Why I'm White And Celebrating Black History Month

Why I'm White And Celebrating Black History Month

I'm a white, female, college student, sorority woman, and not at all a minority, but that doesn’t mean I’m not celebrating black history month.

I am a white, female, college student, sorority woman, and not at all a minority, but that doesn’t mean I’m not celebrating black history month. We have come an extremely long way in the United States regarding segregation and that is something to celebrate. Many of us would not have our bosses, coworkers, classmates, best friends, boyfriends/girlfriends, husbands/wives, let alone, our previous president if it wasn’t for desegregation laws and our conscious efforts to make our society one of equality. With that said, I am not only celebrating black history month, making it a point of conversation, and blogging because I am overjoyed by our nation's accomplishments. Rather, I am celebrating black history month, so that I may bring awareness to those around me that 1) it is Black History Month, and 2) wow, IT’S BLACK HISTORY MONTH, and Black people (as well as other minorities) are equal! We are all equal.

Now, don’t get me wrong, much of our nation is way past all the segregation nonsense. That’s great, but the sad truth is, some are not. Some still look across the room and see color rather than person. Just one example took place not many years ago in 2013 when high school students in Wilcox County, Georgia, were fighting to set up their first ever integrated prom. FIRST EVER. When I heard this, I got chills. How disgusting that they are getting away with having segregated proms. How are they getting away with it? The saddest part is, that it wasn’t going against any laws. The school wasn't breaking any civil rights laws because it wasn’t actually sponsoring the segregated proms. The school wasn’t responsible, the parents and students were responsible. They were the ones organizing and funding the private events. Like some sick invite list. No colored people allowed. God forbid children of different race associate, let alone dance together. Even worse, when this high school in Wilcox, Georgia came to public light and was called to speak on the efforts moving towards an integrated prom, students told reporters that the posters they had put up around the school for the integrated prom were being ripped down. Students were actually objecting the opportunity to finally have a dance when they could all be together as a high school. And I can’t help but wonder, did they even know why, or were they simply ripping down the posters because their parents told them it was wrong?

As much as this story in its entirety disgusted, and angered me, I really got to thinking, and realized—this happens today. The sad truth is, some of our nation still doesn’t seem to understand that we are equal. They get caught up in the then. How things used to be, or what their old-fashioned grandparents grew up believing, and how they’ve passed on these old fashioned, and completely inaccurate, notions of segregation because “they grew up in the south”. I hear from surrounding college students everyday that they “don’t like” blacks, or Latinos, or Native Americans, or Asians, and when you ask them why they have no reasoning other then that’s how they were raised.. Well it’s a bunch of bull. Do they even know how absurdly ignorant that is? That’s like not eating pizza because your mom told you when you were ten that you wouldn’t like it.

So it all boils down to this, it doesn’t matter how things were, what your ancestors may have thought, what your grandparents still believe, or how your father told you when you were a little girl that your husband “could not be black.” Forget about it. You don’t have to believe what your family believes. You are your own person, and you can choose to be better than that. We are long past those misconceptions. We are a new generation whom recognizes that “separate but equal” means exactly what it says. Yes, we are different, and we are unique, in many beautifully various ways—but we are equal.

That is why I am a white celebrating black history month. In hopes that in remembering how far we have come, we may also spread awareness that there still is segregation. Our nation has come so far, and yet not far enough. No race has come far enough, and we could all do better. During this month of remembrance, do, please, notice how far we have come, but also challenge yourself to be nicer. Whatever background you come from, be nicer, and see each neighbor as just that. “The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:31.

Cover Image Credit: snopes

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No, Your Political Views Aren't Always Wrong, They Just Aren't Always Right

"No one is as deaf as the man who will not listen." - Proverb

Violence. It is inevitable. Whether it is verbal or it is physical, it is happening around the world every day and it is a very sensitive subject. Something absolutely devastating happens and all of the sudden politicians are being questioned and those who aren't politicians, but think that they are, are now ranting on Facebook swearing up and down the walls that they are right and everyone else is wrong.

