Malcolm X, born Malcolm Little, Muslim name El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz

Malcolm
X, born Malcolm Little, Muslim name El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz
1925
1965

African-American Muslim Minister, Human Rights Activist

Author Quotes

If I hadn't been arrested right when I was, I could have been dead another way. Sophia's husband's friend had told her husband about me. And the husband had arrived that morning, and had gone to the apartment with a gun, looking for me. He was at the apartment just about when they took me to the precinct.

I'm a man who believes that I died 20 years ago. And I live like a man who is dead already. I have no fear whatsoever of anybody or anything.

It is no longer adequate to say that we will have revolution by any means necessary; you have to begin to define the means necessary.

Learn to see, listen, and think for yourself.

Now, who is it that opposes you in carrying out the law? The police department itself. With police dogs and clubs. Whenever you demonstrate against segregation, whether it is segregated education, segregated housing, or anything else, the law is on your side, and anyone who stands in the way is not the law any longer. They are breaking the law; they are not representatives of the law.

Sitting at the table doesn't make you a diner, unless you eat some of what's on that plate. Being here in America doesn't make you an American. Being born here in America doesn't make you an American.

The cornerstones of this country?s operation are economic and political strength and power. The black man doesn?t have the economic strength ? and it will take time for him to build it. But right now the American black man has the political strength and power to change his destiny overnight.

The platter then kept on down the table.

Then, holding my gun in his hand, he signaled. And out from where they had been concealed walked two other detectives. They'd had me covered. One false move, I'd have been dead.

This modern house Negro loves his master. He wants to live near him. He'll pay three times as much as the house is worth just to live near his master, and then brag about "I'm the only Negro out here." "I'm the only one on my job." "I'm the only one in this school." You're nothing but a house Negro. And if someone comes to you right now and says, "Let's separate," you say the same thing that the house Negro said on the plantation. "What you mean, separate? From America, this good white man? Where you going to get a better job than you get here?" I mean, this is what you say. "I ain't left nothing in Africa," that's what you say. Why, you left your mind in Africa.

Usually the black racist has been produced by the white racist. In most cases where you see it, it is the reaction to white racism, and if you analyze it closely, it's not really black racism... If we react to white racism with a violent reaction, to me that's not black racism. If you come to put a rope around my neck and I hang you for it, to me that's not racism. Yours is racism, but my reaction has nothing to do with racism...

We, the Black masses, don't want these leaders who seek our support coming to us representing a certain political party. They must come to us today as Black Leaders representing the welfare of Black people.

Whether we are Christians or Muslims or nationalists or agnostics or atheists, we must first learn to forget our differences. If we have differences, let us differ in the closet; when we come out in front, let us not have anything to argue about until we get finished arguing with the man.

You don't have to be a man to fight for freedom. All you have to do is to be an intelligent human being.

If it doesn't take senators and congressmen and presidential proclamations to give freedom to the white man, it is not necessary for legislation or proclamation or Supreme Court decisions to give freedom to the Black man. You let that white man know, if this is a country of freedom, let it be a country of freedom; and if it's not a country of freedom, change it.

I'm for truth, no matter who tells it. I'm for justice, no matter who it is for or against. I'm a human being, first and foremost, and as such I'm for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.

It is only after slavery and prison that the sweetest appreciation of freedom can come.

Let's cool it brothers. [Spoken to his assassins, 3 men who shot him 16 times]

On that same plantation, there was the field Negro. The field Negroes ? those were the masses. There were always more Negroes in the field than there were Negroes in the house. The Negro in the field caught hell. He ate leftovers. In the house they ate high up on the hog. The Negro in the field didn't get anything but what was left of the insides of the hog.

So early in my life, I had learned that if you want something, you had better make some noise.

The detectives grilled me. They didn't beat me. They didn't even put a finger on me. And I knew it was because I hadn't tried to kill the detective. They got my address from some papers they found on me. The girls soon were picked up. Shorty was pulled right off the bandstand that night. The girls also had implicated Rudy. To this day, I have always marveled at how Rudy, somehow, got the word, and I know he must have caught the first thing smoking out of Boston, and he got away. They never got him.

The political philosophy of black nationalism means that the black man should control the politics and the politicians in his own community; no more. The black man in the black community has to be re-educated into the science of politics so he will know what politics is supposed to bring him in return. Don?t be throwing out any ballots. A ballot is like a bullet. You don?t throw your ballots until you see a target, and if that target is not within your reach, keep your ballot in your pocket.

There can be no black-white unity until there is first some black unity. There can be no workers' solidarity until there is first some racial solidarity. We cannot think of uniting with others, until after we have first united among ourselves. We cannot think of being acceptable to others until we have first proven acceptable to ourselves. One can't unite bananas with scattered leaves.

This religion (Islam) recognizes all men as brothers. It accepts all human beings as equals before God, and as equal members in the Human Family of Mankind.

We are African, and we happened to be in America. We're not American. We are people who formerly were Africans who were kidnapped and brought to America. Our forefathers weren't the Pilgrims. We didn't land on Plymouth Rock. The rock was landed on us. We were brought here against our will. We were not brought here to be made citizens. We were not brought here to enjoy the constitutional gifts that they speak so beautifully about today.

Author Picture
First Name
Malcolm
Last Name
X, born Malcolm Little, Muslim name El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz
Birth Date
1925
Death Date
1965
Bio

African-American Muslim Minister, Human Rights Activist