Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves, and, under a just God, cannot long retain it. Abraham Lincoln, letter to H.L. Pierce, April 6, 1859.
Today is National Freedom Day in the United States. It’s the day we celebrate freedom from slavery, and recognize America as a symbol of liberty. On this day, Abraham Lincoln signed a joint House and Senate resolution that later became the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
In a time when our voting rights are being restricted, some public school districts are questioning whether to teach the truth about our history, and books dear to our hearts are being banned in schools and libraries, National Freedom Day takes on renewed significance.
Affirmation: I support freedom..
Coaching questions: Why does freedom mean to you? What will you do to protect your freedom?
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Martin Luther King Jr
At a time when the history of slavery is relegated to a few paragraphs in some school textbooks, it behoves us to educate the public on the accomplishments of African Americans throughout the years since slavery.
The Black History Month 2020 theme, “African Americans and the Vote,” is in honor of the centennial anniversary of the Nineteenth Amendment (1920) granting women’s suffrage and the sesquicentennial of the Fifteenth Amendment (1870) giving black men the right to vote.
President Gerald Ford officially recognized Black History Month in 1976, calling upon the public to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”
In my family, the theme is “Blended makes us beautiful!” Honoring our diversity keeps us alert to injustice.
Affirmation: I honor and respect the accomplishments of my black brothers and sisters.
Coaching questions: What does diversity, in all aspects of life, mean to you? This month, I’m celebrating Rosie, an American of Haitian descent, who I helped obtain a college scholarship. Who will you celebrate?