BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

15 October 2014

Make this my Homepage make this my homepage  

BBC Homepage


Contact Us

Akpomena is proud but concerned

To view the video you will need REALPLAYER

By Akpomena Otemro
Akpomena is proud to be black but concerned about how black people are behaving. She wonders whether slavery, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X have made any difference. Black people celebrate their culture for one month a year, but what happens during the rest of the year? She turned on the TV the other day and there was a story of a white man being mugged by a 15-year-old black boy for his phone - people need to chill sometimes.

Your thoughts about this video


Andrea Carpenter
I am an American black woman and have been living in Europe for the last 17 years. What disturbs me is racism on a whole. But also the fact that"my" black people, whether British or American seem to feel they are "owed" something! My mother was a hard working single mom for a long time. She was never on welfare. She would have been ashamed. She taught us,my brother and I, that hard work and believing in yourself were very important. I know there are injustices to blacks and other "minorities". But if we as a people play in to the notion that we are less intelligent, lazy, criminals, who have no values. Too many of our youths live this out. I also recall when I was in high school being ostricized by "my" people because I spoke "proper" english and liked reading books!

Okay, some of you have a point about Gangster rap, but I am a black male youth, I listen to gangster rap but I'm still educated and articulate. Sometimes I speak slang with friends, let us enjoy ourselves I'm still young. You can't blame it on rap just because its a black thing, or the fashion trends, it's just fashion doesn't make us a gangster. No one ever mentions the stuff rock groups mention, if you ever heard a rock track, it promotes just as much crime as rap. Y'all got to stop saying listening to raps wrong because your black. So your saying that I would be considered a productive member of society if I started listening to Rock.

I'm sick of seeing more and more of my friends being robbed by black youths. I have been a victim myself, too, many times. This is why more and more white people are turning to people like the BNP for help.

Adam Taha
Gangsta Rap: because that's all they know, and until we as a community support each other, not waiting for government funding for schemes and just do it ourselves to inspire the youths, give them time instead of judging them, then gangsta style is what they will know. They need to know about the first Black scientists, surgeons, PHD's Graduates who came from same background so they can see, there's more to life. The youth are just angry, felt let down, and sometimes its the small things which affectes them i.e. lack of self esteem, lack of knowledge of who they really are, their heritage, culture, history. Man, what a history! I read about black history, the scientists, the explorers, the doctors, and so many who discovered or invented something first and made a amazing impact to the world. If I had this history, man, I be so damn proud to be black!!!

Johan Smith
I am in not any way a racist, let me firstly make this clear before I air my views. Much of the young black youth of today in the UK, make a mockery of all the values that modern society teaches us. Many black teenagers try to live the gangster lifestyle and go around 'jacking' and starting a lot of 'beef'. I don't understand why this is constantly going on. What should we as a people do about it? Even though it is not just black youth carry out these sorts of crimes it is also whites, however to be perfectly honest I believe the main sector of people causing havoc on the streets of Britain is the young black people. I do apologise to all those young blacks who lead a perfectly honest and anti-crime lifestyle. Akpomena I appreciate you for standing up and make your views clear, because the message had to be sent from a black person.

My only question is are we British? Do we see ourself British? What does it means to be British? My answer really is to look at justice and equality. As a black person maybe highly graduated, unemployed, successful in life their are always obstacles for the darker race people. We have to work ten times hard just to say that we are British. We as Black people are Brtish subjects not British Citizens, and until we accept and embrace our self for who we are and love ourselves we will never be able to be equal to ones with White skin.

Ayomide Bazuaye
I hear what your saying but at the end of the day black people are individuals just as much as white people. I think everyone needs to look at themselves and think about where they came from and how they can get back to their roots. Its not about dignity its about self-respect and respecting others. All the violence thats happening today doesn't need to be happenng if people just realised there was more to life than this and learned to communicate things could get better, coz the only way is up!

Helen Affram
U go girl! Akpomena you are right! It's time we stop making deals about colour and start walking towards real integration. It's only by doing this that we can talk about multiculturalism. Let's keep up this value in high esteem.

I think most people are confused about their skin colour and not looking on their individual achievement. Black people should unite and learn to live with each other and appriciate their colour, likewise other races.

Mark Alistair
I cannot disagree with anything that you stated. For all that our forefathers went through and fought for we owe them and ourselves a great deal. Lets stop making excuses, comparing our selves to other races. Let us take responsibility and fight back against this destructive element in our community.

I fully agree with what Akpomena is sayin, but in a way I also think she's putting down people of our race and generation by saying that we are "bad".

Akpomena, living in Nottingham, a vast majority of the black community are law abiding citizens, unfortunately a growing number follow the trend of gangsta rap and commit crimes without considering what they are doing or even the after effect they have on the community as a whole. I have been targeted several times myself, I have been in my property when some young black youths tried to gain entry, I have been followed and have had abuse thrown at me as well as direct challenges when they were not called for. These are just a few of the things that have been done by a minority and its the whole black culture and community that suffers because of it. These offenders keep on because they want to keep up the image and live life like gangsta rappers. What you say about chilling - it's the music industry that needs to start the ball rolling by killing off the hype and publicity of these groups that only propogate the violence and crime by glamourizing it.

What a shame! The problem is that the black people in the UK have lost their identity. A people enslaved mentally and physically by their host society. The solution would be to get back to their roots and through that get dignity. A people without an identity is like a human with no brains.

I am white, blond and blue-eyed does that make me good because I am white in color, I don't think so. White, brown, red, yellow every skin color have bad ppl and good ones, and everyone is beautiful, as well. As far as blacks and mugging goes, come to Vancuover, Canada and see white Canadians doing all sorts of stuff!

Chris Moholo
I think black people should not be ashamed of being black. It is God's creation and plan for us to be black. God knew what he was doing and still believes that black-skined people exsist on this planet.

John Thombs
It's no good saying the youth of today are bad, we have to ask ourselves as a community - 'Why are the youth are doing what they are doing?' I think poverty and lack of education and jobs is destroying our youngsters, also its no accident the media loves to focus on black people doing bad thinks as it reinforces the stereotype of young black people

Its quite sad that people are judged by the colour of there skin. We are all equal, and we were all put on this earth to be equal. Nobody is better than anyone else and no one is perfect with there lifestyle and how they live their life.

Cheryl Oteng
Akpomena, I feel you girl. I've been saying this for years. But i'm not sure if it will change - it's truly a disgrace the way us as black people have turned out.

Renoir Tuahene
I think you show great maturity and common sense Akpomena. Thank God some of our young people can see wha'ts happening to us. It's not about us sticking together, its about us taking responsibility.

Padraigh O'Cleirigh
There are good and bad peoples in all countries and races. One would find that most crimes are committed by white people in a small village in Finland, or like by black people in a small village in Africa. The majority of all the worlds people are by and large fine decent people.

Whilst everyone is entitled to their own opinions on subject matters, I believe some of what was said in this clip does reflect how some of the youth are today. However, this generalisation of black people is what is the problem. There ARE black people out there doing things for the community (some not recognised, some are) and not all black people are bad. This kind of view only damages what is currently a delicate subject already.

Luzia Marcelo
I think that's true what she said but sometimes people abuse us, just because we are black it don't mean that we aren't a human being.I think we would celebrate ours culture three or even more months a year, it saddens me to hear so much emphasis being placed on the color of people's skin as if that makes a differece.

Akpomena Otemro
1.32 mins
12 Apr 2002
Video Nation UK
England - London
Race UK

Latest Videos




About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy