Starkville High School held annual Black History Program

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Photo by Jaliyah Akins

Students show posters to represent their pride, hurt, and power during Friday’s black history program.

Kristina Baca

STARKVILLE, Miss., Friday, February 21 Starkville High School held their annual Black History Program. This year’s program consisted of performances including SHS singers, Starkville High School Jazz band, student highlights, and other compelling performances. 

Xavier Perkins is the coordinator of the Black History program but believes in the program being student led.   She believes that it just an important time to celebrate Black History but also to learn.  I believe older generations tend to forget that you all don’t know a lot of the things that happened in the past and I really want students to learn some facts,” Perkins said.
“If you understand one’s culture or to be able to see or be a part of one’s culture that helps with unity.  She added, “I think the program is very important for everyone, not just African Americans.”  

Sophomore Sarah Robertson believes that the Black History Program is very important. “It’s important to commemorate those who have paved the way for us. Robertson believes the “Passing the Torch” rite was a great way to show that. 

The “Passing the Torch” rite involves an older generation African American Starkville native coming forward, while a younger generation African American student is asked to continue the legacy handed down to them by the older generation.   Robertson said that this rite showed that, “it was their turn to make a difference, and now it is ours to continue on their legacy.”  

 Robertson is most proud of about being African American because she is “proud [to be] born different! 

I’m proud that I was set on this Earth to show the beauty in the darkest things, the talent that comes from the shadows, the boldness hat was feared, Robertson said. 

Sophomore Roniyah Campbell did a reading on CoriCoco” Gauff and Queen Latifah. Campbell feels like a lot of African Americans go unnoticed. “Like Cori Gauf, she is our age and she beat Venus Williams in a tennis match, but we don’t hear about those types of things We only hear when an African American person are doing something bad, Campbell said. It’s important to notice those that are doing good. 

The SHS Jazz band performed two jazz songs, “Take Five,” and “The Watermelon Man.  According to SHS Jazz assistant band director, Doug Thomas, these were chosen to recognize the enormous influence of African American culture on jazz music.    

The program concluded with comments from local pastor speaking on the theme, “Where Did the Dream Go?” In his comments, he recited the names of many famous civil rights spokespersons including Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X.