Today is the anniversary of the death of one of the most influential figures in civil rights history, the bad cop to Martin’s good cop. The world says, Martin was about peace and Malcolm (at least in the beginning) was about a revolution, you know fighting force with force. Anyone who has taken more than a cursory glance into his life knows that was not true. When Malcolm X (El Hajj Malik El-Shabazz) was shot to death at 3:10 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 21, 1965, at the Audubon Ballroom in New York City, the world was forever changed. I mean by that time Malcolm had become a true Muslim more concentrated on his faith, less focus on the politics of the Nation and more about the true teachings of Muhammad. I admire Malcolm for so many reasons. Most of my life the mainstream media painted him as the bad one as the public enemy #1, always in direct contrast to Dr. King. What I would find out later is that was far from true. That whole dichotomy was set up to make Martin the undisputed leader of our people at that time, or at least in the annals of history. See, we always need a leader.
As usual we as blacks never get the opportunity to be individuals we must always choose one voice/man to represent our many ideas. Well its not that we choose a spokesperson, it’s that someone decides this dude (political figure, rapper, sports star, or captain of industry) speaks for all the blacks…his feeling are theirs. I mean someone has to be the spokes person they need someone to lead them. It’s always someone who the mainstream media (both left and right) looks to, to represent our ideas, Martin, Jessie, and even now, we have Barack (for the record he could Barack my world anytime- intelligence is SO SEXY). Anyway off my box. Malcolm you are missed and we can only dream of how the world would have changed if your life was not snuffed out in its prime. Asa lama lakem, my brothers and sisters.
How did you learn about Malcolm ‘Nique? I am glad you asked public. As a product of Goose Creek Independent School District (read backwoods central) there wasn’t much info taught about Malcolm. It was apparent to me at an early age that anything I would learn would be on my own volition. In 7th grade I began choosing some black historical figures to be the subject of my History Fair project. It was my way to get school time to enlighten myself culturally. Those history fairs are how I learned of many noted blacks George Washington Carver, Sjourner Truth, Fredrick Douglass, Medgar Evers, Langston Hughes, Alex Hailey, and countless other blacks including Malcolm. I normally would make a list of interesting black people that had been mentioned in passing or that I saw referenced in other books or magazines. I would do a little research in the library to come up with a project about one of those folks when it was time for the fair. I even won a few ribbons for some of my projects.
I think all kids should do what I did, a kinda self imposed independent study (well it may have to be parent imposed at first). It’s obvious the school can only teach so much. If every kid made a list of the least discussed historical figures and researched what they did and how they impacted the world, the nation would be a much better place. Learning from the ancestors is the best way not repeat the mistakes of history. Hell, I think Adults should do that now. Read a book about a little discussed figure in history. Hell watch history channel sometime. It amazes me at how so many of us don’t know crap but the truth according to someone. Knowledge is power people use it.
I will now return you back to your regularly scheduled TRIFE. This special blog has been brought to you by the letters M and X and the numbers 40 and 65. Hope this blog didn’t suprise you, I mean you know I had to be somewhat deep I am friends with Buschick and DBH.
Keep keeping on!!
YOUR MAIN DAMMIE