[Three for All] [Mens et Manus]

October 16, 1995, 15:51 ET

Text of Louis Farrakhan's Speech at the "Million Man March"

Minister Louis Farrakhan, Nation of Islam
Christopher Farrakhan, son of Louis Farrakhan

Christopher Farrakhan: In the name of Allah the Beneficent, the Merciful, I bear witness that there is no god but Allah who came in the person of Master Farad Muhammad. And I bear witness that The Honorable Elijah Muhammad is his true servant. And I further bear witness that Minister Louis Farrakhan is his divine reminder in our midst. On behalf of my family, my mother, my wife at home, and my children, we have been the brunt of a whole lot of attacks. And those of you who know the plight of my father knows that whenever any black man is in trouble, he always comes to your aid. Never be ashamed to stand up and say that Farrakhan is a friend of the black man. And I want all- and I challenge all of the leaders that when you are asked by your enemies and those who oppressed us, my father is no bigot. He is no racist. He is no anti-Semite. And we have the history in our archives that will prove everything that I'm telling you. So from the president on down to everybody who's under him, Farrakhan is in your midst today. You don't have to think about what he said or listen to anybody about what he said. Call him yourself and ask him what he said. I present to you the man that God has given this vision to, for without the vision the people will perish. And I say to you that my father is here to speak to you, so listen to him very carefully. I bring to you my leader, my teacher, my guide, my father, your brother, The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan. Let us receive him. Brother Farrakhan.

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Minister Louis Farrakhan: Thank you. In the name of Allah the Beneficent, the Merciful, we thank him for his prophets and the scriptures which they brought. We thank him for Moses and the Torah. We thank him for Jesus and the Gospel. We thank him for Mohammed and the Koran. Peace be upon these worthy servants of Allah.

I am so grateful to Allah for his intervention in our affairs in the person of Master Farad Muhammad, the great mahdi [sp] who came among us and raised from among us a divine leader, teacher and guide, his messenger to us, The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad [sp]. I greet all of you, my dear and wonderful brothers, with the greeting words of peace. We say it in the Arabic language, a salaam aleykum.

I would like to thank all of those known and unknown persons who worked to make this day of atonement and reconciliation a reality. My thanks and my extreme gratitude to The Reverend Benjamin Chavis and to all of the members of the national organizing committees, to all of the local organizing committees, to Dr. Dorothy Hyde [sp] and the National Council of Negro Women, and all of the sisters who were involved in the planning of the Million Man March. Of course, if I named all those persons whom I know helped to make this event a reality, it would take a tremendous amount of time.

But suffice it to say that we are grateful to all who made this day possible. We are grateful to those who put up the sound and the screens. We are grateful to all of the technical people who have made this possible, to all of the security personnel. My heartfelt thanks to Mr. Robert Johnson, the CEO of BET, for having The Reverend Chavis, Dr. Cornell West [sp], and myself with Bev Smith on our voices to help inform our people of the purpose for the Million Man March and for taking out a full-page endorsing the march in the USA Today newspaper. We thank all of the black newspapers, radio stations, commentators, disc jockeys who really talked up the Million Man March.

The mass media did not get involved until the last minute, and it seemed as though they got involved with another agenda in mind. But to all of you- and we thank you, mass media, too, because even though you planned it for mischief, God planned it for good. So we thank you very much for helping to make this day successful. And to all who participated in the program and who helped to formulate the program, to all the singers, the dancers, the performers, the speakers, to all of the celebrities, to the members of the Congressional Black Caucus, to all of the religious leaders who are present, to all of the state legislators, to everyone that made this day possible, words are inadequate to express our heartfelt thanks.

But really, in truth, all thanks, all praise, all honor, all glory belongs to God, for this is the day that the Lord has made. So we are here rejoicing in this day. Certainly, to all of the members of the Nation of Islam, to all of the ministers, captains, secretaries, and sister captains, to all of the foot soldiers who worked to raise money that this day could be produced, and hopefully all of our vendors be paid, it is not adequate to express our deep sense of personal gratitude, so all I can say is thanks, thanks, thanks. Thank you.

Now, where are we gathered? We're standing at the steps of the United States Capitol. I'm looking at the Washington Monument and beyond it to the Lincoln Memorial and beyond that, to the left, to your right, the Jefferson Memorial. Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president of these United States, and he was the man who allegedly freed us. Abraham Lincoln saw in his day what President Clinton sees in this day. He saw the great divide between black and white. Abraham Lincoln and Bill Clinton see what the Kerner Commission saw 30 years ago when they said that this nation was moving toward two Americas, one black, one white, separate and unequal. And the Kerner Commission revisited their findings 25 years later and saw that America was worse today than it was in the time of Martin Luther King, Jr. There's still two Americas, one black, one white, separate and unequal. Abraham Lincoln, when he saw this great divide, he pondered a solution of separation. Abraham Lincoln said he never was in favor of our being jurors or having equal status with the whites of this nation. Abraham Lincoln said that if there were to be a superior or inferior, he would rather the superior position be assigned to the white race.

There in the middle of this mall is the Washington Monument, 555 feet high. But if we put a 1 in front of that 555 feet, we get 1555, the year that our first fathers landed on the shores of Jamestown, Virginia, as slaves. In the background is the Jefferson and Lincoln Memorial. Each one of these monuments is 19 feet high. Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president, Thomas Jefferson the third president, and 16 and 3 make 19 again. What is so deep about this number 19? Why are we standing on the Capitol steps today? That number 19, when you have a nine, you have a womb that is pregnant, and when you have a one standing by the nine, it means that there's something secret that has to be unfolded. Right here on this mall where we are standing, according to books written on Washington, D.C., slaves used to be brought right here on this mall in chains, to be sold up and down the eastern seaboard. Right along this mall, going over to the White House, our fathers were sold into slavery. But George Washington, the first president of the United States, said he feared that before too many years passed over his head, this slave would prove to become a most troublesome species of property. Thomas Jefferson said he trembled for this country when he reflected that God was just and that his justice could not sleep forever. Well, the day that these presidents feared has now come to pass, for on this mall here we stand in the capital of America, and the layout of this great city, laid out by a black man, Benjamin Banneker, this is all placed and based in a secret Masonic ritual, and at the core of the secret of that ritual is the black man. Not far from here is the White House, and the first president of this land, George Washington, who was a grand master of the Masonic Order, laid the foundation, the cornerstone, of this Capitol building where we stand. George was a slave-owner. George was a slave-owner.

Now, the president spoke today, and he wanted to heal the great divide. But I respectfully suggest to the president, you did not dig deep enough at the malady that divides black and white in order to affect a solution to the problem. And so today we have to deal with the root so that perhaps a healing can take place.

Now, this obelisk at the Washington Monument is Egyptian, and this whole layout is reminiscent of our great historic past, Egypt. And if you look at the original seal of the United States, published by the Department of State in 1909, Gaylord Hunt wrote that late in the afternoon of July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress resolved that Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Mr. John Adams and Mr. Thomas Jefferson be a committee to prepare a device for a seal of the United States of America. In the design proposed by the first committee, the face of the seal was a coat of arms measured in six quarters. That number is significant. Six quarters with emblems representing England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Germany, and Holland, the countries from which the new nation had been peopled. The eye of Providence in a radiant triangle and the motto 'E Pluribus Unum' were also proposed for the face of the seal. Even though the country was populated by so-called Indians and black slaves were brought to build the country, the official seal of the country was never designed to reflect our presence, only that of the European immigrants. The seal and the Constitution reflect the thinking of the Founding Fathers that this was to be a nation by white people and for white people. Native Americans, blacks, and all other non-white people were to be the burden-bearers for the real citizens of this nation.

