Frederick Douglass. Harriet Tubman. Martin Luther King Jr. Rosa Parks. George Washtington Carver. These are the only black historical figures I remember learning in my almost ten years in Virginia public schools. These figures are extremely important don’t get me wrong but the black experience in the US goes beyond five names. The understanding of racial systemic oppression of black people begins with the understanding of our history, and that starts in the classroom. This is why it is important that textbooks don’t omit or skip over key moments for black people in the US such as the Tulsa Race Massacre. Not to mention, the omission of the many contributions black people have made to this country such as Garret Morgan who invented the traffic light, Frederick McKinley Jones who invented the refrigerator, or Marie Van Brittan Brown who invented the home security system. To many the discussion of race is uncomfortable but I believe if that we understand that learning about black history is just as American as learning about George Washington, and educate young minds about the racial injustices black people have faced for centuries, we can begin to understand the injustices they face now and make the discussion of race less uncomfortable. There is no excuse for the fact that I learned more about black history from Twitter than from textbooks. Sign the petition and let’s make some changes!