In commemoration of his life, NOWCastSA has published exclusive video of interviews with Rev. Claude Black, produced by the Source of Light Center at University Presbyterian Church in March 2004.
This is the third in a series.
Black was a civil rights activist and minister of the Mt. Zion First Baptist Church in San Antonio for almost 50 years. He served on the San Antonio City Council from 1973 to 1978, and became the city’s first black Mayor Pro Tem.
Black worked closely with other civil rights advocates including A. Philip Randolph, Martin Luther King Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Adam Clayton Powell Jr., James L. Farmer Jr. and Ella Baker.
Black, who died March 13, 2009, was very involved with San Antonio's undeserved neighborhoods, such as the East Side, and earned a great respect from the community.
n the first video, Black talked about civil rights, the separation of races, global community and shares stories from his decades as a civil rights activist. In the second video, Black, the grandson of a slave, spoke about his life growing up with his family in San Antonio, his time attending Morehouse College, his decision to go to Andover Newton Theological School in Massachusetts and his early days as a minister on San Antonio's East Side and beyond. Click here to go to YouTube Playlist of three videos.
In this interview, Black speaks about education in San Antonio and its direct relation to family and community.
"You need a family where education is not debatable. We are not addressing education as a family issue. We are addressing it as a school issue, and you cannot isolate the school from the family."
On San Antonio's school districts, Black says:
"These districts tend to divide people economically, tend to divide people racially, and it's going to maintain some of the division within our city."
"I don't have all the answers, but I know right here in San Antonio, we need to have a militant movement to deal with the education of our youngsters. We cannot continue to have low-performing schools in our minority, impoverished communities. We can't continue to do that."
"The worst thing in the world is to have to deal with an ill-informed group of people -- that you created."