Austin Chenge, a Black man who’s running for governor in Michigan, wants to cancel Black History Month.
Chenge, a Black man who’s running for governor in Michigan, took to Instagram on Tuesday to declare that he “will cancel #BlackHistoryMonth in #Michigan.”
“It’s offensive, unfair, maybe illegal… Americans from all backgrounds deserve a revered history. I’ll declare American History Month,” the post continued.
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Since sharing the post on Instagram, Chenge has received criticism and support for wanting to cancel Black History Month. When reached for comment, Chenge’s campaign office shared two interviews he has since done addressing his canceling Black History Month remark.
“We don’t need to have multiple history months for the Black History Month, or any other history month for that matter,” he said in one of the interviews. “All that should matter is the American History Month because that’s what binds us together.”
“No one should be offended if we’re going to have an American History Month, unless if they’re trying to say that somehow, they’re not American,” Chenge also said elsehwere in the interview.
A Black army veteran and businessman — and a graduate of the School of Law at the University of Birmingham England, according to his website — Chenge will be going up against Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. He’s the governor’s first Republican challenger. Chenge first announced his run back in October. Back in January, he practically defended the actions of the Capitol rioters, saying: “Some of them were overcome by passion, more passion than others and may have acted in a way that they didn’t intend to when they went there.” The statement followed in line with a tweet he shared a day after the attack, where he wrote the following:
Yesterday, I saw Americans doing everything necessary to ensure their God-given freedoms, their rights and their #American way of life, some were overwhelmed by more passion than others, but all for the love of their country.
#CapitolBuilding : Yesterday, I saw Americans doing everything necessary to ensure their God-given freedoms, their rights and their #American way of life, some were overwhelmed by more passion than others, but all for the love of their country. Austin For #Governor of Michigan. pic.twitter.com/uhPo33mgSp
— Austin Chenge (@AustinChenge) January 7, 2021
Michigan’s next gubernatorial election is in 2022, when Whitmer is expected to run for reelection.