MALCOLM X FILM TRAILER
"TITTER YE NOT"
There is a black boy, Malcolm; a white boy, James; and a Mexican girl Jaunita in a spelling test at school.
To win the spelling test the student must spell the word correctly and use the word in a sentence.
James, spell dictate.
Sorry that's wrong.
Juanita spell dictate.
Sorry that's wrong.
Malcolm spell dictate.
Correct Malcolm. Now use it in a sentence.
Juanita, how did my
dictate las nite?
Malcolm X May 19, 1925 – February 21, 1965, born Malcolm
Little and also known as el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz , was an
American Muslim minister and a human rights activist. To his
admirers he was a courageous advocate for the rights of blacks,
a man who indicted white America in the harshest terms for its
crimes against black Americans; detractors accused him of
preaching racism and violence. He has been called one of the
greatest and most influential African Americans in history.
Malcolm X was effectively orphaned early in life. His father was
killed when he was six and his mother was placed in a mental
hospital when he was thirteen, after which he lived in a series
of foster homes. In 1946, at age 20, he went to prison for
larceny and breaking and entering. While in prison, Malcolm X became a member of the
Nation of Islam, and after his parole in 1952, quickly rose to become one of the
organization's most influential leaders. He served as the public face of the controversial
group for a dozen years. In his autobiography, Malcolm X wrote proudly of some of the
social achievements the Nation made while he was a member, particularly its free drug
rehabilitation program. In keeping with the Nation's teachings, he promoted black
supremacy , advocated the separation of black and white Americans, and rejected the civil
rights movement for their emphasis on integration.
By March 1964, Malcolm X had grown disillusioned with the Nation of Islam and its leader
Elijah Muhammad. Expressing many regrets about his time with them, which he had come
to regard as largely wasted, he embraced Sunni Islam. After a period of travel in Africa and the Middle East, which included completing the Hajj, he repudiated the Nation of Islam, disavowed racism and founded Muslim Mosque, Inc. and the Organisation of Afro-American Unity. He continued to emphasise Pan-Africanism, black self-determination, and black self-defense .
In February 1965 he was assassinated by three Nation of Islam members. The Autobiography of Malcolm X, published shortly after his death, is considered one of the most influential nonfiction books of the 20th century.
Malcolm Little was born May 19, 1925, in Omaha, Nebraska, the fourth of seven children of Grenada-born Louise Helen Little (née Norton) and Georgia-born Earl Little. Earl was an outspoken Baptist lay speaker, admirer of Pan-African activist Marcus Garvey, and local leader of the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA); he inculcated self reliance and black
pride in his children. Malcolm X later said that white violence killed three of his father's brothers.
Because of Ku Klux Klan threats—Earl's UNIA activities were "spreading trouble" —the family relocated in 1926 to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and shortly thereafter to Lansing, Michigan. There the family was frequently harassed by the Black Legion, a white racist group. When the family home burned in 1929, Earl accused the Black Legion.
MALCOLM X SHOOTING AND DEATH
Malcolm Little excelled in junior high school but dropped out after a white teacher told him that practising law, his aspiration at the time, was "no realistic goal for a nigger". Later Malcolm X recalled feeling that the white world offered no place for a career- oriented black man, regardless of talent.
After a short time in Flint, Michigan, he moved to New York City's Harlem neighbourhood in where he engaged in drug dealing, gambling, racketeering, robbery, and pimping; according to recent biographies, he also occasionally had sex with other men , usually for money. He was called "Detroit Red" because of the reddish hair he inherited from his Scots maternal grandfather.
Little was declared "mentally disqualified for military service" after he told draft board officials he wanted to be sent down south to "organize them nigger soldiers … steal us some guns, and kill us some crackers".
In late 1945, Little returned to Boston, where he and four accomplices committed a series of burglaries targeting wealthy white families. In 1946, he was arrested while picking up a stolen watch he had left at a shop for repairs, and in February began serving an eight-to-ten-year sentence at Charlestown State Prison for larceny and breaking and entering.
When Little was in prison, he met fellow convict John Bembry , a self-educated man he would later describe as "the first man I had ever seen command total respect … with words". Under Bembry's influence, Little developed a voracious appetite for reading.
At this time, several of his siblings wrote to him about the Nation of Islam, a relatively new religious movement preaching black self-reliance and, ultimately, the return of the African diaspora to Africa, where they would be free from white American and European domination. He showed scant interest at first, but after his brother Reginald wrote in 1948, "Malcolm, don't eat any more pork and don't smoke any more cigarettes. I'll show you how to get out of prison", he quit smoking and began to refuse pork. After a visit in which Reginald described the group's teachings, including the belief that white people are devils, Little concluded that every relationship he'd had with whites had been tainted by dishonesty, injustice, greed, and hatred. Little, whose hostility to religion had earned him the prison nickname " Satan ", became receptive to the message of the Nation of Islam.
