This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress
If it wasn’t for what Malcolm X fought for, for the African-American community as far as freedom and independence and trying to empower that entire community and free them from poverty, injustice and ignorance, then I probably wouldn’t have much respect if any respect for him. Because he used a lot of if not racist, certainly racial and nasty rhetoric towards Caucasian-Americans. And even though he did reform himself at the end of his life in 1964 or so after being exposed to more Caucasians-Americans as well as people oversees, he still said a lot of racial things that Caucasians probably couldn’t get away with.
Malcolm X is someone who I believe from the Center-Right in America, Conservatives and Conservative Libertarians, all the way over to the Far-Left can respect at least to some degree. Probably on the Far-Right which includes Americans of multiple races and ethnicities would say, “he was no good, he was a troublemaker, why should a Blackman have so much power?” That type of thing, but the Center-Right and Center-Left I think can if not respect the man because of what he was fighting for, for his community. Which was freedom and independence and moving his community off of public assistance though things like education, economic development, infrastructure.
Malcolm X wanted the African-American community to be a community of business owners. Small, medium and large business owners that would open their business’s in their communities and hire the people there. As well as working good middle class blue-collar jobs. His goal wasn’t integration and certainly not integration for the sake of integration. But he wanted freedom whether that meant getting that freedom living in separate communities from the Caucasian community. Or even living and working together, which by the time he dies he thought could work. With African and Caucasian-Americans living and working together.
Malcolm X was no Al Sharpton. Where he would use a lot of racially charge if not racial rhetoric to charge people up. And try to make Caucasians guilty and get them to give the African-American community more Welfare and other forms of public assistance. Malcolm X wasn’t about public assistance, but about independence. The ability for people to be able to live freely and not need government to take care of them. Which is where he separated from Dr. Martin King’s more social democratic movement that called for all sorts of new federal Welfare spending for the African-American community and Americans who live in poverty in general.
The Far-Left in America regardless of race would respect if not love Malcolm X because of how he talked about racism as it was directed towards African-Americans. And the rhetoric he used against racist Caucasians and Caucasians in general. Especially men, but they would separate from him back then like the Black Panther Party and today with Occupy Wall Street and other Far-Left movement’s when it came to economic policy. Because they don’t see public assistance and government dependence as bad things, even if it is indefinite. But as acts of compassion that, “this is how compassionate societies treat their people in need.”
So Malcolm X was someone who had broad appeal, respect, as well as hated across the political spectrum racial melting pot in America. He was loved for being a freedom fighter that literally wanted to empower an entire community of people to be able to live in freedom. And not to have to live with racism and injustice and be able to take care of themselves. But by his haters he was seen as a troublemaker and perhaps even as a troublemaker by people in the mainstream civil rights community that saw his rhetoric as unhelpful for their cause and movement. And one of the tragedies of his death is that it cost us an opportunity to see how he would’ve grown and be treated today.