I just finished reading “A Black Women’s History of the United States.”
It was a very important read.
My history, as with most of my peers, was told by and for white people. It left out the vast majority of Black people, especially Black women.
I’m embarrassed to say that just now, at the age of 34, I’ve realized how much a part of United States history Black women are. Not only a part of, put deeply influential in creating the country that I live in today. It would be one thing to simply not know of their actions, but it’s another to not know that they were deeply influential in creating the rights and the freedoms that are so much a part of my life and all who I love. We really have to thank Black women for the lives we have today.
But I accept that I grew up in a racist society that did not give due credit to those who deserved it, who wiped out true history, who took credit for the successes of others, who intentionally kept the voices of Black women and men down and so on…
I mean, I was taught that white people “freed the slaves.” Black people freed themselves through never ending dedication, diligence, intelligence, and hundreds of other skills they had, that I was never or barely taught about.
I can not change my history, but I certainly can take charge of my present and my future. That is something that it seems many people are doing right now in the United States and I hope that those of you who have begun to educate yourselves and make changes to overcome your biases and ingrained racism will continue to do so. I definitely will be. And for those of you who have not begun, I hope that you will begin.
I picked up this book in Richmond, Virginia this summer at the Lil Rad Library and now will pass it on for someone else to read. My short time in Richmond was very powerful and it was truly radical to see the movement there. I was inspired and excited for change. There is so much momentum and now is the time to make the shift in our own lives and in our society. Keep going strong my friends.
Thank you to Daina Ramey Berry and Kali Nicole Gross for this incredible book of history that shapes our present.