MalcolmXElders

The Malcolm X Community Centre provides social, recreational, educational and entertainment facilities to the residents of St Pauls and neighbouring areas.

For information on how to get involved visit their website here.

Speaking to the Malcolm X Elders Group – October 2009

“When I came here, principles was here and principles was in Jamaica. We were ruled by the British and we adopt a lot of the American style. At the same time. A lot of us we were brought up with principles. We learned to respect our elders. The youth of today, some of them do , some don’t respect you as elders. You go on the bus and they are sitting down there and they are swearing and carrying on.

“Don’t blame the police, don’t blame teachers, let’s start from home.

“They get things too easy here, and the government here say when you 16 and over you can do what you like and the children say ‘I know my rights’ and they go and complain to these authorities. The authorities come down on you like a ton of bricks. The old English people didn’t use to grow up their children bad but the younger generation they have changed.”

“The slave trade is still going on in different ways.

“The English had the idea that Black people have the strength of lion but they have no feelings…they have no brain power…but we fought against it. We get knock down but we pick ourselves up. We were stereotyped. And that’s why the young people say we are not going to put up with what you put up with..we were born here.

“When i came here they say black men couldn’t play football, they say black men couldn’t play rugby. When i watch television and i see a black person have a good job that makes me feel good.”

“I am a Caribbean Jamaican. I don’t know about Africa. We learn about the English…the mother country… And all the books we learn about was English.

“I was never taught Caribbean history or African history. All I saw about Africa was half naked people.We had a book Anansi stories and Duppy stories. The books that sell to Jamaica , all of them was about the English, it tells you that the White people who came to Jamaica, some of them were crooks in their country, hangmen , the ship them out to Jamaica, and they couldn’t come back here for a little while.

“Our foreparents they cultivate the land, they build the cane factories , import it to Great Britain, the Tate and Lyle sugar belongs to the Tate and Lyle Family.. Black people and Indians is who make this country rich.

“When we came to Bristol we didn’t know anything about the slave trade, or that Black men were living here since the 18th century.”

“I hear this story..When the slave master went to Jamaica…they had some problems and the white master strung up the women by her two feet and her head hung upside down and they cut out the baby and the baby fell on the ground and they stamp on the baby’s head.. This is why my daughter is so prejudice against white people.”

“My father is light… He’s got nice hair…my great grandparent was a Scotchman…there is no real black in Jamaica except for the maroons. Most of the young girls were used by the slave masters .”

“First they should have a pardon. The young black people who come and read history, they have some kind of hatred in them and this is why I think some of the youngsters have taken it more deeply then we the older . We try to forgive but some of the youngsters try to retalitate. They read more than us and they can’t forgive. And they can’t find anyone who can sit down and explain to them why this has happened. The White man doesn’t know what has happened. Because some of the White people were in slavery as well. But we must learn to forgive and bring ourselves above what has happened. There is still institutional racism.

“Don’t let slavery let them abolish good things to come. They need to rise to above slavery. Slavery is gone. We need an apology about slavery in the country , they are trying so one day it will come. Just move on from there and learn. When you go to school learn, because without education you are no-one. And the education make you rise above everything.

“My legacy is to encourage the young people to have respect for each other. They are born into opportunity in this country. There will always be prejudice. Even in our own Black society there is prejudice but don’t give them people the satisfaction of saying they are worthless, that you are a loser. Don’t give them the opportunity to keep you down. Rise above it. Start from the bottom and work your way upto top. Don’t try to get rich  quick. If you can get a little job. Do it until better come to make a better life for yourself and your family. And forget about racism because there will always be prejudice.”

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