Farrakhan: Followers must continue Obama energy

Comments:  | Leave A Comment

ROSEMONT, Ill.–From a three-hour keynote address by Minister Louis Farrakhan to $10 T-shirts, mentions of President Barack Obama were everywhere at the Nation of Islam’s annual Saviours’ Day convention in suburban Chicago.

ROSEMONT, Ill.–From a three-hour keynote address by Minister Louis Farrakhan to $10 T-shirts, mentions of President Barack Obama were everywhere at the Nation of Islam’s annual Saviours’ Day convention in suburban Chicago.

Despite a flap with the Nation on the campaign trail, the enthusiasm for Obama within the Chicago-based movement, which has embraced Black nationalism since its founding in the 1930s, was used as a launching point for celebration, intellectual discussion and a call to action.

“There’s an energy among our people that has never been seen before, never produced by any man or organization before,” Farrakhan said of Obama before an estimated 14,000 followers Sunday. “But we must not allow our people to live in a false world of euphoria. We must accept our responsibility to build our communities.”

Farrakhan and the Nation have vigorously supported Obama, even when Obama’s campaign tried to distance itself from the 75-year-old Farrakhan. After Farrakhan spoke highly of Obama last year at a Saviours’ Day convention in Chicago, Obama’s campaign released a statement condemning some of the leader’s past statements that many have considered offensive.

In a speech days after the election, Farrakhan acknowledged that he then purposely laid low, keeping his praise quiet, so as not to affect Obama’s chances at winning the presidency.

It was a move many attending the weekend conference in Rosemont said they understood.

“Minister Farrakhan didn’t take offense,” said Audrey Muhammad, who edits Virtue Today magazine, geared at women in the movement. “We understand how politics work.”

Ishmael Muhammad, the movement’s national assisting minister, claimed Farrakhan’s words were twisted.

“He did not want to say anything the media could use to hurt his (Obama’s) chances to become the president,” Muhammad said. “They want to keep demonizing Farrakhan, despite the good he does.”

______

To read the rest of this article, subscribe to our digital or paper edition. For previous editions, contact us for details.

Copyright 2009 Chicago Defender. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Tags:

Comments

blog comments powered by Disqus
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 364 other followers