by John Perazzo
How racial tribalism became the defining hallmark of the black Left.
In a recent interview on the popular radio show The Breakfast Club, Temple University professor and former CNN contributor Marc Lamont Hill affectionately referred to Nation Of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan as “my brother.” Moreover, Hill pushed back against whites who suggested that he and other black pundits should, in Hill's words, “throw [Farrakhan] away wholesale” because of the latter’s long history of incendiary racial rhetoric. Noting that no one had ever urged him to similarly distance himself from what he describes as “extreme” conservatives like Bill O'Reilly and Ann Coulter when he was a Fox News contributor years ago, Hill now asks: “Why is only one set of people untouchable? And why does every black leader have to ritually denounce Farrakhan in order to sustain a position?”
Hill’s professed bewilderment vis-à-vis this alleged double standard is wholly unsurprising, in light of the very obvious fact that he, like Farrakhan, has shown himself to be quite fluent in the vernacular of racism and anti-Semitism. During a January 2017 appearance on a CNN panel, for instance, Hill took issue with black celebrities like Ray Lewis, Jim Brown, and Steve Harvey for accepting President-elect Donald Trump's invitation to meet with him at Trump Tower. After Bruce LeVell — an African American member of Trump’s diversity coalition — objected to Hill’s complaints, Hill characterized LeVell and all other nonwhites who were working on behalf of Trump’s agenda as “a bunch of mediocre Negroes.”
On Columbus Day 2012, Hill published an op-ed in which he listed the “15 Most Overrated White People” – a list that included such names as Elvis Presley, Ronald Reagan, Donald Trump, William Shakespeare, and Babe Ruth. Hill’s motivation for writing this column, he explained, was his angst over the celebration of a national holiday honoring “an immoral treasure hunter” and “vicious conquistador.”
In stark contrast to his sneering derision of “overrated” whites, Hill has heaped mountains of glowing praise upon convicted black cop-killers like Mumia Abu Jamal (“one of the world’s most celebrated journalists, freedom fighters, and political prisoners”) and Assata Shakur (“an American hero and freedom fighter”).
In October 2015, Hill lauded Rasmea Odeh — the mastermind of a deadly 1969 terrorist bombing in Jerusalem — as a “Palestinian freedom fighter.” Viewing Israel as “an apartheid state” that deserves to be crushed economically by organized worldwide boycotts, Hill contends that violence is a wholly legitimate means of advancing the creation of “a free Palestine from the River to the Sea.” In other words, all the land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea — precisely the territory that constitutes Israel — should henceforth be known as “Palestine.”
Among the most revealing aspects of Hill's worldview is the genuine love and admiration he has voiced for the late Khalid Abdul Muhammad, describing him as a “mentor, teacher, and revolutionary hero.” Best remembered as a vulgar mouthpiece of the Nation Of Islam and the New Black Panther Party, Muhammad famously accused Jews of having provoked Adolf Hitler when they “went in there, in Germany, the way they do everywhere they go, and they supplanted, they usurped.” Further, Muhammad advised blacks that “[t]here are no good crackers, and if you find one, [you should] kill him before he changes.” He told a television audience that “[t]here is a little bit of Hitler in all white people.” He told a San Francisco State University audience that the “white man” is “not a devil,” but is “the Devil.” He declared that blacks, in retribution against South African whites of the apartheid era, should “kill the women,…kill the children,…kill the babies,…kill the blind,…kill the crippled,…kill the faggot,…kill the lesbian,…kill them all.” And he praised Colin Ferguson, a black man who had shot some twenty white and Asian commuters (killing six of them) in a racially motivated 1993 shooting spree aboard a New York commuter train, as a hero who possessed the courage to “just kill every goddamn cracker that he saw.”
So much for Hill's “mentor,” “teacher,” and “hero.” Oh sure, Muhammad's language may have been a bit salty at times, but at least he wasn't an “overrated white person.”
