Just A Thought...An Open Letter to Minister Farrakhan

by Rick Adams

DEAR Minister Louis Farrakhan I hope this commentary finds you in the best of health physically, mentally, and spiritually. As one of the most dedicated and hardworking leaders in the African American community you have more than earned a well-deserved rest. At this critical time in our people's history we need you now more than ever!

THE Million Man March and the subsequent Million Woman March represented the largest mass mobilizations in the history of African people in these United States with in excess of 4 million of us gathering on two days. When one considers that each marcher was represented by at least one parent, spouse, offspring, friend and coworker, the gatherings represented at a minimum 20 million of the estimated 35 million African people in this country. (I suspect these are conservative estimates!) This visible and physical manifestation of the emerging Black nation was nothing short of astounding, but even more profound was the collective mental and spiritual energy of a people poised for liberation. The time is now for us to elevate ourselves to the next plateau of our long struggle as we approach the new millennium.

DURING your period of rest and rejuvenation I ask that you reflect on a concern that has bothered me since those two historic gatherings in Washington DC and Philadelphia. I have "guesstimated" that it would probably be fair to assume, that on average, each marcher easily represented a per person expenditure of $100 to cover the cost of transportation, tolls, lodging, and food. That would mean that each march saw African people spending anywhere from 100 to 200 million dollars! As a lifelong champion of Black self reliance and development I don't need to tell you that most of that money went to non-Black transportation, food, and hotel/motel businesses.

OUR beloved brother Kwame Toure, according to the Final Call, asked that you carry forward his work of building a Black United Front. The greatest failure facing our people, they talk about it all the time, is the inability of Black leadership to unite and achieve something concrete that propels our people toward our heartfelt communal goal of meaningful material as well as spiritual advancement. The National African American leadership Summit (NAALS), and the National Development Fund proposed at the Million Man March, have joined there place along side the myriad of well intention initiatives that have gone no where.

YOU above all others have spoken most eloquently of our peoples' pain and suffering. You have articulated our demands for justice and redress for our historic and contemporary oppressions. The people need for you and the many thousands of brothers and sisters who occupy positions of leadership in our community to come together to successfully implement a long-term program of national reconstruction and empowerment. In some ways even more critical is the need for our people to collectively realize something more than one-time marches or symbolic gestures. We need some thing material, beyond a replay of the Million-Man March. Your God inspired vision that led to that historic gathering October 16, 1995 demonstrated to us and the world, that the majority of the Black nation is conscious and ready to move to the next stage of our liberation struggle. The dry bones have begun to stir and now they need the flesh to transform them into healthy functioning whole human beings!

THEREFORE I humbly beseech you to consider the following proposal. No one should gather anywhere on October 16, 2000, who has not concluded a year long and from now on annual tithing to the National Black United Fund. (I am sure you know NBUF President Bill Merritt) I propose the NBUF because it already exists, supports a broad array of community projects, already enjoys widespread support among our people, and would represent a material contribution to our peoples' uplift that would continue to work for our collective advancement for eternity. Our Jewish brothers and sisters have the United Jewish Federation (UJF); the broader European American Community has the United Way, we need our own, richly endowed " Black United Way"!

TRUST among our leadership for an extended period of time has been an elusive goal. Personal, religious, ideological, and class differences along with the sabotage wrought by government agents have subverted our efforts from Marcus to Elijah to Jesse to Farrakhan! As a people we have learned much from our long journey in the wilderness, the Million-Man March is but one proof of this growth. Imagine if you will one million of us contributing $100 each to the Black United Fund in advance of the October 2000 Million Families March. One hundred million dollars donated by Black people to a national Black fund that can use the interest to fund uplift and development projects for a thousand years! Such an achievement would dramatically demonstrate in a concrete way what we as a people are capable of, but most importantly it would provide immediate resources to a beleaguered people yearning to be free.

I believe that this would the capstone achievement of your stellar labors on behalf of our people. There exists no comparable, enduring gift to Africans in these United States that any leader has been able to bequeath our people. I hope and pray that you will convene our leadership, give them this vision, and guide them in realizing what would be one of our greatest accomplishments. An accomplishment surpassed only by the defeat of slavery, the realization of universal literacy and institution building in the nineteenth century by emancipated Africans, and the destruction of Jim Crow/Apartheid. I have faith in the Creator, our people and you that "we accomplish what we will."

Just A Thought...An Open Letter to Minister Farrakhan by Rick Adams

© Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

TimBookTu Logo

Return to the Table of Contents | Return to Main Page