Time for another 28 days of guilt and self-flagellation as we observe Black History Month. I object to meaningless gestures such as Black History Month, and I'm not the only one who feels this way. Watch this classic clip from 60 Minutes as one of my favorite actors, Morgan Freeman, chastises a befuddled Mike Wallace as he rejects Wallace's apparent insistence that blacks should be grateful that they get their own month. Watch and learn, kids:
I don't agree with Morgan Freeman on everything concerning politics, but he and I are totally on the same sheet of music on this topic. And what he told Mike Wallace is almost exactly what I tell my students every year when I get the inevitable questions from them about why I don't do anything or teach anything about Black History Month. I tell my students that there is no "black history." I tell them that this is a United States History class, and "black history" is part of American History. Is that not enough?
"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson