Now that we are celebrating over 50 years since Malcolm X’s murder, it is important that we not just remember the man and toss around his quotes, but that we seek to emulate him.
Malcolm X never hesitated to defend those who were oppressed and he wouldn’t just look on quietly, while those who practice Islam domestically and abroad are being victimized. And he would surely would not have predicted that generations coming after him 50 years later (who profess their love for him) would ignore State sponsored harassment and discrimination against those who practice his beloved religion.
El Hajj Malik El Shabazz (Malcolm X) was a practitioner of Islam he was a Sunni Muslim.
But this foremost of revolutionaries, was not killed at the behest of this government because he was Muslim, he was killed because he was uncompromising in his condemnation of this social/ political/ economic system. If ever there was an enemy of this State, it was Malcolm X.
Malcolm didn’t blink when he called out this government for its hypocrisy, in violently invading Vietnam and practicing violence the world over, while condemning Black people who began to take to the streets to demand an end to their second class status. He died because he unhesitatingly called “a spade a spade.”
He called out racism and rampant materialism and the corrupting influence of what he called “dollarism.” He likened US foreign policy to that of a vulture. He reminded us that, “we didn’t land on Plymouth Rock but Plymouth Rock landed on us.” He chided and teased us for thinking we are fully certified citizens by reminding us that,” just being at the table doesn’t make you a diner,” but eating along with everyone else makes it so.
Malcolm X reminded us that he didn’t see an American dream but “an American nightmare.”
“I am not an American,” he said “and got sense enough to know it.” He condemned this system while preaching brotherhood and sisterhood first among Black and African peoples and later advocated international and universal brother and sisterhood.
It’s not difficult to imagine that the prophet rolls in his grave, every time a Negro jealously complains about people standing up for and with their Muslim brothers and sisters. He probably rolled over every time we decided that, rather than stand for the rights of our Islamic brothers we chose to sit it out because, ‘it’s not my fight.’
According to the prophets’ calculations, they would be wrong. And besides, many Africans and African Americans are in fact; Muslim. This racial bond would make them brothers and sisters.
Malcolm said of Black folks “we have the same problem a common problem a problem that will make you catch hell whether you are a Baptist a Methodist or a Muslim.” “All of us have suffered here, in this country political oppression at the hands of the White man, economic exploitation at the hands of the White man and social degradation at the hands of the White man.” By White man as he made clear he meant the White power structure, the ruling class.
.Malcolm X was a Muslim.
Yet Malcolm would have challenged todays adherents of religion, many of whom bury their heads in the sand, or say simply say, “I will pray for you,” “or its in God’s hands” while their brothers and sisters are suffering. He despised quiescent and passive religious folks who pretend that “God’s got it” absolving them from responsibility for their neighbors. He frowned upon “religiously pious” who make a mockery of the precepts of love and ignore the command “ to do justice,” found in practically all faiths.
When you are considering whether you should stand with your Islamic brothers and sisters remember Malcolm X was a Muslim. Standing with them is akin to standing with the prophet.
Though a dedicated and committed Muslim, he would have laid Islam down if it hindered his ability to fight for his people and justice.
“No religion will ever make me forget the condition of our people in this country. No religion will ever make me forget the continued fighting with dogs against our people in this country. No religion will make me forget the police clubs that come up side our heads. No God, no religion, no nothing will make me forget it until it stops, until it is finished, until it’s eliminated,” said Malcolm.
Now would be a good time to remind ourselves that Malcolm was the ultimate Pan Africanist and internationalist. He loved humanity and he really loved Black people and he loved his religion Islam and its practitioners as well.
justice then peace
When I got the phone call that Brother Chad Robertson died from his wounds after being shot by Amtrak police, I tried not to but the tears just started coming. I didn’t know him personally and can’t recall if we had ever met but it hit me hard cause I was thinking ‘at least he will survive, he might just be okay.’
