2021 02 09 Black History Month Social Media 900

Feb 9, 2021

Panhandle State Communications

Black History Month Celebration at Panhandle State

In Celebration of Black History Month, Oklahoma Panhandle State University supports and stands with our Black Scholars of the World, who asked to share their voice through the statement below.

“Black History Month was designated to commemorate the ratification of the 15th Amendment to the United States Constitution. Passed by Congress February 26, 1869 and ratified the following February, the Amendment granted Black men the right to vote. Black Americans battled through the Jim Crow law era, violence, and discrimination for nearly a century in effort to exercise that right. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was signed into law and throughout history, Black voters have been a catalyst to change, progression, and civil rights liberties afforded to many minority groups and the lgbtq+ community to present date.

Reflecting on the year 2020 and how Black History Month will be approached this year feels differently for many in the community here at OPSU. We have all been through an emotional period together. It has caused us to question if we are truly making changes. Are we helping people to realize the fear, anger, and hurt that has been felt in the Black community for so long? Do they realize the struggle?

We saw protests rise all over the country. Millions came out in support of ending systemic racism and demanding change. But we also saw many incidents across our nation and here in our own local community of those who stood in dark contrast to that progression. At times there were great feelings of a breakthrough, and other times it felt like we took steps backward. The feeling presently is one of worry, but also one of hope, and one of feeling blessed to still be here. To be with one another and to know that we have made it another day to see our family is something that we will not take for granted. We continue to push forward in our mission to achieve goals that some thought we may never achieve. Together we can make a difference, and for us, it begins right here at Oklahoma Panhandle State University.”

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