For the back of the seal, the committee suggested a picture of a pharaoh sitting in an open chariot with a crown on his head and a sword in his hand passing through the divided waters of the Red Sea in pursuit of the Israelites. And hovering over the sea was to be shown a pillar of fire in a cloud, expressive of the divine presence and command. And raised from this pillar of fire were to be shown beaming down on Moses standing on the shore extending his hand over the sea causing it to overwhelm the pharaoh. The motto for the reverse was 'Rebellion To Tyrants Is Obedience To God.' Let me say it again, 'Rebellion To Tyrants Is Obedience To God.' Now, why did they mention pharaoh? I heard the president say today E Pluribus Unum, out of many, one. But in the past out of many comes one meant out of many Europeans come one people. The question today is out of the many Asians, the many Arabs, the many Native Americans, the many blacks, the many people of color who populate this country, do you mean for them to be made into the one? If so, truth has to be spoken to justice. We can't cover things up, cover them over, give it a pretty sound to make people feel good. We have to go to the root of the problem.

Now, why have you come today? You came, not at the call of Louis Farrakhan, but you have gathered here at the call of God, for it is only the call of Almighty God, no matter whom- through whom that call came, that could generate this kind of outpouring. God called us here to this place at this time for a very specific reason.

And now I want to say, my brothers, this is a very pregnant moment, pregnant with the possibility of tremendous change in our status in American and in the world. And although the call was made through me, many have tried to distance the beauty of this idea from the person through whom the idea and the call was made. Some have done it mistakenly, and others have done it in a malicious and vicious manner. Brothers and sisters, there is no human being through whom God brings an idea that history doesn't marry the idea with that human being no matter what defect was in that human being's character. You can't separate Newton from the law that Newton discovered, nor can you separate Einstein from the theory of relativity. It would be silly to try to separate Moses from the Torah or Jesus from the Gospel or Mohammed from the Koran. Well, you said, ' Farrakhan, you ain't no Moses. You ain't no Jesus, and you're not no Mohammed. You have a defect in your character.' Well, that certainly may be so. However, according to the way the Bible reads, there is no prophet of God written of in the Bible that did not have a defect in his character. But I have never heard any member of the faith of Judaism separate David from the Psalms because of what happened in David's life, and you never separated Solomon from the building of the temple because they say he had 1,000 concubines. And you never separated any of the great servants of God. So today, whether you like it or not, God brought the idea through me. And he didn't bring it through me because my heart was dark with hatred and anti-Semitism. He didn't bring it through me because my heart was dark and I'm filled with hatred for white people and for the human family of the planet. If my heart were that dark, how is the message so bright, the message so clear, the response so magnificent?

And so we stand here today at this historic moment. We are standing in the place of those who could not make it here today. We are standing on the blood of our ancestors. We are standing on the blood of those who died in the middle passage, who died in the fields and swamps of America, who died hanging from trees in the South, who died in the cells of their jailers, who died on the highways and who died in the fratricidal conflict that rages within our community. We are standing on the sacrifice of the lives of those heroes, our great men and women, that we today may accept the responsibility that life imposes upon each traveler who comes this way. We must accept the responsibility that God has put upon us not only to be good husbands and fathers and builders of our community, but God is now calling up the despised and the rejected to become the cornerstone and the builders of a new world.

And so our brief subject today is taken from the American Constitution and these words, 'Toward a more perfect union.' Toward a more perfect union. Now, when you use the word more with perfect, that which is perfect is that which has been brought to completion. So when you use more perfect, you're either saying that what you call perfect is perfect for that stage of its development, but not yet complete. When Jefferson said, 'Toward a more perfect union,' he was admitting that the union was not perfect, that it was not finished, that work had to be done. And so we are gathered here today not to bash somebody else. We're not gathered here to say all of the evils of this nation, but we are gathered here to collect ourselves for a responsibility that God is placing on our shoulders to move this nation toward a more perfect union.

Now, when you look at the word toward, toward, it means in the direction of, in furtherance or partial fulfillment of, with a view to obtaining or having, shortly before, coming soon, imminent, going on, in progress. Well, that's right. We're in progress toward a perfect union. Union means bringing elements or components into unity. It is something formed by uniting two or more things. It is a number of persons, states, et cetera, which are joined or associated together for some common purpose. We're not here to tear down America. America is tearing itself down. We are here to rebuild the wasted cities. What we have in the word toward is motion. The Honorable Elijah Mohammed taught us that motion is the first law of the universe. This motion which takes us from one point to another shows that we are evolving and we are a part of a universe that is ever evolving. We are on an evolutionary course that will bring us to perfection or completion of the process toward a perfect union with God. In the word toward, there is a law, and that law is everything that is created is in harmony with the law of evolution, change. Nothing is standing still. It is either moving toward perfection or moving toward disintegration or under certain circumstances doing both things at the same time. The word for this evolutionary changing, affecting stage after stage until we reach perfection, in Arabic it is called rab, and from the word rab, you get the word rabbi, or teacher, one who nourishes a people from one stage and brings them to another stage.

Well, if we are in motion, and we are, motion toward perfection, and we are, there can be no motion toward perfection without the lord who created the law of evolution and is the master of the changes. Our first motion then must be toward the god who created the law of the evolution of our being. And if our motion toward Him is right and proper, then our motion toward a perfect union with each other and with government and with the peoples of the world will be perfected. So let us start where the process leading to the perfect union must first be seen.

Now, brothers and sisters, the day of atonement is established by God to help us achieve a closer tie with the source of wisdom, knowledge, understanding and power, for it is only through a closer union or tie with Him who created us all, with Him who has power over all things, that we can draw power, knowledge, wisdom and understanding, from Him that we may be enabled to change the realities of our life. A perfect union with God is the idea at the base of atonement.

Now, atonement demands of us eight steps. In fact, atonement is the fifth step in an eight-stage process. Look at our division, not here, out there. We, as a people who have been fractured, divided and destroyed because of our division, now must move toward a perfect union. Let's look at a speech, delivered by a white slave holder on the banks of the James River in 1712, 68 years before our former slave masters permitted us to join the Christian faith. Listen to what he said. He said, 'In my bag, I have a foolproof method of controlling black slaves. I guarantee every one of you, if installed correctly, it will control the slaves for at least 300 years. My method is simple. Any member of your family or your overseer can use it. I have outlined a number of differences among the slaves, and I take these differences and I make them bigger. I use fear, distrust and envy for control purposes.' I want you to listen. What are those three things? Fear, envy, distrust. For what purpose? Control. To control who? The slave. Who is the slave? Us. Listen. He said, 'These methods have worked on my modest plantation in the West Indies, and they will work throughout the South. Now, take this simple little list, and think about it. On the top of my list is Age, but it's only there because it starts with an A, and the second is color or shade. There's intelligence, sex, size of plantation, status of plantation, attitude of owners, whether the slaves live in the valley or on a hill, north, east, south or west, have fine hair or coarse hair, or is tall or short. Now that you have a list of differences, I shall give you an outline of action. But before that, I shall assure you that distrust is stronger than trust, and envy is stronger than adulation, respect or admiration. The black slave, after receiving this indoctrination, shall carry it on and will become self-refueling and self-generating for hundreds of years, maybe thousands of years. Now, don't forget, you must pitch the old black male against the young black male and the young black male against the old black male. You must use the female against the male, and you must use the male against the female. You must use the dark-skinned slave against the light-skinned slave and the light-skinned slave against the dark-skinned slave. You must also have your white servants and overseers distrust all blacks. But it is necessary that your slaves trust and depend on us. They must love, respect, and trust only us. Gentlemen, these keys are your keys to control. Use them. Never miss an opportunity. And if used intensely for one year, the slaves themselves will remain perpetually distrustful. Thank you, gentlemen.' End of quote.

So spoke Willy Lynch [sp] 283 years ago. And so, as a consequence, we, as a people, now have been fractured, divided, and destroyed, filled with fear, distrust, and envy. Therefore, because of fear, envy, and distrust, of one another, many of us as leaders, teachers, educators, pastors, and persons, are still under the control mechanism of our former slave masters and their children.