I didn’t know Brother Chad, but I know he had a mother who loved him dearly. I didn’t know Brother Chad but I know he left behind a mate, a woman who loved him dearly. I didn’t know Brother Chad but I know he left some children behind who loved him dearly. I didn’t know Brother Chad but I know he had sisters who loved him dearly. I didn’t know Brother Chad but I know he had an Aunt that loved him dearly.
Even his friends that have contacted me or responded to my earlier commentary were warm. That says something. I feel bad that they will experience this kind of loss. I can’t begin to understand the hurt and pain they must be feeling now.
I call Chad brother because as anyone who knows me will tell you, I call everyone brother of sister except for the the point one percent the bosses who are nothing but criminals, who run this evil system and maintain their power by any means necessary and it deem it necessary that we die either at their hands or one another’s. They are not my brothers and sisters.
But Chad was my brother because he was a fellow human being. He was my brother because he was a fellow Black human being. He was my brother because as members of the most oppressed nationality in the US we shared the same pain the same angst the same fragility of existence. He was my brother because like the vast majority of us, he worked for a living he was a part of the 99 percent of us who don’t have real power, but have to accept the crumbs those in power hand us after our long days of work.
And just as importantly he was my brother because he too was a child of God!
Why his murderer chose to accept a litany of code words and stereotypes and lies as the person in front of him that night, rather than seeing him as a brother, a child of God and a fellow human being,is the work left for us to correct.
His murderer didn’t kill an image,an apparition, a thing. He didn’t kill a ni–er he killed our brother a human being.
They say he ran and we say,’ so what does that have to do anything.’ They tried to say he had some weed on him and we say ‘if you tell us this to justify his murder, then you are a low down dirty pig, dirt on the bottom of our shoes and we hold you too partly responsible.’
They will say he must have been doing something he shouldn’t have and we will say ‘go to hell!’ They (the media collaborators) ran a mug shot as a way of saying that he was a criminal, we say,’he was a better person than you because he wouldn’t do no foul ish like that.’ And for good measure we say ‘kiss our collective behinds!’
They killed a human being! We should not let them forget that. For as long as we can, as long as our energy lasts, we should not let them have any peace until we get justice.
None of US have much in the larger scheme of things. We don’t have the power of life and death. Most of us don’t have much money. We don’t have much that will provide real comfort to his family.
But we do have two legs, two feet, two arms and two hands, a mind and a mouth and we can use those to raise hell in this heavenly cause..
And we have a mind and we can make up our minds and decide that we are going to do everything possible to get justice for this brother.
So let us honor Chad by fighting back in Chicago and in Minneapolis. We will honor him by not letting another brother or sister walk by us without saying hello, remember it could be their last time.
Let us honor him by telling one another the truth about this system and its aims.
Let us honor him by not letting THEM smear his reputation.
Let us honor him by saying his name. Say his name, dammit say his name!
Chad Robertson Presente!
justice then peace
A press conference was held in Minneapolis simultaneously with the family of Chad Robertson’s conference in Chicago in front of the hospital where he lies paralyzed from the neck down, to denounce his shooting at the hands of Amtrak police. And to demand that the criminals who shot him be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
It really hit me this morning that this brother may not walk again.
Can you imagine on your way home from a funeral on the Bus and you wind up paralyzed. And why? Because its simply not okay for young Black men or Black people to just BE! And it ain’t about who is good or bad, we have to confront our reality.
Before a new day could dawn Chicago police shot someone else!
This SYSTEM OF POLICING is the problem. Its like having a good teacher at a bad school, bottom line is the school has to be changed. The good teacher shouldn’t distract us from the truth that the school is mis-educating the children.
The same has to apply to the police. The so-called good cops are a smoke screen, which hides the real purpose of police in this country.
WE have to stop relying on what we “think” and listen to folks who have done their research and analysis and have arrived at an educated conclusion, based on that research, analysis and study of the origin and historic function of the police!
