By Nakyia Taylor
Life is unpredictable. For Chris Singleton, it seems that we can have a greater impact on the people around us. Hailing from Charleston, South Carolina, Singleton has made it his life’s mission to encourage generations to love without discrimination after the murder of his mother.
His mother was shot and killed among eight other victims in 2015 due to the color of their skin at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. Yet he forgave the culprit, which put power into love being stronger than hate.
In the years following his mother’s murder, Singleton had traveled around the country to spread the idea that love is stronger than hate. He also sought to be a role model for his younger siblings and to promote the importance of vulnerability while dealing with tough issues.
“Love is always stronger than hate,” said Singleton. “So if we just love the way my mom would, the hate won’t be anywhere close to what love is.”
See an interview with Singleton and learn more about other Black History Month activities from the Pacer News Network.
On Feb. 11, Kenan Hall amplified his ideas to the students and community of William Peace University. The Campus Board of Activities invited Chris Singleton to speak as part of the month-long celebration of Black History.
Singleton is a former professional baseball player. He has spoken in numerous conferences and to thousands of communities and students. He is inclined to encourage people, in this case, the students of WPU, in the direction of love and unity. Among these topics, Singleton mentioned the importance of mental health, and being emotionally vulnerable.
Singleton believes in the ability of small acts of love creating bigger impacts on the lives of all people. He emphasizes the impact of a hug from someone who is visibly different from you. This small act could give you strength.
“One life is not important except for the impact it has on other lives,” Singleton said.
Singleton hopes to remind people that no one chooses their skin color. People are different, but they are not at fault for being different.
“We didn’t choose our parents,” said Singleton. “We didn’t choose what language we speak. We didn’t choose our names. So why are we judging people based on things they can’t control.”
Singleton is hopeful about his impact. He wants to inspire audiences to educate their peers and all generations to celebrate differences. During his speech at WPU in the face of over 70 people, he sought to emphasize the importance of teaching. Advising would be the key to unifying amidst adversity.
“We teach. We teach like Dr. King when he said I don’t judge somebody based on the color of their skin but of the context of their character. We teach people that 10 percent of our life is given to us but the other 90 is how we respond,” said Singleton.
The event had been the third one in WPU’s black history celebration. It drew many people from diverse backgrounds. Singleton had used anecdotes of personal experience to emphasize his points of accepting differences of those backgrounds.
As a speaker, he hopes to inspire people for the enhancement of themselves, the country, their peers and family.
WPU’s CAB gets photo with speaker, Chris Singleton.