In late 1948, Little wrote to Elijah Muhammad, the leader of the Nation of Islam. Muhammad advised him to renounce his past, humbly bow in prayer to Allah, and promise never to engage in destructive behavior again. Though he later recalled the inner struggle he had before bending his knees to pray, Little soon became a member of the Nation of Islam. "Between Mr. Muhammad's teachings, my correspondence, my visitors—usually Ella and Reginald—and my reading of books", he later wrote, "months passed without my even thinking about being imprisoned. In fact, up to then, I had never been so truly free in my life." From that time, he maintained a regular correspondence with Muhammad.
In 1950, the FBI opened a file on Little after he wrote a letter from prison to President Truman expressing opposition to the Korean War and declaring himself a Communist . That year, Little also began signing his name "Malcolm X". He explained
in his autobiography that the Muslim's "X" symbolised the true African family name that he could never know. "For me, my 'X' replaced the white slave master name of 'Little' which some blue-eyed devil named Little had imposed upon my paternal forebears."
After his parole in August 1952, Malcolm X visited Elijah Muhammad in Chicago. In June 1953 he was named assistant minister of the Nation's Temple Number One in Detroit. Later that year he established Boston's Temple Number 11; in March 1954, he expanded Temple Number 12 in Philadelphia; and two months later he was selected to lead Temple Number 7 in Harlem, where he rapidly expanded its membership. In 1953, the FBI began surveillance of him, turning its attention from Malcolm X's possible communist associations to his rapid ascent in the Nation of Islam.
During 1955, Malcolm X continued his successful recruitment of members on behalf of the Nation of Islam. He established temples in Springfield, (Number 13); Hartford, Connecticut (Number 14); and Atlanta, Georgia (Number 15) . Hundreds of African Americans were joining the Nation of Islam every month. Beside his skill as a speaker, Malcolm X had an impressive physical presence. He stood 6 feet 3 inches (1.91 m) tall and weighed about 180 pounds (82 kg). One writer described him as "powerfully built", and another as "mesmerizingly handsome … and always spotlessly well-groomed".
MALCOLM X MUGSHOT
By the late 1950s, Malcolm X was using a new name,
Malcolm Shabazz or Malik el-Shabazz, although he was
still widely referred to as Malcolm X. His comments on
issues and events were being widely reported in print, on
radio, and on television, and he was featured in a 1959
New York City television broadcast about the Nation of
Islam, The Hate That Hate Produced .
From his adoption of the Nation of Islam in 1952 until he
broke with it in 1964, Malcolm X promoted the Nation's
teachings. These included the beliefs:
that black people are
the original people of the world
that white people are "devils"
that blacks are superior to whites and that the demise of
the white race is imminent
History proves that the
white man is a devil.
Many whites and some blacks were alarmed by Malcolm X and the statements he
made during this period. He and the Nation of Islam were described as hatemongers,
black supremacists, racists, violence-seekers, segregationists , and a threat to
improved race relations. He was accused of being anti-Semitic. One of the goals of the
civil rights movement was to end disfranchisement of African Americans, but the Nation
of Islam forbade its members from participating in voting and other aspects of the
political process. Civil rights organisations denounced him and the Nation as
irresponsible extremists whose views did not represent African Americans.
Malcolm X was equally critical of the civil rights movement. He labelled Martin Luther
King Jr. a "chump" and other civil rights leaders "stooges" of the white establishment.
He called the 1963 March on Washington "the farce on Washington", and said he did
not know why so many black people were excited about a demonstration "run by whites
in front of a statue of a president who has been dead for a hundred years and who
didn't like us when he was alive".
While the civil rights movement fought against racial segregation, Malcolm X advocated the complete separation of African
Americans from whites. He proposed that African Americans should return to Africa and that, in the interim, a separate country for black people in America should be created. He rejected the civil rights movement's strategy of nonviolence , expressing the opinion that black people should defend and advance themselves "by any means necessary". His speeches had a powerful effect on his audiences, who were generally African Americans in northern and western cities. Many of them—tired of being told to wait for freedom, justice, equality and respect—felt that he articulated their complaints better than did the civil rights movement.
Malcolm X is widely regarded as the second most influential leader of the Nation of Islam after Elijah Muhammad. He was largely credited with the group's dramatic increase in membership between the early 1950s and early 1960s (from 500 to 25,000 by one estimate; from 1,200 to 50,000 or 75,000 by another).
