Quick Note from Dr. Boyce Watkins
I noticed a couple of things this weekend: First, Louis Farrakhan’s attack on President Obama’s decision to bomb Libya became one of the most amazingly viral videos I’ve seen in quite a while. In just a couple of days, the video had over half a million views, which is rare and powerful for a video of that nature. Farrakhan is not like, say, Lady Gaga or Kanye West (who might get a lot of views from non-black folks). He fits into a niche of black leadership, receiving views from only a particular segment of the population.
Thirteen years after African American men from across the country gathered at the U.S. Capitol for the Million Man March, community leaders, neighborhood groups and marching bands paraded through Southeast Washington to keep the spirit of the historic event alive.
“We have to let people know that we can’t forget the work that our ancestors started before the march and the commitments the men made during the march,” said Ron Moton, co-founder of the Peace-a-holics, just before the parade began at the corner of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Avenue.
Members of the Ballou High School Band tried to make a musical point to the Dunbar High School band that they own the streets east of the Anacostia River, but in the end both groups and hundreds of high school students enjoyed marching instead of being in class for much of the day.
Tyrone C. Parker, executive director of the Alliance of Concerned Men, said that he was glad to see so many young people, because “The spirit of our youth is the spirit of our community.”
Kwaco Atiba, with the Concerned Parents of Petworth, said he hopes the march will make a difference with young people [...]
Imam Warith Deen Mohammed, a major Islamic leader in the United States who led thousands of African-American Muslims to orthodox Islam, died Tuesday in Illinois. He was 74.
Born and raised in Hamtramck, Mohammed, also known as W.D. or Wallace Mohammed, was the son of Nation of Islam leader and Michigan native Elijah Muhammad.
After his father’s death, Mohammed transformed the Nation of Islam from a black nationalist organization into a group that embraced a more mainstream Islam and rejected racial and ethnic divisions.
He was considered to be the biggest Muslim leader in the United States among African Americans and may have had more followers than any other Muslim leader in the country, supporters said. Mohammed became known as a national leader who worked with other faiths and was the first Muslim to lead prayers in the U.S. Senate.
In metro Detroit, Muslims were stunned to hear of his death. He had just spoken two weeks ago at a Detroit convention of his followers and was planning to speak in Detroit again later this month…