All hie wanted was his name on his high school sweater.
17 year old Malcolm Xavier Combs wanted to get the name “Malcolm X” printed on the back of his senior sweater from Christ the King High School in Queens.
He said a school official named Veronica Arbitello
“told me … that’s someone I don’t want to be associated with.”
Combs’ parents aren’t happy with the school’s decision, adding that the school didn’t seem too familiar with the the history or impact of slain civil rights icon Malcolm X and what he represents to the struggle of human rights.
“They pulled him out of class to tell him that a man who said, ‘A man without an education, you have nothing,’ is someone he shouldn’t be associated with,” mother Mychelle Combs said, referencing Malcolm X.
Combs said that Arbitello also joked about his name with her husband, high school school basketball coach Joe Arbitello, introducing him as “the new Malcolm X”.
“I felt insulted. They just laughed at me … that’s my name, Malcolm X, not a nickname,” Combs said.
Christ the King declined to comment. Combs’ parents, however, have scheduled a meeting and reached out to Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network to join them.
Combs’ mother said they don’t have plans to pursue legal action, but they want the school to understand inclusivity and diversity. She’s asking for the faculty to get culture-sensitivity training and for the school to increase minority staff.