Florida Senate - 2011                             (NP)    SR 540
       By Senator Joyner
       18-00633-11                                            2011540__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution recognizing February 2011 as “Black
    3         History Month” in Florida.
    5         WHEREAS, our nation has celebrated Black History during the
    6  month of February since 1926 when Carter G. Woodson established
    7  Negro History Week, and the theme for this year’s celebration is
    8  “African Americans and the Civil War,” and
    9         WHEREAS, long ago, approximately 12 million African men,
   10  women, and children were forced to enter ships for lives of
   11  slavery in the Western Hemisphere, 10 million of whom survived
   12  the Middle Passage to arrive in America, and
   13         WHEREAS, the Civil War erupted because the ideals upon
   14  which this country was founded are in direct conflict with
   15  slavery, resulting in the ratification of the 13th Amendment,
   16  abolishing slavery in the United States of America, and
   17         WHEREAS, the Civil Rights Movement of the 20th century
   18  began in an effort to correct the failures of Reconstruction and
   19  erase the remnants of slavery still evident in Jim Crow laws, in
   20  continued segregation in nearly every aspect of daily life, and
   21  in the persistence of second-class citizenship for African
   22  Americans, and
   23         WHEREAS, as a testament of strength throughout these
   24  struggles, African Americans, such as Harriet Tubman, Sojourner
   25  Truth, Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. DuBois, Booker T. Washington,
   26  George Washington Carver, Carter G. Woodson, Malcolm X.,
   27  Thurgood Marshall, Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Fannie
   28  Lou Hamer, Shirley Chisholm, Barbara Jordan, and Dorothy Height,
   29  have contributed to the political and social growth of American
   30  society, and
   31         WHEREAS, through the contributions of African American
   32  musicians and writers, such as Louis Armstrong, Count Basie,
   33  Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, Ella Fitzgerald,
   34  Dizzy Gillespie, Leontyne Price, Marian Anderson, Andre Watts,
   35  James DePreist, Phyllis Wheatley, Langston Hughes, James
   36  Baldwin, Richard Wright, Alex Haley, Maya Angelou, Alice Walker,
   37  Gwendolyn Brooks, and Toni Morrison, the culture of the United
   38  States of America has been vitally enriched, and
   39         WHEREAS, African American sports figures, such as Jesse
   40  Owens, Arthur Ashe, Muhammad Ali, Robert “Bullet Bob” Hayes, a
   41  Florida native who is the only athlete to earn both an Olympic
   42  Gold Medal and an NFL Super Bowl Ring, Lee Roy Selmon, Venus
   43  Williams, and Serena Williams, have demonstrated their ability
   44  to be role models on and off the field and in and out of the
   45  ring as they stood up for their rights and beliefs, and
   46         WHEREAS, the fields of medicine, science, and technology
   47  have all been advanced by the contributions of such African
   48  American men and women as Dr. Charles Drew, Dr. Daniel Hale
   49  Williams, Garrett Morgan, George Washington Carver, Dr. Mae C.
   50  Jemison, and Dr. Benjamin Carson, and
   51         WHEREAS, African Americans who are native to Florida, such
   52  as Zora Neale Hurston, Charles Kenzie Steele, Sr., Jesse K.
   53  McCrary, Jr., Joseph E. Lee, Asa Philip Randolph, and Mary
   54  McLeod Bethune, have proudly represented our state as they
   55  contributed to the history and culture of the United States of
   56  America, and
   57         WHEREAS, it is important to celebrate the many achievements
   58  of African Americans in an effort to offer each American a
   59  broader perspective of United States history and an appreciation
   60  for the diversity that makes this country strong, and
   61         WHEREAS, February is the birth month of both Abraham
   62  Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, two of the leaders in the
   63  movement to abolish slavery, and has been recognized at the
   64  local, state, and national levels as an appropriate month to
   65  commemorate the contributions of African Americans to our
   66  society, NOW, THEREFORE,
   68  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   70         That February 2011 is recognized as “Black History Month”
   71  in the State of Florida, and the Florida Senate calls upon the
   72  people of this state to observe Black History Month through
   73  programs, ceremonies, and activities celebrating the historical
   74  and cultural contributions of African Americans.