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Haiti - Black History Month : Message of reflection from Lesly Condé
Message from Lesly Condé :
"Dear fellow citizens and friends everywhere,
I am delighted to be able, once again this year, to find myself in your company to welcome the month of February, black history month. This is definitely not a celebration; even though Black History Month offers us, time and time again, the opportunity to admire feats of bravery, endurance and ingenuity despite the ever-present specter of injustice, brutality and the deception. It is an abundant, exciting, often surprising story that speaks of that of the human race. It must be said clearly that the history of the black race cannot be condensed into a matter of a month. It is a story that we are still discovering, and which is not about to say its last word. In the end, it is no exaggeration to say that modern science is still helping us to discover this history, and to remove all the controversies.
Today, if we are to speak of black history away from the petty and dishonest stereotypes that have long served the cause of Western colonialism, we must first acknowledge that the experience of this race transcends continents, and will not cease to disturb those who delight in prejudice and imposture. It is clear that the month of February each year is far from sufficient to cover all aspects of the experience of the black race on this planet. I therefore fear that those who have thought of dedicating this month to black history have made the mistake of believing that the history of this race began with slavery. If Africa is the cradle of humanity, if arts, science and organized societies originated on the African continent, black history simply cannot be a month's affair.
Black history is, indeed, a history that colonization and slavery have cleverly falsified for centuries. Today, scientific evidence has established beyond doubt that Egypt at the time of the pyramids was black. This kind of information belongs in our classrooms. The history of blacks is, alas, a history of usurped heritages, and brave visionaries cowardly murdered. To find themselves, these black people need to discover their true story, and to believe in it.
One cannot talk about the history of the black race without mentioning Haiti, the first black State in the New World. One of the key players in Haiti's independence being a former warrior from the kingdom of Dahomey (now Benin) who, after being captured and enslaved, used her superb military training to help shape the troops that routed Napoleon's soldiers, we have here a manifestation of Africa and its kingdoms destroyed by the unimaginable brutality of colonization and slavery. The history of our country provides anyone interested in the evolution of the human race in general, and black people in particular, with gigantic heroes and heroines as well as a genuine tribute to the concept of freedom and human rights.
In closing, I wish you all a pleasant and safe month of February. Take care of each other. Whatever you do, think HAITI.
Thank you for your attention."
Reflection messages from Lesly Condé in 2023 :
All Lesly Condé's reflection messages in 2022 :
All Messages from Lesly Condé in 2021 :