MALCOLM X SPEECH
He inspired the boxer Cassius Clay (later known as Muhammad Ali) to join the Nation, and they soon formed a relationship which Clay's corner man Ferdie Pacheco later described as "like very close brothers". When Malcolm X left the Nation of Islam and converted to Sunni Islam, he tried to convince Clay to join him, but Clay declined and refused to speak to him again. When Ali left the group in 1975 and became a Sunni Muslim, he wrote, "turning my back on Malcolm was one of the mistakes that I regret most in my life." During 1962 and 1963, events caused Malcolm X to reassess his relationship with the Nation of Islam, and particularly its leader, Elijah Muhammad.
Rumours were circulating that Muhammad was conducting extramarital affairs with young Nation secretaries—which would constitute a serious violation of the Nations teachings. After first discounting the rumours, Malcolm X came to believe them after he spoke with Muhammad's son Wallace and with the women making the accusations. Muhammad confirmed the rumours in 1963, attempting to justify his behaviour by referring to precedents set by Biblical prophets.
On December 1, 1963, when asked for a comment about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X said that it was a case of "chickens coming home to roost". He added that "chickens coming home to roost never did make me sad; they've always made me glad." The New York Times wrote, "in further criticism of Mr. Kennedy, the Muslim leader cited the murders of Patrice Lumumba, Congo leader, of Medgar Evers, civil rights leader, and of the Negro girls bombed earlier this year in a Birmingham church. These, he said, were instances of other 'chickens coming home to roost'." The remarks prompted a widespread public outcry. The Nation of Islam, which had sent a message of condolence to the Kennedy family and ordered its ministers not to comment on the assassination, publicly censured their former shining star. Malcolm X retained his post and rank as minister, but was prohibited from public speaking for 90 days.
Malcolm X had by now become a media favourite, and some Nation members believed he was a threat to Muhammad's leadership. Publishers had shown interest in Malcolm X's autobiography, and when Louis Lomax wrote his 1963 book about the Nation, When the Word Is Given, he used a photograph of Malcolm X on the cover. He also reproduced five of his speeches, but featured only one of Muhammad's—all of which greatly upset
Muhammad and made him envious.
On March 8, 1964, Malcolm X publicly announced his break from the Nation
of Islam. He was still a Muslim, he said, but felt that the Nation had "gone as far
as it can" because of its rigid teachings. He said he was planning to organize a
black nationalist organization to "heighten the political consciousness" of
African Americans. He also expressed a desire to work with other civil rights
leaders, saying that Elijah Muhammad had prevented him from doing so in the
REVOLUTION (MALCOLM X)
religious organization, and the Organization of Afro-American Unity, a secular group that advocated Pan-Africanism. On March 26, 1964 he met Martin Luther King Jr. for the first and only time—and only long enough for photographs to be taken —in Washington, D.C. as both men attended the Senate's debate on the Civil Rights bill. In April, Malcolm X gave a speech titled "The Ballot or the Bullet", in which he advised African Americans to exercise their right to vote wisely but cautioned that if the government continued to prevent African Americans from attaining full equality, it might be necessary for them to take up
At this time, several Sunni Muslims encouraged Malcolm X to learn
about their faith. He soon converted to the Sunni faith .
In April 1964, with financial help from his half-sister Ella Little- Collins, Malcolm X flew to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, as the start of his Hajj, the pilgrimage to Mecca obligatory for every Muslim who is able to do so.
Malcolm X later said that seeing Muslims of "all colours, from blue- eyed blonde to black-skinned Africans," interacting as equals led him to see Islam as a means by which racial problems could be overcome. On November 23, 1964, on his way home from Africa, Malcolm X stopped in Paris, where he spoke in the Salle de la Mutualité. A week later, on November 30, Malcolm X flew to the United Kingdom, and on December 3 took part in a debate at the Oxford Union Society. The motion was taken from a statement made earlier that year by U.S. presidential candidate Barry Goldwater:
"Extremism in the Defense of Liberty is No Vice; Moderation in the Pursuit of Justice is No Virtue". Malcolm X argued for the affirmative, and interest in the debate was so high that it was televised nationally by the BBC.
On February 12, he visited Smethwick, near Birmingham, where the Conservative Party had won the parliamentary seat in the 1964 general election. The town had become a byword for racial division after Conservative supporters used the slogan, "If you want a nigger for your neighbour, vote Labour." In Smethwick he compared the treatment of coloured residents with the treatment of Jews under Hitler, saying:
"I would not wait for the fascist element in Smethwick to erect gas ovens."
After returning to the U.S., Malcolm X addressed a wide variety of audiences. He spoke regularly at meetings held by Muslim Mosque, Inc., and the Organization of Afro-American Unity and was one of the most sought-after speakers on college campuses. One of his top aides later wrote that he "welcomed every opportunity to speak to college students." He also addressed public meetings of the Socialist Workers Party, speaking at their Militant Labor Forum. He was interviewed on the subjects of segregation and the Nation of Islam by Robert Penn Warren for Warren's 1965 book Who Speaks for the Negro?
