Dear Brothers & Sisters:
I greet you as taught by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, with the words of peace: As-Salaam Alaykum!
I thank Brother Minister Farrakhan for his generosity and kindness: for his invitation that I’m honored to accept.
On Savior’s Day, we remember the extraordinary courage of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, for speaking as he spoke-, when he spoke-,where he spoke-, the hells of North America – a message of freedom, justice and equality – in the shadows of lynching trees, mass terrorist white riots against Black life, and the open state policy of white supremacy in America.
On May 29, 1959, the Messenger said the following words at a speech in Washington, DC:
The Church has failed you. Christianity has failed you. The government of America has failed you. You have not received justice from any quarter. As prophesied, you, my fellow Black men, are as sheep among wolves, and, as is to be expected, every wolf is taking a bite at you.
The Messenger – 57 years ago!
Look at us today! How little things have really changed.
Tamir Rice, a child, is shot and killed by cops – and the city bills the Rice family $500 for driving his body to the morgue! In 2016!
When the Messenger spoke, in 1959, he referenced Black men, but today, we can say children, women – like Sandra Bland, dragged to prison for a faulty tail light – where she dies, broken-hearted and alone!
It is for good reason that the children are rising as the Black Lives Matter Movement, for they know in their hearts, that Black Lives Don’t Matter.
I speak to you from Mahanoy prison, Northeastern PA, and just days after the DOC released, under protest, its secret protocol which decides when someone with Hepatitis C can be treated with the new anti-viral cures. State protocols required Hep C sufferers to have two symptoms before treatment: 1) cirrhosis of the liver; and 2) what they called “Esophageal varices” – or, in layman’s terms, bleeding from the esophagus; the throat!
This came out in my hearing in a U.S. Federal Court, and if we prevail, some 10 thousand men and women will get timely cures for Hepatitis in PA.
Regarding health issues and prisons, I must note the horrendous history of Philadelphia prisons, where, for decades, doctors from the University of Pennsylvania Medical School experimented on hundreds and hundreds of prisoners – mostly Black men. They applied powerful chemicals to their bodies; injected them with toxic agents; and even drugged them with mind-bending substances.
The men got $10 – up to $30 per experiment (unless they quit, and got nothing) and honestly, these were poor men, who were happy to get it, for it paid for commissary; candy, coffee & cigarettes.
They got pennies, but guess what the testers got? Rich. Dr. Albert M. Kligman, project head, became a millionaire, and U. of P Med School got millions. In 1951, when Dr. Kligman first entered the Holmesburg prison, you know what he said?
“I saw”, he said, “an Anthropoid colony.”
Anthropoid (meaning ‘ape-like’).
Guess who tried to warn those brothers to stay away from these tests, way back in 1972 and ’73? Young members of the Nation of Islam, that’s
There are men today in their 60s and 70s, who still carry scars and suffer crippling pain and diseases because of these experiment – some men lost their minds – and never came around.
Real talk. If you doubt me, read Acres of Skin or Sentenced to Science by Alan Hornblum.
Brothers – Sisters – I thank you and the Nations’ Ministry of health for their kind invitation. I thank Sister Dr. Shabazz for her expert counsel; and the Brothers from the Sunni community at Mahanoy who washed my sores and wretched skin; who cared for me when I couldn’t care for myself—(and were punished for it!)
I want to thank The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and his Student National Prison Reform Minister Abdullah Muhammad for the invitation to speak to the participants at The Nation of Islam Prison Reform Ministry Saviour’s Day Workshop Prison Health/Treatment Justice Or Else. I also thank The Nation of Islam Prison Reform Ministry in the Delaware Valley for supporting the two hearings on my behalf.
And last but not least, Sisters Pam and Ramona Africa, who led supporters into a courtroom in Scranton –so many that it filled two courtrooms!
One closing observation before I go –please –A U.S. Marshal at the Courthouse told Pam, “Y’know—uh –I’ve been here quite a few years –Y’know, since they opened this courthouse – and, uh – I’ve never seen anything like this – Y’know –that many people.”
Pam coolly responded, “You see it now –don’t you?”
Sister Pam Africa – Minister of Confrontation – The MOVE Organization.
Thank you all!
To quote John Africa: “Long Live the Power that pulls all things together!”
Long Live John Africa!