"This is our month"

As we celebrate Black History Month, I thought I would try to better understand what black people have to go through, and what this month truly means to them.  I decided to write this article about my RA Lincoln Edwards.  He is always there to listen to you when you need to talk, and will do anything to make you smile.  He inspires me with his strength and kindness everyday.

 

 Lincoln was born December 10, 1996.  He is from Upper Darby, PA (5 minutes outside of west Philly).  He is currently a  junior, a dual geography and government major here at Millersville University.  He is an RA for East Village Suites.  He has 3 siblings (2 sisters and 1 brother).  He also has a dog named B.B., who just recently turned 16 years old.  Lincoln identifies as Black American, but his ethnicity is Jamaican.  In his free time, he likes to listen to music, work out, and watch movies. 

I asked Lincoln a few questions to better understand his life and race.

What does Black History Month mean to you?

Black history month is a time where it makes me unapologetically proud of who I am and my ethnicity and race.  It's also a time for me to learn more about the race that I am apart of.  They have been doing so many important things throughout history that isn’t really talked about until this month, so it is very important to me, and every other person of my race.

How has being black in this country affected you or your loved ones?

My brother is married to a white woman, who just had their first kid.  He goes through a lot of criticism and questions about why they are together.  No one really sees me as my race, they see my wheelchair, and that’s what they notice first.  The wheelchair has almost protected me from people being harsh about my race, because they are so focused on that.

Why should we celebrate black history month? 

This is our month.  It gives us a chance to look back on notable and lesser known black figures in history.  It shouldn't be one month, it should be an all year thing.  Black people have had a huge effect throughout history, and that should be taught always.  It also gives black people the freedom to express themselves, without really caring what others think, and to be 100% comfortable in their skin, 

Why do you think there are still so many racist people in this world?  What would you want them to know about black people?

I think racism is imbedded in not only American culture, but the world in general.  Racism is a system, and that system is very complex.  We as a society have not done anything to address the system that we created many years ago.  This issue is going to keep on going as long as we keep not addressing it.  I would want racists to know that we are people.  We are not lazy.  We do have jobs, good ones actually.  We don’t hate white people.   We are people and we deserve to be treated that way.

 

*Image courtesy of Lincoln