New Kent Charles City Chronicle

News for New Kent County and Charles City County, Virginia | February 26, 2021

Editorial: It’s time to elaborate on the truth about Black History

By Robb Johnson | February 10, 2021 6:49 am

It’s the first week of Black History Month and it is time for a chance to get real.

People always ask why this month is so important. This month has extra meaning for so many because for so long, the history added with the accomplishments of so many have felt like they have been pushed off to the side. Black excellence is important whether people want to acknowledge it or not. The United States of America was built on the backs of slaves, along with African-American people who never get their true credit for what they have accomplished.

This month is also important because it shows how far we still must go as people. Racism is real. The problem is that I see many things that need to be pointed out. I feel that the real issues are not getting addressed.

I hear politicians speak about how they are going to improve the lives of black people in this county. They pass everything except the items that benefit those people. I have a problem with that because politicians beg for the vote and in the end, do nothing. I feel that many who claim to take black plight seriously are just trying to sound good for the cameras.

I am tired of talk and I want more action. Many black people are qualified for jobs and great positions. So, stop making it such a big deal. Whenever I see people celebrating the first black this or that, I truly get disgusted. We are celebrating things that should be common everyday things. Some call this progress. I call it keeping people’s minds stuck on a mentality that every so often greatness can be accomplished.

Here is my solution; get rid of Black History Month for good and replace it with American History Month as a way to unite this country. Let us look at the past and shove it aside. We must move on, but I feel people who are career politicians use the pain of black people to prolong the process for their benefit.

It should be mandatory that all aspects of American history be taught year-round. Just giving one month to people with a rich history is a joke. If we really want to teach black history, then teach it, all histories, and let us have a real mix. Teach the good and the bad.

We need the next generation of black children to be empowered not by the shackles of the past, but by their future. This starts with not only the system, but at home. We must continue to be better and have real conversations with the kids coming up. It is time to tell them yes, they will have to work harder than the fellow white co-worker to achieve success. Instead of them making excuses or getting discouraged, we need to tell them to keep grinding. We have seen the story before we know the blueprint. Once that mindset is implemented and the shackles are taken off emotionally, then progress will be made.

African-American people must be real about their own faults as well. We hold other races of people accountable and it is time to look in the mirror to do the same. Some will talk about the justice system, but by now it should be understood that it just is what it is. I hate to put it simply but understand the history of things instead of dwelling. Learn and take the steps to reverse it. This country once beat you for reading, picking up a book up and gaining knowledge. You were denied an education. Now, use your resources to just not go to college, but get a skill or trade so that you can build generational wealth. Stop waiting for politicians and people on television to save you. It is not happening. It is time to change the narrative for good. Are you willing to take that challenge?

Will you be the generation to laugh at racism and to say those old games will not work with us? Or will you concede to the old tricks that have continued to enslave people’s mentality for all these years? Are you ready to look at your own people in the face and say that ignorance will no longer be tolerated? It is a new day and the time for a new beginning is now.