Throughout 1964, as his conflict with the Nation of Islam intensified, Malcolm X was repeatedly threatened. In February a leader of Temple Number Seven ordered the bombing of Malcolm X's car. In March, Muhammad told Boston minister Louis X (later known as Louis Farrakhan) that "hypocrites like Malcolm should have their heads cut off"; the April 10 edition of Muhammad Speaks featured a cartoon depicting Malcolm X's bouncing, severed head.
On June 8, FBI surveillance recorded a telephone call in which Betty Shabazz was told that her husband was "as good as dead." Four days later, an FBI informant received a tip off that "Malcolm X is going to be bumped off." (That same month the Nation sued to reclaim Malcolm X's residence in East Elmhurst, Queens, New York. His family was ordered to vacate but on February 14, 1965—the night before a hearing on postponing the eviction—the house was destroyed by fire.)
The September 1964 issue of Ebony dramatized Malcolm X's defiance of these threats by publishing a photograph of him holding a rifle while peering out a window. On February 19, 1965, Malcolm X told interviewer Gordon Parks that the Nation of Islam was actively trying to kill him. On February 21, 1965, he was preparing to address the Organization of Afro-American Unity in Manhattan's Audubon Ballroom when someone in the 400-person audience yelled, "Nigger! Get your hand outta my pocket!" As Malcolm X and his bodyguards tried to quell the disturbance, a man rushed forward and shot him once in the chest with a sawed-off shotgun and two other men charged the stage firing semi-automatic handguns.
Malcolm X was pronounced dead at 3:30 pm, shortly after arriving at Columbia
Presbyterian Hospital. The autopsy identified 21 gunshot wounds to the chest, left
shoulder, arms and legs, including ten buckshot wounds from the initial shotgun
One gunman, Nation of Islam member Talmadge Hayer (also known as Thomas
Hagan), was beaten by the crowd before police arrived; witnesses identified the
others as Nation members Norman 3X Butler and Thomas 15X Johnson. All three
were convicted of murder in March 1966 and sentenced to life in prison. At trial
Hayer confessed, but refused to identify the other assailants except to assert that
they were not Butler and Johnson. In 1977 and 1978, he signed affidavits
reasserting Butler's and Johnson's innocence, naming four other Nation members
as participants in the murder or its planning. These affidavits did not result in the
case being reopened.
MALCOLM X FUNERAL
Butler, today known as Muhammad Abdul Aziz , was paroled in 1985 and
became the head of the Nation's Harlem mosque in 1998; he maintains his
innocence. In prison Johnson, who changed his name to Khalil Islam, rejected the
Nation's teachings and converted to Sunni Islam. Released in 1987, he
maintained his innocence until his death in August 2009. Hayer, today known as
Mujahid Halim, was paroled in 2010. A CNN Special Report, Witnessed: The Assassination of Malcolm X , was broadcast on February 17, 2015. It featured interviews with several people who worked with him, including Peter Bailey and Earl Grant, as well as the daughter of Malcolm X, Ilyasah Shabazz.
The public viewing, February 23–26 at Unity Funeral Home in Harlem, was attended by some 14,000 to 30,000 mourners. For the funeral on February 27 , loudspeakers were set up for the overflow crowd outside Harlem's thousand-seat Faith Temple of the Church of God in Christ, and a local television station carried the service live.
Among the civil rights leaders attending were John Lewis, Bayard Rustin, James Forman , James Farmer, Jesse Gray, and Andrew Young. Actor and activist Ossie Davis delivered the eulogy, describing Malcolm X as "our shining black prince": Malcolm X was buried at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York. Friends took up the gravediggers' shovels to complete the burial themselves.
Reactions to Malcolm X's assassination were varied. In a telegram to Betty Shabazz, Martin Luther King Jr. expressed his sadness at "the shocking and tragic assassination of your husband." He said:
While we did not always see eye to eye on methods to solve the race problem, I always had a deep affection for Malcolm and felt that he had a great ability to put his finger on the existence and root of the problem. He was an eloquent spokesman for his point of view and no one can honestly doubt that Malcolm had a great concern for the problems that we face as a race.
Elijah Muhammad told the annual Savior's Day convention on February 26, "Malcolm X got just what he preached", but denied any involvement with the murder. "We didn't want to kill Malcolm and didn't try to kill him", Muhammad said. "We know such ignorant, foolish teachings would bring him to his own end."
Writer James Baldwin, who had been a friend of Malcolm X's, was in London when he heard the news of the assassination. He responded with indignation towards the reporters interviewing him, shouting:
"You did it! It is because of you—the men that created this white supremacy—that this man is dead. You are not guilty, but you did it.... Your mills, your cities, your rape of a continent started all this."
Be peaceful, be courteous, obey the law, respect everyone;
but if someone puts his hand on you, send him to the cemetery.