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Farrakhan’s message of fearlessness taken to heart

By Janiah X -Contributing Writer- | Last updated: Mar 9, 2018 - 9:32:04 PM

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Men and women applaud and were moved by Min. Farrakhan’s Feb. 25 message to cap off Saviours’ Day 2018. The Muslim leader spoke for three hours and his message resonated with many who traveled from around the country and world to attend the annual convention.

CHICAGO—The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan’s Saviours’ Day message touched many in the audience, including those who sat on stage with him during the Feb. 25 address at the Chicago Wintrust Arena which was also broadcast via internet webcast around the world. The arena was full and a large overflow room across the street at McCormick Place was needed to hold additional people.

Tamika Mallory, an activist and organizer of the Women’s March, said she received a jewel from the Minister’s lecture.

“I think today what I was able to take home as a real jewel, is where the Minister was talking about really not allowing fear to cripple you and as leaders, how we have to find a way to confront the fears that we have,” Ms. Mallory said.

Young Muslims applaud during program.
“And he talked about his own fears and challenges and moments when he has actually been nervous about things, but how he confronted it, and it ultimately turned the issue around, turned the challenge around on the person that was trying to bring fear upon him. And I think for me, as I continue to grow throughout this movement, it means a lot to have someone sort of reaffirm that we have to be bold and fearless in this moment.”

Hakeem Muhammad a first-year student at Northeastern Law School in Boston, Mass., stated, “Minister Farrakhan rightfully addressed the smear of White supremacist Zionist organizations against the Nation of Islam.   The same ADL that brands the Nation of Islam as a hate group and masquerades as a civil rights organization supported White rule in South Africa and even spied on behalf of the Apartheid, South African government.”

Audience in Chicago Wintrust Arena clap during program.
He added, “Minister Farrakhan pointed out correctly that not a single White Jewish person has ever been physically harmed as a result of his words—we can’t say the same for the ADL who worked on behalf of an apartheid government who actively killed Black people.”

Author, professor, activist and intellectual Dr. Cornel West was also in attendance.  “I’m here because I have a deep love for Min. Farrakhan, we go back over 35-40 years and he’s been fearless and he has been bold. Despite whatever disagreements he and I have, we have a deeper love of the people,” said Dr. West.

Dr. Cornel West and Father Michael Pfleger
“We need a cacophony of voices that is telling the truth that’s not scared, that’s not afraid, that’s not intimidated. We need a whole coalition of voices and Min. Louis Farrakhan’s voice is one of them,” he added.

Cliff Kelley, a longtime Chicago radio show host on 1690 AM WVON a Black talk radio station, said he was still trying to let the message sink in.

“The Minister is unbelievable, as he always is and actually I was there taking some notes because I wanted to make sure I heard some things I want to mention on Monday,” said Mr. Kelley, whose show airs weekdays at 3 p.m.   “I think that this was just great, the place was packed, and there’s so many messages that people really need to hear, and we’ll be talking about it for some time.”

Mysonne Linen, a hip-hop artist, founder of a male mentoring organization and member of Justice League NYC, said he received great energy from the Minister.

“It was so many jewels, man,” Mr. Linen said. “It just was about us being responsible for each other and us uplifting, and that’s having strength, and us not being afraid, you know, in the face of adversity and the face of the enemy and us having the energy and the will to stand up despite anything and he’s always given me that energy, so today was just amplified by 1,000.”

Thousands packed Chicago Wintrust Arena for Min. Farrakhan’s message which was also broadcast worldwide via internet webcast. An overflow room was set up at nearby McCormick Place for the hundreds who were not able to get into the arena.

Rev. Alfreddie Johnson of the World Literacy Crusade said he enjoyed hearing the Minister point out historical events.

“I was here just to see the Minister and also for him to lay down the historical background behind the relationships between the destructive Jews versus the good Jews,” Rev. Johnson said. “And also (to) show the historical relationship that there are things that are taking place historically that prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that he’s walking in the seat of Christ and that we are the chosen people.”

As always, Min. Farrakhan’s message resonated with young people. “The inspiration to hear the Honorable Minister Farrakhan speak is that he always gives me something special I can take back and apply to my life, and it puts my life in a better place,” said Ishmael Pennington, 24 who traveled from Miami.

