From The Final Call Newspaper

Mayhem in America? Serial pipe bombings, shootings cause fear, anger and uncertainty in a divided and troubled nation

By Richard B. Muhammad and Bryan Crawford

After a nearly weeklong scare that saw a number of explosive devices addressed and mailed to prominent members of the Democratic Party and the media, a person allegedly connected to sending the bombs through the mail was arrested in South Florida.

Next came the killing of at least 11 people when a middle-aged White man entered a Jewish synagogue in Pennsylvania and slaughtered people.

In between, these two horrors was the slaughter of a Black man and a Black woman in Kentucky, allegedly by Gregory Bush, a 51-year-old White man. Ed Harrell was quoted by the Courier Journal of Louisville as saying he was waiting on his wife in the parking lot when he heard gunshots and grabbed his revolver. As he crouched down, he said he saw the gunman walk “nonchalantly” by with a gun by his side. Mr. Harrell said he called out to ask what was going on, and the gunman replied: “Don’t shoot me. I won’t shoot you. Whites don’t shoot Whites.”

“As Federal officials continue to work with local and state law enforcement in the wake of this week’s senseless Kroger murders, I believe they can and should take into account the racist words and actions of the man behind this gruesome act and call it what it was: a hate crime,” tweeted U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, a Democrat, after the Oct. 24 shooting. Maurice Stallard, 69, and Vickie Lee Jones, 67, were shot to death at the grocery store and the suspect tried to enter a Black church before fatally shooting the elderly Blacks, police said. The suspect reportedly had a history of mental illness and should not have been legally able to own a handgun.

Law enforcement are positioned outside the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Oct. 28. Robert Bowers, the suspect in the mass shooting at the synagogue, expressed hatred of Jews during the rampage and told offi cers afterward that Jews were committing genocide and he wanted them all to die, according to charging documents made public. Photos: AP

“Court records also show that Bush was accused of calling his ex-wife, who is black, ‘(N-word) bitch,’ ” reported the Courier-Journal newspaper in Louisville. “He is also a fan of Donald J. Trump, Blue Lives Matter, and various conservative pages, per his Facebook likes,” according to Mr. Bush was arraigned Oct. 25 on two counts of murder and ten counts of wanton endangerment. He is being held on $5 million bail.

Cesar Sayoc, a 56-year-old man who racially identifies as White, was detained in Plantation, Fla., and accused of sending at least 15 explosive devices through the U.S. Postal Service after they were all traced back to a sorting facility in Opa-locka, Fla. According to records, Mr. Sayoc was criminally convicted of felony drug, theft and fraud charges, and was once accused of threatening to use a bomb. Mr. Sayoc, a registered Republican, has owned several businesses and worked as a pizza deliveryman. His van, which was plastered on the outside with pro-Trump and anti-Democratic Party paraphernalia, was confiscated by federal investigators. The bombs themselves, described as crudely made, were sent to former president Barack Obama, former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, former Vice President Joe Biden, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former CIA director John Brennan, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Senator Corey Booker, Senator Kamala Harris, former first lady and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, liberal billionaire George Soros, actor Robert DeNiro and CNN. All have criticized Donald Trump and been verbally attacked by him at one point or another. The devices themselves were primarily intercepted in California, New York, Florida, Delaware and Washington, D.C., sometimes before arriving at their intended destinations. They all had a return address in the name of Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who was also sent a package.

Robert Bowers, who officials said traded gunfire with Pittsburgh police, was charged late Oct. 27 with 29 federal counts, including hate crimes and weapons offenses.

Authorities said he spoke of killing Jews during the attacks and posted anti-Semitic slurs and rhetoric on social media before barging into a Pittsburgh synagogue on Oct. 27, the Jewish Sabbath, killing 11 people in the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history.

He is 46-years-old. If convicted on the charges, he could face the death penalty. He has been charged with some hate crimes under federal law. There is also the possibility that he could face domestic terror charges.

Police are standing watch near a building associated with Robert DeNiro, Oct. 25, in New York after reports of a suspicious package.

The 20-minute attack at Tree of Life Congregation in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood left six others wounded, including four police officers who dashed to the scene, authorities said. Gab confirmed Mr. Bowers had a profile on its website, which is popular with far-right extremists. Before the shooting, the poster believed to be Mr. Bowers also wrote that “HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I’m going in.”

HIAS is a nonprofit group that helps refugees around the world find safety and freedom. The organization says it is guided by Jewish values and history.

The synagogue killings reverberated in the city, in the country and around the world. One Jewish analyst called the attacks, not just anti-Jewish, but anti-immigrant. The shooter’s views against immigrants were fed by the rhetoric of the president and other Republicans, she said. And, she added, anti-Semitic charges and troupes have followed the president, who remains a favorite of alt-right groups and nationalists who see him as one of them, she said. The president’s attacks on George Soros and “globalists” is a veiled reference to Jews, she argued.

Where is America headed?

And the events prompted a question: Has this country, with a long history of racial animus and red hot political tension, taken another dangerous step toward a breaking point?

With Donald Trump’s rise has been an increase in open White nationalist and racist sentiment that has widened an already wide racial and political divide in America. After eight years of a Black man sitting as Commander in Chief of this nation, many Whites felt as if they’d not only lost their social status, but that this country was fast losing its identity as a “White nation.”

The alleged bomber, who was Filipino and Italian, and the alleged mass murderer were either pro-Trump in their public expressions or supported some of the president’s policies.

Analysts condemned the president, not for the acts, but for using perhaps the greatest political megaphone in the world to divide, to target people. They fear bitter fruits of such activity is coming to harvest.

One analyst argued Mr. Trump’s “job” as president, which should be to unite the country especially in times of crisis, clashes with his brand and role as a polarizing and confrontational figure that undergirds his success.

Others acknowledged Mr. Trump was setting a dangerous frame but warned deeply rooted racism and hatred in America must be constantly fought.

“This is in the DNA of America,” said Nina Turner, an analyst on a CNN Sunday show hosted by Jake Tapper. “I’m surprised that people are surprised,” said the political progressive and former leader in Bernie Sanders’ campaign for the presidency on Oct. 28.

“What is happening is that what is in our root as a country is bubbling up now and that’s why people are surprised. Every generation we have to be fighting eradicate racism and bigotry,” added the Black former Ohio legislator. “What is in this man’s heart, i.e., the president, comes out time and time again when he doesn’t have a script in front of him—and that is what we are dealing with. We are in a moment of transcendence in this country, and either we can continue to work to create a more perfect union, which we have to do every generation, or we can regress. And, I see regression.”

Too many politicians, from both parties, are doing anything to win and that needs to stop, Ms. Turner added.

During the program Mr. Tapper attempted to inject the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan into the discussion, mischaracterizing a statement by the Minister made in mid-October in Detroit and trying to equate the Minister with noted racist David Duke, the former KKK leader who won political office as a Republican and whose pro-death penalty and anti-welfare positions were within mainstream GOP orthodoxy at the time.