And now, in spite of all that division, in spite of all that divisiveness, we responded to a call, and look at what is present here today. We have here those brothers with means and those who have no means, those who are light and those who are dark, those who are educated, those who are uneducated; those who are business people, those who don't know anything about business; those who are young, those who are old; those who are scientific, those who know nothing of science; those who are religious, and those who are irreligious; those who are Christian, those who are Muslim, those who are Baptist, those who are Methodist, those who are Episcopalian, those of traditional African religion. We've got them all here today. And why did we come? We came because we want to move toward a more perfect union.

And if you notice, the press triggered every one of those divisions. 'You shouldn't come, you're a Christian; that's a Muslim thing. You shouldn't come, you're too intelligent to follow hate. You shouldn't come, look at what they did, they excluded women, you see?' They played all the cards. They pulled all the strings. Oh, but you better look again, Willie. There's a new black man in America today, a new black woman in America today, a new black woman in America today.

Now, brothers, there's a social benefit of our gathering here today, and that is that from this day forward we can never again see ourselves through the narrow eyes of the limitation of the boundaries of our own fraternal, civic, political, religious, street organization or professional organization. We are forced by the magnitude of what we see here today that whenever you return to your cities and you see a black man, a black woman, don't ask him, 'What is your social, political or religious affiliation, or what is your status.' Know that he is your brother, and if he needs help, you are obligated to help your brother because he is your brother. You must live beyond the narrow restrictions of the divisions that have been imposed upon us.

Well, some of us are here because it's history-making. Some of us are here because it's a march through which we can express anger and rage with America for what she has and is doing to us. So we're here for many reasons. But the basic reason that this was called was for atonement and reconciliation. So it is necessary for me, in as short a time as possible, to give as full an explanation of atonement as possible.

As I said earlier, atonement is the fifth stage in an eight-stage process. So let's go back to the first stage of the process that brings us into perfect union with God. And the first stage is the most difficult of all, because when we are wrong and we are not aware of it, someone has to point out the wrong. I want to say this again, but I want to say it slowly, and I really want each one of these points to sink in. How many of us in this audience at some time or another have been wrong? Will we just raise our hands?

OK. Now, when we are wrong, Lord knows we want to be right. The most difficult thing is when somebody points it out. Do we accept it? Do we reject it? Do we hate the person who pointed out our wrong? How do we treat the person who points out our wrong?

Now, I want you to follow me. When you go to a doctor, you're not feeling well. The doctor says, 'What's wrong?' 'Well, I don't know, Doc.' 'Well, where's the pain? Tell me something about the symptoms.' You want the doctor to make a correct diagnosis. You don't smack the doctor when he points out what's wrong. You don't hate the doctor when he points out what's wrong. You say, 'Thank you, Doctor. What's my prescription for healing?' Are we all right?

Now, look. Whoever is entrusted with the task of pointing out wrong, depending on the nature of the circumstances, is not always loved. In fact, more than likely, that person is going to be hated and misunderstood. Such persons are generally hated because no one wants to be shown as being wrong, particularly, when you're dealing with governments, with principalities, with powers, with rulers, with administrations; when you're dealing with forces which have become entrenched in the evil, intractable and unyielding, their power produces an arrogance, and their arrogance produces a blindness. And out of that evil state of mind, they will do all manner of evil to the person who points out their wrong, even though you're doing good for them by pointing out where America went wrong.

Now Martin Luther King, Jr., was probably one of the most patriotic Americans, more patriotic than George Washington, more patriotic than Thomas Jefferson, more patriotic than many of the presidents, because he had the courage to point out what was wrong in this society. And because he pointed out what was wrong, he was evil spoken of, vilified, maligned, hated, and eventually murdered.

Brother Malcolm had that same road to travel. He pointed out what was wrong in the society, and he had to suffer for pointing out what was wrong, and he ultimately died on the altar for pointing out what was wrong inside the nation, outside the nation, to the greater nation and to the smaller nation.

We're talking about moving toward a perfect union. Well, pointing out fault, pointing out our wrongs, is the first step. The second step is to acknowledge. 'Oh, thank you. Oh, man, I'm wrong.' To acknowledge means to admit the existence, the reality, or the truth of some reality. It is to recognize as being valid or having force and power. It is to express thanks, appreciation or gratitude. So in this context, the word 'acknowledgement' means to be in a state of recognition of the truth of the fact that we have been wrong. This is the second step.

Well, the third step is that after you know you're wrong and you acknowledge it to yourself, who else knows it except you confess it? You say well, yeah, all right, but who should I confess to, and why should I confess? The Bible says confession is good for the soul. Now, brothers, I know I don't have a lot of time, but the soul is the essence of a person's being, and when the soul is covered with guilt from sin and wrong-doing, the mind and the actions of the person reflect the condition of the soul. So, to free the soul or the essence of man from its burden, one must acknowledge one's wrong, but then one must confess. The Holy Koran says it like this, 'I have been greatly unjust to myself and I confess my faults. So grant me protection against all my faults, for none grants protection against faults but thee.' It is only through confession that we can be granted protection from the consequences of our faults, for every deed has a consequence. And we can never be granted protection against a fault that we refuse to acknowledge or that we are unwilling to confess.

So, look, who should you confess to? 'I don't want to confess.' Who should you confess to? Who should I confess to? Who should we confess to?

First, you confess to God. And every one of us that are here today that know that we have done wrong, we have to go to God and speak to Him in the privacy of our room and confess. He already knows, but when you confess, you're relieving your soul of the burden that is there.

But then, the hardest part is to go to the person or persons whom your fault has ill affected and confess to them. That's hard. That's hard.

But, if we want a perfect union, we have to confess the fault. But what happens after confession? There must be repentance. When you repent, you feel remorse of contrition or shame for the past conduct which was and is wrong and sinful. It means to feel contrition or self-reproach for what one has done or failed to do. And it is the experiencing of such regret for past conduct that involves the changing of our mind toward that sin. So until we repent and feel sick, sorry, over what we have done, we can never, never change our mind toward that thing. And if you don't repent, you'll do it over and over and over again. But to stop it where it is- and black men, we've got to stop what we're doing where it is. We cannot continue the destruction of our lives and the destruction of our community. But that change can't come until we feel sorry.

I heard my brother from the West Coast say today, 'I atone to the mothers for the death of the babies caused by our senseless slaughter of one another.' See, when he feels sorry deep down inside, he's going to make a change. That man has a change in his mind. That man has a change in his heart. His soul has been unburdened and released from the pain of that sin. But you've got to go one step further, because after you've acknowledged it, confessed it, repented, you come to the fifth stage. Now you've got to do something about it.

Now, look, brothers, sisters, some people don't mind confessing. Some people don't mind making some slight repentance. But when it comes to doing something about the evil that we've done, we fall short. But atonement means satisfaction or reparation for a wrong or injury. It means to make amends. It means penance, expiation, compensation, and recompense made or done, for an injury or wrong. So atonement means we must be willing to do something in expiation of our sins. So we can't just have a good time today and say we made history in Washington. We've got to resolve today that we're going back home to do something about what's going on in our lives and in our families and in our communities. [Applause.]

Now, are we all right? Can you hang with me a few more? Now, brothers and sisters, if we make atonement, it leads to the sixth stage, and the sixth stage is forgiveness. Now, so many of us want forgiveness, but we don't want to go through the process that leads to it, and so when we say we forgive, we forgive from our lips, but we have never pardoned in the heart, so the injury still remains.

My dear family, my dear brothers, we need forgiveness. God is always ready to forgive us for our failures. Forgiveness means to grant pardon for, or remission of, an offense or sin. It is to absolve, to clear, to exonerate and to liberate. Boy, that's something. See, you're not liberated until you can forgive. You're not liberated from the evil effect of our own sin until we can ask God for forgiveness and then forgive others. And this is why in the Lord's Prayer you say, 'Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.' So it means to cease to feel offense and resentment against another for the harm done by an offender. It means to wipe the slate clean.

