african american farmer with digital tablet smiling at camera in greenhouse.

In The Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful.

God has kept feeding us great ones and the enemy worked to destroy all our ancestors, but, they could not destroy The Idea of what “Liberation” really is.  And so, though many have compromised to get along—and we understand it, because everyone is not made to take the pressure to be a real true liberator of the people:  To be a real liberator of that which needs liberation, you have to love them more than you love life itself.  Because the only thing that will deliver a people from the bondage of mental and physical slavery is the presence of truth, and men and women prepared to teach that truth even at the cost of their lives.

I thank Allah to be present in this august body of Black intellectual strength.  I thank Allah that I was blessed this morning to hear the words of Dr. Maulana Karenga.  To my esteemed brother, Dr. Ron Daniels, and all of the wonderful, wonderful people that worked with him to produce this fourth conference of the Institute of the Black World, and the best yet:  He said (to put on this conference) was “over his head.” 

But you were the one to do the job.  And evidently The Creator was very pleased with the idea, so He arranged circumstances because I know there were some “winds” that blew us all up in here together today.  So The Creator helped us all to see the importance of being present in this great city of  Newark, New Jersey, at this time for a cause bigger than all of us who are gathered here today. 

Honorable Elijah Muhammad

‘The Problem and its Origin’: Fixing our current state requires knowledge of our problem within and without

Allah took that which was within, that had been giving us problems intermittently for trillions of years, and gave it form and expression in the making of the White race; that which was within was brought without, and for 6,000 years a world has come up.  I don’t want to upset you, but White people are a part of that which came out of us.  There would be no Brown, no Red, no Yellow, if there were no Black; so if all humanity comes from us, then we have a responsibility, as Dr. Karenga said, to all those that came from us. 

“While we slept they wrecked the world; now, in our awakening, we have to make a new world!”—I’m just borrowing from my brother.  It’s not about just “us,” it’s about all that came from us that are messed up.  Study these words from the Holy Qur’an (Surah 2:30):  “And when thy Lord said to the angels, I am going to place a ruler in the earth, they said: Wilt Thou place in it such as make mischief in it and shed blood?”  

Now, these are the angels talking to The Creator, The God:  They knew that whatever He was going to place in the Earth would be so different in the way they ruled (“I’m going to place a ruler in the earth that is going to create mischief and cause the shedding of blood”).  So when the angels put that to The God, they said, “And we celebrate Thy praise and extol Thy holiness,” in words, “but we don’t like what You are about to do.”  But The God answered them and said:  “Surely I know what you know not.”

No matter what evil comes into your life, at the end of evil there is always a good result—if you don’t get lost in the evil.  So in the Book of Romans, the scripture teaches, “All things work for good for those who love The Lord, and who are called according to His purpose.” (8:28)  So evil is a part of a Purpose of Someone bigger than ourselves!  We didn’t bring this crap in the world.  So elsewhere in Romans (5:12-14), the Bible teaches:  “As by one man”—not a spook—“sin entered into the world; and death came also by sin, so death has passed to all men,” for “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

I know. These are “nationalists”—they don’t read Bible and Qur’an; [to them] that’s “stuff.”  But there is a lot of wisdom in these Books, in that they come from The Original.  We talk about “Moses” and “law,” but before Moses there was Hammurabi.  We are the origin of law.  We are the origin of civilization.  We are the origin of mathematics.  We are the origin of science.  We are the origin of all of this; we are God’s khalifah on Earth. 

What does that mean (“we are God’s khalifah on Earth”)?  The privilege of man is to stand in the place of God.  This is the privilege of man and woman.  Never leave the woman out; she is a part of God.  Every time I see Maulana, I see his queen by his side; he understands the value of women.  As we saw these young Vanguard sisters [exercise military drill]:  See, they are soldiers in the Army of Allah.  In fact about it, all of us who come in The Nation, we are soldiers first. 