L-r: Cliff Kelley, Ahmed Rufai, Akbar Muhammad and Anthony Shahid

“I come back with more love and more energy to grow and want to produce and be a better individual. That’s something I can take back and share with my friends and family, and hopefully, it will make me a better example and better their lives as well,” he added.

“The youth like to listen to the Minister because he’s such a revered man who has an impact on the youth because they can trust him. He’s 100 percent and keeps his word.” 

The Minister’s words about the removal of fear also resonated with Nasira Muhammad, a 15-year-old from Chicago. “Basically, what I got from that is that we can’t let our fear control us and that in our daily lives with basic things and the little things that we fear, we should overcome that,” she said.

Fredrica Bey and Rev. Willie Wilson
Rev. Willie Wilson of Union Temple Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. is a long-time friend of Min. Farrakhan. A Christian pastor, Rev. Wilson opened the doors to his church to Min. Farrakhan to speak when he first began rebuilding the Nation of Islam after the departure of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad. Rev. Wilson was also, impressed by the Minister’s Saviours’ Day message.

“Brother Minister Louis Farrakhan has left an indelible imprint on the whole world, particularly as we look now and see the rise of the blackening and the browning of the world with a new found sense of consciousness, which has provoked a fear among White nationalists, and White racists who are determined, have a fear of losing their power, their status and position and because of the fear of genetic annihilation,” said Rev. Wilson.

“It is due to the great word of Brother Minister going around the world, raising the consciousness level of the people that we are at the point that we are right now, and it is a situation where it cannot be stopped. It will continue to rise because the people will continue to rise,” he added.

Fredrica Bey, executive director of Women in Support of the Million Man March enjoyed her treasured seat on the dais as Min. Farrakhan spoke to the world. The Nation of Islam pioneer said she was pleased that the Minister addressed the denial of him by Congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) and showed images on the large screen of when Mr. Ellison once sold The Final Call Newspaper.

Ms. Bey added, “I’m so happy that we work with a group of women, Christians and Muslims, that put his name everywhere we went.  They knew not to come ask us any foolishness about the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, because we wore his name, and hopefully, we wore it well.”

Back L-R: Min. Tony Muhammad and Min. Hakeem Muhammad Front L-R: NOI pioneers Abdul Bey Muhammad and Thomas Jehad
Thomas Jehad, NOI pioneer, said Min. Farrakhan delivered a message that went deep into the heart of things.  “He exposed what needed to be exposed, and he showed that other people can do it, as Dr. Billy Graham is sitting in the (Capitol) Rotunda, and what he said is what the Minister has been saying all along,” stated Mr. Jehad speaking of the late evangelist who recently died. Rev. Dr. Graham also spoke to Jewish influence and power in America. Known as “America’s pastor,” Dr. Graham died Feb. 21 at age 99. His body laid in state at the U.S. Capitol in the rotunda, the first religious leader given that honor.

Yasmeen Salaam, a student of Imam Warith Deen Mohammad, thought the Minister’s message aligned with that of her teacher’s.

“I thought it was absolutely extraordinary,” Ms. Salaam said. “I think in the time we’re living in, we need to recognize the roots that we come from and also understand that we have to establish a foundation in order to build upon the collective destiny that we all want in our lives as Black people.”

Linda Robinson, a stay at home mom brought her children to hear Min. Farrakhan because she saw someone post on Facebook that the Nation of Islam is “our Wakanda and has been for decades,” she said referencing the fictitious African nation from the comic book and now blockbuster movie “Black Panther.” 

“I wanted my children to see Black men and women doing for self and looking militant.  We were not disappointed.  I love the Minister.  His words were inspiring, and he looked so good.  I was very impressed with his guidance about eating one meal a day.  That’s real discipline,” said Ms. Robinson.

Min. Tony Muhammad
Nation of Islam Western Regional Representative Tony Muhammad said he heard Jesus within the Minister’s message. “We may have just heard one of the last, if not the last public lecture and warning that the Minister can give to those in power and us,” Student Minister Tony Muhammad said.

“He has laid down the blueprint on how they’re going to come and how we are to get out. That’s what I heard. I heard Jesus speaking to those Jews that Jesus was speaking to in the book of St. John.”

(Charlene Muhammad, Nisa Islam Muhammad, J.A. Salaam, Eric Ture Muhammad and Anisah Muhammad contributed to this report.)