Mr. Tapper and panelist Jonathan Weissman, an author and researcher, also called for condemnation of the Minister from the political Left. Mr. Weissman cited Min. Farrakhan’s presence at the funeral for singer Aretha Franklin on stage with former President Clinton as an affront and unacceptable.

Bigotry should not be tolerated, responded Ms. Turner. “But in terms of Aretha Franklin’s funeral, I don’t know who’s on the invitation list. Somebody being at Aretha Franklin’s funeral is not the equivalent of, at all, about what’s going on here,” she added. Pausing, she continued, “This is making me feel some kind of way. I will say this … Because we continue to see these things through Left and Right, let’s just see it through the lens of humanity. What we do have to do is stop seeing everything through the lens of whether you are Republican or Democrat and see it through the lens of what kind of country do we want to be? What kind of people do we want to be?”

Mr. Tapper, the ADL’s Jonathan Greenblatt and others have widely and falsely accused the Minister of calling Jews termites. But he made no such statement connecting the two. “Now White folk don’t like Farrakhan, some of them respect me. But those who have been our Deceivers, they can’t stand me. I’m not mad with you. In fact, you members of the Jewish Community that don’t like me: Thank you very much for putting my name all over the planet. Because of your fear of what we represent, I can go anywhere in the world and they’ve heard of Farrakhan. Thank you very much,” said the Minister during an Oct. 14 address at Aretha Franklin Park in Detroit.

“I’m not mad at you. My teacher Elijah Muhammad taught me one day: There once was a donkey that fell in a ditch and everybody came along picked up a stone and threw it at the donkey. They threw so many stones that the ditch got filled up and the donkey walked up. So my teacher said, ‘brother remember every knock is a boost.’ When they talk about Farrakhan, call me a hater, call me an anti-Semite; stop it I’m anti-termite,” Min. Farrakhan said, in an edited transcript published in The Final Call newspaper and available at

“I don’t know anything about hating anyone because of their religious preference. But just like they called our ancestors in the 1930s ‘voodoo people,’ they figure ‘anti-Semite’ would be a good thing to put on us. Farrakhan hates Jews. Stop it,” he said.

“You cannot find one Jew that one who follows me has plucked one hair from his head. You haven’t found us defiling a synagogue. Our Qur’an teaches us if we see something like that stop it. They call me anti-Semitic. No, you are anti-Black. Now I’m talking to the anti-Black White folk. Why do you lay around Black people like the 10 Percent in our Lessons? You know we’re a talented people so you lay right around us, ‘I’ll be your manager.’ … How did they get to own everything that we have created? It’s because they’re Master Deceivers and they hate the fact that we are strong enough to say it. Now when a liar has gotten ahold of you, the liar is afraid of anybody who knows the truth and will tell it. So, they don’t want you near Farrakhan.”

Growing White anger and White angst?

In addition to cultural and demographic changes in the United States, economic insecurity in different parts of the country, and an opioid crisis, studies say White deaths are outpacing their live births and White people would be a minority in America in a little more than 20 years.

Donald Trump’s dog whistle and often direct racist rhetoric has struck a chord with many. His inflammatory words aimed at the Democratic Party and the media has helped inflame and perhaps radicalize those who share the president’s thoughts and views, say critics.

There are questions and concerns about whether the current poisoned, no-compromise political climate could inspire a new wave of domestic terrorists and vigilantes, similar to former U.S. serviceman and Oklahoma City federal building bomber Timothy McVeigh, to rise up and take violent matters into their own hands.

“A globalist is a person that wants the globe to do well, frankly, not caring about our country so much. And you know what? We can’t have that,” President Trump said during an Oct. 22 rally in Houston, Texas, while stumping for Ted Cruz. “You know, they have a word—it’s sort of became old-fashioned—it’s called a nationalist. And I say, really, we’re not supposed to use that word? You know what I am? I’m a nationalist, okay? I’m a nationalist. Nationalist. Nothing wrong. Use that word. Use that word.”

On Oct. 23, when asked in the Oval Office by the media if he was at all concerned at the suggestion that his comment was a coded message, or dog whistle, to a select group of Americans who identify as White nationalists, Mr. Trump denied that he’d ever heard that his comment could be tied to White nationalism and then doubled down on his statement, saying, “I’m a nationalist and I’m proud of it.” The Trump administration has long been accused of embracing White nationalist ideology and garnering support from groups such as the alt-Right, Neo-Nazis and even the KKK after Mr. Trump initially refused to renounce the support of former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke.

Has the election of Donald Trump brought the nation to a racial and political crossroads in America? With five of those bombs being addressed to prominent Black political figures associated with the Democratic Party, and voter suppression tactics being aggressively employed in the run up to midterms, many are worried about the current political climate.

“Black America has long been exposed to the domestic terrorism of White supremacy,” Dr. Benjamin Chavis, president and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association, told The Final Call. Dr. Chavis revealed that the national office of the NNPA had received threats from right-wing groups after presenting its 2018 National Leadership Award to Rep. Waters in September.

“The recent resurgence of repressive tactics and actions to keep our families and communities in a state of fear will not be tolerated,” Dr. Chavis added, while also saying, “The Black Press will not be intimidated. America will not be free of its past until Black America and others attain freedom, justice and equality.”

Faith in Action executive director, Alvin Herring, agreed with the sentiments uttered by Dr. Chavis. “The terroristic packages come during a time of heightened anti-immigrant and anti-media rhetoric. Politicians have created a climate of fear of the ‘other’ and that fear has been stoked by those who choose the path of hate rather than love, acceptance and reconciliation,” Mr. Herring said in a statement. “No one in this country should be targeted because of their political affiliation, their religious affiliation, their gender or sexual identity or the color of their skin.”

Political commentator David Gergan added, “Donald Trump unleashed the dogs of hatred in this country from the day he declared he was running for president. And they’ve been snarling and barking at each other ever since. It’s just inevitable there are going to be acts of violence that grow out of that.”

Steve Schmidt, a former campaign strategist for the late Republican Senator John McCain, said he renounced the party after it aligned with Mr. Trump. The president’s repeated fearmongering and calls for violence from the highest office in the land, has created fertile ground for radical sentiments to flourish, he said.

“The stoking of hatred and sundering of the American people was always going to lead to terrible consequences. Chief amongst them would be the initiation of partisan or sectarian violence within our country,” Mr. Schmidt wrote in a series of tweets. “The targets are political, not coincidental. Trump, the greatest demagogue in American history, has celebrated violence over and over again. It looks like someone finally took Trump both literally and seriously. The White House will feign outrage when this obvious point is made.”

Prophetically enough, that’s exactly what happened. Not long after Mr. Trump called for Americans to, “come together and send one very clear, strong, unmistakable message that acts or threats of political violence of any kind have no place in the United States of America,” he bristled at the notion that he was in any way responsible for radicalizing anyone and encouraging them to commit acts of violence against political opponents and critics. Instead of embracing some measure of accountability, he deflected and blamed the media.

“A very big part of the anger we see today in our society is caused by the purposely false and inaccurate reporting of the mainstream media that I refer to as Fake News,” he tweeted on Oct. 25. “It has gotten so bad and hateful that it is beyond description. Mainstream Media must clean up its act, FAST!”