I didn’t come in under Brother Malcolm as a “minister,” I came in as a soldier.  If you don’t know how to soldier, if you don’t understand the value of discipline of soldiering, you are not a good “movement” person.  All movement people have to be soldiers in the army of the liberation struggle of our people.  That is why we drill; because those sisters acted at the command of the drill instructor.  … Those of us who fall in:  You fall in, in ranks, submitting to leadership.  That’s our problem:  We don’t know how to submit to leadership.  We all want to lead; the problem is we don’t want to follow.

‘Black Scholarship’: True advancement requires us to no longer settle for White racist educational system

When I came in The Nation, I came in under Brother Malcolm, and I came in under soldiers that taught me how to be a soldier.  I didn’t know anything about “soldiering.”  I was playing music, man, loving everybody; I needed focus.  I needed somebody to focus my talent, and that was Brother Malcolm, student of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad:  Brother Malcolm focused us on The Problem of Black People; that meant we had to read Black scholarship. 

We had to read 100 Amazing Facts About The Negro, From “Superman” to Man—we had to read J.A. Rogers; Fifteen Million Negroes and Fifteen Billion Dollars by William Kenan Bell.  We had to read the works of our scholarly brother from Washington, D.C., the historian Chancellor Williams; we had to read the works of Black scholars like Cheikh Anta Diop and Ivan Van Sertima.  We had to read our illustrious brother, Yosef Ben-Jochannan, and John Henrik Clarke.  When I met Brother Malcolm, he was carrying a briefcase!  I said, “Wow!  What was in that?” And when he opened the briefcase one day, it was just books. 

Malcolm went to the eighth grade of school, college people, but you quote a man that became a master from the eighth grade.  It doesn’t make any difference “how far” you went in school if you meet the right master.  Muhammad Ali only went to the 12th grade.  He met a master … Brother Malcolm had finished the 8th grade.  The teacher asked him, “Malcolm, what would you like to be?” Malcolm said, “I want to be a lawyer.”  She said: “You know, your people would not trust your ability as a lawyer, and my people would never hire you. 

You would make a wonderful carpenter.”  That was going on in Omaha, Nebraska.   I’m growing up in Boston, playing my little violin, and my teacher asked me, “Oh Louis, what would you like to be when you grow up?”  I said, “I want to be a doctor!”  My teacher said:  “Oh Louis, if you became a doctor, my people would certainly not trust your skill, and your own people wouldn’t trust it either.  But you do play the violin beautifully.…” 

For us to want to keep our children in schools rooted in White Supremacy, and wonder why we are brilliant but nonproductive for the good of a whole people:  The school is your enemy.  You have to have a school of your own, with your wisdom as the curriculum of that school; otherwise, to hell with the White man’s school. 

Education is what we need, but it must be the proper education; it must be the education that qualifies us for what Maulana Karenga said, “self-determination.”  It must be an education that makes us fall in love with our self, and fall in love with one another; it must be an education that makes us see “unity” as a paramount goal.

White folk don’t teach our children that.  And why would we turn over the brilliant babies that are coming from the womb of our women to The Enemy, for him to poison their minds and stifle their development?

What we want is scholarship that we can bow to.  Not individuals that we can bow to, but the scholarship in individuals.  That’s what makes Dr. Karenga and Dr. Daniels and Dr. Jeffries persons that have a following: It’s not that we’re following flesh or following blood, we are following knowledge and we are following guidance that has made us better than when we first met them.  We are made better by meeting scholars.

It was a “wind” that blew us here. …  “What ‘wind’ is that, Farrakhan?”  Hillary thought for sure that she was going to be our next president.  Many of us were torn over the idea of saying “Madam President” for the first time in American history.  But as Donald Trump said when they were debating, and he looked at Hillary:  “Wrong … Wrong!”  It was not the best choice for us, so God helped to sweep a man that they never thought would come out of the woodwork. 