Muhammad's mentor, Louis Farrakhan, likewise has a long, well-documented history of venom-laced references to “white devils” and Jewish “bloodsuckers.” He has characterized Jews as “wicked deceivers” from “the synagogue of Satan”; has referred to Judaism as a “gutter religion”; has described Adolf Hitler as “a very great man”; and has portrayed white people variously as “vicious beasts,” “the skunks of the planet,” and “potential humans [who] haven’t evolved yet.”
In March 2015, Farrakhan said that “Israelis and Zionist Jews” — and “not … Arabs or Muslims at all” — were behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In a sermon he delivered four months later in Miami, Farrakhan issued what was, in essence, a call for black people to murder whites: “I’m looking for 10,000 in the midst of a million. Ten thousand fearless men who say death is sweeter than continued life under tyranny.... [S]talk them and kill them and let them feel the pain of death that we are feeling!”
A protégé of both Farrakhan and Khalid Abdul Muhammad is the former Chairman of the New Black Panther Party, Malik Zulu Shabazz, who once told a Howard University audience: “I say to all Jewish people and all white people … stop pushing your Holocaust down my throat.” At a “Redeem the Dream” rally at the Lincoln Memorial, Shabazz called on black young people to unite against their “common enemy” — the white man — and he articulated his “black dream” of seeing “caskets and funerals in the community of our enemy.”
Even while denouncing what he depicts as the scourge of white supremacy, Shabazz passionately embraces his own philosophy of racial superiority: “Black Power! Black Power!… Our genes are dominant, white genes are recessive.... Black Power!”
In the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Shabazz defended Osama bin Laden and blamed President George W. Bush for the horrors of that day. Calling America and Israel the “number one and two terrorists right now on the planet,” Shabazz declared: “Zionism is racism, Zionism is terrorism, Zionism is colonialism, Zionism is Imperialism, and support for Zionism is the root of why so many were killed on September 11.” During a New Black Panther Party meeting in March 2002, Shabazz held up a picture of bin Laden and praised him as a Muslim “brother” and “a bold man” who was “not bowing down” to the West, but rather was “standing up” for his beliefs and “bringing reform to this world.” Urging his listeners to “give [bin Laden] his respect,” Shabazz said: “Let’s give him a hand, man.”
At a protest outside B’nai B’rith headquarters in Washington soon thereafter, Shabazz said: “Kill every goddamn Zionist in Israel! Goddamn little babies, goddamn old ladies! Blow up Zionist supermarkets!”
Shabazz's successor as Chairman of the New Black Panther Party is Hashim Nzinga, who routinely refers to white people as “crackers” and has accused Jews of using “their monies” to “infiltrat[e]” historically black colleges with the poison of “white supremacy.”
Another longtime New Black Panther Party leader, Quanell X — who recently severed his ties to that organization — once told a CNN interviewer that black Americans were fully prepared to resort to violence as a means of addressing racial injustices. Declaring that “all you Jews can go straight to hell,” he warned: “I say to Jewish America: Get ready … knuckle up, put your boots on, because we’re ready and the war is going down.”
A particularly prominent black racist/anti-Semite who has made a long career out of smearing whites and Jews is Jesse Jackson. In a private conversation with a black reporter during his 1984 presidential campaign, Jackson infamously referred to Jews as “Hymies,” and to New York City as “Hymietown.” In a speech at Michigan State University many years later, he disparaged the American founders as nothing more than “a bunch of white men” who were oblivious to the needs and perceptions of nonwhites.
A slightly younger and distinctly more vulgar version of Jackson is the equally renowned “civil rights activist” Al Sharpton, who first gained notoriety thirty years ago when he helped perpetuate the obscene Tawana Brawley hoax, where a black teenage girl falsely claimed to have been the victim of a racially motivated gang-rape that in fact had never even occurred.
A few years after that, Sharpton fanned the flames of a series of deadly race riots that overran the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn after a Hasidic driver had accidentally struck and killed a young black boy. Among other things, Sharpton characterized local Jews as “the diamond merchants right here in Crown Heights.”