Mr. Trump, followed up with another tweet continuing to blame the media, saying, “Funny how lowly rated CNN, and others, can criticize me at will, even blaming me for the current spate of bombs and ridiculously comparing this to September 11th and the Oklahoma City bombing. Yet when I criticize them, they go wild and scream, ‘It’s just not Presidential!’ ”

A divine warning for an errant nation

With the midterm elections just weeks away, and in the aftermath of these attempted mail bombings, many people will flock to the polls and cast their ballots in a racially and politically charged climate that seems to have created an irreversible chasm between Black and White—and White versus White.

A coming clash and breakdown in American society is one of the major warnings found in the Teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and the analysis and words of caution spoken by Minister Farrakhan. In numerous messages and in his book, “A Torchlight for America,” Minister Farrakhan has repeated warnings that America must engage in a deep and abiding change if she hopes to survive. “Without an advocate for the poor, without a new state of mind in America, the country lies on the brink of anarchy. Anarchy is the complete absence of government. It’s a condition of political disorder, violence and lawlessness in the society. We saw signs of it in Los Angeles after the Rodney King verdict,” he wrote. “Anarchy may await America, due to the daily injustices suffered by the people. There really can be no peace without justice. There can be no justice without truth. And there can be no truth, unless someone rises up to tell you the truth.” Min. Farrakhan has also warned that Mr. Trump has pulled back the layers of civility White America has used to cover her deep, deep divisions and ugliness.

He also warned the country is headed down a destructive path and has earned the chastisement of God for evil done to the Black once-slaves of this nation and their descendants and the Native Americans. If America wants to escape the judgement of God, she must do things she has never done in her history and engage in an unheard of level of atonement, reconciliation and responsibility.

“We were on the cusp of the great war of Armageddon before Trump was voted into office. The war of Armageddon, which is the war between good and evil, the war between God and Satan, that’s the war between Black and White. The falsity of the American lie of integration and brotherhood, that’s always been a charade, and time is forcing it to be exposed,” commented Dr. Wesley Muhammad, a Nation of Islam student minister and author. He holds a Ph.D. in Islamic Studies.

While Dr. Muhammad pointed out rising racial animus, not only with the mail bombs, but also the shooting deaths of the Black man and woman by a White man in Kentucky.

Racial clashes and violence have risen in the country with high profile events. The violence of the White right wing, which resulted in the death of a young White woman during protests in Charlottesville, Va., last year, is being countered by anarchist and left-leaning groups like Antifa, which are determined to confront racist groups and go toe-to-toe with them.

“White America is a very amoral culture, despite the eloquent clich├ęs and talking points we hear consistently,” Dr. Muhammad said. “Remember, the scripture describes us, the Black man and Woman in America, as being born in sin and shaped in iniquity. That is talking about the sin and iniquity of America.”

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

From The Final Call Newspaper

Defending Min. Farrakhan and fighting the oppressor’s false charges

By Charlene Muhammad @sischarlene National Correspondent

(l) Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO and National Director, at the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) National Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C. on May 6. (r) Alan Dershowitz promoting his newest book, "The Case Against Impeaching Trump," at the Barnes & Noble in Union Square in New York City on July 11. Photos: AP

The Zionist Jews and their imps are at it again on social media and mainstream news with relentless, unfounded attacks against the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam.

During his Holy Day of Atonement message delivered Oct. 14 at the Aretha Franklin Amphitheater, the beloved Muslim and world leader confronted head-on those Whites and Jews who hate him and have deceived Blacks.

“So when they talk about Farrakhan, call me a hater. You know what they do … call me an anti-Semite; stop it! I’m anti-termite,” said Minister Farrakhan.

His haters came out on social media, but those who defend Farrakhan responded as well, saying the attacks, lies, and disrespect of this man with a pristine, in fact, divine character will not be tolerated.

“I think that’s what the attacks are for is to isolate him. The thing that always has puzzled me is those Jewish organizations that attack him, and I refer to Zionist organizations specifically, why aren’t they attacking the people that marched in Charlottesville?” asked Professor Ray Winbush of Morgan State University.

He was referring to the violent August 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

“There seems to be almost a silence on the part of Jewish organizations about the clear hatred that these people have done with their primary leader, a dead Adolf Hitler, who clearly killed them,” Prof. Winbush told The Final Call. “Minister Farrakhan hasn’t done anything to Jewish people! There are several Jewish people and organizations in Chicago and elsewhere that support him! It seems that the people that these organizations need to be most concerned about are the ones who have a history of killing innocent Jewish people.”

A major Twitter attack came from Chelsea Clinton, daughter of former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. She tweeted a clip of Minister Farrakhan’s address to her 2.38 million Twitter followers, saying it was wrong, dangerous and anti-Semitic.

Minister Farrakhan’s supporters say most Blacks aren’t fazed by the attacks and they haven’t diminished his support. And, they add, the Minister never called Jews termites.

According to Jesse Muhammad, social media director for Minister Farrakhan, not a day goes by when he is not attacked online, because the enemy wants the Minister banned from social media. But there are also daily efforts to defend Min. Farrakhan and spread his message of truth.

Rep. Al Green’s (D-Texas) comments and others on Twitter regarding Min. Farrakhan were met with swift responses from members of the Nation of Islam and supporters of Min. Farrakhan.

Twitter has not replaced his verified blue check since removing it back in May, however, Jesse Muhammad stated, “Minister Farrakhan was verified long before social media came into existence, and, in their so-called purge, they took down tens of thousands of his followers, but interestingly, leading up to the Day of Atonement, Minister Farrakhan’s Twitter followers started skyrocketing at a very unusual pace.”

Among the latest attackers are groups like Christians United for Israel and others from various parts of the country and world—even from as far as Israel, according to Jesse Muhammad.

When those who defend Min. Farrakhan respond with intelligence, truth, actual facts and dignity, the enemy responds with curse words and even death threats, he noted.

“This is evident that the Minister must have sprayed some form of termite repellant that stirred up those that have practiced and continue to practice Talmudic ways by eating at the foundation and the carcass of a dead people chosen by God,” continued Jesse Muhammad.

Minister Farrakhan stated in Detroit, “I don’t know nothing about hating somebody because of their religious preference, but just like they called our ancestors in the ’30s ‘voodoo people,’ they figure ‘anti-Semite’ would be a good thing to put on us. Farrakhan hates Jews. … Stop it!”

Jewish people cannot produce any Jew that my followers have harmed in 40 years, added Minister Farrakhan. “You haven’t found us defiling a synagogue. Our Qur’an teaches us if we see something like that stop it,” he said.

Ants, pointed out Nation of Islam Student Minister Nuri Muhammad, are black, brown, and red and they get along, but there’s also a white ant, which is called the termite. “The termite is the kind of ant that’s white or pale in color, that is like a termite, always behind the scenes, behind the structure, eroding away at the wood that supports the structure,” he stated.

“When the Minister said he’s anti-termite, he’s anti-any group of people that will gather their unity together to be behind the movements, behind our organizations, behind our fight for justice and be eroding the very structure that supports these movements. That has been the legacy of the Jews with the NAACP and the Urban League as they stated as part of their objective, we want to make sure that if we fund you that you become a non-economic, liberal organization, which is what they’ve become,” he said.