I said this in my analysis of the two:  “Don’t pay attention to polls, because White folk are going to come out of the woodwork.”  Yes, I saw it, and some of us saw it.  Because the White people that have been marginalized in our movement for “equality”:  Our movement for equality had to disaffect some White folk.  When one goes up, somebody goes down.  That’s a natural law.  We don’t go up together.  White folk put us down so, if we’re going up, some White folk are going down. 

And the more we go up, the more they go down, because their level of knowledge has produced problems that their knowledge is unable to solve.  But Dr. Karenga, when he spoke: In his words to us you could see The Solution to world problems.  It’s our time. …  Not only to heal ourselves, but to heal a world that’s crying out for deliverance from that one that The God said, “I’m going to place a ruler in the Earth.”  And for 6,000 years, mischief and bloodshed have been the order of the day under Caucasian rule.  Can you deny that?

Couple holding blueprints on construction site. Horizontally framed shot.

‘Practice that defines principle’: A valley of dry bones in need of a common purpose

Why are we here?  We have great conferences. …  Sometimes conferences are intellectual masturbation.  I’m sorry, to put it in a vulgar term, but my brother spoke so eloquently about “hearing” and about “doing”—it’s the practice that defines the principle.  If there is no practice, the principle lays there, waiting for somebody to take it and practice it to bring about the results of what that man, Dr. Karenga, was teaching us this morning. 

That’s what gives you “power”: You don’t have power by reciting; you have power by practicing what you recite until you don’t have to recite it anymore, that it’s in living flesh and color for you to see.  I’m going to go to the scripture in the Book of Ezekiel, Chapter 37:  There were some bones in a valley (they’re called “dry bones”), and God sent a Son of Man into the valley to talk to the bones—and the bones were talking to each other.  And look at how the bones were talking (verse 11): “Our bones are dry, our hope is lost/we are cut off from each other.”  Translate that into modern parlance: “Ni–as ain’t never gonna unite. All our great leaders have come and tried; our hope is lost.” 

When your hope is lost, what do you do?  You say, “See, I’m tired of the struggle.”  What Dr. Karenga said to us: He was trying to quicken us again to The Struggle.  Why would he have to quicken us to a struggle that some of us were in during the 1960s, but we are not struggling anymore; we are just “trying to survive” now.  …  When you feel old, and tired, and somewhat abused and misused, you settle and when you settle, and you call it “retirement fever.” You begin to think: “You know, I’ve given it the best I could.  These ni–as don’t like it, you know what I mean?” 

Young african american woman smiling happy working at the till at retail shop

I know so many Black people who live their life for us….  My dear mother, Rosa Parks:  Some young Black person broke into her house and slapped her down.  How could we allow our youth not to know those who made it possible for them?  How could there be a movie called Barbershop, and in the movie Dr. King is mocked; a man that gave his life for us?

And the enemy never taught you the evolutionary development of that man’s thinking; so, if you don’t know the “Martin Luther King, Jr.” that was assassinated in ’68—if you don’t know the man and what he preached at the temple there in Memphis, Tennessee, the night before he was assassinated.  If you’re not familiar with him, and the things he was saying as he was exiting the world … if you don’t know the words of Brother Malcolm as he was exiting the world, if we don’t know the thoughts of Marcus Garvey, the thoughts of Noble Drew Ali, the thoughts of Booker T.

Washington:  Everybody in our struggle was evolving from where they were; and when they passed from this Earth, they had words to speak to us, because they learned lessons before they died that they wanted to pass on to the next generation.  But we are not clever enough to write our own history, so the White folk come in, and they write the history of our struggle.  And if the idea in it threatens the idea of “White Supremacy,” they twist it, they turn it.  They are the historians, because we don’t trust our own people to tell our story. 