In a 1994 speech at New Jersey’s Kean College, Sharpton referred to white people as “crackers” who “was in the cave while we [blacks] was building empires.” “We taught philosophy and astrology and mathematics before Socrates and them Greek homos ever got around to it,” he added for good measure.
In 1995, Sharpton led his National Action Network in a racially charged boycott against Freddy’s Fashion Mart, a Jewish-owned business in Harlem. The street leader of the boycott, former mental patient Morris Powell, and his fellow protesters repeatedly warned passersby not to patronize the “crackers” and “the greedy Jew bastards [who are] killing our [black] people.” This all took place under the watchful, approving eye of Sharpton, who referred to the proprietors of Freddy’s as “white interlopers.” The subsequent picketing became ever-more menacing in its tone, until one of the participants eventually shot four whites inside the store and then set the building on fire –– killing seven people in all.
In June 2016, Sharpton led a rally in support of black Assemblyman Keith Wright, who at that time was running in a Democratic primary election as part of his quest for a U.S. House seat. Belittling Wright’s primary opponents, who also were black, as race traitors, Sharpton said: “You’re supposed to be attracted to these Negroes you ain’t never seen before. I mean, they must have a laboratory to just create these Negroes.”
There is no white person anywhere in the media or in politics who could have said this –– or any of the other ugly remarks made by Sharpton –– without being permanently blacklisted from polite company. But Sharpton faced no consequences whatsoever. Indeed, former President Barack Obama publicly lauded him as “a voice for the voiceless and ... dispossessed”; praised him for his “commitment to fight injustice and inequality”; and thanked him for his “dedication to the righteous cause of perfecting our union.” Moreover, Sharpton visited the White House on official business at least 85 times during Obama's two terms in office.
Keith Ellison, the longtime U.S. congressman who was recently elected Attorney General of Minnesota, once published an article advocating slavery reparations as well as the creation of a geographically self-contained “homeland” for black people. For more than a decade, Ellison worked actively on behalf of the Nation Of Islam and argued that Louis Farrakhan “is a role model for black youth”; “is not an anti-Semite”; “is a sincere, tireless, and uncompromising advocate of the black community and other oppressed people around the world”; and is regarded by “most black people” as “a central voice for our collective aspirations.”
Filmmaker Spike Lee has been highly outspoken on racial matters in many different contexts and venues. After visiting apartheid-era South Africa in the early 1990s, for instance, he said: “I seriously wanted to pick up a gun and shoot whites. The only way to resolve matters is by bloodshed.” On other occasions, Lee has bluntly articulated his contempt for black-white couples. “I give interracial couples a look,” he once said. “Daggers. They get uncomfortable when they see me on the street.”
In February 2014, during a Black History Month event at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, Lee angrily denounced the recent influx of new, wealthy, and disproportionately white residents to certain historically black New York City neighborhoods. He also voiced resentment over what he viewed as the white newcomers’ efforts to quash local black traditions and pastimes. Said Lee:
Lee then likened the wave of gentrification to efforts to wipe out Native Americans who already had been living on the continent during the nation’s formative years. And in yet another allusion to attempted genocide, Lee stated in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine that “AIDS is a government-engineered disease” designed to eradicate nonwhites and homosexuals.
Jeremiah Wright, the longtime former pastor of Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ, likewise believes that “we started the AIDS virus … as a means of genocide against people of color.” A Jew-hater extraordinaire, Wright has referred to Israel as a “dirty word”; has stated that Zionism contains an element of “white racism”; has likened Israel’s treatment of Palestinians to South Africa’s treatment of blacks during the apartheid era; and has advocated divestment campaigns targeting companies that conduct business in, or with, Israel. When a number of prominent African Americans counseled fellow blacks to boycott Louis Farrakhan's Million Man March in 1995, Wright derided them variously as “Negro leaders,” “colored leaders,” “Oreos,” “darkies,” and “house niggras.”
