Women’s History Month in March follows Black History Month in February. Asian Pacific Americans and Jewish Americans share May. In June we celebrate the LGBT community. October finds us celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month. Native American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month is November, ironically. There are many more celebrations each month, but these are the ones that grabbed my attention as if they were flashing neon lights.
In lieu of being honored for a month, those of us who aren’t Straight White Christian Males prefer to be respected and treated equally every single day. Take us off the monthly pedestals and integrate us into history books. Why did I only recently learn about the critical role of African American women in NASA from a current movie decades after I graduated college as a history major? These women weren’t tangential to our space exploration; rather, they were much of the brainpower behind it. Should we celebrate them in February (Black History) or March (Women’s History)? Such choices seem silly.
We have come a very long way in our various social justice struggles, but we haven’t yet crossed the finish line. I have had opportunities that my mother could only have dreamed of in her lifetime. My daughter has had doors wide open to her that were locked to me.
My wish for future generations is they one day chuckle over these month-by-month “honors.” That world will be one where women and people of color claim every month of the year, when LGBTQ go about their lives with ease all twelve months, and when Jewish, Muslim and others of minority religions feel safe everywhere January through December.
Until that day comes, just know that I wish you the best. Every. Single. Month.