‘Ello Everyone and welcome!
As many of you may or may not know, February is Black History month here in America which is a time that Americans traditionally take the time to reflect on this country’s past centered on their African American citizens as well as other citizens of color. It has also been (in my opinion) a time for people to start pointing the historical blame finger at each other…though none of us were there so we cannot truly know what occurred.
Lately, I have felt that this month does not hold the same weight as it once did. Many of the celebrations and lessons that are supposed to be taught during this time have become watered down generic spin-offs of their original counterparts. Children in schools are no longer being taught about their history…..American history. Also, know that when I say their history, I do not just mean Black American children’s history, I mean ALL American Children’s history.
I can remember growing up and having my teachers tell us about the Black Panther party, Langston Hughes or, Assata Shakur, Maya Angelou and Malcolm X. In today’s classrooms, students are lucky if they get to hear Martin Luther King Jr give his “I have a dream” speech in his voice. They will never know the struggle that slaves had to overcome to stay alive, nor will they understand how the alliance with Native Americans came about and how this alliance allowed for so many Natives and Africans to stay alive.
These facts have been brewing in the back of my mind for a very long time, and ever since the Travon Martin Case and the most recent cases of unarmed men and women of color being subjected to police brutality, did I believe that these lessons would be taught. This all changed when I watched the 2015 Grammy Music Awards that took place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Overall I can honestly say this year’s Grammys were extremely lack lustered and bland. Most of the acts had a very somber tone acts, which set the overall energy/tone of the show. Throughout the night, there were subtle traces of more serious topics besides the traditional pop culture news.
Towards the middle of the show, I came to the realization that artists were using their voices and fame as a plat form to assist in becoming a catalyst for change. By using their platforms to talk about social issues such as police brutality and domestic violence. It has allowed for Americans to take a step back and reevaluate themselves. It has made many of us question “is this what I believe? Is this what I want my nation to stand for? For victimizing its citizens and oppressing those who do not fit the conventional mold provided for them?” Obviously, this isn’t what we want to be known for since we pride ourselves on being the home of the free and the land of the brave. So we have to make a change.
This call for change was apparent as an artist after the artist used their performances to display the now famous “hands up” gesture, which refers to the acknowledgment of police brutality against people of color. Lately professional athletes, teachers, activists and journalist have been using this gesture to call to action other citizens to speak up and hold out government accountable for its actions.
The solidarity that was shown tonight was amazing and I hope that this is just the beginning of something great. I am a firm believer that if we do not learn from our history, we are doomed to repeat it. Let us all come together to create an era of reform.
I feel like I’m babbling so I will wrap it up. Just keep this in the back of you mind. What can you do to call others to action while demanding that their government do something about the ill treatment of our fellow citizens? If you don’t believe that a change is coming just watch Beyonce’s performance at this years Grammy’s below and know….the plan has been set in motion!
Until Next time! Take Chances! Make Mistakes! AND GET MESSY!!