Today, Congresswoman Gwen Moore (WI-4) released the following statement in recognition of Black History Month.
"Every February, we come together as a nation to reflect on the many contributions of African Americans in this country and throughout the world. From the beautiful poetry of Langston Hughes, to the fortitude of Ida B. Wells, to local Wisconsin trailblazers like Vel Phillips and Reuben K. Harpole, Jr. -- black history has and continues to be intricately woven into the fabric of our nation. We thank Dr. Carter G. Woodson for his extensive studies of black history, and efforts to bring Black History Month to fruition.
"While 28 days seems too short a time to fully appreciate this rich history, it is important that we use each day to promote the important historical contributions of African Americans. Otherwise, it is far too easy for the history books to focus on the Supreme Court's role in desegregating schools instead of the efforts of Thurgood Marshall. Students could grow up seeing President Johnson as the only man responsible for the Civil Rights Act, forgetting about the roles of Bayard Rustin, A. Phillip Randolph and Martin Luther King, Jr. To only remember Lincoln's role in ending slavery, and forget about Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglas, would be an incomplete recollection of American history.
"Black History Month gives our nation an opportunity to learn about African American figures that are too often overlooked. Authors like Toni Morrison, actors like Sidney Poitier and business leaders like Robert Johnson can all serve as role models to African American youth, providing examples of Americans who overcame great obstacles to achieve success.
"As we begin to fully recognize the diversity of our great nation, taking a month to specifically recognize African American contributions helps bring greater tolerance and understanding -- because Black History is American History.
"Throughout the month of February and beyond I encourage all people, in my district and across this country, to learn about the many and varied contributions of African Americans to the growth and betterment of our nation."