The Downey Legend

Black History Month

Valeria Ostorga, Writer

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Since the mid-1970s the month of February has been recognized by each president as the official month to celebrate black history. This is a significant month in which African Americans and many other races can look back to reflect and admire the historical struggles and achievements of African Americans. Now, each February serves as a month to create advancement in the long journey of finding equality for African Americans.

 

This year, the movie Black Panther came out – leading there to finally be a Black superhero. Lily Solis, 11, voices her opinion after watching the movie.

 

“I honestly liked the movie because it lived up to the expectations that people had for it. However, it is also nice to now see a superhero for the Black race,” Solis said. “Even though Marvel still lacks a Hispanic, Asian, or Indian superhero, this can be a start to hopefully a new trend.”

 

Fans like Solis have been anticipating Black Panther since Marvel Studios announced that they had began production on Jan. 26, 2017. The film broke records by having the majority of the cast be African American actors and the album was solely created by black artists. The dominance of African Americans in the Black Panther movie leads to be another achievement for Black History Month.

 

Even though Black Panther brought in a new achievement for Black History Month, Taelor McDonald, 12, states her views on what Black History Month should truly focus on.

 

“ I don’t think that people fully understand the month and what it’s for. In school we don’t talk about it or take time to understand it,” McDonald said. “ I think that Black History Month should appreciate the African Americans that are recognized in this month because they fought for what they believed in which helped shape this country to what it is today. I and many others are given more opportunities that they would have if it wasn’t for them.”

 

Others like McDonald do agree with the fact that the purpose of the month is lost to some people. Here, McDonald is saying that she hopes people do take the time to recognize and appreciate those who came before which did allow to greatly advance the culture in America. On the other hand, others stray away from appreciating their predecessors and instead only applaud current influencers. Therefore, McDonald states that she feels the need to thank past figures for allowing her to live the life which she has today; a life which they only could dream of.

 

Through the views of a different race, Mexican-American, Ashley Ramos, 12, gives insight to how she was taught and how she views Black History Month.

 

“I definitely remember learning about this in elementary school since it coincided with a lesson on MLK and what he did for our country. Ever since, I have always known that this was the month to celebrate him and all of those who created a difference as well,” Ramos said. “However, I do appreciate what he did not only for the black race but for all races. I appreciate that the fight for African American equality also led to the equality of other races.”

 

Here, Ramos sheds new light on the meaning of Black History Month. People do take time to celebrate the month of February to view that achievements of the African American culture, but also to view the chain reaction that it has caused onto other races. In all, this expands the importance of Black History Month outside of the African American community.

 

Even though milestones in the African American community such as Black Panther cause many to view the importance of African Americans in the industry, others believe that it is as well as important to remember those who first stimulated this ongoing movement.

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The School Newspaper of Downey High School
Black History Month