Farrakhan offers support to Benton Harbor activist

BENTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. — People have a duty to stand up for what’s right, even if it means suffering consequences for doing it, Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan said Friday night.

BENTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. — People have a duty to stand up for what’s right, even if it means suffering consequences for doing it, Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan said Friday night. He was in southwestern Michigan to speak out about the case of Benton Harbor activist Edward Pinkney, who was imprisoned after writing in a Chicago newspaper that God might punish a judge who had handled an election-fraud case against him. "Jesus was an activist," Farrakhan said. "Jesus was a revolutionary." Pinkney, who ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. House on the Green Party ticket last year while behind bars, has said he was merely quoting the Bible. The Michigan Court of Appeals will hear his imprisonment case on Tuesday. "Mrs. Pinkney, my dear suffering sister, I’m honored to be here on behalf of your husband," Farrakhan said to Dorothy Pinkney, who was among about 20 people seated on stage with him in an auditorium at Lake Michigan College’s Mendel Center. Although he was freed in December while his case is appealed, Edward Pinkney is under house arrest and was not at the rally held on his behalf. Several hundred people attended the event at the college, which is in Berrien County’s Benton Township, about 65 miles southwest of Grand Rapids. "He’s not here tonight because he was not given permission," Farrakhan said. "It is as though we are still on a plantation." Throughout Farrakhan’s 100-minute speech, members of the audience shouted "yes sir" and "that’s right" in agreement with his words. A few protesters carrying pro-Christian signs stood at one entrance to the college. Farrakhan said he saw the protesters and commented that many people don’t understand that he and other Muslims hold Jesus Christ in the highest regard. Farrakhan also says some people hate him and feared his visit to the area because of propaganda spread against him. Opponents have criticized Farrakhan for calling Judaism a "gutter religion" and speculating that crack cocaine was a CIA plot to enslave Blacks. ______ In photo: Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan speaks during a "Rally for Justice & Unity" Friday, June 5, 2009, at Lake Michigan College in Benton Township, Mich. (AP Photo/The Herald-Palladium, Don Campbell) Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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