lördag 19 september 2009

Malcom X. Leaving the Nation of Islam Part 7.

In early 1963, Malcolm X started collaborating with Alex Haley on The Autobiography of Malcolm X. The book was not finished when he was assassinated in 1965. Haley completed it and published it later that year.
On December 1, 1963, when he was asked for a comment about the assassination of PresidentKennedy, 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 issued a message of condolence to the Kennedy family and ordered its ministers not to comment on the assassination, publicly censured their former shining star. Although Malcolm X retained his post and rank as minister, he was prohibited from public speaking for 90 days.

Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, March 26, 1964
On March 8, 1964, Malcolm X publicly announced his break from the Nation of Islam. He said that he was still a Muslim, but he felt the Nation of Islam had "gone as far as it can" because of its rigid religious teachings. Malcolm X said he was going to organize a black nationalist organization that would try to "heighten the political consciousness" of African Americans.
He also expressed his desire to work with other civil rights leaders and said that Elijah Muhammad had prevented him from doing so in the past.
One reason for the separation was growing tension between Malcolm X and Elijah Muhammad because of Malcolm X's dismay about rumors of Muhammad's extramarital affairs with young secretaries. Such actions were against the teachings of the Nation.
Although at first Malcolm X ignored the rumors, he spoke with Muhammad's son and the women making the accusations. He came to believe that they were true, and Muhammad confirmed the rumors in 1963. Muhammad tried to justify his actions by referring to precedents by Biblical prophets.
Another reason was resentment by people within the Nation. As Malcolm X had become a favorite of the media, and many in the Nation's Chicago headquarters felt that he was over-shadowing Muhammad. Louis Lomax´s 1963 book about the Nation of Islam, When the Word Is Given, featured a picture of Malcolm X on its cover and included five of his speeches, but only one of Muhammad's, which greatly upset Muhammad. Muhammad was also envious that a publisher was interested in Malcolm X's autobiography.
After leaving the Nation of Islam, Malcolm X founded Muslim Mosque, Inc., a religious organization, and the Organization of Afro-American Unity, a secular group that advocated black nationalism.
On March 26, 1964, he met Martin Luther King, Jr. in Washington, D.C., after a press conference which followed both men attending the Senate to hear the debate on the Civil Rights bill. This was the only time the two men ever met; their meeting lasted only one minute, just long enough for photographers to take a picture.
In April, Malcolm X made a speech titled "The Ballot or the Bullet" in which he advised African Americans to exercise their right to vote wisely. Several Sunni Muslims encouraged Malcolm X to learn about Islam. Soon he converted to Sunni Islam, and decided to make his pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj).

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