Allied Blacks for Liberty and Equality (ABLE) and the NAACP of Galesburg have planned many events, film screenings and discussions that will take place throughout the month of February, which is commonly known as Black History Month. We would like to encourage all students to attend these events and to keep resisting the status quo.
There are five movie screenings scheduled for the month and the three remaining ones will take place on Feb. 10, 21 and 28. The Galesburg Public Library is hosting these screenings. All the selected films, fiction and non-fiction, have messages about Black culture and its place in America. Professor of Africana Studies, Brother Shabazz, led one of the two scheduled discussion sessions which focused on dispelling myths about the Black Panther Party. The upcoming discussion session will take place on Feb. 10 and will focus on the Underground Railroad.
Aside from the events of the aforementioned two categories, four other events have been advertised as a part of the month-long commemoration of Black thought, innovation and resistance. These four events are trivia night, Black-owned business expo, a gospel fest and the monthly NAACP meeting that will take place on Feb. 28 in the Alumni room of Old Main.
The participation of all Knox students is highly encouraged as all events are free, open to the public and will have opportunities for voter registration.
Black History Month is about acknowledging Black thought and innovation. It is about commemorating shifts in history and pioneers of that progress. In celebrating Black History Month, we must also recognize that our anti-supremacy must stretch farther than just a month. Every month is the month of privilege. During Black History Month, unarmed Black men continue to be brutalized by the police. During Black History Month, Black trans women continue to be murdered at alarming rates. We must do better.
It can be easy to sit through February and the rest of the year, thinking that the Obama presidency ended racism in America. It can be easy to cross our legs and do nothing about injustice because some of us look at symbols of resistance like a Black president or a desegregated college and assume the underlying issues have been solved. Black History Month is a symbol of resistance and its existence shall always remind us that there are 11 more months in a year during which Black people are still Black and marginalized.
Let’s all attend these events not only to respect the energy that went into planning them, but to carry our own weight in dismantling oppression and educating ourselves on the injustices that weave the fabric of our lives.