Congressman Al Green (D-Texas) perplexed many when he jumped into the fray, retweeting an article about Minister Farrakhan and accusing the Minister of bigotry.

“I haven’t talked to him yet, and I’m trying to be balanced and understand what would cause him to repudiate a friend, someone he has supported and has supported him! What is his reality?” asked Abdul Haleem Muhammad, Nation of Islam Southwest Region student minister. “I would have expected (Rep. Green) to call me to get clarity or to get the Minister’s quote in its context before issuing a public statement like that,” he added.

Jesse Muhammad, who is also from Houston, said Congressman Green should be ashamed of himself. The Black lawmaker faced death threats from President Trump’s supporters and Minister Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam came to his aid, he said. Further, where was all the outrage when a chief rabbi in Israel called Blacks monkeys, or when President Trump’s daughter and son-in-law were blessed by the same rabbi? Jesse Muhammad asked.

“I think when it comes to all of this, there’s a serious racist double-standard and the double standard is very clear in the sense that the Jewish community rarely holds itself accountable for its irresponsible behavior towards Blacks,” said Dr. Boyce Watkins, author, entrepreneur and advocate for Black economic empowerment.

“You have a music industry that is heavily Jewish dominated that allows musical artists to promote Hitler-level genocide in the Black community and the Jewish community has never held them accountable for that.”

“You have a music industry where Jewish run record labels are allowed to refer to Black people as niggers but they would never say anything that derogatory about their own people,” argued Dr. Watkins.

Final Call Newspaper from April of this year examining anti-Black racism among members of the Jewish community.

“You have a music industry that is heavily Jewish controlled that is incredibly disrespectful to Black women, that has promoted mass marketed messaging that has led to the deaths of more Black people that died in World War II than in Nazi Germany. So to some extent, when Minister Farrakhan says he’s anti-termite, he’s talking about the termites in this world, who will either eat off the Black community and give nothing back, or will destroy the Black community and not expect to ever be held accountable, so if he is anti-termite, I am anti-termite.

“We should all be anti-termite, and saying that you’re anti-termite only translates to being an anti-Semite if you happen to be one of the termites,” he added.

“I heard everything the Minister said at the Million Man March. They are attempting to slander his name, his good works that he has demonstrated toward humanity as a whole,” said JaMo Shabazz, who like other Detroit activists and those who heard the Minister speak rejected the false charges of anti-Semitism. “And what I took from the message on he is anti-termite, he was speaking of the One Percent of White Jewish men who hold 90 percent of the wealth of the world, who profess that they represent Black, Latino, poor Whites and Jewish brothers and sisters but they don’t. They don’t truly represent us as a human family.”

“As a human family we must come together and fight against that oppression. They take that statement and say he is talking about the entire Jewish community and everybody knows that’s not true. Historically speaking, there is evidence that shows wealthy Jews played a role in the Holocaust of their own brothers and sisters, so when the Minister is speaking out against these wealthy small percent of these Jewish men that own 90 percent of the wealth he is not speaking against the entire Jewish community, it is obvious the masses of Jewish people don’t have the power,” he continued.

“When you are speaking about termites, that is what they represent, they are termites eating at the souls of those in poverty and that don’t have a voice in the world,” added Mr. Shabazz of the Melanic Islamic Palace of the Rising Sun in Detroit.

“I think personally that it is an oxymoron for someone who has inherited their ancestors’ conversion to Judaism to call the original Semitic people anti-Semitic,” commented Sutton Bey, an activist in Detroit who is Moorish American.

“The original Semitic people look just like Farrakhan,” he said. “People who are knowledgeable know who the Semitic people are and were. They are dark skinned people. We are the ancient Hebrews. We are the original Semitic people. We are not anti-Semitic. We are anti-devil that has infiltrated the Semitic system and Semitic spiritualism.”

“The Minister’s comments were directed at a very specific group within the Jewish community. Taken out of context some may think it was a blanket statement on the religion of Judaism. However, those of us who were in the audience were clear about who he was speaking about,” commented Khalid el-Hakim.

“Being critical of corruption and evil practiced by so-called followers of Judaism isn’t anti-Semitic. His comments were admonishing them for misrepresenting God’s religion,” said the Motor City activist.

Thousands listened to Min. Farrakhan’s address at the venue in Detroit or in other parts of the country via webcast.

“Who has time to hate? I just can’t stand it when people say the Minister teaches hate. No, he doesn’t,” said Helen Miller, who viewed the Oct. 14 message from Washington, D.C., at Muhammad Mosque No. 4.

Members of Neturei Karta, an Orthodox Jewish community opposed to the State of Israel, met with Min. Farrakhan several years ago in Chicago. In 1999, a leader of the group denounced Zionism and called for a return to the guidance of the Torah. Photo: The Final Call

“He doesn’t know anything about hating someone because of their religion. Those Jews got it all wrong. Like the Minister said, Jews are anti-Black,” said the retiree.

Kevin Dennis watched the broadcast via internet from Nation of Islam headquarters at Mosque Maryam in Chicago. He heard Min. Farrakhan’s observations about Black entertainers and many of their White Jewish managers.

“That’s the only reason they stick around, to make profit off of us,” said Mr. Dennis. “You can see it in everyday life. They’ve never treated us equally.”

(Katrina Muhammad reported from Detroit and Final Call staff contributed to this report.)

From The Final Call Newspaper

Minister Farrakhan issues challenge to Trump, White America and Black America in return to Detroit

By Askia Muhammad -Senior Editor-

DETROIT—The 23rd anniversary of the Million Man March (MMM) and Holy Day of Atonement, with the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan at the Aretha Franklin Amphitheater here Oct. 14, was itself like another holy day.

And then, there was a miracle of sorts. The Weather Channel had predicted for two weeks that there would be rain in Detroit on Oct. 14. The temperature was a brisk 52 degrees Fahrenheit when the program began. When Min. Farrakhan entered the arena 45 minutes later, wearing a brown suit and gold bowtie, the temperature had increased to 54. The Minister assured the audience that “the God we serve is the master of climate and climate change,” promising that it would soon “heat up.”

Sure enough, within four minutes the thermometer had climbed to 55 degrees, and just seven minutes later, the temperature was 57, where it remained for the duration of the Minister’s remarks, remarks he concluded with a warning that if America does not atone to the Black descendants of slaves in this country and to Native Americans who were annihilated in the conquest of this country, climate calamities and extreme weather would continue, and get worse, with devastating earthquakes which would flatten entire cities, yet to come.

“I’ve been telling you for three years. Now, watch the weather,” the Nation of Islam (NOI) minister warned. “Now watch. This is my backup,” he said, gesturing to poster-size portraits of Master Fard Muhammad and the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, who he insisted, are masters at controlling the weather and natural calamities. Detroit is the birthplace of the NOI. It was here that Master Fard Muhammad, founder of the movement, met and taught then Elijah Poole.

