Thursday, February 21, 2008


This Day in the History of Chickens Coming Home to Roost

On this day in 1965, black nationalist leader Malcolm X, nee Malcolm Little, is shot to death while speaking to his own group, the Organization of Afro-American Unity, at the Audubon Ballroom in Washington Heights way uptown in New York City. He was a former member of the Nation of Islam who advocated, as opposed to Martin Luther King's non-violent, civil disobedience, liberation of African Americans "by any means necessary."

Certainly this firebrand was assassinated by white racists. Nope, he was killed by members of the Nation of Islam, the Black Muslims. It is an ironic connection. Many historians believe that leader of the Black Muslims, Elijah Muhammad, was jealous of Malcolm X's growing popularity and influence, and used a statement Malcolm X regarding the assassination of John Kennedy (that it was a case of the "chickens coming home to roost") to suspend him from the Black Muslims; and the relationship continued to deteriorate from there to the point where other members killed Mr. X. Just as slightly lefty Kennedy was killed by a full blown communist, so too was violent overthrow embracing Malcolm X killed by fellow African American Muslims he had failed to please sufficiently. Chickens returning to the roost indeed.
That's Malcolm X with the paratrooper version of the M1 carbine, as wimpy a weapon as America has ever fielded.


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