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Black History Month: The Tears and The Joy

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial

President Gerald Ford in 1976 officially recognized February as Black History Month. The reason was to focus attention on the contributions of African Americans to the United States.

And as Americans our observance of Black History month runs the full spectrum of attention: from deep and profound reverence and celebration, to apathy.

Perhaps if more of us sought to understand black history and the black experience, our observance would be more fruitful.

On this edition of Oregon On The Record you’ll hear from two leaders in our community who work exceptionally hard to teach about the history of black people in our state – to both understand and remember all of the pain and suffering, yet also to celebrate the joy and triumph

Talicia Brown is the Executive Director of the Black Cultural Initiative in Eugene and Kokayi Nosakhere is an advisor and community organizer. Their goal is to cultivate a healthy and connected Black community by creating welcoming spaces that attract Black people, while also centering and celebrating black culture. You’ll hear how and why what they do is so important to all of us.

Links from the show:

Black Cultural Initiative and Festival

Michael Dunne is the host of KLCC's public affairs show Oregon On The Record. He also hosts the business-focused podcast, Oregon Rainmakers. Do you have a suggestion for a guest or topic? Email Michael at mdunne@klcc.org.