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

It?s the hinge that squeaks that gets the grease.

My feeling about in-laws was that they were outlaws.

People don't realize how a man's whole life can be changed by one book.

That morning was when I first began to reappraise the ?white man.? It was when I first began to perceive that ?white man,? as commonly used, means complexion only secondarily; primarily it described attitudes and actions.

The greatest mistake of the movement has been trying to organize a sleeping people around specific goals. You have to wake the people up first, then you'll get action.

The same government that you go abroad to fight for and die for is the government that is in a conspiracy to deprive you of your voting rights, deprive you of your economic opportunities, deprive you of decent housing, deprive you of decent education. You don't need to go to the employer alone, it is the government itself, the government of America, that is responsible for the oppression and exploitation and degradation of black people in this country.

They asked if I knew what ?conscientious objector? meant. I told them that when the white man asked me to go off somewhere and fight and maybe die to preserve the way the white man treated the black man in America, then my conscience made me object.

To me, the thing that is worse than death is betrayal. You see, I could conceive death, but I could not conceive betrayal.

We have a broader scope of pilgrimage thinking and open Beserta I saw in two weeks unless seen in thirty-nine years old.

When this country here was first being founded there were 13 colonies. The whites were colonized. They were fed up with this taxation without representation, so some of them stood up and said ?Liberty or death.? Though I went to a white school over here in Mason, Michigan, the white man made the mistake of letting me read his history books. He made the mistake of teaching me that Patrick Henry was a patriot, and George Washington -- wasn?t nothing nonviolent about old Pat or George Washington. ?Liberty or death? was what brought about the freedom of whites in this country from the English. They didn?t care about the odds. Why they faced the wrath of the entire British Empire. And in those days they used to say that the British Empire was so vast and so powerful when the sun would never set on them. This is how big it was, yet these 13 little, scrawny states, tired of taxation without representation, tired of being exploited and oppressed and degraded, told that big British Empire ?Liberty or death.? And here you have 22 million Afro-American black people today catching more hell than Patrick Henry ever saw. And I?m here to tell you, in case you don?t know it, that you got a new generation of black people in this country who don?t care anything whatsoever about odds. They don?t want to hear you old Uncle Tom handkerchief heads talking about the odds. No. This is a new generation. If they?re gonna draft these young black men and send them over to Korea or South Vietnam to face 800 million Chinese -- if you?re not afraid of those odds, you shouldn?t be afraid of these odds.

You can cuss out colonialism, imperialism, and all other kinds of ism, but it's hard for you to cuss that dollarism. When they drop those dollars on you, your soul goes.

You?re not supposed to be so blind with patriotism that you can?t face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who says it.

If you don't stand for something you will fall for anything.

In fact, once he is motivated no one can change more completely than the man who has been at the bottom. I call myself the best example of that.

It's got to be the ballot or the bullet. The ballot or the bullet. If you're afraid to use an expression like that, you should get back in the cotton patch, you should get back in the alley.

Negroes don?t even like snails! What they?re doing is proving they?re integrated.

Power in defense of freedom is greater than power in behalf of tyranny and oppression, because power, real power, comes from our conviction which produces action, uncompromising action.

The ability to read awoke inside of me some long dormant craving to be mentally alive.

The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses.

The thing that you have to understand about those of us in the Black Muslim movement was that all of us believed 100 percent in the divinity of Elijah Muhammad. We believed in him. We actually believed that God, in Detroit by the way, that God had taught him and all of that. I always believed that he believed in himself. And I was shocked when I found out that he himself didn't believe it.

They call me "a teacher, a fomenter of violence." I would say point blank, "That is a lie. I'm not for wanton violence, I'm for justice." I feel that if white people were attacked by Negroes ? if the forces of law prove unable, or inadequate, or reluctant to protect those whites from those Negroes ? then those white people should protect and defend themselves from those Negroes, using arms if necessary. And I feel that when the law fails to protect Negroes from whites' attacks, then those Negroes should use arms if necessary to defend themselves. "Malcolm X advocates armed Negroes!" What was wrong with that? I'll tell you what's wrong. I was a black man talking about physical defense against the white man. The white man can lynch and burn and bomb and beat Negroes ? that's all right: "Have patience"..."The customs are entrenched"..."Things will get better."

To tell a woman not to talk too much was like telling Jesse James not to carry a gun, or a hen not to cackle.

We have formed an organization known as the Organization of Afro-American Unity which has the same aim and objective to fight whoever gets in our way, to bring about the complete independence of people of African descent here in the Western Hemisphere, and first here in the United States, and bring about the freedom of these people by any means necessary. That's our motto. We want freedom by any means necessary. We want justice by any means necessary. We want equality by any means necessary.

When we say Afro American, we include everyone in the Western Hemisphere of African descent. South America is America. Central America is America. South America has many people in it of African descent.

You can?t drive a knife into a man?s back nine inches, pull it out six inches, and call it progress.

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