On Monday, the Falcons announced they are hosting a writing contest for Black History Month. The contest encourages students from the ages of 13-18 throughout the state of Georgia to write an original essay or poem to one of three specific questions.
A few players on Atlanta's roster wanted to provide their input, and throughout the month of February, their essays will be posted.
Today's featured player essay comes from DE Tyson Jackson: *
Question: What does Black History Month mean to you and why is it important?
Answer: "For me personally, Black History Month is a time for me to reflect on the past accomplishments of African Americans. The stance that we took on the world, especially during a time period where things were different and more of a struggle for us than it is now. This is an opportunity for me to look back and understand the struggle that my people went through and I have to embrace this time period and find ways to better myself each and every day to live up to the dreams that they set forth for me."
Question: Give one word that characterizes Black History Month and why does that specific word come to mind?
Answer: "Triumphant. The reason why that word comes to mind first is because when you look at the past and learn about all the things that we have been through in fighting for equal rights, it gives you an appreciation for all the things that our ancestors have done to pave the way for how we live today."
Question: Which historical African American figure do you admire and why?
Answer: "I would have to go with Langston Hughes. Out of all the prominent leaders that were trying to make a difference for the African American culture, he had a unique approach because he used his writing talents to promote equality for all African Americans."
Question: Which historical African American athlete figure do you admire and why?
Answer:"Jackie Robinson without question! As a competitor myself and being an athlete, I know the struggle and the process of just preparing for your competition day in and day out and for Jackie Robinson to go through that process alone, along with all the racial hate that took place during that time period, how could he not be someone you admire."
Question: If you could be one historical African American figure who would it be and why?
Answer:"I am going to have to go with Barack Obama. He is in the position of power where he can make significant changes. Not only that but while he is making these decisions, he is able to do that in comfort. What I mean by that is, I am sure Barack Obama receives plenty of threats daily simply because of his skin color, but even with that he has the proper security to where he is not in so much danger as other prominent African American leaders were in the past."