The Black Family Summit hosted a virtual “Community Conversation” featuring different perspectives on the Covid-19 vaccine, safety, efficacy, and other questions and concerns raised by Blacks across the country.
Featured panelists were Student Minister Dr. Ava Muhammad, national spokesperson for the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam; Dr. Leon McDougle, president of the National Medical Association; and Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts, III., senior pastor of Abyssinian Baptist Church and national co-chair of Choose Healthy Life, a coalition of Black clergy formed to curb the pandemic in Black communities. Dr. Nathan Rabb, Jr., Los Angeles-based Traditional Naturopath, was unable to attend due to an unforeseen scheduling conflict, according to Leonard Dunston, chairof the Black Family Summit network of national organizations.
During his welcome address Mr. Dunston said the virtual forum was the brainchild of Min. Farrakhan’s and grew from his desire to address the needs of Blacks impacted by Hurricane Katrina which decimated New Orleans, Louisiana in August 2005. The Black Family Summit is an initiative of the Institute of the Black World 21st Century, founded by political activist and author Dr. Ron Daniels.
Laura House welcomed guests and participants. Dr. L. Zakiya Newland set the tone by outlining the discussion, guided by African-centered philosophy, principles and values, and gave context for the Covid-19 forum. Debra Fraser-Howze, founder of Choose Healthy Life and the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS, moderated the January 8 forum.
“We view this vaccine, as an instrument of death. Everyone doesn’t view it that way. But if you don’t, consider the fact that what is in the vaccine is not even outcome determinative in our decision to take it or not, because the question is credibility,” said Min. Ava Muhammad.
“We object to these phrases ‘hardest hit,’ as though Black people have not been the hardest hit by every form of genocide for centuries; that we are a ‘vulnerable population’ with preconditions. What is the source of these preconditions? What is our condition and what is the cause?” she said shortly after highlighting Minister Farrakhan’s July 4, 2020 worldwide message, “The Criterion,” as the basis for the NOI’s position.
“We will not accept your vaccine. So you can slow down, because whenever you bring it out, it is for your people. Give it to them, because we are not accepting death. You are the very representative of death itself, the pale horse,” she quoted directly from Min. Farrakhan.
“Everywhere you have gone in the world, hell went right behind you. We are sick of hell, and we are sick of death. So all of you that have made a covenant with death, your covenant is going to be annulled. Your agreement with hell will be broken,” she continued.
Rev. Butts lifted the Black church as a long-term trusted voice for the Black community since their enslavement. He said the Black church is the first line of defense against any crisis that threatens the Black community, including Covid-19.
He has listened carefully to those he’s in the struggle with, from within the community, and looked at all possibilities for healing for the Blacks, said Rev. Butts. He said, he believes in all of the organizations and individuals that have endorsed using the vaccine as a way to fight Covid-19. “We choose to stand behind the vaccine,” he stated.
The vaccine is being introduced to the exclusion of any and all other treatments and therapies, into a historical climate, which is the U.S. policy of depopulation, Min. Ava Muhammad said. “That is the overarching goal and has been for some time, to cull the population of our planet by 2 to 3 billion people,” said Min. Ava Muhammad, who highlighted several other problems with the vaccine.
Dr. McDougle said her remarks helped to better frame his presentation and said the reason the National Medical Association exists is because the American Medical Association refused to let Black doctors join. “Racism is a public health crisis,” he stated.
Mistrust and racism led to the establishment of the National Medical Association Task Force on Covid-19. He echoed news reports about vaccine maker’s warnings that those with severe allergies are not recommended to take the vaccine because some have reported severe reactions.
The Task Force has already met with Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, and were in the process of meeting with AstraZeneca, and based on a review of clinical trial data, it supports the Food and Drug Administration’s emergency use authorization for Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines, he said.
Though there were differing views, the panel agreed on the belief that the U.S. should heed Min. Farrakhan’s call to lift the embargo on Cuba, which has tremendous success in dealing with Covid-19. Cuba’s treatment protocol includes addressing the patient’s comorbidities, which according to the CDC, are related to 96 percent of Covid deaths in the U.S., noted Min. Ava Muhammad.
Mr. Dunston told The Final Call he thinks the dialogue went well, despite time-related glitches, which hindered the opportunity for panelists to give closing remarks. “The information was extremely informative. It was incisive, and it gave and gives all of reasons to pause and think about the degree to which these vaccines can potentially have an adverse impact on our communities,” he added.