It's Black History Month Again, and I've Got Nothin'

It’s that time of year again. Somehow, I’ve become the unofficial leader of the group of people to put this thing together in my church this year – again – and I’m not sure what new angle I can come up with.

Oh, it not as though we have absolutely zero planned. We have a speaker for one Sunday. There will be a kente cloth presentation. And I expect there will a luncheon after church one week.

More at issue are three weeks of adult education. I think one Sunday the topic will be related to race relations in the era of an Obama presidency. How does he change the conversation? Some think this means the black community has arrived, and such things as B H Month are no longer needed!

To that last point, I would disagree. A Swahili aphorism states: “You are what you make of yourself, and not what others make you.” A positive self-concept is important, and so an awareness of the richness of Black history becomes important. This is one of the reasons we continue to celebrate Black History Month, first celebrated in 1926.

Another thought is to use the class would to show film clips – 15 to 20 minutes – and then discuss for remainder of class. One white person suggested segments from White Man’s Burden, a 1995 movie I was unfamiliar with. (Anyone out there seen it? ) He said this film is always an eye opener for white audiences, and it does a good job of showing unnoticed race-based behaviors and norms in our society.

I will be participating in “The 3 Biggest Diversity Blunders Your Organization Could Be Making Right Now (And How to Avoid Them)” workshop in a couple weeks, and that might have some help. But that won’t be for a couple weeks, and I need to put something together for the church newsletter this Friday.

Any thoughts about resources you would use?

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