How is your breathing?
As we enter Black History and Futures Month, we root ourselves in history and imagine and co-create futures.
Black History Month founder Carter G. Woodson spoke of Black history:
“What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world void of national bias, race hate, and religious prejudice.”
Woodson was both commenting on history and imagining a future where history was free of racism. Without an understanding of history, one’s lineage and truth are erased.
Ibram X. Kendi wrote: “One of the reasons they are banning antiracist history books is because they don't want people to learn how they constructed racism.
Because the more we learn how they constructed racism, the more we learn how to deconstruct it and build equitable and just and democratic societies for all people. The more we build equitable and just and democratic societies, the more people of color resist their racist efforts to take us back and the more White people join in that antiracist resistance because they realize equitable and just and democratic societies benefit them more than a deeply unequal society ruled by fear-mongering fascists and tyrants spreading bigotry of all kinds to divide and conquer us.”
The fear of Black history is the fear of a pro-Black future. And this is why we must honor Black history, Black realities, and Black futures. We look forward to being in community for our panel on Thursday, February 15, 6:30 p.m. EST.
To return to Woodson: “If a race has no history, if it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated.” We will not allow Black people and Blackness to be in danger of extermination. We will dream, we will love.
“All that can save you now is your confrontation with your own history . . . which is not your past, but your present,” James Baldwin wrote. Linear time is a construct white supremacy; history is present and our futurity is now.