West Indies legend Michael Holding breaks down discussing racism in the UK

published on July 12, 2020

Now he was there to commentate on thereturn of Test match cricket but whenrain delayed play Michael holdinginstead delivered a powerful and movingspeech on race the Sky Sports pundit andlegendary West Indian fast bowler foughtback tears as he called for an end to

Institutional racism and for meaningfuleducation on black history you can tellme who invented the light board byThomas Edison righteverybody knows Thomas Edison inventedthe light board Thomas Edison invented a

Light bulb with a paper filament itburnt out in no time at all can you tellme who invented the filament that makeshis light shine throughout nobody knowsbecause a black man I was not taught inschools

Lewis Howard Latimer invented the carbonfilament to a low lights to continuouslyshine who knows that everything shouldbe taught when you go back to theschooling as a young man I remember myschool is I was never taught anything

Good about that people and you cannothave a society that is brought up likethat both white and black that onlyteach what's convenient to a teacherhistory is written by the Conqueror notby those that are conquered history is

Written by the people who do harm not bythe people who get harmed and we need togo back and teach both sides of historyand until we do that and educate theentire human race this thing will notstop the treaty keep on tell me there is

Nothing called white privilege give me abreakI don't see any white people going intoa store on Oxford Street a bit followeda black man walks in somebody's fallingin everywhere he goes that is basic

White privilege whether that whiteperson when did they rob the place ornot is not when we thought of that weand things like that have to changeextraordinary stuff and Michael holdingjoins me now from Southampton good

Evening Michael thank you for being withus now you've done a lot of commentarybut that right there was possibly themost powerful thingthat you have said what impact do youhope it has well mark thanks for having

Me thanks for giving me the opportunityagain to talk to the entire public inthe world about this thing I would hopeMA that is not just something thatpeople have heard and they will justbrush it under the carpet and eventually

Just move on I would hope that peopleunderstand exactly what I'm saying andthat understand exactly where I'm comingfrom with what I am saying I'm 66 yearsold I'm no kid I have been through itI've seen it and I've experienced it

With other people and as I said as ayoung man I was very selfish I just saidto myself if that's not affecting meI'll just walk away no big thing butwhen you realize it's affecting so manydifferent people over the world and then

When you realize you see with your owneyes the victimization you just can'tkeep on you're sayin you're gonna walkaway and forget it because it doesn'taffect you and that's why I had to saywhat I said it was not planned they

Don't call it reign of obviously thevideo was planned the videos wererecorded about a week or so before wecame to South Hampton but I had it allpent up inside of me and I just had tosee it yeah I mean it was unscripted

Obviously and from the heart and butyour appeal was about education forhistory when taught to include the whiteperspective and the black perspectivedefinitely mark cook you see if you goback to many many years many centuries

The entire world and society was builton white people white people dideverything and whatever you're taught inschool I spent about nine years at highschool I was not bright so I spent alotta time at high school what I was

Never taught anything about anythingthat a black person that was did thatwas good and when you grow up and thatis inculcated in you that everythinggood is done by the white man oranything bad is done by a black man it

Cannot be good for your health mentalhealth I'm talking about your kidsgrowing up that they think they haveabsolutely no chance of achieving whatotherkids their same age but just to that

Different skin color has achieved andthat can't be goodI can give you many stories and examplesI give some when I was speakingyesterday about the different studiesthat were done at Yale University this

Is not just some little universitiesfrom backwoods Yale University did thesestudies and it is covered theinstitutionalized racism that is goingon it cannot continue like this we haveto understand that people are people

Okay you want to write a book about thehistory of your peoplewhat about explaining everything aboutthat history everything not just what issuitable to be explained yeah and yourown personal experience since you've

Been playing crickethave you experienced racism on thecricket field not by cricketers I'venever had one cricketer anywhere in theworld that has passed a racist remark tome never ever but of course I spend most

Of my time though I'd finally gottenthird man and you know what people inthe stands will see so you hear it butnever ever has a cricketer pass theracism up to me because I wouldn't havestood for it anyway but what about wider

Society what about just your normal lifeon the streets of the UK lots mark lotslots lots you know I I can tell youabout so many things that have happenedto me here in the UK and even inAustralia where I've been in South

Africa since I started going down therelots of things I'll give an example ofeach place here in the UK I was with thelady that is know my wife who isPortuguese backgrounds that means thatshe's white and I was standing beside

Her in in Leicester Square greeting on ataxi we had just gone to China tonne toget a meal came back out get trying toget a taxi the taxi was heading in ourdirection with his lights on I steppedout to put my hand in the road for the

Taxi driver to stop he turned off thelight that's not only me I see it so Italked to friends of mine years ago heturned off the light and when he passedme turned it back on and a West IndianEnglish guy West Indian background

Across the street saw me showto me record and I said Mikey you haveto put her in front which is meaning putthe white lady in front because he theguy was tough for the white lady and Ishowed it back to him I'll walk first

That is this country Australia WestIndies team we were down there in theeighties a group of us were in the liftbecause whenever we go to Austrialangostino hotel they put the entireteam on the CM floor so about four or