This is science. Its like math. No matter what we “think,” “believe” or “feel,” 2 plus 2 equals 4. E= MC squared, no matter what we think. Gravity is real, no matter how much we may think it should or wish it to be different, if you jump out of the window you will fall and break your behind. You will not float.
The police’s REAL role despite what we THINK, BELIEVE or FEEL, is to protect private property and the rich. Notice whose side the police take in any strike or dispute with property owners businesses or corporations. They also serve to reinforce the racist, sexist, homophobic, nativist stereotypes of this social/economic/ political system. Its why they not only brutalize and kill Black folks but they also abuse poor and everyday White folks, as well as women, gay folks, immigrants and anyone that has been designated as “other” by those in charge, the representatives of the point one percent.
The sooner we accept this fact, the sooner we can get to the fix.
And yes its also true in the vicious “dog eat dog,” every person for themselves nation, they have set up, we will need protection from those who would victimize us. Common sense says that we can’t have those who are supposed to protect us from predators and others, also behave like criminals and victimize us as well.
So the challenge is to set up a system of guardianship in our communities in which we can safeguard ourselves. We have to create community whose bonds would discourage some of the criminality we see.
Ultimately, we will all have to pitch in and fight and organize to bring about a society in which police violence and community violence in inner cities aren’t as normal as waking up.
And yes the killing in the hood and the killing by the police come from the same source, the ruling class.
It is the rulers that have created the ghetto’s. They have mis-educated our young people to believe they aren’t “ish,” didnt come from “ish,” and have come from a people that aint nothing and have no history, no future, or even a culture (except a so-called “culture of poverty”). Its why some folks are quick to tell Black folks to “go back to Africa” cause the fool despite having all kinds of stuff that has African origins doesn’t think anything is in Africa. Hell their pre-modern ancestors originated from Africa.
So these young people are under-educated and mis-educated by people who they know don’t like them. They grow up in a community that screams inferior, second rate, less than. They are denied jobs and locked up for almost any reason, with no effort by the system to rehabilitate or point them in the right direction.
They wind up discouraged and open to joining groups that claim that their real enemy is folks down the street who look like them, but display different signs and where different clothes. They are convinced they have nothing to live for, because they for all practical purposes they don’t. Mad at the world for ripping them off,filled with internal self hatred, he is a walking time bomb. And then the man adds to their woes by supplying them with self hatred, drugs and guns.
Add to that the corporate music heads like cannibalistic, hustling, profiteers who pump in music, like some sick anti human Musac that encourages more hatred of themselves and even their women.
Make that n–er a chalk outline in the street;sell dope to those ni–ers; F–k your women and make sure “you ain’t lovin dem hoes;” And get “racks and racks and racks” get stacks by any means necessary, preferably by exploiting fellow n–rs. And make sure you buy everything; cars, diamonds, gold, clothes, wine, champagne the MAN sells cause this, yes this is what will define your worth as a human being!
And middle class folks who claim to be smart, educated and refined, will blame him, the damned victim! But he didn’t do this to himself. He didn’t plant the seed of doubt,inferiority and mistrust. The system did that.
So it is this system, (the same one that existed before Trump) that created police violence and inner city violence.Trump just took the gloves off.
If we are to survive we will have to fight back. Sacrifices will have to be made old assumptions, old paths, old parties( yes the damned Democrats), old out of date organizations will have to be laid aside.
And like any army going to war we will have to have a clear analysis of what we are up against and a real understanding of the enemy. Victory will depend on what you know, not what we “think”, what we “feel”, what we “believe.” And make no mistake it will come in conflict with those who profit and benefit from things as they are: “where we gonna go where we gonna find a Massa better than this,” they will say.
