The African American Community and Islam Nation
Even before Malcolm X was born it appeared as if he would be involved in some racial activity. When his was pregnant their village was attacked by Ku Klux Klan. They were night riders who attacked their village in 1925 in Omaha. The attack was because of Malcolm X father involvement in activities of the Universal Negro Improvement Association.
Malcolm X lived with some of childhood memories on some of the incidents which happened when he was a small child. At one time, their entire village was burned down by a group of white racists. Malcolm saw police watching as their houses were being burned and did not do anything to stop the attackers. Black people were not allowed to live in East Lansing, the family moved out of the town where they built a four room house. The move was important and advantageous to the family since they got a farm where they could grow their own crops.
Malcolm’s father and mother frequently had conflicts because the mother was more learned than the father. Due to this, the mother had a tendency of correcting the father and what to be done and eaten. It was against the values of Malcolm’s family to eat either rabbit or pork which Malcolm X father loved.
Malcolm X was the father’s favorite because he was light-skinned despite the father being proud of being dark. On the other hand, Malcolm X preferred her children who were dark-skinned yet she was light-skinned.
Malcolm X was never a Christian despite his father being a Christian minister. When the father was addressing Universal Negro Improvement Association meetings, he would go with Malcolm. In the meetings Malcolm X came to note that Africa was being referred to as a mighty continent and also as the Garden of Eden. This was a complete contrast to Malcolm X belief that Africa was characterized by savage.
Malcolm X father was killed and his death was made to look like an accident. After the father’s death, the family faced financial constraints and was thus the responsibility of Malcolm to take care of his brother Reginald. The mother because of the white color started sewing in Lansing and was fired when they discovered that she was black. As a result the family relations became poor because of financial reasons and their injured pride.
Malcolm X started to be involved in conflicts with the authorities when he started stealing foods. Mrs. Little thought that by whipping him she would instill discipline in him. She remained in a State Mental Hospital until 1963 after a mental breakdown.
Malcolm X attributes the torments his mother went through as a result of the victimization by the white officials. As a result Malcolm X was always bitter and vowed not to forgive the white authorities for the torments his mother went through. Malcolm was expelled from school in 1938 and went Mason, Michigan. He went to live with a white couple who despite treating him nicely, they refused to recognize him as a human being. This led to him being a rebel against the whites since they were only willing to accepts the blacks if they treated them as inferiors.
Malcolm started a career in boxing which was never successful. He lost in two of his fights where he fought with a white boy named Bill Peterson. He terminated his boxing career and he attributes his lose to Allah who stopped him from being punchy. In his new home in Michigan, the family was kind to him and this gave him the motivation to be involved more in school. His turning point is when he became the class president in his eighth grade. He wanted to become a lawyer and he told his teacher who told him it was hard for a black person to pursue such a career.
People started referring to him as a “nigger” and this made him upset, withdrawn and he became quiet. Malcolm X decided to move to Boston where his sister was living and he considered this to be Allah’s plans. In Boston, Malcolm X became a hustler in the ghetto life though his sister helped him cope with life in the city. In the city, Malcolm indulged in smoking, drinking bhang and gambling.
At the age of twenty one, Malcolm X was jailed to serve for seven years. He was introduced by his brother Reginald into Muslim religion. In prison he became a Black Muslim where he wrote a letter to Elijah Muhammad. After the jail term, Malcolm X started to search for converts where he found that black people were accepting Islamic religion more easily as compared to the white people. The prison was another turning point of Malcolm X since he went there as illiterate, a criminal and came out being a religious man. Malcolm X was intelligent and also a devoted Muslim and this attracted the attention of Elijah Muhammad.
The autography of Malcolm X is an extraordinary story trying to illustrate the change of movement by Malcolm as an icon. He grew up in a state of segregation and racism, and he was able to fight for his life while participating in crime activities and developed to become one of the most influential black in the United States of America. Malcolm first developed hatred towards Americans and any white person and this was from the time of his childhood. When Malcolm was introduced to Islam teachings about Muhammad, he readily accepted the idea all -whites were devils (Haley p162). The teaching of Islam and Muhammad did not apply to Malcolm, but it was also accepted by more African American community for either social or personal Reasons.