Five of us got into the lift to go downinto the lobby in stopped on the floorbelow once the doors opened and onAustria and a white Austrian guy stoodthere sauce in the lift and decided hewas not gonna come into the lift

Okay if you feel intimidated by four bigblack guys fine the lift door starts toclose and his shot sorry system ah justas the doors closing so we just laughedwe've got own little Lobby we go overway that's Australia yeah don't you

South Africa no the first time I went toSouth Africa I went with Sky I wentthere on my own the second time I wentworld cup again with my wife see himwhite lady or skin white Portuguesebackground we stood at the lobby trying

To book in a guy came to me try to bookme in and somebody walked up to herimmediately to try to book her inbecause in their mind she could not bewith meand that's the sort of thing what we

Laugh about those things because whenI'm not living in the society I justlaugh about it sometimes I agreemisleading my head and I move on but Icannot keep on laughing grimacing andmoving on it's time for change

So my question I think is you know afterwhat's happened to George Floyd and allthat has followed from that Sir Michaeldo you think the time is right now couldthis be the moment where things can andpossibly do change

I think it can I think that definitelyis the moment I've seen so many positivethings since that George flightsituation mark I made a comment aboutthe amount of white people that I seeare

In these protest marches some protestmarches are more whites than blacks Ithink that's a huge plus for thismovement one thing that I a friend ofmine even sent me on whatsapp todaythere's a gentleman in the United States

A blood stock agent who posted someracist remarks on his private whateverFacebook what I don't know what to do isI'm not a big guy on social media but itbecame public Keenelandracing industry banned him immediately

He neared the he nor the company herepresents the horses history and theseller by Django the Keeneland this yearshortly after that his son posted onagain some social media that it's hisfather he's ashamed of what his father

Did but in a way he is glad because forthe last 20 years he has been trying tohave this conversation with his fatherabout his racist remarks and he sayshe's so glad to a degree that ithappened so he can no actually sit down

With his father and say listen this iswhat you have been doing this cannotright this is his own son and he cameout to the post criticizing his fraudand said is glad he can no sit down withthem and discuss it yeah I see the

Possibility of change and this is notjust a few people talking a few peoplemarching for we are – I think with theeven companies mark the company we areworking for no they have pledged 30million pounds towards this thing this

Campaign and I see a lot of othercompanies doing that and that is themost important thing right look atpeople on the street walking up and downand not going in a particular shop thatis important yes but you need big

Corporations about this thing all rightjust two more questions going on fromwhat you say it's gonna take an enormouseffort from everybody talking abouthaving people in decision black peoplein decision-making positions in sport in

Business in politics this is gonna takea long time and it may just be that youknow everything goes back to normalI would hope it won't go back to normalI hope that train will just keep onmoving and yes I know it's gonna take a

Long time I am six to six years old Imay not see myself what I'm hoping foris future generations that they will allhave equality my grandson for instancehe's six years old I hope that when hegets to be a man that they're mean

Nothing about black and white and brownand pink it will just be human beingthat everybody gets an equal opportunitydepending on your skills not the colorof their skin or their race or ethnicityare what their religion that is what I'm

Hoping for that's a big hope but I'mhoping that we are moving in the rightdirection and eventually we'll get therethis thing has been going on for decadesor centuries mark so I don't expectovernight change but it has to start

Somewhere and hopefully that will justkeep on rolling a bit at a time a bit ata time you cannot change what arewatches in people's heads overnight as Isaid yesterday a lot of it is not peoplethinking negatively it is something that

Is seeps in almost like osmosis intoyour mindset that's the day that Irelated to with the preschools you knowteachers who automatically look for theblood kick black kids to be misbehavingthey were embarrassed when they were

Told that's what they did because thisis not conscious it is not somethingthat they consciously think about butwhen you live in a society and you livein that environment you automaticallyget it into your head the son of that

Blood stocky agent he said that that iswhat his father taught him yeah that isnot something that he was born withnobody's born with it but if you don'thave the people to teach it andeventually it will just die away as I

Said I will be around to see it what I'mhoping for future generations well theone last thing Michael at the end ofyour improv chi speech at the end ofyour impromptu speech yesterday youseemed visibly upset how difficult was

It emotionally I mean in the middle of arain delay at a cricket match on livetelevision to be honest that emotionalpart came when I started thinking of myparents and it's coming again Ohmark I know what babyrage red – all

Right take your time Michael take taketake the timemy mother's family stopped talking toher because her husband was too dark Iknow what the way true and that cameback to be immediately

All right Michael we'll lookextraordinary stuff yesterday and thankyou very much for being with us todayand as you say it may be the moment itmay be the moment that things change andyou obviously you obviously hope so well

It's gonna be a slow process mark what Ihope even if it's a baby step at a timeeven snails pierce but I'm hoping itwill continue in the right directioneven steel Spears I dog here okayMichael appreciate you joining us and a

Difficult subject but something youwanted to talk about thank you very muchfor being with us Michael my pleasure

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