MEMPHIS–Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan issued blunt warnings in this Southwestern Tennessee city Oct. 18–commemorating the 14th anniversary of the Million Man March which took place in Washington, DC.
Another Memphis was the ancient capital of the first nome of Lower Egypt, and of the Old Kingdom of Egypt from its foundation until around 2200 BC and later for shorter periods during the New Kingdom, and an administrative centre throughout ancient history.
Washington, DC, the site of the Historic Million Man March and Holy Day of Atonement is the seat of the United States government, and it is designed and constructed, many scholars insist, on an ancient Egyptian axis as well.
Min. Farrakhan’s warning was directed at the U.S. government, the Black community at large, and to Black clergy and other leaders, that conditions today in this country are as bad as they were before the historic march, except that now there is not enough time before a catastrophe that is looming, to stage another march to save Black people and the country.
“The vision of 1985 was the driving force behind the actions that we took, but 14 years later as we meet here in Memphis, Tenn., we are now at the same crossroads again, where now the killings have gone back up. The crime rate that went down after the Million Man March has gone back up.
“When people see our young Black men, they recoil. They’re afraid now because the violence in the inner cities has gotten out of control,” the 76-year-old Nation of Islam leader told more than 7,000 during a two and a half hour address at the Cook Convention Center here. “Now, the killings have increased in all the major cities of America, and leading Black thinkers are now calling for the National Guard.
“Some people say: ‘Farrakhan, you need to have another march.’ No. That’s over. I’ll never go back to Washington like that ever again. In fact, we don’t have time. If you don’t get your act together, you will see blood in the streets and you will fulfill which is written in the scriptures, that there will be blood up to the horse’s bridle.
“Let me say something to you. You elders that have abandoned responsibility to our children; preachers that don’t want youth in the church because they don’t tithe, so we don’t go after them to save them; leaders who lead for the people that give money to their organizations; I want you to hear me, because the chastisement of God has entered America. One calamity after another, as fast as one goes, another one is coming.
“Let me tell you. You think Farrakhan is some nut. You think that my teacher, Elijah Muhammad was some crazy man. But every one of you will have to bear witness before long that God did indeed visit America, and indeed he raised up a Messenger from among us who is the promised Messiah,” Minister Farrakhan said.
Black communities all over the country have become toxic places and they must be cleansed and must restore peace from within, Min. Farrakhan insisted as he reiterated the subject of his remarks: “Accepting Responsibility to Build Our Community.” The toxicity, he said, is filled with self-hatred that results in destructive behavior Black people have toward one another, and will ultimately lead to the destruction of those communities.
Black people in this country must not become satisfied with the election of President Barack Obama–the nation’s first Black president, Min. Farrakhan explained. “This can pacify you and lull you to sleep in a dangerous time, making you think that we live in a post-racial America when the opposite is true.”
Instead, the Muslim leader urged his followers to pray for Pres. Obama and not expect him to solve the problems of the Black community. “You have to understand that he was voted in to take on the affairs of a nation, not yours and mine. He is the American president, not the Black president. We’ve got to marshal our energy and talent to do for ourselves,” he said reiterating the Nation of Islam mantra that has transformed people who were thought to be beyond redemption into a productive force in the society.
Before Min. Farrakhan’s address, several city officials thanked the Nation of Islam for commemorating the 1995 Million Man March in Washington in Memphis and praised the NOI leader. “His message is one that we all need to hear, heed and follow because it’s a message of self-reliance,” said Mayor Pro Tem Myron Lowery.
Former five-term mayor Willie Herenton, now a candidate for the Congressional seat formerly held by Rep. Harold Ford also greeted Min. Farrakhan, a man he said “represents truth and wisdom.”
“We are honored to have him in the great city of Memphis,” Mr. Herenton said. “It was easy for me as a mayor to present a key to the 19th largest city in the country to a man who is worthy, to a man who speaks truth, to a man who possesses wisdom, to a man who is courageous in thought and in action, to an anointed man.” said Mr. Herenton, who was the first elected Black mayor of Memphis.