And then that leads to the seventh stage. You know, I like to liken this to music, because in music, the seventh note is called a leading tone - [singing] do, re, mi, fa, so, la, ti - you can't stop there - ti - it leaves you hung up - ti - what you got to get back to? - do. So, whatever you started with, when you reach the eighth note, you're back to where you started, only at a higher vibration.

Now, look at this. The seventh tone, the leading tone, that leads to the perfect union with God, is reconciliation and restoration, because after forgiveness, now, we are going to be restored to what? To our original position. To restore, to reconcile means to become friendly, peaceable again, to put hostile persons into a state of agreement or harmony, to make compatible or to compose or settle what it was that made for division. It means to resolve differences. It can mean to establish or reestablish a close relationship between previously hostile persons. So restoration means the act of returning something to an original or unimpaired condition.

Now, when you're back to an unimpaired position, you have reached the eighth stage, which is perfect union. And when we go through all these steps, there is no difference between us that we can't heal. There's a balm in Gilead to heal the sin-sick soul. There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole. We are a wounded people, but we are being healed.

But, President Clinton, America is also wounded, and there's hostility now in the great divide between the people. Socially, the fabric of America is being torn apart, and it's black against black, black against white, white against white, white against black, yellow against brown, brown against yellow. We are being torn apart, and we can't gloss it over with nice speeches, my dear Mr. President.

Sir, with all due respect, that was a great speech you made today. And you praised the marchers, and they are worthy of praise. You honored the marchers, and they are worthy of honor. But, of course, you spoke ill, indirectly, of me as a purveyor of malice and hatred. I must hasten to tell you, Mr. President, that I'm not a malicious person, and I'm not filled with malice. But I must tell you that I come in the tradition of the doctor who has to point out, with truth, what's wrong. And the pain is that power has made America arrogant. Power and wealth has made America spiritually blind. And the power and the arrogance of America makes you refuse to hear a child of your slaves pointing out the wrong in your society.

But I think if you could clear the scales from your eyes, sir, and give ear to what we say, perhaps, oh, perhaps, what these great speakers who spoke before me said, and my great and wonderful brother, the Reverend Jesse Jackson said; and perhaps, just perhaps, from the children of slaves might come a solution to this pharaoh and this Egypt, as it was with Joseph, when they had to get him out of prison and wash him up and clean him up because Pharaoh had some troubling dreams that he didn't have any answer to. And he called his soothsayers, and he called the people that read the stars, and he called all his advisers, but nobody could help him to solve the problem. But he had to go to the children of slaves, because he heard that there was one in prison who knew the interpretation of dreams. And he said, 'Bring him. Bring him, and let me hear what he has to say.'

God has put it for you in the Scriptures, Mr. President. Belshazzar and Nebuchadnezzar couldn't read the handwriting on the wall. But Daniel had to read the handwriting for him. [quotes in Hebrew.] 'Your kingdom has been weighed in the palace and has been found wanting.'

Do you want a solution to the dilemma that America faces? Then don't look at our skin color, because racism will cause you to reject salvation if it comes in the skin of a black person. Don't look at the kinkiness of our hair and the broadness of our nose and the thickness of our lips, but listen to the beat of our hearts and the pulsating rhythm of the truth. Perhaps, perhaps, you might be as wise as the pharaoh and save this great nation.

And so the eighth stage is perfect union with God. And in the Koran it reads, 'Oh, soul that is at rest, well pleased with thy Lord, and well pleasing.' Oh, brothers, brothers, brothers, you don't know what it's like to be free. Freedom can't come from white folks. Freedom can't come from staying here and petitioning this great government. We're here to make a statement to the great government, but not to beg them. Freedom cannot come from no one but the God who can liberate the soul from the burden of sin. And this is why Jesus said, 'Come unto me,' not 'some' who are heavy laden, but 'all' that are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

But, listen, all of these eight steps take place in a process called time. And whenever a nation is involved in sin, to the point that God intends to judge and destroy that nation, He always sends someone to make that nation or people know their sins, to reflect on it, to acknowledge, to confess, to repent, and to atone, that they might find forgiveness with God.

America, oh America. This great city of Washington is like Jerusalem. And the Bible says, 'Jerusalem, oh Jerusalem, you that stoneth and killeth the prophets of God.' Right from this beautiful Capitol and from the beautiful White House have come commands to kill the prophets. Garvey's trouble came from this house. Martin Luther King's trouble came from this house. Malcolm's trouble came from this house. W.E.B. Dubois' trouble came from this house. And from this house, you stoned and killed the prophets of God that would have liberated black people, liberated America. But I stand here today, knowing, knowing that you are angry, that my people have validated me. I don't need you to validate me. [crowd responds]

I don't need to be in any mainstream. I want to wash in the river of Jordan. And the river that you see, and the sea that is before us and behind us and around us is validation. That's the mainstream.

You're out of touch with reality. A few of you in a few smoke-filled rooms, calling that the mainstream, while the masses of the people, white and black; red, yellow and brown; poor and vulnerable are suffering in this nation.

Well, America, great America, like Jerusalem that stoned and killed the prophets of God, that a work has been done in you today unlike any work that's ever been done in this great city. I wonder what you'll say tomorrow. I wonder what you'll write in your newspapers and magazines tomorrow. Will you give God the glory? Will you give God the glory? Will you respect the beauty of this day? All of these black men that the world sees as savage, maniacal and bestial, look at them - a sea of peace, a sea of tranquility, a sea of men ready to come back to God, settle their differences and go back home to turn our communities into decent and safe places to live.

America. America the beautiful. There's no country like this on the Earth. And certainly if I lived in another country, I might never have had the opportunity to speak as I speak today. I probably would have been shot outright, and so would my brother Jesse, and so would Maolana Karenga [sp], and so would Dr. Ben Chavis and Reverend Al Sampson and all the wonderful people that are here. But because this is America, you allow me to speak even though you don't like what I may say. Because this is America, that provision in the Constitution for freedom of speech and freedom of assembly and freedom of religion, that is your saving grace, because what you're under right now is grace, and grace is the expression of divine love and protection which God bestows freely on people.

God is angry, America. He's angry, but his mercy is still present.

Brothers and sisters, look at the afflictions that have come upon us in the black community. Do you know why we're being afflicted? God wants us to humble ourselves to the message that will make us atone and come back to him and make ourselves whole again.

Well, why is God afflicting America? Why is God afflicting the world? Why did Jesus say there would be wars and rumors of wars and earthquakes in diverse places and pestilence and famine? And why did he say that these were just the beginning of sorrows? In the last 10 years America has experienced more calamities than at any other time period in American history. Why, America? God is angry. He's not angry because you're right, he's angry because you're wrong and you want to stone and kill the people who want to make you see you're wrong.

And so the Bible says Elijah must first come. Why should Elijah come? Elijah has the job of turning the hearts of the children back to their fathers and the father's heart back to the children. Elijah becomes an axis upon which people turn back to God and God turns back to the people. And that's why they said Elijah must first come.

And so here we are, 400 years fulfilling Abraham's prophecy. Some of our friends in the religious community have said why should you take atonement? That was for the children of Israel. I say yes, it was. But atonement for the children of Israel prefigured our suffering here in America.

Israel was in bondage to Pharaoh 400 years. We've been in America 440 years. They were under affliction. We're under affliction. They're under oppression. We're under oppression. God said, 'That nation which they shall serve I will judge.'

Judgment means God is making a decision against systems, against institutions, against principalities and powers, and that's why Paul said, 'We war not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers and the rulers of the darkness of this world and spiritual wickedness in high places.'

