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Morgan Freeman Slams The Idea Of Black History Month: It Is 'Not Right'

Home / Entertainment / Morgan Freeman Slams The Idea Of Black History Month: It Is 'Not Right'

By Kelly Coffey-Behrens on June 17, 2024 at 1:45 PM EDT

Morgan Freeman, 87, is not shying away from his feelings surrounding Black History Month.

In the past, the actor has been publicly open about his distaste for the annual observation. Once again, Morgan Freeman is doubling down on his thoughts about Black History Month, questioning why it is celebrated in the "shortest month in a year."

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Why Doesn't Morgan Freeman Like Black History Month?

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In a new interview with Variety, the Academy Award winner ripped Black History Month apart, claiming he "detests" it and doesn't understand why it is celebrated.

“I detest it," he told the outlet. "The mere idea of it. You are going to give me the shortest month in a year? And you are going to celebrate ‘my’ history?! This whole idea makes my teeth itch. It’s not right."

“My history is American history. It’s the one thing in this world I am interested in, beyond making money, having a good time and getting enough sleep," he added.

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The Importance Of Knowing Your Past

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Freeman also spoke on how knowing your past and where you came from is one of the most important pieces of information. “If you don’t know your past, if you don’t remember it, you are bound to repeat it,” he told Variety.

“Do you know this song? ‘To everything, there is a season.’ It really, really works in show business," the actor continued. "You are trying to sell something 15 years ago and nobody even looks at you. Then they go: ‘Didn’t you have a project, some time ago? Do you still have it?’ Life is like that, in this industry. You have got something you think is important, but trying to convince others is the difficult part.”

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Black History Month Is 'An Insult'

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This is by far the first time Morgan Freeman has voiced his opinion on Black History Month. In 2023, he sat down with The Times, telling the outlet that the annual observation is "an insult."

"Black History Month is an insult," he expressed at the time. "You're going to relegate my history to a month... Also 'African-American' is an insult. I don't subscribe to that title. Black people have had different titles all the way back to the N-word and I do not know how these things get such a grip, but everyone uses 'African-American'."

"What does it really mean? Most black people in this part of the world are mongrels," he added. "You say Africa as if it's a country when it's a continent, like Europe."

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Stacey Dash Calls For Elimination Of Black History Month

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Morgan Freeman is not the only celebrity to openly voice his opinions surrounding Black History Month. “Clueless” actress and former Fox News contributor Stacey Dash said she disapproves of the celebration.

“Either we want to have segregation or integration,” the actress said, per Variety. “And if we don’t want segregation, then we need to get rid of channels like BET and the BET Awards and the Image Awards, where you’re only awarded if you’re black. If it were the other way around, we would be up in arms. It’s a double standard.”

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Whoopi Goldberg later agreed. “American history holds all of us and [Dash is] right in that. Yes, we are all Americans, but we’re not all treated like Americans,” she said. “And one of the reasons that there is a BET is because networks wouldn’t take a lot of the shows that have an all-black cast. … Unfortunately, we need things like BET.”

Why Is Black History Month Celebrated In February?

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While Morgan Freeman questions why Black History Month is celebrated in "the shortest month in a year," there are actually a few significant reasons why February was chosen.

Black History Month has its roots in Negro History Week, which was established in 1926 by historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). Woodson chose the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of two figures who played significant roles in African American history -- Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln.

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In 1976, the ASNLH expanded the celebration from a week to a month during the United States Bicentennial. February's designation as Black History Month provides a focused period for schools, organizations, and communities to engage in educational activities, events, and discussions that highlight African Americans' history, culture, and contributions.

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