Leonard Jeffries, a former Professor of Black Studies at the City College of New York, contends that blacks are “sun people,” the culturally and racially superior counterparts of whites, the “ice people.” Speaking at a taxpayer-funded Black Arts and Cultural Festival in Albany, New York, he once claimed that his Jewish disputants in academia were “slick and devilish and dirty and dastardly.” Sneering at the “white boy” and “the culture of white racism,” Jeffries has exhorted historians to point out that President George Washington was nothing more than a “slave master bastard Founding Father.”
Amir-Abdel Malik-Ali is a California-based black Imam who lectures frequently at Muslim Student Union and Muslim Students Association events. A passionate supporter of the genocidal terrorist organizations Hamas and Hezbollah, he endorses suicide bombings as a legitimate “resistance” tactic: “Palestinian mothers are supporting their children who are suicide bombers, saying, ‘Go honey, go!’ That ain’t suicide; that’s martyrdom.”
In a May 2006 appearance at UC Irvine, Malik-Ali accused the “apartheid State of Israel” of carrying out a “holocaust” and a “genocide” against the Palestinian people. Speaking from a podium whose facade was adorned with a banner that said “Israel, the 4th Reich,” he referred to Jews as “new Nazis” and “a bunch of straight-up punks.” “The truth of the matter is your days are numbered,” Malik-Ali added. “... We will fight you until we are either martyred or until we are victorious.”
Another noteworthy black racist is Women's March, Inc. co-president Tamika Mallory, who previously served as executive director of Al Sharpton's National Action Network and has characterized Nation Of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan as the “Greatest Of All Time.” “We’re not really interested in hearing white women talk about how much they want to work with us [in Women's March], and how much they want to be allies, and how much they appreciate us, and all those great things,” says Mallory, because they “have been voting the wrong way” and thus “are largely to blame” for America's racial inequities. Moreover, Mallory accuses white women of being “unable to step aside and allow women of color to … lead.”
At an event in 2011, Congressman James Clyburn shared a stage with Louis Farrakhan, who discussed the Nation Of Islam book The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews, which purports to provide “irrefutable evidence that the most prominent of the Jewish pilgrim fathers [sic] used kidnapped Black Africans disproportionately more than any other ethnic or religious group in New World history.” After Farrakhan spoke about the need for blacks to pool their resources and work together, Clyburn said: “I want to thank Minister Farrakhan for offering up a number of precepts that we ought to adhere to.”
Farrakhan and Clyburn have plenty of company among black public figures who are not only unashamed of engaging in racial tribalism, but who actually go so far as to put it on display and shout it from the rooftops. In 2012, for instance, actor Samuel L. Jackson proudly and defiantly acknowledged that in 2008 “I voted for Barack [Obama] because he was black.... [His] message didn’t mean [bleep] to me.”
In a “Millions for Reparations” rally demanding that the federal government pay slavery reparations to black Americans, New York City Councilman Charles Barron angrily declared: “I want to go up to the closest white person and say, ‘You can’t understand this, it’s a black thing,’ and then slap him just for my mental health.” When delivering a commencement address to black students at Medgar Evers College in 2009, Barron encouraged the graduates to always identify themselves first-and-foremost as black: “Never forget who you are, and don’t be afraid to be black…. I don’t want you to be a lawyer who happens to be black. Be a black lawyer. I don’t want you to be an elected official who happens to be black. Be a black elected official. We got a black President. We got a black governor. Say black, black, black, black, black.”
Another hallmark of contemporary black racism is a spirit of self-righteous combativeness that jumps at any opportunity to disparage white people in openly racialist terms. In December 2018, for example, NBA star LeBron James ripped NFL team owners as “a bunch of old, white men” who “got that slave mentality. And it’s like: ‘This is my team. You do what the fu** I tell y’all to do, or we get rid of y’all’.”
