The community is seeking more information about the recent allegations reported by KHOU 11 News, indicating that Quanell X used his position as a community “activist” to make money off of individuals seeking help and not addressing their concerns after receiving payment.
For years, the black community has always had voices rise from the shadows to become what has been deemed an “activist.” Activism is the vigorous and sometimes aggressive action taken as a means of achieving political, social or other goals.
Whether it was Moses challenging Pharaoh to “let his people go” or Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. leading the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, activism has long been a means of notable expression, as demonstrated by protests, marches, sit-ins, boycotts and other actions.
Another consistency that tends to follow that of activists, is that of being labeled radical or controversial.
Quanell X has been no stranger to the controversy that comes along with the title of community “activist,” especially after these recent allegations levied against him by members of his own community.
His response to these allegations is even more shocking. On a radio interview last Monday, Quanell X said that the KHOU 11 News broadcasts that were aired last week were part of a plot to kill him.
“This is bigger than people who are just unhappy with Quanell X,” he said on 97.9 FM, KBXX. “The plan is to inspire somebody who looks like me to make an attempt on my life. This is to inspire my own people to turn against me.”
Quanell X also shared that there had been three assassination attempts on his life over the last ten years, but none were attempted by an African-American. He stated that police and authorities knew about all of these assassination attempts on his life.
Quanell X went on in the interview to say that the KHOU 11 News broadcasts concerning him were retaliation against him for giving exclusive stories to other TV stations, such as the surveillance video he obtained of the brutal police beating of 15-year-old Chad Holley, a charge that KHOU-TV’s management flatly denies.
In an exclusive interview with the Houston Forward Times, Quanell X shared his thoughts on why he believes these allegations have come forward against him.
Houston Forward Times: Why do you believe these allegations have come forward against you?
Quanell X: “I am a young, black man that is fearless and without compromise,” said Quanell X. “Bold uncompromising leaders come under attack often, as did brother Malcolm X and Adam Clayton Powell. I am looked at as a nuisance to many because I take bold stances to stand up against injustice against my people.”
HFT: Do you really believe that a member of the black community would make an attempt on your life?
Quanell X: “There is nothing further to add to that statement.”
HFT: After hearing about these allegations, do you plan to modify the way you take on cases and handle members of the black community that seek you out for help?
Quanell X: “I will continue to be an activist. That is who I am. I have always had a consulting company, but we will make sure that complicated cases that require outside help and additional assistance goes through my consulting firm to avoid confusion to those that need my help.”
HFT: What message do you want to give to people who may be in need of advocacy and assistance with their social issues, that have heard these allegations against you?
Quanell X: “I truly love my brothers and my sisters. I will continue to fight for them and will not run away and hide. I’ve helped thousands of people for free, with money coming out of my own pocket. Please don’t allow the good work that I’ve done to be overshadowed by these attacks. I can’t be a miracle worker for everyone on every matter. Unlike Jesus, I can’t turn water into wine.”
Many in the community have a difficult time accepting that community leaders, such as activists, are deserving of compensation for their work, as those that have a more traditional and identifiable job or career and have expressed that community leaders and community activists should not charge those that are in need of services and support.
Krystal Muhammad, local community activist with the Houston chapter of the New Black Panther Party said that the community needs to be aware that while Quanell X has done great work, he is not the spokesperson for or representative of all of the Houston-based social and community activist organizations that have supported the black community for years.
“The New Black Panther Party has never charged anyone to assist them in any matters of social justice or injustice,” said Muhammad. “Our bylaws state that we cannot take any money from the people.”
Much of the confusion in the community behind Quanell X is knowing just exactly who he is and what he does. Quanell X is not an attorney and acts independently from any other organization and group.
Nation of Islam Minister Robert Muhammad and other well-known community leaders, such as the Reverend William Lawson, Reverend Ronald Smith and Howard Jefferson of the NAACP sent a letter to KHOU 11 News stating that the fees that Quanell X charges are justified and that the considerable good that Quanell X has done without receiving any form of payment should be reported also.
The New Black Panther Party and other community leaders held a press conference on Monday at the Shape Community Center to address the Quanell X allegations, and asked the community to attend a community hearing on November 29 at Shape Community Center. It is at that community hearing that community leaders plan to give alleged victims the opportunity to express themselves, as well as offer help to anyone that feels that they are still in need of help with their unresolved issues.
“Don’t persecute Quanell X in the media,” said Muhammad. “Let’s sit down with our own community members to resolve our own issues amongst each other.”
Quanell X also held his “3rd Annual Turkey Giveaway” on Monday, in the Cuney Homes, located in the Third Ward of Houston. Over 300 turkeys were given away to needy families for Thanksgiving.
Many in the black community have been the recipient of assistance from various Houston-based activist organizations and they hope that this situation with Quanell X will encourage the community to support these organizations financially and with donations.