God is sending His decision. I can't help it if I've got to make the decision. No. You don't understand me. My people love me, and yet - [crowd responds] - and yet I point out the evils of black people like no other leader does. But my people don't call me anti-black, because they know I must love them in order to point out what's wrong, so we can get it right, to come back into the favor of God.

But let me say, in truth, you can't point out wrong with malice. You can't point out wrong with hatred, because if we point out wrong with bitterness and hatred, then the bitterness and the hatred becomes a barrier between you and the person whom you hope to get right, that they might come into the favor of God.

So we, as Muslims, who, in our first stage - yeah, we pointed out the wrong of America, but we didn't point it out with no love. We point it out with the pain of our hurt, the pain of our suffering, the bitterness of our life story. [crowd responds] But we have grown beyond our bitterness. We have transcended beyond our pain. Why? It's easy for us to say, 'The white man did this. The white man did that. The white man did the other. The white man did this. He deprived us of that. He killed the Indians. He did this.' Yes, he did all of that. But, why did God let him do that? That's the bigger question. And since we are not man enough to question God, we start beating up on the agent who is fulfilling prophecy. But if we can transcend our pain to get up into God's mind and ask God, 'God, why did you let our fathers come into bondage? God, why did you let is die in the middle passage? God, why did you suffer us to be in the hulls of ships? God, why did you let him lash us? Why did you let him beat us? Why did you let him castrate us? Why did you let him hang us? Why did you let him burn us? Why, God? Why? Why? Why'? We've got a right to question God. That's the only way we can become wise. And if we question him like Job, God may bring you up into His own thinking.

And if God were to answer us today, He would say to black people, 'Yes, I allowed this to happen, and I know you suffered. But Martin King, my servant, said undeserved suffering is redemptive. A whole world is lost, not just you black people. A whole world has gone out of the way, not just you black people.' You're the lost sheep, but the whole world is lost. You're the bottom rail but the one that put you on the bottom has been in the bottom with you holding you down. He's in the bottomless pit himself. He said, 'Black man, I love you.' He said, 'But God, I mean, that's a heck of a way to show me you love me.' He said, 'But I love my son. I love Jesus more than I love any of my servants. But I had a cross for Him. I had nails for Him. I had him to be rejected and despised. I had Him falsely accused and brought before the courts of men. I had them spit on Him. I had them to pierce His side, but I loved Him more than anybody else.'

Why God? Why did you do it? Why? He said, 'I did it that I might be glorified because like Job no matter what I did to Him he never cursed me. He never said, my God ain't no good.' He said, 'Whatever your will is.' And that's what I want to do and that's why. Even though he descended into hell, I have raised him to the limitless heights of heaven because only those who know the depths of hell can appreciate the limitless heights of heaven. And so, my children, I cause you to suffer in the furnace of affliction so that I might purify you and resurrect you from a grave of death and ignorance.

I, God, put in your soul not a law written on stone, but I have written a law on the tablets of your heart. So I'm going to make a new covenant with you. Oh, black man, the secret of the Masonic order is the secret of Hiram of [unintelligible]. The secret of the Masonic order is a master builder that was hit in the head. The secret of the Masonic order is a master that ruffians roughed up. I think one of the ruffians was named Jubelo [sp] Fuhrman. And another one was named Jubala Bilbo [sp]. And another was named Jubulum [sp] Jesse Helms. These racists, hit him in His head and carried Him on a westerly course and buried Him in the north country, in a shallow grave. Many tried to raise Him up but they didn't have the master grip. It take a master to come after Him.

And this is why Matthew said, 'As lightening shines from the East even unto the West, so shall the coming of the son of man be, for wheresoever the eagles are gathered together, there shall the carcass speak.' Here's the carcass, the remains of a once mighty people, dry bones in the valley. And people slain from the foundation of the world. But God has sent the winds to blow on the bones. One of those winds is named Gingrich. And the companion wind is named Dole. And the other is called Supreme Court decision. The other is fratricidal conflict - drugs and dope and violence and crime.

But we've had enough now. This is why you're in Washington today. We've had enough. We've had enough distress, enough affliction. We're ready to bow down now. 'If my people who are called by my name will just humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, forgive their sins, heal their land.'

You are ready now to come out of your furnace of affliction. You are ready now to accept the responsibility, oh, not just of the ghetto. God wants to purify you and lift you up, that you may call America and the world to repentance. Black man, you are a master builder, but you got hit in the head. Black man, you are the descendants of the builders of the pyramids, but you have amnesia now. You can't remember how you did it. But the master has come.

You know, pastors, I love that scripture where Jesus told his disciples, go there and you'll see an ass and a colt tied with her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anybody asks you what you're doing, because it may look like you're stealing, and you know they love to accuse you of stealing, tell them the master got need of these. And Jesus rode into Jerusalem on an ass. The Democratic Party has for its symbol a donkey. The donkey stands for the unlearned masses of the people. But the Democratic Party can't call the masses no more. You got them all tied up, but you're not using them. The donkey's tied up. But can you get off today? No, I can't get off, I tied up. Somebody on your donkey? Well, yeah. I got a master, he rides me like the master rode Balaam's ass, you know? But, hell, the ass is now talking with a man's voice, and the ass want to throw the rider off 'cause he got a new rider today. If anybody ask you, tell them the master has need.

Look at you. Well, I don't know what the number. It's too much for me to count. But I think they said it's a million-and-a-half or two. I don't know how many. But you know I called for a million. When I saw the word go out my mouth I looked at it. I said, 'Oh, my God.' It just came out of my mouth. I didn't know. And after it came out, I said, 'Well, I got to go with it.' And I'm so glad I did. People told me, 'You better that figure to one more realistic.' And I should have changed to the Three Million Man March. [applause]

Now, we almost finished. I want to take one last look at the word atonement. The first four letters of the word form the foundation a-t-o-n, aton. Aton. Since this obelisk in front of us is representative of Egypt and the 18th dynasty, a pharaoh Akhenaton was the first man of this history period to destroy the pantheon of many gods and bring the people of the worship of one god, and that one god was symboled by a sun disk with 19 rays coming out of that sun with hands holding Egyptian ankh, the cross of life. Aton. The name for the one god in ancient Egypt.

Aton, the one god, 19 rays Look at your scripture. A woman, remember the nine? Means somebody pregnant with an idea. But in this case, it's a woman pregnant with a male child destined to rule the nations where they're all divine. God is standing over her womb, and this child will be like the day's sun. And he will say I am the light of the world. Hands coming out of that sun - come unto me, all ye that are heavy laden. I'm gonna give you respite. I'm going to give you life because I am the resurrection and the life, and if you believe in me, though you are dead, yet shall you live again.

You're dead, black man. But if you believe in the God who created this sun of truth and of light with 19 rays meaning he's pregnant with God's spirit, God's light, God's wisdom. Abraham Lincoln's statue, 19 feet high, 19 feet wide. Jefferson, 19 feet high, and the third president, 19, standing on the steps of the Capitol in the light of the sun, offering life to a people who are dead. Black man, be atoned, represents the one God.

In the Koran, Muhammad is called a light-giving sun. So if you look at the aton, add an E to it, and separate the A from the next four letters and you get the word atone. Tone means sound and A, the first letter of the alphabet. And the first letter of the numerical system is one, so A equals one. So A sound means when you hear the A tone you will hear the right sound. And when you hear the right sound from the one God calling you to divine light, you will respond.

So what is the A tone? In music, A equals 440 vibrations. How long have we been in America? Four hundred and forty years. Well, in the 440th year from the one God, the aton, will come the atone, and all of us got to tune up our lives by the sound of the A tone because we've got to atone for all that we have done wrong. And when you atone, if you take the T and couple it with the A and hyphenate it, you get at-one. So when you atone you become at-one. At-one with who? The aton, or the one God. Because you heard the A tone and you tuned up your life, and now you're ready to make a new beginning. So when you get at-one you get the next two letters, it is ME. Me. Who is that has to atone? Who?

