February 03, 2022
Black History Month is an opportunity to grapple with and name the history of state-sanctioned and interpersonal violence that Black individuals have been subjected to in this country. At the same time, it’s an opportunity to not singularly define or limit conceptions of Blackness solely on a history of pain, trauma, and violence. This month is an opportunity to recognize, celebrate, and elevate the achievements of Black individuals and all they have and continue to create and overcome despite that pain, trauma, and violence.
This month began with a painful reminder that the struggle is not just a part of our history but a part of our present as a growing number of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have been the target of bomb threats. These threats terrorize and traumatize students, faculty, and staff, and strain already limited resources. HBCUs occupy a unique place in this country’s history. They were established primarily in the post-Civil War era to meet the educational needs of Black Americans. Over time, Americans of all backgrounds have attended and continue to attend HBCUs, because the institutions prioritize academic excellence, cultural affirmation, and inclusivity. They provide pathways to upward social mobility and have a long-standing commitment to promoting both academic success and students’ health and well-being. These horrific threats seek to subvert those pathways. We will not let them.
The Hope Center condemns these acts of terrorism and hate, and we are proud and honored to be partners with 10 HBCUs across America in our #RealCollegeHBCU coalition.