them. Though we may not be able to stand out there with them, simply honking, waving, or even stopping by for a moment to acknowledge them is appreciated. Your moment can uplift those who stand for our belief in social justice. They are on the corner of 101 and 42s on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:30 to 4:30, and on Fridays from 2:00 to 3:00.
Next, ponder the fact that in the USA we have supported our government in designating persons or groups of people as important to us as a whole, so important that we granted a time on the official calendars to celebrate those persons. Among those are “Mother’s Day” and “Father’s Day”, “Veteran’s Day”, “Martin Luther King’s Birthday” and “Labor Day”.
Besides Black History Month, also known as African American History Month (February), there are the following designations: National American Indian Heritage Month (November), National Women’s History Month (March), Gay Lesbian Pride Month (June), and a host of others. When you think about it, our calendars are full of reminders to pause, reflect, and remind ourselves of those persons who worked and are still working for social equity.
According to a recent article by NPR, “Black History Month celebrates the rich cultural heritage, triumphs and adversities that are an indelible part of our country’s history.” The article states that this year’s theme is “Black Health and Wellness”, very apt during the continued Pandemic. For the full article please see: https://www.npr.org/2022/02/
We suggest reading that article and one of the articles (or watch the YouTube clips) we list below. Believe me, your heart will be lifted by reading how over the years individuals have taken a step, that developed into a group, that ultimately lead for social change, a ripple effect that even the person who started it couldn’t have imagined. These stories are important, they refresh our hopes and may inspire us to take one little step, one brave moment, one chance, with the faith it will bring good into the world.
THE FREEDOM RIDERS:
Remembering the ‘Freedom Riders’ whose courage to ride integrated buses into the deep south, and often landed them in jail for months. https://www.npr.org/2011/05/
Ruby Bridges, at age 6, was the first African-American student to integrate an elementary school in the south. https://rubybridges.foundation
ARCHBISHOP DESMUND TUTU:
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, whose voice helped end apartheid, said: “People ask ‘How are we going to change?’ Well, I always say to people: Remember, the sea is actually made up of drops of water. What you do, where you are, is of significance. It may just be that your act of courage, encourages someone else, who is likely more apprehensive.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?