We must resist (intelligently) or else!
justice then peace
The Trump White House making up stories about a fake Bowling Green massacre, while ignoring minister Robert Doggart’s plot to murder dozens of Muslims in upstate New York, is designed to detract and deflect from stories like Doggart’s, stories of real domestic terrorism in the US committed by some Whites against Muslims, Black folks and other people because of their color/religion/national origin.
And don’t be duped, the Big Business (MSM) while pretending to push back have been compliant in this effort.The alternative press’ Daily Beast kept this story in the public’s eye.
Christian minister and former Congressional candidate Robert Doggart is currently on trial in federal court in Chattanooga, Tennessee for a 2015 plot to kill dozens of Muslims in upstate Hancock, New York.
Doggart, 65, was caught in 2015 and even though he was recorded actually planning an attack on Islamberg, a village in Hancock, a judge initially ruled it wasn’t sufficient evidence to charge him with a crime. The government eventually charged him with solicitation to burn down a mosque, solicitation to commit a civil rights violation and solicitation to commit arson of a building.
However he was not charged with a hate crime, or with terrorism, nor conspiracy to commit murder and was released to the custody of relatives while awaiting trial, to the chagrin of many in the Muslim community who protested the obvious double standard.
But a quick internet search reveals that neither CNN, NBC, CBS or ABC, the New York Times nor Washington Post and not even NPR has given the trial a mention. And this can’t be blamed on Trump, he didn’t order their silence or complicity in this news black out.
Incidentally, Islamberg is a predominantly Black enclave. It’s also home to “The Muslims of America” a group, according to its website that, “primarily consists of African American Sunni who are indigenous Americans with Islamic roots spanning four generations. The first generations were mainly converts from various branches of Christianity.”
Doggart was quoted as saying in telephone conversations recorded by the FBI, “If I don’t get [kill] 40 of them, then something’s wrong with me.” Authorities reported that he planned to burn down a mosque, school and cafeteria, in Islamberg. He planned to carry out his attack with Molotov cocktails, M4 rifles, machetes and grenades. The plan was to create as many casualties as possible. “We will be cruel,” he said.
Doggart tried to recruit others in the South to help him carry out his plan. According to the “Chattanooga Times Free Press,” he said that his recruits would be required to take an oath ON THE BIBLE to support the country. “We will offer those lives as collateral to prove our commitment to our God.”
Imagine if the story was reversed, and an Islamic Imam had plotted against White Christians. The story would be blasted all over the internet and splashed on the front pages and online editions of all the major newspapers and would be the lead story on most electronic news broadcasts.
So why wasn’t this heinous plot broadcast far and wide? Because it didn’t fit the “War on Terror” narrative.
Furthermore it describes a plot against Muslims who are African American. The plot also serves as a reminder of the meanness of some White folks. And White folks are tired hearing about the historic criminality, of the Robber Barons, rich White folks, the bourgeoisie, the ruling class folks even though it doesn’t necessarily condemn them. The key words in that phrase are “rich” “bourgeoisie” and “ruling class,” not White.
And maybe it’s because Muslim lives don’t matter in the broader scheme of things. When hundreds of people were killed in ISIS attacks in Iraq, Pakistan and Turkey there was little sympathy or empathy expressed in the North American press.. There was no twitter or Facebook love or memes expressing solidarity with or acknowledging the Brown people’s pain. Or maybe just maybe if we are honest, the phrase Brown people is an oxymoron. And Black people…
It also turns the truth on its head. Yes there have been attacks by unhinged people who practice Islam But it is the US government that has seemingly declared war on Islam. Trump has merely taken off the veil and eliminated all pretenses.
The Trump administration is crazy like a fox; there is indeed a method to their madness. The US indeed has a history of terrorism but it’s not against White people.But the favored group of choice when it comes to terrorism has always been Black people followed closely by “Colored” folks that is, Indians, Mexicans and Asians and to a lesser extent Jews..
Moreover, to take the focus off the historic victims of racist violence also takes focus off of efforts to stem that violence.
justice then peace