In 1934, Master Fard Muhammad “disappeared,” and one year later the Honorable Elijah Muhammad relocated the NOI headquarters to Chicago.

“Your suffering is not because you, or your parents did something wrong,” Min. Farrakhan assured the attentive audience. No, the suffering and affliction was prophesied, he explained. “After that time I (God) would come, first to judge the nation which afflicted you, then to raise the nation of Black, Brown, and Red (people), like dry bones in the valley.”

The 1995 Million Man March, Min. Farrakhan explained, was intended to lead Black men into “atonement, reconciliation and responsibility” for their own lives and for their families. “Those three words are the root of why we’re here today.”

Whites directing affairs of Blacks is over!

Decorating the stage—with the scenic river view, and occasional Canadian Steamship Lines transports gliding silently by in the background—were the two spiritual, soulful portraits of Aretha Franklin which were “divine,” and which appeared on the cover, and on the page accompanying Min. Farrakhan’s tribute to Ms. Franklin in the memorial edition of The Final Call newspaper.

“One God, One Faith, One Baptism” are the words in one of her portraits as well emblazoned on the podium of Greater Grace Temple Church of God in Christ (COGIC), where Bishop Charles Ellis III, former Presiding Bishop of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, is the pastor. Ms. Franklin’s home going service was held at Grace Temple on Aug. 31, and it was there that Bishop Ellis took Min. Farrakhan by the hand to a seat on the dais which had his name on it, next to the Revs. Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, and former President Bill Clinton.

There was a flurry of concern at the time—“especially White folks”—wondering how Min. Farrakhan got seated on the stage. At the same time there was little public concern that Michigan’s Republican Governor Rick Snyder was an honored guest. Gov. Snyder was part of a “genocidal plot,” which was responsible for the crippling water crisis which literally poisoned thousands of people in nearby Flint, Mich., and which led to criminal prosecutions of several state employees. “You ought to shut your mouth,” Min. Farrakhan said to those critics. “Your day of directing our affairs is all over!”

In the cities of Detroit and Chicago, Master Fard Muhammad, and the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad played a role in the establishment of proper education systems for Black youth Min. Farrakhan explained. “The Honorable Elijah Muhammad paid a price for you to have an independent Afro-centric education today. Someone paid a price!”

In both Detroit and in Chicago, both Master Fard Muhammad and the Honorable Elijah Muhammad were jailed because they took the Muslim children out of the public schools to be taught in the Muhammad University of Islam. Master Fard Muhammad and the Hon. Elijah Muhammad were also both run out of Detroit by their enemies who did not want Islam established in the hearts and minds of Black people. And those two cities, said Min. Farrakhan, can “turn the whole nation (of Black people) around.”

The value of women

After confessing that he cried, watching the testimony of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford concerning now Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, the Muslim leader taught about the sacredness of the woman, and even the artistic, violin playing component in his own personality. Dr. Ford accused Mr. Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were in high school years ago. The #MeToo movement founded by Tarana Burke, a Black woman, has catapulted the very real scourge of sexual assault, sexual misconduct and abuse of women and girls into the spotlight. During his remarks, the Minister stressed upon the value and sacredness of the female and how God views her.

“Sisters, you are a universe within yourself. You are a world within yourself. The worst mistake you make is when you open your legs and let a man take advantage of you and leave you with a baby. You really need God in your life, and not a spook god.”

His goal is “showing women their place, not as a woman of man, but as a woman of God!” the Minister said. The female vaginal track is “the road to the workshop of God.” That workshop is the womb, where the answer to every single prayer is produced in the form of a person born of a woman who answers the prayer or solves the problem.

“Breast cancer is a scourge, which someone needs to come up with a cure for. How will that happen? It will be answered from the womb of a woman, a child.

“Every great person came from your womb,” and we all must “make death for those who violate that sacred place.” The Muslim leader mused that he is called “misogynist.” “I had to look it up.” But, he said as he was taught by Mr. Elijah Muhammad, “every knock is a boost,” and he thanked his critics, especially the Jewish persons who have falsely accused him of being anti-Semitic, for making his name known all over the world.

“You cannot find one Jew, on whose head one hair has been harmed, or one synagogue which has been defiled,” by anyone associated with the Nation of Islam. “They call me anti-Semitic. No! You are anti-Black.”

Min. Farrakhan said he believed Dr. Blasey-Ford’s testimony and he called the situation she endured, a “real injustice.”

“That lady was a victim of something,” the Minister said. If Mr. Kavanaugh had apologized for his alleged conduct, Dr. Blasey Ford likely would have forgiven him. Mr. Kavanaugh has denied all allegations against him, the Minister said.

“When that woman stood up and went through the horror of what Mr. Kavanaugh is alleged to have done to her, she had to relive it, because that kind of thing—when you experience it, you don’t forget that.

“Your sacredness has got to be respected by yourself,” Minister Farrakhan said to women. “Every prophet of God was born from your womb. Women are sacred. If you don’t see that, Satan has robbed you of the knowledge of who you are.” To the men, the Minister said: “We are busy destroying the virtue of our women.” He said men must be the protectors of women.” Men and women must avoid thinking that fast sex is the path to true love or intimacy.

“As fast as sex is over, that’s how fast marriage ends, because it was never love, it was always lust. After the lust is completed, then what? Have you ever wondered if there’s more to life than this?”

Min. Farrakhan also addressed rapper Kanye West, who has come under blistering criticism for his support and meeting with President Trump. Min. Farrakhan said the rapper was right in saying the 13th Amendment is a trap door. It outlaws slavery, except as punishment for commission of a crime, he said. (See Final Call pages 16 and 17 for more coverage.)

To President Trump, Min. Farrakhan said the time is coming soon, when he and key figures must talk to him. The Minister said he is loathe going to the White House, but announced that his address is at 4855 South Woodlawn Avenue in Chicago, and that Trump administration officials can meet with him there.

“I’m saying to Mr. Trump, ‘You’re planning genocide.’ I want you and the people of God to watch how God is working. When earthquakes come, we’ve got to talk about letting Black people go. A few Negroes in high places is not atonement,” not sufficient reparations for White America’s sins.

“We’re ready to serve. We’re ready to help clean up, along with our Moorish Science brothers, and all those who mean well. The Nation of Islam is the hope of our people,” Minister Farrakhan said in his conclusion. “We are not trying to make you a Muslim. You are already one. You just don’t know it yet.”

Sonya Weaver, owner of Deals with BOB (Black Owned Businesses) was elated that she accepted the invitation from Student Minister Troy Muhammad of Muhammad Mosque No. 1 to hear Min. Farrakhan. His coming back to Detroit, and his focus on the woman and Black unity touched her deeply, she told The Final Call.

“I’m excited, because I feel a shift. I’ve been feeling a shift in my spirit for the last couple years, knowing that I had a mission, a purpose, and assignment pertaining to God’s people, and knowing that it was a time for them to stop wandering in the wilderness, and take their place in the promised land that has been given to them,” said Ms. Weaver.

“What really stood out to me was men understanding their role as strong men and women understanding their role as beautiful women, and each other understanding that, respecting, and protecting it,” she stated.

