Sunday, February 10, 2008

Has Black History Month Run Its Course?

Some commentators have argued that African American History Month has become trivial and tokenized in the United States. Children across the country learn the same African American leaders every year to the point that their true accomplishments become diluted. Some have even said the month has become more important in sales and marketing than in the classroom.

This article excerpt is from the newspaper, Lansing State Journal. Do you agree that Black History Month has run its course? Does it still have any relevance today and in the future?

When Carter G. Woodson founded Negro History Week in 1926, he wasn't trying to establish a permanent annual tradition.

In fact, he was looking toward a day when black history would be integrated into the general run of history and carving out time in February to pay attention to it wouldn't be necessary.

But more than 80 years later, Black History Month is an annual tradition, complete with sales, television specials and school assemblies. There are times when it seems to be used more for marketing purposes than idealistic ones.

And some have concluded that it has run its course.

The actor Morgan Freeman, for instance, said in an interview for "60 Minutes" two years ago that it was "ridiculous" to relegate black history to a single month.

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