February is Black History Month. It was first established in 1926 by Dr. Carter Woodson, a professor at Tulane University, who “strongly believed that documenting black history and educating the public were both vitally important ingredients to the progress of race relations and the progression of the lives of black Americans.” As a class, most of us believe that Black History Month is very important and that there should be more celebration and respect paid to black Americans. Today there has been a tremendous change for all citizens of America. The country has gone from scarcely making it as the first English settlers arrived to then becoming nearly the richest country in the world. I personally believe that throughout our great growth and tremendous jump on life, the country that once consisted of all different cultures and populations lost the meaning of Americ a. Despite our color, or where we came from, nearly all emigrated to America in search of freedom and a better life. And still the nation went against the main reason they came to America in the first place, ostracizing other immigrants, especially Africans. Black history is unquestionably worthy of a month to be celebrated.
— Jessie Chandler, Editor
By Ana Nascimento
When we study black history we are able to interact with everything that people went through years ago that had an effect on life nowadays. Black people never had an easy life; they went through the toughest times a human being could ever go through.
It’s good to learn about black history because we get to know more about everything that they couldn’t do because of their color. Years ago black people couldn’t enter places where white people went. Studying black history is good to make this world a better place in which to live.
Do you know how many people are still racist? If kids study black history and learn how horrible it is to treat anybody differently they will be a better generation. When kids learn to live to respect people for who they are regardless of skin color, the world will be a better place. Studying black history is important for everyone. They should have started teaching students about it ages ago. When we study black history, we learn about people who were enslaved, segregated and mistreated and despite much adversity have prevailed. But the most important thing we can learn from studying black history is never to let this happen again.
Our Island Heritage
By Rafael Maciel
This year I really enjoyed studying the Martha’s Vineyard Heritage Trail. I found that I learn a lot more when I am learning about something that happened here. In the past when we learned about black history, we were told stories of how blacks were mistreated in the South. The stories were sad and they gave me somewhat of an idea of what slavery and segregation were like, but I never really learned much. Hearing stories about how blacks were treated here on the Island was a much better way of learning. Seeing the sites and being able to relate the story I had heard to an actual place made learning black history easy and fun. I really enjoyed the Heritage Trail.
Learn and Celebrate
By Shelby Ferry
When we study black history we learn a lot about different cultures and how they work. It is good to learn about cultures other than your own because you get an exposure to new ideas. I also think that we need to celebrate black history because there are many important events that happened in the United States that included black people. We can learn a lot from their culture and maybe even include our knowledge in something we may want to do.
Mix It Up
By Tyler Araujo
I don’t think there is a need to celebrate Black History Month. I feel like history was full of the blacks trying to get equal rights. Since they have succeeded I feel like the black population does not need to be singled out. Equal rights mean equal representation and by celebrating black history only during one month they are not being represented equally. Schools learn about history every day. I think that the two need to be combined and Black History Month should be eliminated.
Let’s Not Forget Haiti
By Andrew Randall
During Black History Month we should honor African Americans such as Jackie Robinson, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King and many others. It’s important to honor them because of the roles that they have played in American history. This year it’s especially important to think about the history of African Americans because of Haiti. Haiti is the oldest black republic in the world and they need help. Our class is selling bracelets for Haiti. All the profits go to helping the victims of the earthquake. I believe it is very important for us to raise money and help them.
Please Help Haiti
By Kevin Walsh
With Haiti dominating the news, there is no way we can turn away and ignore it. With donations still pouring in from all around the world, there is much hope for Haitian people who are still desperately in need of essentials. As many have said before, this was the worst place for an earthquake to hit. Many celebrities have taken action and organized a telethon to raise money. The telethon featured hundreds of actors, musicians and artists throughout the night and donated 100 per cent of the proceeds to help Haiti. Our high school is doing its part. We recently held a relief concert, raising $3,000, and our class is selling wristbands that sayHaiti: Be the Hope, here at school. Even though the earthquake was devastating, we are really seeing how people can come together even in this tough economy and donat e even just a few dollars. These donations have saved thousands and, with your help, we can save thousands more.
By Kunal Datta
In the early 17th century the French colony of Haiti, because of its forestry and sugar-related industries, became of one of the wealthiest colonies in the Caribbean because the heavy importation of African slaves. In the late 18th century the slaves in Haiti revolted and Haiti became the first black republic to declare independence in 1804. Since then Haiti has had a history of political violence and remains the poorest country in the western hemisphere. The country has a mortality rate of 8.65 deaths in 1,000, mostly due to AIDS. A huge earthquake struck Haiti in January 2010 southwest of Port-au-Prince, later followed by 12 aftershocks. It is thought to be the worst earthquake in this region in more than 200 years.
Help Us Help Haiti
By Courtney Mussell
As we all know, Haiti has gone through a serious disaster that has left them struggling. To make life better for the Haitian people, our history class is selling bracelets that read: Haiti (on the front) and Be the Hope (on the back). Many students and faculty members have contributed to our fundraiser. We plan to send the money to help out the Haitian people.