[PEN-L:1386] Black militancy

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Tue Sep 1 08:58:40 PDT 1998

At 11:42 AM 9/1/98 -0400, Frances Bolton (PHI) wrote:
>You're reading NY Magazine, Louis?
>That said, I'm hoping you can elaborate on a couple of things here. First,
>how is NOI accomodationist?

In the sense that selling bean pies and subscribing to an updated version of Booker T. Washington's self-reliance philosophy is accomodationism.

And, we've all heard the story that KM was
>kicked out of NOI for his strong anti-semitic stance. Is that in the
>article? I'm pretty sure, although not entirely sure, that his
>anti-semitic comments were not simply invented by the ADL, although maybe
>you know otherwise. Assuming KM's vocal antisemitism, can we consider him
>a leftist, as you label him? (Note: I'm *not* equating antisemitism with
>anti-Zionism, which *is*, in my estimation, consistent with leftist
>politics) Actually, You said he's "to the left of thr NOI" which is pretty
>meaningless, as I think even Al Gore is to the left of the NOI.

I didn't say he was a leftist. Adolph Reed and Manning Marable are leftists. What I am saying is that the New Black Panther Party is to the left of the NOI, even though Muhammed is a demagogue and a fraud for the most part. As far as the antisemitism of these characters is concerned, I think it has been exaggerated. The Republican Party has been a source of much worse antisemitic utterances over the years, from Nixon's White House to various figures like David Duke.

>Some of these demands I find curious. In particular, I find curious his
>call for repatriation and dual citizenship. Repatriation is, of course,
>precisely what white supremecist extremists would like to see. And the
>dual citizenship is sort of odd, too. It assumes that US citizens, who are
>considered "white" in Africa regardless of skin color, have the right to
>citizenship anywhere. Isn't that sort of presumptuous in a typical"First
>World" sort of way?

Interesting questions. At any rate, these sorts of demands are clearly an advance over the Million Man March which came across as Promise Keepers + numerology.

And maybe you simply didn't put in all the demands,
>but I notice a complete lack of gender and g/l/b/t awareness. That's
>deeply troubling. And I've looked over it several times, and I don't see
>any critique of capitalism, or any indiation that KM has taken seriously
>the connection between capital and race stratification in the US. Those
>are some pretty disturbing absences. The BRC explicitly addressed gender,
>sexual orientation, and capitalism.

The BRC is what I identify with, not Khallil Muhammed. What's important about the Million Youth March is that it expresses motion in the black community toward militancy. It is roughly analogous to early stirrings in the labor movement against the status quo, which led to the successful UPS strike. A march in Harlem of 100,000 black youth in favor of black power type demands is an absolutely historic event.

Louis Proyect


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