February is Black History Month.
As the saying goes, even a broken clock is right twice a day. So it’s not fake news that President Trump signed into law H.R. 1242, the “400 Years of African-American History Commission Act,” which establishes the 400 Years of African-American History Commission to plan activities to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the arrival of African-Americans in the United States; and H.R. 1927, the “African American Civil Rights Network Act of 2017,” which establishes the African American Civil Rights Network within the National Park Service.
Congressman Lacy Clay said in a statement:
The African American Civil Rights Network Act will recognize, preserve, protect and share the remarkable American story of the modern struggle for civil rights, a unique national experience that touches every American, regardless of their age, ethnicity or heritage. The historic network will create tremendous educational opportunities by recognizing those brave souls from all walks of life who fought to make the promises enshrined in our constitution finally ring true.
In too many places across this country, precious historic waypoints along the routes of that still largely untold story are at risk of being lost forever. My hope is that the historic civil rights network and the programs that will grow from this law will honestly tell the full and sometimes painful story of the struggle for civil rights, not just for African Americans, but to foster healing, tolerance and understanding among all Americans.
Fifty years ago, the Temptations made a statement that was designed to foster tolerance and understanding. In “Message from a Black Man,” the legendary group said:
This is a message, a message to y’all
Together we stand divided we fall
Black is a color just like white
Tell me how can a color determine whether
You’re wrong or right