Back to Top

Langston Hughes' "I, Too" poem is emblazoned on the wall in one of the museum's lower levels. The last stanza is what the NMAAHC represents to me:

"They’ll see how beautiful I am 

And be ashamed— 

I, too, am America."

For me, the NMAAHC is a symbol of African-American legitimacy within this nation. It is an indicator that I, too, am America, but for many others, perhaps even that woman who made the film for the Angola Penitentiary exhibit, it is not sacred. 

White people have the privilege of feeling removed from the reality that torments the Black community. While white people consume the history and present of Black oppression in this nation, they must make conscious efforts not to be oppressive and to honor the NMAAHC as a sacred space.

Main Image: Courtesy of Blair Imani