The Islam community was always referred as “natural religion of the black man” (Haley 158). The leader of the cult was called Elijah Muhammad and according to the religion principles, it was believed that he was sent by God sent. The existence of the grudge between the whites and blacks was described as “Yacub’s History.” It is believed that a black was the origin of man and not the white. At the time male were born from to unwanted part of the people and result in threatening the peace.
Malcolm was a genius individual and decides to figure out how to separate human genome into brown and black genes. Mr. Yacub decided to shift to the island where more than 1000 years ago, a “bleached out” race was developed. The black race decides to stay with the white race at long last. They believed that Allah had nurture Moses to raise human civilization (Haley 168-70). In Muhammad teachings, he made people believe that white had hidden the identity of blacks in the United States Malcolm thought by hijacking blacks in their land in Africa; they ignored the blacks’ right to know their true family and their native language (Haley 164).
The Islam affected blacks personally because it made the have pride because of their unique race as stated. Before, Malcolm X had many grievances caused by the whites. They had assassinated his father and place his mother in an asylum, separated both his sister and brother and told him he would not be successful as he was a black (Haley 162). These injustices also affected blacks who faced unfairness and inequality.
African American believed that whites were evil. Malcolm noted in the message Muhammad stressed that history was all about the white, and the black had been ignored (Haley 162). Malcolm X believed ignoring African American was the main reason they supported Muhammad teachings. Once educated on the history of black being treated as a slave in the United States that decided to be alienated from the whites. (Haley).
Socially the religion of Islam gave power to the African American and hence making the rival between whites and blacks. Having charismatic leaders such as Muhammad and Malcolm X the African American had s good respect for the religion. The black community then decided to form an organization, the Nation of African American in the United States of America and have the power to educate other black on their beliefs “brainwashed blacks” (Haley 166) and was raised to believe “Black was a curse … and look for his pie in the sky…while right on earth, the slave master white man enjoyed his heaven” (Haley 166).
The religion considered blacks as superior, not to be despised by the whites. The blacks were denied their rights as human beings and forced into the ship fully occupied by slaves. It was another question asked by Malcolm X. He asked “how is the black man going to get ‘civil rights’ before his first win human rights?” (Haley 183). Malcolm speaks out that blacks can protect their fellows as a great race and culture. In the Islam culture, the Muslims were not authorized to “dance, attend movies and sports, date, and take a long vacation or gamble” (Haley 226). The laws restricted Muslim to associate with whites because they were particular addressed to sidelining the whites.
Malcolm X spoke “the white man wants the black man to be immoral, unclean, and ignorant. We cannot win freedom, justice, and equality until we be are self-reliant and hard work!” (Haley 225). Through the African American organization blacks were able to give whites a strong signal of enjoying equal rights as United States Citizens.
A large number of blacks were staying in lowest economic classes in the 1951s and 1960s. It was as a result of civil right activist led by Martin Luther King Jr. who supported middle class black, and Malcolm did not support the idea. Martin Luther King Jr. supporters come out and brainwashed the black emperor. (Haley 186).
The conflicting opinion of Malcolm X and King lead to splitting of African American community. Some were in support of Marcus Garvey’s idea and his “back to Africa” movement. Muhammad and Islam teachings were supported by the pan Africa movement and showed some hopes to all Africa America regardless of the economic status. The religion taught blacks to be self-reliant. Instead of moving to a white men’s land, they were advised to start their own income generating activities and give support to fellow blacks.
All the blacks were affected personally by the inhumane treatment of Africa American. Even in today generation racial animosity is between blacks and whites. Things have changed, and the black history of blacks may haunt America later. The Autobiography of Malcolm X tries to show the way blacks were raising the status of power to be heard despite the racism. The black joined civil groups to support what they were fighting for.