Growing up, I remember my grandmother spending every Saturday reading to my siblings and I. The stories she would read were often related to our African American heritage and culture. My father was also very influential in teaching us about our history. He not only made sure that we knew where we came from, but that we were proud of it. He wanted us to be proud of our brown skin and our curly hair. We went to any event that related to our heritage.
Each year we not only celebrated Kwanzaa but we participated in the events throughout the community as well. Education is extremely important to my family. Education about our history is even more so. I think it is very important to teach children about their heritage.
Black history is rich. Unlike other cultures, most of our culture was lost and destroyed. The efforts of many of our ancestors have created traditions in America and around the world that we can be proud of. They did not just do it for themselves. They did it for generations to come.
We should never stop being proud of who we are but first we have to know who we are. Our history is not just an event that we spend time celebrating once a month. It is a part of us. It should live within us. So many black people are suffering from an identity crisis. They do not know who they are.
Let’s start reading to the children. We cannot leave it all up to the school system because in all honesty, they won’t learn it there anyway. Get them involved in community events. Let them know that their culture is important too.I was very fortunate to grow up the way I did. However, this isn’t everybody’s story. How different would life be if it were?