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Why Every Day Is Black History Month

Submitted by on February 1, 2011 – 9:21 amNo Comment

As an editor of DrJays.com Live, I’m tasked with ensuring we cover major news, pop culture, celebrity, music and any interesting trends occurring in our world. Our Content Team is as diverse in culture, ideas, beliefs, passions and tastes as the topics we cover. We are Indian, Jamaican, Lebanese/Cypriot, Chinese and African-American. I have a passion for 1990s indie rock and anything 1980s. Simone (“Boss Lady”) is our hip-hop impresario. Kiran is obsessed with men’s streetwear. Jenny is a gamer with a gift for COD. Andrew is our resident aesthete while Anthony is our “wavy specialist” (his term, not mine).

We raucously celebrate our diversity. Our edit meetings are a mix of long range editorial planning and constant cracking of distastefully playful jokes about race, culture and everything in between. Our jokes are often “HR-able” but, man, do we laugh. At times we shake our heads at the scandal of an off-color comment. Obnoxious, maybe—but don’t jump to conclusions. There’s a comfort in how we discuss race, religion and politics because we are making fun of ourselves. We don’t skewer others. Serious we are not.

Each member of this team is allowed to be who they are without judgment. Between the laughs or the agreements to disagree and move on, we learn a little bit more about how the other thinks and feels. On this Content Team, all flavors are welcome. We realize how lucky we are and understand that once upon a time not that long ago, our Content Team would not have existed so naturally as it does today.

Every February we honor African-American history, contributions and significance in the world. As we progress in a world where even great literature is being cleansed to maintain a perceived and ill-conceived ideal, it’s important we take that long look back to keep from fumbling in the future. Our strides are obvious. Look no further than the face of our nation, the greatest superpower in the world, represented by the confident multicultural face of President Barack Obama.

I would not be where I am today without the efforts of so many before me. My advantages are born of those with more vision than I could ever hope to attain. If only my grandparents were here today. I believe they’d enjoy this moment, but they wouldn’t get too comfortable.

My parents always remind me that hard work is a 24/7 effort. I’m glad we have a month in which to celebrate our achievements and recognize our history, but a year is 365 days long. And freedom from oppression cannot be bound by time. We can’t rewrite history but we can have a say in what comes next.

I wish I could tell you what’s next but race isn’t a trend. Acceptance is a political act, a human act, an act of kindness or passivity, an act of passion and deeply personal. Acceptance is your mission statement. The side of acceptance you fall on is your choice. In our little corner of the world, every day is a chance to honor Black history—and Indian, Lebanese, Cypriot, Chinese and Jamaican history, as well.

So take a cue from the Content Team—talk openly, welcome humor and accept each person for who they are. Laughter is the best cure.

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