It's Black History Month 2015. This is a time of remembering the many great contributions of African-Americans in the history of our great nation.
We have experienced many advances made possible from contributions from members of the African-American community. Beyond the familiar names that we hear every year, advances have been made by countless African-American "unsung heroes" in every spectrum of the human experience. While we will never hear every name of these contributors to the tapestry of our lives, we can take comfort in knowing that they were born, and that they made the quality of our lives more meaningful. For this truth we should thank our God.
Generally as a people, African-Americans have proven to be very resilient people, surviving the greatest obstacles of slavery and segregation that are part of the annals of our history. The current success of the movie Selma pays great tribute to our heroes of these eras past. In many ways, we have overcome. There is reason to celebrate this truth.
Yet, here in the 21st century, we are faced with an epidemic that threatens the black community, and indeed the entire fabric of our nation in a manner that has never before occurred in our history. In America since 1973, over 58 million people, nearly 36 percent of these numbers being identified as African American people, have been denied the right to be born. Their innocent lives were ended as they were attacked in the sanctuaries of their mothers' wombs—by the heinous scourge of abortion.
Let's include all of the other deaths of blacks that have occurred by no fault of the victims throughout American history: black slaves and black people killed during the race wars that have occurred throughout the years. All of these occurrences are of course very tragic. We take pause now to remember the death of every innocent.
The key here is innocence. Slaves were innocent. The victims of the KKK are innocent. The babies in the womb are innocent. God hates the shedding of innocent blood.
Please forgive me, I don't mean to be maudlin. This after all is meant to be a tribute to Black History Month. I would suggest though, that this startling revelation, that abortion is part of African-American history, and it deserves our attention and our prayers. Please indulge me here by reviewing my recent Black History Month video:
Black History Month, or National African American History Month grew out of "Negro History Week;" the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African-Americans. Since 1976, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month.
While I have many Black History honorees on my list, I believe that Frederick Douglass, one of my favorite abolitionists, ranks high on my list, near my granddaddy MLK Sr., and my uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and my daddy, Rev. A.D. King—powerful freedom fighters of the 20th Century.
"I have said that the Declaration of Independence is the ring-bolt to the chain of your nation's destiny; so, indeed, I regard it. The principles contained in that instrument are saving principles. Stand by those principles, be true to them on all occasions, in all places, against all foes and at whatever cost" (Frederick Douglass).
For me, Black History is just as American as July 4, and apple pie. Celebrating Black History Month helps us reflect back on how far we as a collective people have come.
I celebrate Black History Month because it is part of the American dream of my uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebrating Black History Month helps us to preserve a memory of "overcomers" like Douglass, MLK, my dad—A.D. King—Tubman, Truth and indeed every hero, sung and unsung, man, woman and child that has forged and bridged the gaps for future generations.
Some of my favorite models for tributary during Black History month are the Tuskegee Airmen, Madame C.J. Walker, Rosa Parks, the black slaves who helped to build the White House ... The list is long, with people from every walk of life, and regarded with much gratitude that God granted each the courage to press on.
Please, as we come to a close of this blog, join me in prayer that one day history will remember not only that there was a Black History Month in America for a season, but that one day on earth there was a time when indeed every human being, born and pre-born, was awarded human dignity and the reality of a loving God who, as introduced in John 3:16, loved us all so much that He and His Son made the ultimate sacrifice, so that we can live forever.
Dr. Alveda King is the daughter of the late civil-rights activist the Rev. A.D. King and niece of Martin Luther King Jr. She is also a civil rights and pro-life activist, as well as director of the African-American outreach for Priests for Life. Click here to visit her blog.
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