Re "Beyond the black history hit parade," Opinion, Feb. 11
Betty DeRamus' excellent article on Black History Month points out that the same American figures are extolled each February, to the exclusion of legions of others. I would expand her vision to include the history of black people before slavery.
At one time in this country, black individuals were viewed as three-fifths of a man; clergymen claimed that African Americans were the cursed sons of Ham, the biblical offspring of Noah; and historians dismissed pre-colonial Africa as the dark continent.
Recent discoveries and DNA evidence dispense with this nonsense. For example, global civilization appears to have been initiated by black Africans in upper Egypt; the black Moors civilized medieval Europe; and Africans likely reached and influenced the New World long before Christopher Columbus.
In view of this, next February let's discuss the black people who built civilizations before slave ships left the coast of west Africa.
Legrand H. Clegg II
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