Paul Robeson was a giant.  When they told me I had to speak on Paul Robeson (Rutgers University, November 19, 2016 by Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity), they were trying to “organize me”—because they were so frightened of what I might say:  “So you talk on Paul Robeson!”  I said (with glee), “Oh, thank you!”  Because Paul Robeson was our “Moses” before there was a Moses; Paul Robeson was our “Jesus” before we knew a real Black Jesus:  Paul Robeson was all of the prophets in one!  He was like David:  A scholar!  A physical giant!  A superlative football player; the valedictorian of his racist class … . He went on to get a law degree, and then went on to be an activist; he studied, in the Soviet Union, “scientific socialism.”  … Paul Robeson risked it all. 

A great voice, a great cultural giant, a great scholar, a great activist—with not a lot of people behind him, except the kind that say (from a far off, “safe” distance):  “Go on, brother, we’re with you!”  …  We all sing the song in church, “Were you there when they crucified my Lord?”  Yes, we’re always there: They have never crucified one of our leaders outside of our sight.  We are always looking, we are always listening, and we are always frightened.  “Look at what they did to Dr. King: I ain’t goin’ down that road!”  Or, “Look at what they did to Paul Robeson: I ain’t riskin’ my talent and my money for them Negroes!” 

When my brother passed away, his hope in us was a little extinguished.  He should have been buoyed up; he should have been held up . …  We have profited from all our ancestors.  So when you make what is called “libation”:   we must always remember the ancestors, and we must always teach our children the struggle of those that went before us. 

Cute pupil writing at desk in classroom at the elementary school. Student girl doing test in primary school. Children writing notes in classroom. African schoolgirl writing during the lesson.

How can you do it in the White man’s system of education, especially for our young people?  At the college level we can do it, but in grammar school, from pre-school and kindergarten, our children should know the great ones; that when their name is mentioned, immediately we stand to attention. 

The duty of Black scholars, politicians to choose mass elevation over self-elevation

A lot of the sisters that helped me with the Million Man March and all of our great activities when we came to The Mall in Washington, they were deeply committed to Hillary.  I’m not going to fall out with you because you vote for her.  I’m not going to fall out with you.  I am in love with you:  I don’t care what idea or philosophy that you have, you are my family.  I respect your intelligence, but I challenge it when it’s purely for yourself; that you would vote for self-elevation rather than what is in the best interest for the majority of our people?

The Honorable Elijah Muhammad said “it doesn’t make any difference” whether it’s Hillary or Trump, or any other White person; he said, “they are all the same.”  Study these words he wrote in his book The Fall of America, Chapter 8 (“The National Election”):  “The Black man of America has been privileged by the slave master’s children for the last century to vote for Whites for the offices to judge and rule.  This freedom to vote has made the Black man in America feel very dignified and proud of himself. 

He goes to the polls very happy to vote for a White ruler.”  This is my Teacher talking … that’s why I lift my Teacher.  And those of you who are students of great ones:  You don’t worship none of your teachers, for none of us are worthy of worship; but, acknowledging our teachers that help shape us is gratitude.  If you are grateful for what someone has done for you, don’t try to hide it like it came from you. 

You know, like Melania Trump:  She became Michelle Obama for a moment in time, and was bold and brazen, too.  That’s the way White folk are:  They take the words of God, and twist them.  Can’t you see that there is a state of their mind that’s crooked like a snake?  That even if the water you pour is straight, it takes the form of the vessel into which you poured it. 

They are crooked, they are like snakes.  They can’t report truth correctly; they add one word, take one away, and then you’ll say, “Oh! They quoted Farrakhan…,” or “they quoted Malcolm,” “they quoted Dr. King.”  And understand, brothers and sisters, that if they quote you right, they’ve got a purpose; the purpose will reflect the twist of their thinking if they don’t twist your words.  You’re dealing with a ruler that makes mischief and causes the shedding of blood.

Let’s go back to Elijah.  He said:  “The Black man today is gradually changing to a desire to vote for his own kind for such offices of authority.  We must remember that our vote is strong and powerful only when and where the White man can use it to get in the office over his White opponent.  After the election and the victory there are very few favors that come from his office to the Black voters who helped and aided him in getting in the office. 

