The Abolition of Slavery: Its Impact on America's Rise - Interview Example

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  8
Wordcount:  2170 Words
Date:  2023-03-13


Good evening, slavery started with the rise of civilization. During the 17th to 18th Century, people were caught in the African continent and forced to be slaves in the colonies of America. They were highly exploited to do a lot of work in harsh environments. They worked in production farms such as those of cotton and tobacco. In the mid-19th Century, the expansion of America's westward as well as the abolition movement caused a debate about slavery and this broke the nation apart and caused a civil war full of blood. The Black community and the minorities in the U.S. are the ones who were affected the most. My name is Chris Wine and I will be hosting tonight's episode of History Time. With me is Prof. Taylor Moore, a special guest who is going to join us in the episode. I understand that most of you are familiar with him. He is renowned for being among the best all-time game composers and film-makers. The works and studio album recordings of Prof. Moore have made him an Oscar and Grammy award winner multiple times. Just at the age of 25, he was recognized for being among the youngest African American people to ever receive a Doctoral music degree. Tonight's episode will be one of its own as he will be talking to us about his journey to success and his active participation in the Black Community to ensure that the rights of African Americans and minorities living in the U.S. are respected. Prof. Moore will also share with you his life story and some of the reputable people who have guided him to success.

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How are you, Prof. Moore ? Welcome to the episode of History Time.

I am doing fine. Thank you so much for allowing me to share with you this platform. An invitation to a platform like this to talk to you means a lot to me.

I will go right away on to my first question. For you, what was the experience as you grew up and did that have an impact on becoming a humanitarian as you are currently?

It was quite a challenge to grow up with dark skin. I had the darkest skin in the family and I was even darker than my parents. I felt so different from the other children just because of my skin tone. I felt more upset to hear some people making jokes about the complexion of my skin. It was not surprising to find someone asking if I was raised through adoption. However, I was inspired by writings such as the letter of Willie Lynch, which enabled me to understand that the worst enemy to African Americans is us. It was so hard to see that after decades of racism, we were still struggling for equality among us. Instead of fighting against each other, we need to unite and stand up for the rights that we deserve.

During an interview on Good Morning America, you talked about the experiences you encountered as a student at Virginia State University. What are the experiences that enabled you to be in the frontline of being helpful to the people?

Virginia State University is a school that I had both the best and the most challenging experiences. The experience of learning at the historically black college and university (HBCU) was ideal and I enjoyed. However, as compared to the Predominately White Institutions (PWIs), there was a high division among many students on the campus. Students in PWI would unite together in groups and come up with great ideas, which would eventually lead to long-lasting businesses. In my undergraduate years, black jokes could still be heard, but I came to my conclusion that most of the people who were around me were not educated socially on the things that were going on around the globe and what they needed to do to bring a change. The idea that I always had in my mind is that through music, people would unite together and be peaceful. As I was in my undergrad, I observed that the people who surrounded me appreciated the complexion of my skin and gave much support to my vision to empower myself and those around me.

Could you please share with us the vision that you always had?

My vision was that I could one day be among the leaders in the black community and lead them in the right direction using the gift that I was blessed with by God. I had to spend a lot of hours in my pursuit and it eventually paid off. In doing all this, I also understood that another generation of talented musicians who wanted to venture into the same career as mine would later come up. I formed a Non-profit Organization that had the aim of helping minorities who wanted to be great composers in America. There is one of the classes in my undergrad that led to the success of my vision and built me to be a reputable person and an activist.

I would like to know more about this class that led to the success of your vision.

The class was known as Blacks in American Music. Mr. James "Saxsmo" Gates, who is in the list of my mentors, was the one who taught the class. In his teachings in class, he ensured that we understood our roots and the hardships more than we understood music. In return, the teachings helped every person in that class.

About the teacher, which ways did he use to make you understand the hardships that your ancestors went through?

The teacher gave us different movies to watch. We regularly watched movies about the Civil Rights Movement, and also the slaves who fought day and night for our rights. Apart from that, he also brought different speakers and suggested discussions which in turn helped me in improving my understanding of my fellow students in the class. Most of the movies about slavery made us feel emotional as we watched them but the teacher told us that watching them made us understand more of what happened to our ancestors. Honestly, I do not know if there is any single black person around the world who is not deeply saddened or angered after watching a movie which is based on true life stories about slavery or racial injustice.