“When he said men protect women and women protect one’s self, that just resonated with me the most, because if we just get back to the basics, everything else kind of falls into place. It’s not that difficult,” the young entrepreneur stated.

“I thought it was one of the most motivating speeches that I’ve heard,” shared Michael Roberts, Sr., chairman and CEO of Roberts Riverwalk Hotel. “He sent a tremendous message, calling for the people of Detroit to really continue to work to make Detroit number one again. He gave a historical perspective of Detroit and the origin of how Black folks got here,” said Mr. Roberts.

“The Minister did a fabulous job of bringing attention to prospects and the possibilities … I’m delighted to be here. I am very happy that this was the location for the 23rd Anniversary of the Million Man March, and I’m particularly happy that it launched with planning in my hotel,” Mr. Roberts added, referring to a town hall in its newly renovated Grand Ballroom.

“Wonderful,” exclaimed Donetta Simpson in a word to describe her experience. “He’s saying that we all need to stand up as our own Black people, and stop wanting someone to give us a hand and that it’s our moment at this time, and that we can change our condition,” continued the non-party affiliated candidate for Congress.

“We can change our neighborhoods. We can change the language to come off our tongues. We can change the way we live, eat, drink and treat each other! But we can’t do it without us getting into our own self-government,” Ms. Simpson added. (Starla Muhammad and Charlene Muhammad contributed to this report.)

From The Final Call Newspaper

Killer cop’s conviction brings relief and calls for action

By Bryan Crawford and Tariqah Shakir-Muhammad The Final Call

CHICAGO—Jurors in the murder trial of police officer Jason Van Dyke for the 2014 shooting death of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, after listening to three weeks of testimony from the prosecution, defense, and even from Van Dyke himself, deliberated for a little more than a day and reached a verdict of guilty of second-degree murder.

He was also found guilty Oct. 5 on all 16 counts of aggravated battery—one for each shot the officer fired into the teenager. Jason Van Dyke became the first Chicago police officer in almost five decades to be convicted of murder in the shooting death of an individual while on duty.

Protesters outside courthouse for trial of Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke. 

The trial was closely watched by people inside and outside of Chicago. In the days and months leading up to the trial, community activists and organizers took to the streets calling for a conviction of officer Van Dyke and justice for Laquan. The guilty verdict on Mr. Van Dyke seemed to accomplish both goals—up to a point.

But, a saga involving Chicago police department personnel who were on the scene that night will continue: Just one day before the guilty verdict, a judge unsealed prosecution documents in the case of three officers—Thomas Gaffney, Joseph Walsh and David March—are charged with conspiracy, obstruction of justice and official misconduct. They are accused of helping to cover-up what happened between officer Van Dyke and teenager McDonald on that fateful night.

“I’m so grateful to God. I know the whole country is looking at Chicago right now, but it was only because of God that we got justice,” said William Calloway, who filed a lawsuit to get police video of the McDonald shooting released to the public. “We did a lot of praying. We did a lot of work. We were peaceful when we didn’t want to be peaceful. There were so many shootings that happened after Laquan McDonald, and we remained peaceful. After the tape was released, we still remained peaceful. And I thank the community for remaining peaceful and non-destructive. But we want everybody to know the buck stops here in Chicago.”

After the guilty verdict, people gathered downtown to march in solidarity and celebrate a semblance of justice finally being served.

“This sentence is going to reverberate through the policing community on two different levels,” Corey Pegues, a former New York City police commander, told The Final Call. “The overwhelming majority of police feel like they don’t do anything wrong. But I can promise you there’s a small segment of police—Black, White, Asian and other ethnicities—saying that guy needed to go to jail because it was one of the most vicious crimes ever viewed on television. No cop in their right mind agreed with officer Van Dyke. Secondly, a lot of policing around the country is hands off because of the body cams and people recording them with their cameras. No one wants to be on the front page of the newspaper, but they still need to go out and do their jobs. But if any of them do what Van Dyke did, then they need to go to prison.”

During three weeks of testimony, the defense seemed to place blame on young McDonald for his own death. Mr. Van Dyke echoed this sentiment himself when he testified on his own behalf.

“He could’ve thrown that knife away and ended it all right then and there,” Mr. Van Dyke said, saying teenager McDonald ignored his commands to drop the knife. Mr. Van Dyke was among many officers at the scene and when he arrived other cops appeared to be waiting for an officer with a taser to arrive. “His face had no expression, his eyes were just bugging out of his head. He had these huge white eyes, just staring right through me,” said officer Van Dyke, who exited his vehicle and emptied his weapon into the young man who was acting erratically. No other officer fired a shot.

Activist Will Calloway (middle) was unrelenting in fighting for justice for Laquan McDonald. Mr. Calloway along with others filed the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request that eventually lead to the court-ordered release of dash cam video showing Off. Van Dyke shooting the 17 old to death in a hail of bullets.

“They always want to blame the victim. Here this poor kid was savagely murdered, and they tried to blame him for his own death, thinking it was going to sway the jury. That is common practice, and you see this all the time in policing whenever there is an officer-involved shooting,” explained Mr. Pegues. “Luckily, God took care of this one. And no matter what dirty tactics they tried to use, he was still found guilty of murder.”

Mr. Van Dyke, while on the stand, made a series of statements that could be viewed as outright lies, particularly when prosecutors cross examined him. Mr. Van Dyke testified that he and McDonald maintained eye contact the entire time and he never saw him turn and walk away from officers. When asked if it was his testimony that Mr. McDonald never turned his back to Van Dyke, the officer answered yes. “Then how did you shoot him in the back?” a prosecutor asked.

In the aftermath of the verdict, Chris Southwood, the Illinois Fraternal Order of Police State Lodge president, issued a scathing and tone deaf statement condemning the jurors and the judicial process.

The murder trial of Off. Van Dyke was monitored closely by activists in the city.

“This is a day I never thought I’d see in America, where 12 ordinary citizens were duped into saving the asses of self-serving politicians at the expense of a dedicated public servant,” Mr. Southwood wrote. “This sham trial and shameful verdict is a message to every law enforcement officer in America that it’s not the perpetrator in front of you that you need to worry about, it’s the political operatives stabbing you in the back. What cop would still want to be proactive fighting crime after this disgusting charade, and are law abiding citizens ready to pay the price?”

Kevin Graham, president of the FOP Chicago Lodge 7, said, “We are certainly not blaming the jury, but we do think that as we had requested, and has been done countless times throughout the country, that we could’ve had a change of venue which was not granted to us.”

“There will be an appeal. Mark my words. We think that Jason has a tough road to go, but he’s not standing alone. The Fraternal Order of Police is standing with the officer who we believe acted as a police officer and did the best he could that night.”

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and police chief Eddie Johnson, released a joint statement following the verdict. “Today, the jury reached its verdict. As we absorb their decision, let us continue to hear each other and partner with each other—as public servants, police and members of the public—and let us ensure our collective mission is what endures for generations to come … . While the jury has heard the case and reached their conclusion, our collective work is not done. The effort to drive lasting reform and rebuild bonds of trust between residents and police must carry on with vigor.”

