I Am Malcolm X

One of the many things that I miss about working at a school is presenting daily African-American facts during Black History Month. Not only could the students learn about all the greatness that stems from their heritage and where we came from, but I also took it personal. I saw it as my own history lesson. One thing that I did stress was that February should not be the only month to learn about our history. Instead, look at February as a time to celebrate our successes, contributions, and accomplishments and be proud of our people. So, what I plan to share is only a couple of African-American Firsts. Enjoy:)

  • Macon Bolling Allen was the first African-American to pass the bar and practice law in the United States in 1845. He was also the first black American Justice of the Peace and the first African-American licensed to practice law in the U.S.
  •  Arthur Ashe was the first African-American to win the U.S. Open (1968); to come in first in the Wimbeldon men’s singles (1975); and be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame (1985). In 1963, tennis champion Arthur Ashe was the first African-American to be named to the U.S. Davis Cup team.
  • Actress Diahann Carroll won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a TV Series in 1968 for her role on the sitcom Julia. Carroll was the first African-American actress to star in her own television series where she did not play a domestic worker.
  • Politician and educator Shirley Chisholm was the first African-American woman elected to Congress. She was also the first major-party African-American candidate for President of the United States.
  • Human rights activist Clara “Mother” Hale founded the first and, at the time, the only black social services agency in America in 1975. Over the course of her life, Mother Hale received more than 370 awards for her work in the fight against AIDS and inner city drug use.
  • Robert Johnson, the owner of Black Entertainment Television (BET), became the first black billionaire in America in 2001.

Stay tuned for the next “I Am Malcolm X” segment… .


Saving All My Love

I really wasn’t going to do this, but now I feel compelled. {Sigh} After just watching Whitney perform the “Star Spangled Banner” (at the 1991 Super Bowl) and the end of “I Will Always Love You” (at an awards show a couple years ago) on the music channel, I sat in admiration. She sang effortlessly.  Left with a face full of tears, her passing finally hit me. Since Saturday, I’ve noticed that many female singers have been compared to her, such as Mariah Carey, Beyonce, etc. I’m sorry, but there is no comparison whatsoever. Whitney’s powerhouse vocals were beyond incredible and were untouchable. Her strength, her range, her overall pureness of good old fashion raw talent. There is and was no other. Not only was a legend taken from us too soon, but she was also a music icon. I am truly saddened, and hope that she rests in peace as her music lives on and continues to bless us with her authentic gift.

Whitney Elizabeth Houston

August 9th, 1963- February 11th, 2012