Why?  Because he does not owe the Black voter anything as long as he has to feed, clothe and shelter us.  The Black vote could be cast or not cast, the White citizens of the government are going to win and continue to rule anyway.”  So why do I want to vote for continued rule by my oppressor?  We have to vote for freedom from the oppressor!  What’s the theme of this conference?  “It’s Nation Time!”… 

The Honorable Elijah Muhammad said, “As much talk of this man or that man,” or woman, “who shall the vote of the people put in the White House for the next four years,” he then raises a question:  “How much good have the two parties (Republican and Democrat) done for us for the last century in the way of freedom, justice, equality and real power?  Regardless of what party wins, the die is always set against us, the Black man or woman in America.”   

This is the part I want us to think about; he said: “Injustice, crooked politics, and the breeding of corruption under crooked politics have been practiced ever since Adam to the present day rulers. Adam was the first crook.  There has not been justice for the Black man in this race of people, and this is why [their] race suffers from the effect of chaos today.”  

The White man’s own evil has brought him to a place of utter confusion.  So when the leaders are confused, why would you be in that party?  And when I say “that party,” I mean you want them to lead you, but they are confused:  They don’t know what (“party”) they are today, and what they were yesterday.  They’re trying to figure it all out.  Let them be.  We are rising!  They are falling.

He said:  “There are Black politicians who would like to use their Black people for selfish greed and will throw them behind any crook with money.  Black politicians of this type have sold their Black brothers to suffering and shame for self-elevation with the crook.” 

As a politician:  Do you want self-elevation?  Or do you want elevation for the masses of our people?  That’s what caused Paul Robeson to suffer.  That’s what caused Harry Belafonte to suffer.  Harry loves Paul Robeson; Paul Robeson was his mentor.  Belafonte, gifted, talented:  He sacrificed his talent, and the wealth that came from his talent, to help Dr. King and the movement. 

That’s what people of culture do:  They use their skill and their wisdom to finance a movement for the mass of the people.  Now on our level, as intellectuals and scholars:  What are you willing to sacrifice to see the elevation not of yourself, but of the mass of our people?  It’s going to take sacrifice; and there will be pain, and there will be suffering. … Are you willing to endure it for the elevation of the masses of our people?

I have said, “Mr. Trump is peeling back the skin of the ‘onion’ of civility.”  The moment he was elected, according to what I’ve heard on the news, there were 700 hate crimes committed against people of color, the Black, the Brown; the Muslims.  And now, you know, White people are just angry (“N—a! Shoot the n—a!”; police, “Kill that n—a!”)—they don’t care now.  The skin of civility is gone. 

Our Native brothers and sisters at Standing Rock, they have the right answer: To protest what the enemy is doing.  But how are they treated?  They don’t care for you.  They don’t care for us.  Our Mexican family:  They don’t care for you.  Our Muslim family:  They don’t care for us.  Michael Jackson finally got it, and he wrote a song, They Don’t Really Care About Us:  “Do me/Jew me, Like me/Kike me”…  What?  Those fellas got that music, took it off the shelves, and Michael had to redo it.  Because Jewish people don’t want any critique of them.

Most of us who achieve, we owe a debt to members of the Jewish community; none of us have become millionaires or billionaires without some help, mainly from the Jewish community (although there are some White Anglo-Saxon philanthropists).  However, it was mainly members of the Jewish community:  They financed the NAACP (but then have the power to dictate): “So be careful!  Don’t be too revolutionary—we’ll pull your funding.” 

The Urban League:  A great institution.  But be careful, because you know you’re not getting any money from your people.  Institute of the Black World:  It takes people from the Black world to support that institute! 