Audience: Me.

Louis Farrakhan: Who went wrong?

Audience: Me.

Louis Farrakhan: Who got to fix it?

Audience: Me

Louis Farrakhan: Who should we look to?

Audience: Me

Louis Farrakhan: Yes. And then if you add, if you add another letter to m-e, you get an N. What does that say?

Audience: Men!

Louis Farrakhan: Men. So, Farrakhan called men. Why did you call men? Because in the beginning, God made man and if we are at a new beginning, we gotta make a man all over again, but make him in the image and the likeness of God.


Now if you add the T on, you get the suffix ment. Ment means action, process, the instrument or agent of an action or process. So when you say, I'm atoning, you gotta act on it. You gotta get in the process. You go to acknowledge your own, confess your own, repent of your own, atone for your own. Huh? Then you'll get forgiveness, then reconciliation and restoration and then you're back to the A-tone. Oh Lord. Now brothers, let's close it out. Don't move. Don't move.

Now, you know, the bible says in the 430th of their sojourn, they went out. That's in a book called Exodus. Now, the word exodus means departure, a going our, a way out. What did we come to Washington for? We didn't come to Washington to petition the government for a way out of hurt. But to find a way out of our affliction. But a way out from something bigger then our affliction. Oh man. When you say, come out, what do you mean? You've got to come out from under the mind of a slave. We've got to come out from a mind that is self afflicted with the evil of black inferiority. We gotta come in to a new way thinking. Now, brothers, sisters, I want to close this lecture with a special message to our President and to the Congress. There is a great divide. But the real evil in America is not white flesh or black flesh. The real evil in America is the idea that undergirds the set up of the Western world and that idea is called white supremacy. Now, wait, wait, wait before you get angry, those of you listening by television. You don't even know why you behave the way you behave. I'm not telling you I'm a psychiatrist. But I do want to operate on your head. White supremacy is the enemy of both white people and black people. Because the idea of white supremacy means you should rule because your white-That makes you sick. And you produce the sick society and a sick world. The founding fathers meant well, but they said, 'Toward a more perfect union.' So the Bible says, 'We know in part; we prophecy in part; but when that which is perfect has come that which is in part, you'll be done away with.'

So either, Mr. Clinton, we're going to do away with the mind-set of the founding fathers. You don't have to repudiate them like you've asked my brothers to do me. You don't have to say they were malicious, hate-filled people. But you must evolve out of their mind set. You see their mind was limited to those six European nations out of which this country was founded.

But you got Asians here. How you going to handle that? You got children of Africa here; how you going to handle that? You got Arabs here.

You got Hispanics here. I know you call them 'illegal aliens,' but, hell, you took Texas from them by flooding Texas with people that got your mind - [laughs]. And now they're coming back, across the border, to what is northern Mexico: Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California. They don't see themselves as illegal aliens. I think they might see you as an illegal alien. You have to be careful how you talk to people. You have to be careful how you deal with people.

The Native American is suffering today. He's suffering almost complete extinction. Now he learned about bingo. You taught him. He learned about blackjack. You taught him. He learned about playing roulette. You taught him. Now he's making a lot of money. You're upset with him because he's adopted your ways. What makes you like this? See, you're like this because you're not well. [crowd responds] You're not well. And in the light of today's global village, you can never harmonize with the Asians, you can't harmonize with the islands of the Pacific, you can't harmonize with the dark people of the world, who out-number you 11 to 1, if you're going to stay in the mind of white supremacy. White supremacy has to die in order for humanity to live.

Now, all- I know, I know, I know. I know it's painful, but we have to operate now. Just take a little of this morphine and you won't feel the pain as much. You just need to bite down on something as I start this last few minutes. Just bite down on your finger.

Listen. Listen. Listen. Listen. White supremacy caused you all - not you all, some white folk, to try to rewrite history and write us out. White supremacy caused Napoleon to blow the nose off of the Sphinx because it reminded you too much of the black man's majesty. White supremacy caused you to take Jesus, a man with hair like lamb's wool and feet like burnished brass, and make Him white so that you could worship Him because you could never see yourself honoring somebody black because of the state of your mind. You see, you really need help. [crowd responds] You'll be all right. You will be all right.

Now, now, now. You painted the 'Last Supper.' Everybody there [is] white. My mother asked the man that came to bring her the Bible, she said, 'Look, there are pictures in the Bible. You see? Jesus and all his disciples at the last supper.' My mother, in her West Indian accent, said, "You mean, ain't nobody black was at the last supper'? And the man said, 'Yes; but they was in the kitchen.' So now you've whitened up everything. Any great invention that we make, you put white on it because you didn't want to admit that a black person had that intelligence, that genius. You try to color everything to make it satisfactory to the sickness of your mind. So you whitened up religion. Farrakhan didn't do that. You locked the Bible from us. Farrakhan didn't do that. Your sick mind wouldn't even let you bury us in the same ground that both of us came out of; we had to be buried somewhere else. That's sick.

Some of us died just to drink water out of a fountain marked 'White.' That's sick. Isn't it sick? You poisoned religion. And in all the churches until recently, the master was painted white. So you had us bowing down to your image, which ill-affected our minds. You gave us your version of history, and you whitened that up. Yes, you did. Yes, you did. Yes, you did. You are a white shriner. The black shriner don't integrate the shrine. Why don't you black shriners integrate the shrine? Because in the shrine you're the essence of the secret. They don't want you there. They'll have to tell the world it's you we've been thinking about all along.

Now, white folks, see, the reason you could look at the O.J. Simpson trial in Harlem and the reason black folk rejoiced had nothing to do with the horror of the tragedy. Black folk would never rejoice over the slaughter of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson. Black folk saw that with compassion. Many black folk grieved over that reality. [crowd responds] You say 'O.J. sold out.' No, he didn't sell out. He was drawn out.

Black folk, they've got talent. They all grew up in the 'hood. When we sing, we sing in these old raunchy nightclubs in the 'hood. When we play sandlot ball, we play it in the 'hood. But when you spot us, you draw us out. You say, 'That negro can run.' 'Look at how high he jumps.' So you give us a scholarship to your university. But the blacks who are in college who play basketball for you, who play football for you, who run track for you, you disallow them to get involved with black students and the suffering of black students on all-white campuses. You hide them away, give them privileges, then they find themself with your daughter. Then you take them into the NBA, the NFL, and they become mega-stars or in the entertainment field. And when they become mega-stars, their association is no longer black. They may not have a black manager, a black agent, a black accountant. They meet in parties in posh neighborhoods that black folk don't come into, so their association becomes white women, white men, and association breeds assimilation. And if you have a slave mentality, you feel you have arrived now because you can jump over cars running in airports, play in films.

I'm not degrading my brother; I love him. But he was drawn out. He didn't sell out, he was drawn out. Michael Jackson is drawn out. Most of our top stars are drawn out. And then when you get them, you imprison them with fear and distrust. You don't want them to speak out on the issues that are political, that are social. They must shut their mouths, or you threaten to take away their fame, take away their fortune, because you're sick.

And the president is not going to point this out. He's trying to get well, but he's a physician that can't heal himself.

I'm almost finished.

White supremacy has poisoned the bloodstream of religion, education, politics, jurisprudence, economics, social ethics and morality. And there is no way that we can integrate into white supremacy and hold our dignity as human beings, because if we integrate into that, we've become subservient to that, and to become subservient to that is to make the slave master comfortable with his slave.

So we've got to come out of her, my people. Come out of a system and a world that is built on the wrong idea, an idea that never can create a perfect union with God. The false idea of white supremacy prevents anyone from becoming one with God. White people have to come out of that idea, which has poisoned them into a false attitude of superiority based on the color of the skin. The doctrine of white supremacy disallows whites to grow to their full potential. It forces white people to see themselves as the law or above the law. And that's why Fuhrman could say that he is like a god. See, he thinks like that. But that idea is pervasive in police departments across the country, and it's getting worse and not better, because white supremacy is not being challenged. And I say to all of us who are leaders, all of us who are preachers, we must not shrink from the responsibility of pointing out wrong so that we can be comfortable and keep white people comfortable in their alienation from God.

