Fleming helps Black History Month agenda at LPHS
February is Black History Month, and students and staff throughout the school are spreading awareness on the culture and its history. Nellijah Fleming, senior at LPHS, has taken this idea to a whole new level with her plans.
Fleming’s plans include but are not limited to filming video lessons with students and friends about black history, filming videos about black culture and its influence on today’s society, amplifying black voices and recognizing black art, and writing articles supporting Black Lives Matter (BLM), creating student spotlights, and highlighting black businesses to support.
“I want to provide an honest representation of what it means to be black in America and create lessons that can be played every year,” Fleming said.
Her efforts don’t stop there. This past month, Fleming joined a group of both students and staff and helped create the Black History Month display located outside of the school cafeteria.
Fleming believes that Black History Month education is not only important but absolutely essential.
“It is so important to be taught here at LPHS the youth needs to understand it’s two different realities. We are staring history in the face right now. When your children ask about these times, what will you be able to say you did? In a racially tense America, it is the bare minimum to use your voice to amplify ours,” Fleming said.
Fleming believes the confederate flag should be banned within the high school as it is a hate symbol used during the Civil War.
“It is racist, and white people don’t get to decide how people of color feel about the hate symbol.”
Fleming attended the La Porte BLM protest back in June of 2020 and even received the opportunity of speaking in front of an entire crowd of citizens, police officers, and even the current mayor of La Porte, Tom Dermody.
“I thought it was something I definitely needed to hear. It’s one thing to see people at marches speak online, but when you’re actually there, surrounded by tons of people all there for the same cause, it’s a different atmosphere,” LPHS senior Brianna Thorpe said. “I think it was a great way for her to get her voice heard, and her amazing writing skills shown through as well. She has a way with words that I’ll never stop giving her credit for.”
Fleming plans on extending her agenda beyond the month of February. She believes this part of history should not be limited to one month a year.
Outside of her current plans, Fleming has always been an excellent activist. She often volunteers at food pantries. Anyone interested can read about her other achievements at this link https://slicernewsroom.com/7744/showcase/fleming-heartens-others-with-volunteer-work/
Whether it’s in or outside of school, Fleming continues to acknowledge overlooked topics and challenge what is considered “normal.” LPHS is proud of her determination.
“Saying Black Lives Matter isn’t political. Acknowledging that our lives are in jeopardy for no reason other than taught racism and excessive police brutality, seeing how they treat us like animals, and letting that break your heart is okay. It is humanity. Any rebuttal to Black Lives Matter is racist. We never said your life doesn’t matter. (to those who say All Lives Matter). We are just saying right now, we aren’t being treated like we matter,” Fleming said.