Activists and community organizers also carry on with vigor, even with the conviction of Mr. Van Dyke. The fight for justice and police reform is far from over—at the grassroots organizing level and in the voting booth during upcoming elections, they said.

“No Black alderman showed up for this trial. No city council people or no Black elected official showed up. It was just us. Not one of them came for one hour to sit in this trial, not once. All of them need to go,” said Mr. Calloway. “Black Chicago, we have to make sure all of these Black elected officials are voted out in these 2019 elections.”

Judge Vincent Gaughan revoked Mr. Van Dyke’s bond and set his sentencing for Oct. 31. The former Chicago cop’s mug shot was taken and he was jailed after the unanimous decision by a 12-member jury. Sitting on the jury was one Black, seven Whites, three Hispanics and one Asian.

With the verdict announced on a Friday afternoon, activists and Chicagoans had awaited the trial outcome. They marched in victory downtown and the jury’s decision drew national and international attention.

Independent journalist, Jamie Kalven, activist Will Calloway, and University of Chicago Law School professor Craig Futterman, who led a successful Illinois Freedom of Information Act request for release of police dashcam footage showing the horrific shooting. It took 13 months for the video to be released. The video only came out after a contentious mayoral election victory by Rahm Emanuel and quick payment of a multi-million dollar settlement to Laquan’s family. Before the video was public, some police officials and others saw it. Heat was out on then-police chief Garry McCarthy, police higher ups and then-District Attorney Anita Alvarez for not taking action in the shooting.

Protests rocked the city alongside calls for the removal of the mayor, the police chief and the district attorney. Police chief McCarthy was fired. The district attorney lost a bid for re-election. Mayor Emanuel is not running for another term in office.

Mr. Van Dyke faces a minimum of four and a maximum of 20 years in prison on the second-degree murder conviction, of which he is eligible for probation. The aggravated battery with a firearm convictions carries a minimum sentence of six years and a maximum of 30 years in prison for each count, with no eligibility for probation.

It is unclear if Mr. Van Dyke’s conviction will lead to any kind of sweeping police reforms. A consent decree outlining mandatory reforms for the Chicago Police Department, which came as a result of a Department of Justice investigation into the department after the McDonald shooting, has been finalized, but has yet to be enacted, pending approval from a federal judge. Still, the guilty verdict has brought some measure of relief to many of those who worried another police officer would get off with killing another Black man in America.

“This is a gratifying verdict,” said prosecutor Joseph McMahon. “Today our justice system fulfilled its obligation to justice for all.”

“We celebrate today but the fight continues because we have to do police reform, justice reform and equity of the South and West side,” Father Michael Pfleger from St. Sabina Church told The Final Call.

“There’s thousands of Laquans in Chicago … the fight continues, it’s good to get a win every now and then but we have to continue to fight.”

Wallace “Gator” Bradley, a 67-year-old activist was equally pleased to hear the conviction after so many years of officers not being held accountable. “God made it possible for all of us to see how the man was murdered with the release of that video. … It’s been 50 years since a Chicago police officer has been guilty of murder,” he said.

Downtown Michigan Avenue, a major shopping district, and some universities shut down at noon, shortly before the jury’s announcement of a guilty verdict. Some were relieved but still angry.

Afrika Porter, an activist and media personality, echoed those who said the struggle for justice has to stay alive.

“People are comparing this to O.J. Simpson, that moment,” she stated. “I’m somewhat relieved because second-degree is better than not guilty but first-degree murder would have given him a larger sentencing from what I understand.”

“We can’t take a vacation because we have so many others whom we have to continue to fight for,” she continued. “We can’t fall asleep at this time. We are excited, we have a reason to feel a load has been taken off; however, we have to continue to fight.”

The mayor is very clever to not run again, Ms. Porter concluded. “We have to be even more wise as the Honorable Elijah Muhammad taught us.”

“We want peace in the streets regardless of how the verdict came out,” Mr. Bradley added. “What it should say to our young, African-American millennials (is to) push for the continuation of justice with the inclusion of telling other young African-Americans to stop killing one another.”

(Final Call staff contributed to this report.)

From The Final Call Newspaper

Welcome Back Minister Farrakhan

By Katrina Muhammad @KatrinaMuhammad - The Final Call

Downtown Detroit

DETROIT—For the first time in history the Million Man March Anniversary will take place in Detroit, Michigan, at the newly-named Aretha Franklin Amphitheater, previously known as Chene Park. On October 14, thousands of Muslims from the Nation of Islam (NOI), family members, friends and supporters are expected to converge in the city which will be a homecoming for the 88-year Islamic movement

This October marks the 23rd Anniversary of the Million Man March and Holy Day of Atonement. The mosque community as well as residents of the City of Detroit are very excited about the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and Nation of Islam returning to the city of its founding.

The historic event is expected to take place with weekend long activities starting on Friday, October 12 - Sunday, October 14. The keynote address by Min. Farrakhan will take place on Sunday, October 14.

Pastor Maurice Hardwick greets members of NOI Executive Council.

Key leaders in Detroit, community activists and organizers, clergy, civic leaders, entrepreneurs, educators, government officials, entertainers, Muhammad Mosque No. 1 Believers and other hard-working residents attended a town hall planning meeting about the Holy Day of Atonement at the only Black-owned hotel in Detroit in the Roberts Riverwalk Hotel newly-renovated Grand Ballroom.

It was a beautiful atmosphere with a view of the waterfront. The energy in the room was filled with excitement and anticipation of the discussion. Once the entire Nation of Islam Executive Council walked in the room to take their seats and start the Sept. meeting, the room filled to standing room only with approximately 300 people in attendance.

Student Minister Troy Muhammad of Muhammad Mosque No. 1 in Detroit welcomed everyone. Student Min. Troy Muhammad and members of the leadership team made calls to invite the community to have a seat at the table of planning activities and to receive their blessing by helping the man of God.

A divine movement in an historic city

“The response of the city was the response based upon the love and the heart of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan. It’s a response based upon the coming of Master Fard Muhammad in 1930 because so many Believers were affected by the coming of Master Fard Muhammad that you can’t identify a family that doesn’t have a Muslim member in the family, so we are already familiar with those teachings,” he explained.

Though Chicago is the international headquarters of the Nation, and is where its flagship Mosque Maryam is located, Detroit is where the NOI was founded and established, July 4, 1930 with the appearance of the Great Mahdi Master Fard Muhammad. It was in Black Bottom Detroit where Master Fard Muhammad met, raised and cultivated thousands of Black men, women and children—among them, his top student, the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad. Over the recent years, the Nation has hosted its annual Saviours’ Day Convention, commemorating the birth of Master Fard Muhammad in Detroit—the last gathering in the city coming in 2017. However, this is the first time the city will host the anniversary of the 1995 Million Man March called by God through Min. Farrakhan.

“When one comes teaching those teachings, it resonates with the people here, the words of the Honorable Louis Farrakhan resonate with our people here in Detroit, there is no question that the people will come out based on his name. I’m appreciative that they came out and I thank the people of Detroit for attending this meeting on behalf of the Minister,” Student Min. Troy Muhammad continued.