In a similarly mean and accusatory tone, Democrat Congressman Andre Carson told a gathering of supporters at a 2011 Congressional Black Caucus event that the conservative Tea Party movement was infested with white racism: “This is the effort that we are seeing of Jim Crow. Some of these folks in Congress right now would love to see us [blacks] as second-class citizens. Some of them in Congress right now with this Tea Party movement would love to see you and me [blacks] … hanging on a tree.”
In October 2018, CNN host Don Lemon scolded President Trump for “demonizing” Muslims and illegal aliens as potential terror threats. Then, in the next breath, he asserted that “the biggest terror threat in this country is white men, most of them radicalized to the right, and we have to start doing something about them. There is no travel ban on them. There is no ban on — you know, they had the Muslim ban. There is no white guy ban. So what do we do about that?”
Like most black racists, Lemon routinely engages in psychological projection by accusing white people of harboring racist beliefs and malevolent intent. For instance, he claims that President Trump was engaging in racism when he mocked both Lemon and Congresswoman Maxine Waters as people of low intelligence. And yet, as the Media Research Center has documented, there have at least 36 known occasions where Trump has publicly characterized specific white individuals as “dummies,” “not bright,” “dopey,” “clueless,” and “low IQ.”
The late Professor Derrick Bell, widely regarded as the principal founder of Critical Race Theory, described Nation Of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan as a “smart and superarticulate” man and “a great hero” for black people. Claiming that “few whites are ready to actively promote civil rights for blacks,” Bell stated that “slavery is, as an example of what white America has done, a constant reminder of what white America might do.”
In a 2016 op-ed piece in The New York Times, Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson described whites as people of boundless “privilege,” known for their “selfish insistence that the world, all of it — all its resources, all its riches, all its bounty, all its grace — should be [theirs] first, and foremost, and if there’s anything left, why then we [blacks] can have some, but only if we ask politely and behave gratefully.” Dyson also laments that blacks commonly react to white racism by “sicken[ing] our souls with depression”; presumably he is unaware that white suicide rates are fully three times higher than those of blacks.
Salon political writer Chauncey DeVega laments that “Negrophobia” — a form of “mental, physical and emotional violence against black people” which “presumes the inherently benign nature of whiteness and the dangerousness of black and brown people” — is ubiquitous in America, “where many whites dehumanize black people by subconsciously linking them to apes.”
Fellow Slate writer Jamelle Bouie contends that “the Americans who backed Trump and his threat of state-sanctioned violence against Hispanic immigrants and Muslim Americans … voted for a racist.” “If you voted for Trump, you voted for this, regardless of what you believe about the groups in question,” says Bouie. “That you have black friends or Latino colleagues, that you think yourself to be tolerant and decent, doesn’t change the fact that you voted for racist policy that may affect, change, or harm their lives. And on that score, your frustration at being labeled a racist doesn’t justify or mitigate the moral weight of your political choice.... To insist [that] Trump’s backers are good people is to treat their inner lives with more weight than the actual lives on the line under a Trump administration. At best, it’s myopic and solipsistic. At worst, it’s morally grotesque.”
In September 2018, then-ESPN host Jemele Hill posted a tweet stating that “Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.” In a subsequent discussion about that particular charge, Hill doubled down: “I thought I was saying water is wet. I didn’t even think it was controversial.”
The overt and unapologetic promotion of racial tribalism has become the defining hallmark of the black Left in contemporary America. Rooted in the absurd notion that black people, by definition, cannot be racists because they lack political “power,” black racism today parades righteously and ostentatiously under the protective, all-encompassing banner of “social justice.” And because the leftists who thoroughly dominate America's educational establishment and mass media have largely embraced and advanced this very same narrative of perpetual black victimhood and white transgression, black racists have become emboldened as never before to trumpet endless litanies of manufactured racial grievances. As evidenced in the many examples cited above, they feel free to thunder with absolute impunity things that would permanently destroy the career and reputation of any white person who dared to even whisper similar words. This is how people come to hate each other. This is how nations get torn apart. This is how civilizations die.
Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter