In a joint effort to get students involved with the Children Services Council’s 2019 Broward AWARE! Protecting OUR Children campaign: Growing the Voices of Our Future, the Westside Gazette will engage youth in a photovoice (photojournalism) project. The youth will tell their stories through the written word and through the lens of cameras they will operate as photojournalists focusing in but not limited to the Broward AWARE campaign.
I recently went on a trip to Washington, D.C. and visited the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil rights activist who advocated for integration not segregation and nonviolence not violence. Black History month is my favorite month because I love to learn more about where I came from and my background.
I’m Leja Williams and I am interviewing James Murray Sr. as my grandad and I am going to be asking him 4 questions about how times have changed over the years when it deals with racism. He lives in Dearing, Georgia and he was born on September 24, 1934 in Perkins, Georgia. He is also a minister at a church in Dearing, Georgia.
How old were you when you came to Florida?
How old was I when I first came to Florida? I was 28-years-old when I came to Fort Lauderdale, Florida and that’s the answer to that.
How do you feel about racism?
I feel good about racism; ain’t nothing I can do about it but learn to live with it. But time has passed, and it’s a whole lot different than what it used to be so we’ll begin to get closer and closer. But one of these days it’s gonna be all over, no more racism.
Is discrimination against the African American race as prevalent as it was when you were younger?
No, it’s not the same. It’s a whole lot better now than it was then, but it’s still racism. We still having a racial problem, and we are learning to deal with it more, you know? More, in a better way and a different way. We don’t have to fight one another, you know? That’s my saying.
What do you feel like we can do as a whole to decrease racism?
We have to understand that we all is one flesh; it doesn’t matter about what color you are; we still are the same flesh. Now if we learn to love one another, we could wipe out racial problems.
At the South Campus of Broward College, there was an event for ages 7-19 to help people learn how to give speeches for an oratorical competition. Many guest speakers/teachers were instructing approximately 80 children about the importance of public speaking and tips on how to improve their oratorical skills. The audience had a chance to gain valuable knowledge concerning public speaking as well as the difference it can make in the potential to advance in a career and financial earning potential.
The “Sankofa” bird teaches us that we must go back to our roots in order to move forward. It is a word in the Twi language of Ghana that means to “go back and get it”.
This Sankofa statue sits at Sistrunk Boulevard and N.W. Second Avenue and reminds me of my African Heritage.