“People know that he donated 90,000 Final Call newspapers—and that cost, and that he wants to do a free event for the city of Detroit and everyone wants to do their part to alleviate the burden for the Minister. We chose the Riverwalk Hotel for this meeting because it is the only Black-owned hotel in the city, and because Mike Roberts is a strong supporter of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan. If you want to attend this event and you live in Detroit, contact Muhammad Mosque No. 1.”

Min. Farrakhan gifted the City of Detroit with a special commemorative editions of the newspaper featuring the iconic Aretha Franklin, who called Detroit home. Ms. Franklin died Aug. 16.

Stu. Minister Ishmael Muhammad, National Assistant for Min. Farrakhan introduced each NOI Executive Council member and shared very important words about the history of the Million Man March and why Detroit is a special, spiritual and important city as Mecca to the Muslim followers of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad.

"It gives me great joy to come back home, personally, because it’s the city of my mother. And this is where we buried my mother,” he said, reflecting on his mother, Tynnetta Muhammad, wife of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad.
“This is the city of my father, the Hon. Elijah Muhammad. So, I have roots here, and each time I come, to be honest, I start realizing more and more that I really am connected to Detroit even though I wasn’t raised here. But more than that, this city is such a sacred city, and it has so many great men and women in this city,” said Student Min. Ishmael Muhammad.

If Detroit is resurrected and rises in truth the whole of Black America will rise from Detroit, he explained. “It’s a sister city to Chicago. Detroit and Chicago when they rise, the whole of Black America will rise. So, I am excited that we have been connecting with Detroit over the last five years; three Saviours’ Days in Detroit over the last five years, and now to come back in the month of October which is the month of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad’s birth, and of course the 23rd anniversary,” he continued.

“I’m still grasping what this all means because the Minister is moved by a higher power, so it is not an accident that Allah (God) has put in him the spirit to come here, to distribute 90,000 copies, that means this city is loved by the God and He is making Detroit to know how much He loves Detroit through Brother Farrakhan.”

The Minister has a heart that is a heart after the heart of God, Stu. Minister Ishmael Muhammad stated.

A call for community

One of many Detroit residents who attended the gathering expressed excitement and heart felt sentiments about Minister Farrakhan coming to Detroit.
During the town hall meeting, Student Min. Ishmael Muhammad stated that the purpose of the community gathering was to announce a call for help from the community to work together in the spirit of love and unity, a theme of the Million Man March. Attendees applauded, and many began announcing their desire to support the event and help the Minister and the Nation.

Other members of the NOI Executive Council including Berve Muhammad, Student National Secretary; Leonard F. Muhammad, longtime aide to Min. Farrakhan; and Mustapha Farrakhan, Student Supreme Captain and son of Min. Farrakhan addressed the town hall.

“Generally the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan recognizes this is our Mecca and to come back home to where it all began and the first time for the Day of Atonement address here is just befitting. The spirit moved him and it is apparent already that Allah and His Christ are guiding him,” said Berve Muhammad.

People shared testimonials of gratitude for the 90,000 Final Call newspapers and many stood up to express how Islam and words of Min. Farrakhan saved their lives and pledged their assistance in bringing the Holy Day of Atonement to Detroit.

Several city officials and Detroit Police Department representatives stood up and boldly professed that whenever Min. Farrakhan comes to Detroit, “we roll out the red carpet for him because we know who he is.” Many enthusiastically shouted their thanks to God and agreed wholeheartedly.

Fraternity and sorority members were also present. Lanre Musa Lee of Omega Psi Phi said bringing Holy Day of Atonement to Detroit is fantastic and something that is needed in light of high crime and violence plaguing Black communities.

“Definitely, the Nation of Islam has my support and also the support of my fraternity of the brothers of Omega Psi Phi, Incorporated. Anything I can do to assist in the endeavors of the NOI and to better our community as a whole I’m all for it.”

“I think it was a loving expression of brothers and sisters coming together for some greatness, because God we do some greatness in this city and throughout this country. I love Minister Farrakhan and I went to the Million Man March and I’m 62 years old. God is about love,” said Keith Williams, chairman of the Michigan Democratic Party.

“This is a great time to have the event here because the people in Detroit have suffered a lot, they have gone through a lot of ups and downs, where people have had money and where Detroit has had a down turn where people have struggled,” said Eric Sabree, Wayne County treasurer.

“I think that there are very strong people here, very resilient people, and with the Million Man March and Atonement, we have to look at ourselves with the Million Man March anniversary. It will help us look at ourselves and see how we can strengthen ourselves and take control of our community like we should,” he added.

One of the original organizers of the march 23 years ago also attended the meeting, Reverend Joann Watson. “This was magnificent, what an outpouring of love and respect and investment in our collective future. What a wonderful way to honor the Minister’s coming. We love Minister Farrakhan. We love him and honor him and thank him for choosing this location one more time, one more time,” she said.

She and others helped organize men in Detroit to attend the march. “I did not go, we helped brothers go, we sent our money off and packed lunches for them. I continue to meet with a group of men that formed a Million Man Alumni on the bus ride back home from D.C. I meet with them every Thursday, we are the ones organizing Black business bus tours. Many of the things the men planned to happen has happened. The Million Man spirit is alive,” said Rev. Watson.

Members of the NOI Executive Council at Detroit community leadership meeting, including: Front row l-r; Leonard F. Muhammad, Imam Sultan R. Muhammad, Student Minister Dr. Ava Muhammad, Student Minister Ishmael R. Muhammad, Attorney Abdul Arif Muhammad. Second row l-r; Student National Secretary Berve Muhammad, Student National MGT Captain Sandy Muhammad, MGT Captain Emeritus A’ishah Muhammad, Student Protocol Director Thomas Muhammad, Student Minister Dr. Wesley Muhammad.

Many other Muslim leaders were present at the town hall and very pleased with the announcement. Imam Mikail Stewart Saadiq stated, “This is a wonderful gathering, and I’m grateful to Minister Louis Farrakhan and the Executive Committee for bringing all these leaders together from different faiths, people that care about the condition of Black people, and the City of Detroit.”

Imam Saadiq added the event will bring a good spirit into the city. The Million Man March was transformative, he explained. “It did a lot for me as a young person even though I wasn’t able to attend because of exams, I was very young at the time, and I still feel the effects on my person and also my direction towards becoming an imam and loving Islam, and my people.”

Pastor Paul Fudge who opened the meeting in prayer said he was honored to be a part of the leadership and community town hall.

“It is something that our city needs; it’s something that we as men need, the women need. We just need this unity. Detroit is in position now where there is a lot of gun violence, killings, our own Blacks killing each other, and we need a healing now,” said Pastor Fudge.

“I believe that Minister Farrakhan is anointed by God, and yes I’m a Christian and he is Muslim but I still believe he is anointed by God, and it is just his time to come here and give us a message of hope and it is just what we need and I’m looking forward to it. There was just so much power in this meeting tonight. I was just sitting there absorbing it, and now it is time for this power that has come together to now manifest!” (Final Call staff contributed to this report.)