And so, white folks are having heart attacks today because their world is coming down. And if you look at the Asians, the Asians have the fastest-growing economies in the world. The Asians are not saying - bashing white people. You don't find the Asians saying, 'The white man is this. The white man is the that. The white man is the other.' He don't talk like that. You know what he does? He just relocates the top banks from Wall Street to Tokyo. He don't say, 'I'm better than the white man.' He just starts building his world and building his economy and challenging white supremacy. I saw a young, 14-year-old Chinese girl the other day play the violin; Sara Chang [sp] is her name. She was magnificent. I saw a young Japanese girl, Midori [sp], play the violin. She was magnificent. They don't have to say to white people, 'I'm better than you.' They just do their thing, and white folk have to readjust their thinking because they thought they could master all these instruments and nobody else could. But the Chinese are mastering it, the Japanese are mastering it. All these things are breaking up the mind of white supremacy.

Black man, you don't have to bash white people. All we've got to do is go back home and turn our communities into productive places. All we've got to do is go back home and make our communities a decent and safe place to live. And if we start dotting the black community with businesses, opening up factories, challenging ourselves to be better than we are, white folk, instead of driving by using the 'n' word, they'll say, 'Look, look at them. Oh, my god. They're marvelous. They're wonderful. We can't- we can't say they're inferior anymore.'

But every time we drive by shooting, every time we car-jack, every time we use foul, filthy language, every time we produce culturally degenerate films and tapes, putting a string in our women's backside and parading them before the world, every time we do things like this we are feeding the degenerate mind of white supremacy. And I want us to stop feeding that mind and let that mind die a natural death.

And so to all the artists that are present, you wonderful, gifted artists, remember that your gift comes from God. And David the psalmist said, 'Praise him on the timbrel, praise him on the lute, praise him on the harp, praise him in the psaltry, praise him in the song, praise him in the dance, let everything be a praise of God.' So when you sing, you don't have to get naked to sing. Demonstrate your gift, not your breast. Demonstrate your gift, not what is between your legs. Clean up, black man, and the world will respect and honor you.

But you have fallen down like the prodigal son and you're husking corn and feeding swine. Filthy jokes. We can't bring our children to the television, we can't bring our families to the movies because the American people have an appetite like a swine. And you are feeding the swine with the filth of degenerate culture. We got to stop it.

We're not putting you down, brothers. We want to pick you up, so with your rap you can pick up the world, with your song you can pick up the world, with your dance, with your music you can pick up the world.

And so, America, if your conscience is afflicted because God is lashing you, don't just start with the Constitution, Mr. President, start with the evil of slavery, because that's the root of the problem. And you can't solve the problem, Mr. President, unless we expose the root; for when you expose the root to the light, then the root will die. The tree will die, and something new can come to birth.

And so to the whites of this nation, 'Except you be born again, you cannot see the kingdom of God.' But can I return back into my mother's womb for the second time? No, you can't do that. But this old mind of white supremacy has to die in order that a new mind might come to birth.

Black men, you can't see the kingdom of God unless we born again. Must I enter back into my mother's womb for a second time? No, you can't do that, black man. But the mind of white supremacy is repulsive to God, and the mind of black inferiority is repulsive to God. And any mind of black supremacy is repulsive to God. But the only mind that God will accept is a mind stayed on Him and on righteousness. [crowd responds]

Black had to be taught to give us root and love in ourselves again. But that was a medicine, a prescription. But after health is restored, we can't keep taking the medicine. We got to move on to something else, higher and better.

So, my beloved brothers and sisters, here's what we would like you to do. Everyone of you, my dear brothers, when you go home, here's what I want you to do. We must belong to some organization that is working for, and in the interests of, the uplift and the liberation of our people. Go back, join the NAACP if you want to. Join the Urban League. Join the all African People's Revolutionary Party. Join us; join the Nation of Islam. Join PUSH. Join the Congress of Racial Equality. Join SCLC, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. But we must become a totally organized people, and the only way we can do that is to become a part of some organization that is working for the uplift of our people. We must keep the local organizing committees that made this event possible, we must keep them together. Go back and join the local organizing committee. And then all of us as leaders must stay together and make the National African-American Leadership Summit inclusive of all of us.

I know that the NAACP did not officially endorse this march; neither did the Urban League. But so what? So what? Many of the members are here anyway. I know that Dr. Lyons [sp], of the National Baptist Association, USA, did not endorse the march. Nor did the Reverend Dr. B.W. Smith [sp], nor did Bishop Chandler Owens [sp]. But so what? These are our brothers, and we're not going to stop reaching out for them simply because we feel there was a misunderstanding. We still want to talk to our brothers because we cannot let artificial barriers divide us. Remember the letter of Willie Lynch [sp], and let's not let Willie Lynch [sp] lynch our new spirit and our new attitude and our new mind.

No, we must continue to reach out for those that have condemned this and make them to see that this was not evil. It was not intended for evil. It was intended for good.

Now, brothers, moral and spiritual renewal is a necessity. Every one of you must go back home and join some church, synagogue, temple, or mosque that is teaching spiritual and moral uplift. I want you, brothers. There's no men in the church, in the mosque. The men are in the streets, and we got to get back to the houses of God.

But, preachers, we have to revive religion in America. We have to revive the houses of God that they're not personal fiefdoms of those of us who are their preachers and pastors. But we've got to be more like Jesus, more like Mohammed, more like Moses, and become servants of the people in fulfilling their needs.

Brothers, when you go home, we got to register 8 million eligible, but unregistered, brothers, sisters. So you go home and find eight more like yourself. You register and get them to-

'Well, how should I register? I register as a Democrat? Should I register as a Republican? Should I register as an independent'?

If you're an independent, that's fine; if you're a Democrat, that's fine; if you're a Republican, that's okay, because in local elections you have to do that which is in the best interests of your local community. But what we want is not necessarily a third party, but a third force, which means that we're going to collect Democrats, Republicans, and independents around an agenda that is in the best interests of our people. And then all of us can stand on that agenda, and in 1996 whoever the standard bearer is for the Democratic Party, the Republican Party, or Independent Party, should one come into existence, they got to speak to our agenda. We're no longer going to vote for somebody just because they're black. We've tried that. We wish we could. But we got a vote for you if you are compatible with our agenda.

Now, many of the people that's in this house right here are put there by the margin of the black vote. So in the next election we want to see who in here do we want to stay, and who in here do we want to go. And we want to show them that never again will they ever disrespect the black community. We must make them afraid to do evil to us and think they can get away with it. We must be prepared to help them if they're with us, or to punish them if they're against us. And when they're against us, I'm not talking about color, I'm talking about an agenda that's in the best interests of the black, the poor, and the vulnerable in this society.

Now, atonement goes beyond us. I don't like this squabble with the members of the Jewish community. I don't like it. The Honorable Elijah Mohammed said in one of his writings that he believed that we would work out some kind of an accord. Maybe so. Reverend Jackson has talked to the 12 presidents of Jewish organizations, and perhaps in the light of what we see today maybe it's time to sit down and talk, not with any preconditions. You got pain, but we got pain, too. You hurt; we hurt, too. The question is, if the dialogue is proper, then we might be able to end the pain. And ending the pain may be good for both and ultimately good for the nation. We're not opposed to sitting down. I guess if you could sit down with Arafat, where there are rivers of blood between you, why can't you sit down with us, and there's no blood between us. You don't make sense not to dialogue. It doesn't make sense.

