It almost felt as if this Black History Month would be filled with somber. The confirmation of Jess Sessions to Department Of Justice after his credentials were questioned in the past due to his hand in black voter suppression. In the week of his confirmation voices like senators like Corey Booker and Elizabeth Warren stood up to disarm his nomination.
In fact, the night before his confirmation Elizabeth Warren was silenced, because she read a letter from Corretta Scott King asking for Jeff Sessions to not be allowed as a federal judge because of his bias towards black voters. Super Bowl Ads were put in place to remind Americans to call their local senators to vote “no” however Jeff Sessions was confirmed. A man that was thought to be too racist to be a federal judge in previous decade was confirmed during Black History Month.
This is also the Month of Trayvon Martin’s passing. Five years ago,
Trayvon Martin case brought awareness to laws that dismantle and hurt the disenfranchised and marginalized groups. It was five years ago that millennials, like myself began realizing that if we want change and representation we must fight for it.
That’s what this weekend was all about change and representation. Before, we go to the Oscar wins and the success of Jordan Peele’s film “Get Out”. We must be reminded that this month began with infamous “Muslim Ban” executive order enacted by President Trump.
Dr. Angela Davis, known for her revolutionary attributes to the fight for civil liberties for all people, spent her visit in Columbus earlier this month to remind us all that “we are all immigrants…whether voluntarily or forced.” Dr. Angela Davis visited both The Ohio State University and Columbus City College.
Her speech at The Ohio State University was on to be remembered. The remarkability of a woman who grew up in a different generation but able to recognize the new found struggles and fight for them as well. She spent some time in her speech recognizing that we as nation must also stand up for the transgender community.
It’s ironic, that within this same month, the Trump administration reversed the federal policy allowing transgender children the right to use the bathroom in which the qualify. Her speech marketed on the need for all citizens to speak up for all injustices of all people and to fight for recognition.
So how does this correlate with this weekend? Well, this weekend should teach us all that all victories matter no matter how small. This weekend the fight for equal representation in media won a battle. With the success of Moonlight winning “Best Picture” and Jordan Pelee’s satiric horror film on white liberalism earning 30.5 million in the box office with a 4.5 million dollar budget.
The beauty of black films depicting the range of black culture in America winning Oscars and Oscar nominations shows the power that we as youth have to control the media. This is also the month that Secretary of Education Betsy Devo’s depicted HBCU’s a pioneer for school choice. There were many flubs and setbacks but what this month can show us all is that we can educate or struggles with persistence and this was a month that the battle of representation felt easier.