Do you still remember the name of the first movie you watched in that class? If yes, what was the name and how did it impact you?

The first film that I watched in the class was known as Sankofa. Through it, I saw many harsh things that were encompassed in slavery. I understood that it is very essential not to forget our history and fight harder to build a future that is better for the coming generations. Mona was the main character in the film. She is portrayed as an African model. The sacred place where slaves were held as they waited to enter the deadly ships is where she takes pictures. A man called Sankofa puts a spell on the girl and she goes back 200 years in time. She feels the experience of being in slavery and that changes her when she comes back.

Which other films did you watch in that class?

There are several films that we watched. Every film had a historical moment and described how our ancestors struggled to make their future generations better. The Birth of a Nation is a film that I can't forget, it is based on a story about Nat Turner. This was a very rebellious film and it happened not far from the location of Virginia State. A movie that was very challenging to watch was the Medgar Evers movie Ghosts of Mississippi. This is because the current judicial system has never ceased to do some of the things that it did during the past. It makes every effort to skip cases for the blacks who were tried wrongfully and have not received justice. A film called Selma was also played and most of my classmates felt so emotional because of how it ruthlessly told a story on how leaders of Civil rights pushed for voting by African Americans in Alabama. Eventually, it became a Civil Rights Bill whereby all African Americans had the right to vote nationwide. 12 years a slave was another film that was hard to watch a free Black man was once again forced to be a slave and what he experienced was not easy. Each film conveyed its own story about history. However, all had a common thing: history has a way of repeating itself all the time.

History has a way of repeating itself. Tell me more about that.

I mean that all that took place to our ancestors as they were fighting for what is right is also taking place now, it's only that the government and the media outlets have that ability to just share with people a small part of the story to avoid any negativities. There are stories in which I have heard about what was happening in the 18th Century it was a struggle for those who fought. The same stories always come up nowadays but the current generation cannot do anything because of the many distractions that they face. Most people even fear to address the problems because they fear being hated on or being killed by the racist. We see these things happening in sports arenas, events, on the roads, among other places, but we fear raising the issue because you may even end up not being listened. But we have seen many people raising the matter through platforms such as social media and they have been listened to and the suspects punished. The ancestors did the best for us and we must fight to have all the rights we deserve.

Apart from the films, you have talked about, what other genres of the film did you watch in that class?

We watched a documentary known as "Black Girls." Everybody looked so frustrated about other people looking at them in fifty different shades of Black. As I grew up, African Americans who were light-skinned were viewed as emotional. They had more chances of being shown on the television that those of a dark skin complexion. African Americans who were dark skin were viewed as evil, mean and disrespectful. The thing that most people did not think of is that we all were once enslaved. Even today, it still goes on. It gets worse when fellow dark skins make jokes about the skin tone of other dark skins. The white man feels good when they watch us diminishing each other. There are many cases where the white people have made an appreciation of my skin and it is bad to see those friends we grew with not doing the same. However, there are also cases whereas an African American undergraduate, a white person would keep a big distance from where I was while walking down the same street. There are times where other whites could stare at me at the store waiting for me to steal. They have a thing in mind that dark skin people are associated with all evils. We need to stop all this arrogance and begin to think as one human race.

Are there speakers who shared their life experiences in that class?

One of the speakers was Dr. Karen Savage, a powerful music department professor who was living at "Dynamite Hill" in Birmingham. An area where she made me so emotional is when she touched on the church bombing in 16th Street. Her best friend perished in the incident and as he talked about this, it was so evident that she felt so painful. She told us that she could have also died. The bombing is a thing that made the people to march from Birmingham to Selma. She lived at the time where the Alabama governor was a Klansman. They were fighting for the right of voting him out of the office. She then talked on her life as a pageant young girl, and the way she managed to come out as the first finalist African American for Miss Alabama. Another story that she talked about is the ten years that she took to get a Doctoral Degree.

Mr. Bill McGee, the record label 804 Jazz owner, was another speaker. He had a different story as he was homeless and far from home. He managed to graduate from Virginia but before that, he was living in Atlanta. Instead of moving with his mum, he decided to start living on his own in Atlanta. Just like any other musician, he got a name for himself and was among the producers on a song by a group called the Sugarhill Gang. The song was called "Apache." I was happy to learn that there was a professor who had such reputation teaching around the school.

The other speaker was Mr. Anders...

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