‘Come out of her, My People,’  It’s Nation Time:  All signs point to our time of deliverance

Donald Trump is a “wind” blowing on “the bones.”  The bones have never come together because of words; that’s evident.  Brothers and sisters, you have never heard such a brilliant lecture in the few moments that Dr. Karenga had with us today—you don’t hear lectures like that.  But here are Bill Clinton, and Hillary:  They might get $1 million for a speech and you know they didn’t say anything like that.  One day I would just like to take us through the ruin of America by the Synagogue of Satan, and why it is necessary that we build a brand new reality; not subject ourselves to theirs, but as the scripture says:  “Come out of her, My people.”

Are you slow in coming out?  Every woman who has suffered through childbirth can bear witness:  Isn’t it interesting how the body is formed inside, and it’s drawing from the host through the umbilical cord; that whatever the host eats, the baby draws it into itself, to build independent organs that one day will function on their own?  Function on their own. …  Soon, and very soon, the water will break and there will be a show of blood, and there will be the turning of the feet that are where the head should be.  

That’s what our problem is: We’ve been led by feet in the absence of thinkers—the head.  Most of our leaders are not deep thinkers.  “The populist leaders”: They are not deep thinkers; they have the right words—that they steal to sound “Black” when they are trying to be a populist leader.  “What did, what did Elijah say?  What did Malcolm say?  Let’s fix it. …”

Donald Trump is a “wind.”  As I listened to the news regarding his cabinet, the men that he has formed around him, White nationalists, I said, “Oh look at that: White people who love White people.”  “White power!”  They’re talking about “White Power” because you’ve been kicking their behind in this civil rights movement.  You pulled down their Confederate Flag.  Listen to you.  

“Yes, it was 60 years ago, but that bum put a bomb in the Birmingham church.  Get him!”—and you forced White folk.  They had to do something, so they got an old man, and he was guilty, and didn’t you feel good?  But you’re thinking, “White folk look like they’re going to do justice by us.”  You’re just getting bamboozled again, like Brother Malcolm said; “hoodwinked.” 

If you’re thinking, “We’re going to reform the Justice Department!”  No.  That has to be completely destroyed, and a new department of justice set up.  It’s got to be set up by those who know what “justice” is, and are unafraid to give justice to all who seek justice, no matter what their creed, their class or their color.  Every human being deserves justice, but it takes a special heart …  and you’ve got that heart, brothers and sisters:  You are the people that can bring in a brand new world. 

I looked at the Trump Cabinet, and I reflected on a song (by rap group Salt-n-Pepa) Push It:  “Push It Real Good!”  (Smile.)  “PUSH IT REAL GOOD,” see, because now they’ve got their boys up in there, and they’re going to push it:  they’re going to push you out.  Listen to me good:  You are not going to come out on your own.  You don’t want to leave the White man because of the money that you’ve got in your pocket and the influence that you’ve got in their society.  But you have to come out of this thing … It’s Nation Time!

This saying—“It’s Nation Time!”—is not a “Muslim” thing.  It’s a human thing; “religion” doesn’t say that.  Please study what the Honorable Elijah Muhammad declares on the inside back page of The Final Call newspaper (and formerly, on the back page of Muhammad Speaks) in The Muslim Program under “What the Muslims Want.”  Point No. 1:  “We want freedom.  We want a full and complete freedom.”   Isn’t that what you want?  Isn’t that what our Mexican family wants?

 Isn’t that what our Native American family wants?  Isn’t that what Africa, and Central and South America, and the Caribbean want?  It’s a human right:  it doesn’t have any color!  Then read what “We Want” in what follows – Point No. 2: “We want justice. Equal justice under the law. We want justice applied equally to all, regardless of creed or class or color”; and Point No. 3: “We want equality of opportunity.  We want equal membership in society with the best in civilized society.”    

Can you get it under the “stars and stripes”?  You’ve been marching; we’ve been singing, we’ve been shouting, we’ve been kneeling in, we’ve been praying in—begging in.  Do you have it yet?  No.  Then if they are incapable of giving it to us under that flag, then we’ve got to give it to ourselves under our own flag.