After the shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, I was at a loss for words. For an incident this serious to happen in what felt like my backyard was absolutely terrifying. To live in a world where this happened was absolutely terrifying. As families and friends of victims and survivors grieved on social media and on TV, people took no breath in expressing their feelings about the incident. From angry messages about the LGTBQ community and to the complete opposite side where those mourned for the LGBTQ community, arguments were all over Facebook. Opinions were all over Facebook, as they always are.

With the recent Las Vegas shooting the same thing was seen on social media as some felt strongly about the mental health of Americans and others cared deeply about those who were killed and what was going to happen next. Social media is home to many different political views as well as social views and the biggest issue, in my opinion, is that no one allows the opportunity for someone else to speak their mind.

Most importantly in my life right now, as well as the lives of many who surround me, is the Parkland shooting. This was absolutely horrifying, to say the least. It showed how unfair life was and how screwed up people can be.

Unfortunately, I have found on social media as well as on TV that people have lost sight of what truly matters right now as they are too worried arguing about their political views and making the statement that only their thoughts are correct.

Being a very open-minded person, I have read through hundreds of comments and watched my fair share of videos. I have heard Republicans and Democrats speak on the matter on gun control, gun safety, and guns in school.

Yes, I believe in the Second Amendment. I believe it is a right to carry a gun with the appropriate training and paperwork. Yes, I also believe that it has become way too easy to obtain such a powerful weapon.

Lastly, I believe that it is not the ease of buying guns or the Second Amendment itself that is leading to these terrifying events. It's the people of the United States and the way that they are raised today.

As Governor Matt Bevin said when he was younger, kids brought guns to school on a day to day basis and even more around the holidays to show off their new presents. People simply did not think about killing people. People were not terrified for their lives when they went to school or to a country concert.

Yes, you're allowed to have your own political opinions.

Yes, you can plaster your views and arguments all over Facebook and other social media platforms.

But stop and take a second to think about others views as well. Think about simpler times when your life didn't revolve around a video game or your cell phone or the latest violent movie that just came out.

When things were "simpler," there were not constant shootings at schools and out in public places.

Guns are not the problem. Do not be ignorant.

Realize that you can have your views but they may not always be right.

Cover Image Credit: Alex Radelich

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Let's Take The Politics Out Of School Shootings

So, please do not use school shootings as a reason to get in a Facebook fight.

The American dream is to send our beloved children off to school where they can flourish and learn. On the other hand, an important aspect of the American dream is the second amendment.

How shall we move forward so these two aspects of the American dream can coexist?

The answer to that question will not be discovered in my lifetime (or maybe ever). There is no way to save an entire country from horrific events like ones we have seen too many times. So, let’s stop focusing on which is the “correct” way to handle the situation and look at the broader perspective.

This week, social media is flooded with a variety of political opinions after the Florida school shooting that I would rather not explore. I am sure everyone is familiar with the different opinions that unveil after a mass shooting.

Unfortunately, we are too familiar with them.

I am a senior in high school who is hardly involved with politics. Putting political beliefs aside, I focus on the victims’ faces and names. I focus on their families. I focus on a school that will never feel the same.

The kids who passed were not thinking about politics during this tragedy. Rather, they were wondering if they would make it out of a place they considered safe, alive.

This issue is much bigger than a political debate. It is about hate in our world, a lack of love and a disconnect between ourselves and others. It’s not about guns. It’s not about mental illness. It’s about much more.

Rather than pointing the finger, we can all equally share the blame.

When social media turns an issue into a political debate, it’s easy to forget that children aren’t thinking about politics when they see their teacher, coach or friend pass away in front of their eyes.

So please, do us all a favor and don’t use children's dead bodies as a reason to get into a heated Facebook fight. That only spreads the hate. It is counterproductive. Rather than plotting against each other, we need to band together.

Cover Image Credit: Pixbay

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