Well, brothers, I hope Father Clements [sp] spoke today. Is Father Clements here? Father Clements?. Do you know Father Clements? He's one of the great pastors. Father Clements- I wanted him to speak today because he has a program that he wants every one of us, when we leave here, to go to some jail or prison and adopt one inmate for the rest of his and your life; to make them your personal friend, to help them through their incarceration, to be encouragement for them. The brothers who are locked down inside the walls need us on the outside, and we need them on the inside. So if every one of us will pick out one inmate, Father Clements will do the work of guiding this development, because it is his idea, and it is a good idea. And the National African-American Leadership Summit adopts that idea. Thank you, Father Clements.

Will you do that, brothers? How many of you will adopt one black man in prison and make him your pal, your brother for life, help him through the incarceration. Well go to the chaplain of that jail and say you want to adopt one inmate, to start writing to that person, visiting that person, helping that person. So many of us have been there already, we know what they suffer. Let's help our brothers and sisters who are locked down.

Did anybody mention the political prisons? Brother Conrad Waller [sp] mentioned our political prisoners - never forget them.

And now, brothers, there are 25,000 black children in need of adoption. This is our brother Eson [sp], who is the president of Blacks in Government - I'm sorry, Brother Johnston [sp], the president of the Black Social Workers. He has 25,000 children in need of adoption. Out of this vast audience there must be 25,000 men who will take one of these children and take them through life and make life worth living for those children. In this vast audience, is there any one, two, 10, 25, 100, 1,000, 25,000 who would be willing to adopt a black brother or sister, bring them into your home and rear them properly? How many of you think you would like to do that? Would you just raise your hand, let me take a look. Raise them high. That's a wonderful expression. Where should they go? What should they do? Who should they see?

Mr. Johnston: They should see Booth 26 North.

Louis Farrakhan: Booth 26 North is where you should go. It is to my right, your left. Or you should call 1-800-419-1999.

Now, brothers, the last thing we want to say, we want to develop an economic development fund. Suppose the nearly 2 million here and 10 million more back home that support us gave $10 a month to a national economic development fund. Inside of one month, we would have over $100 million, and in one year we would have $1,200,000,000. What would we do with that?

I would love for the leadership up here to form a board and call in Myrlie Evers-Williams and ask her, 'What is the budget of the NAACP for this year'? 'It's $13 million. It's $15 million.' 'Write a check.'

Now, next year you have to become accountable to the board, and the members of the NAACP will be on the board, too, which means that no black organization will be accountable to anybody outside of us, but accountable to us, and we would free the NAACP, the Urban League, and all black organizations to work in the best interests of our people. How many of your would like to see all our black organizations free? [crowd responds]

Now look, brothers, an economic development fund for $10 a month is not a big price to ask to begin to build an economic infrastructure to nurture businesses within the black community. Soon the leadership is going to meet and work out the details of an exodus - exodus economic fund. And we're going to get back to you. This is not a one-day thing. A task force will be formed right out of this leadership to make sure that the things that we say today will be implemented, so that next year, on the day of atonement, which - this will take place each and every year from now on until God says, 'Well done.'

Now, you saw the money that was taken up today, didn't you? How many of you gave some money today? I see some hands that wanted to give, but didn't get that box to them. Well, let me tell you something, brothers, we want an outside accounting firm to come in and scrutinize every dollar that was raised from your pockets to make the Million Man March a success. And if there is any overage, it will not be spent. We will come back to this board of leadership, and we will account for every nickel, every dime, every dollar. Do you know why? We want Willie Lynch to die a natural death. And the only way we can kill the idea of Willie Lynch; we have to build trust in each other. And the only way we can build trust is to open up the coat and show that you don't have a hidden agenda. All of us will be looking at the same thing for the same purpose, and then we'll come back to you and make a full accounting for every nickel, every dime and every dollar so that you can trust. I put my life on this. To rob you is a sin. To use you and abuse you is a sin. To make mockery of your love and your trust is a sin, and we repent of all sins. And we refuse to do sin anymore.

Is that agreeable, black man? [crowd responds]

Now, brothers, in closing, I want you to take this pledge.

When I say 'I,' I want you to say 'I,' and I'll say, 'your name.' I know that there's so many names, but I want you to shout your name out so that the ancestors can hear it. Take this pledge with me.

Say with me, please, 'I - say your name - pledge that from this day forward I will strive to love my brother as I love myself. I - say your name - from this day forward will strive to improve myself spiritually, morally, mentally, socially, politically, and economically for the benefit of myself, my family, and my people. I - say your name - pledge that I will strive to build business, build houses, build hospitals, build factories, and enter into international trade for the good of myself, my family, and my people. I - say your name - pledge that from this forward I will never raise my hand with a knife or a gun to beat, cut, or shoot any member of my family or any human being except in self-defense.'

I - say your name - pledge from this day forward, I will never abuse my wife by striking her, disrespecting her, for she is the mother of my children and the producer of my future.

I - say your name - pledge that from this day forward, I will never engage in the abuse of children, little boys or little girls, for sexual gratification. But I will let them grow in peace to be strong men and women for the future of our people.

I - say your name - will never again use the "B" word to describe any female, but particularly my own black sister.

I - say your name - pledge from this day forward that I will not poison my body with drugs or that which is destructive to my health and my well-being.

I - say your name - pledge from this day forward I will support black newspapers, black radio, black television. I will support black artists who clean up their acts to show respect for themselves and respect for their people and respect for the ears of the human family.

I - say your name - will do all of this, so help me, God.

Well, I think we all should hold hands now. And I want somebody to sing, "To God Be the Glory." And the reason I want this song sung is because I don't want anybody to take the credit for a day like this. I didn't do it. Reverend Chavis didn't do it. Reverend Jackson didn't do it. Reverend Sharpton didn't do it. Conrad Warrell (sp) and Mowlana Karenga (sp) didn't do it. Dr. Cornel West didn't do it. But all of us worked together to do the best that we could, but it's bigger than all of us. So since we can't take the praise, then we have to give all the glory,

all the honor, all the praise to Him to Whom rightfully belongs.

So, in closing, we want to thank Mayor Barry and Mrs. Barry - (calls of affirmation, scattered applause) - for opening this great city to us. And out of every dollar that was collected, 10 percent ofit we're going to leave here in Washington, that Mayor Barry may aid some institution, some good cause in the city. We want to set a good example.

This was a beautiful and a peaceful meeting, probably one of the best that was ever held in Washington, held by black men -

Audience: Yes, sir.

Louis Farrakhan: - who want to atone to God and clear our slate. Beautiful black brothers, beautiful brothers, I'm going to say a prayer. And I want to thank Phi Beta Sigma -

Audience: (Applauding.) That's right.

Louis Farrakhan: - and its wonderful, wonderful president, and all the Greek letter organizations, but Phi Beta Sigma especially,because they opened their doors to the Million Man March and made it possible.

Now, let us not be conformed to this world, but let us go on, transformed by the renewing of our minds. And let the idea of atonement ring throughout America; that America may see that the slave has come up with power. The slave is being restored, delivered and redeemed. And now, call this nation to repentance, to acknowledge her wrongs; to confess, not in secret documents called classified, but to come before the world and the American people, as the Japanese prime minister did, and confess her faults before the world, because her sins have affected the whole world. And, perhaps, she may do some act of atonement that you may forgive and those ill-affected may forgive; that reconciliation and restoration may lead us to the perfect union with Thee and with each other. We ask all of this in your holy andrighteous name. (Amen ?).

(Rev. Farrakhan chants in Arabic.)

That means God is great. And now, Gregory Hopkins to sing "To God Be the Glory." Keep holding each other's hands, brothers. And after the song is sung, let us embrace each other.

(Singing of song.)


Louis Farrakhan: Everybody turn to your brother, and hug your brother, and tell your brother you love him. And let's carry this love all the way back to our cities and towns. Never let it die, brothers. Never let it die.

October 17, 1995 Ideas? Questions?   Let us know! [HTML Hit Counter]