BALTIMORE – “At the end of the day… it’s about how we connect to our youth and help develop them to become our future,” says Anthony Pena, a Booker T. Washington Middle School administrator who took more than forty students between the ages of 11 and 15 to a conference on reparations for African Americans.
The 2nd Annual Black United Summit International (BUSI) conference, the theme of which was “Re-Claim, Re-Pair, Re-Form, Re-Produce, – REPARATIONS NOW!”, took place at Morgan State University and was reportedly attended by more than 2,000 “students, community leaders, and distinguished guests.”
Keynote speaker to the conference was Nation of Islam leader, Minister Louis Farrakhan.
According to the Nation of Islam publication, Final Call, the event was sponsored by the Student Government Association of MSU.
Final Call reports that Morgan State University Professor Dr. Ray Winbush gave an “enlightening yet easy to understand presentation on reparations” wherein he said there have been studies indicating that “if you calculate the free labor of enslaved Blacks in building the Western world, it would amount to roughly 10 trillion dollars.” Winbush added, however, that “it is about justice… not a handout.”
Director of the Hip Hop group, Hip Hop Detoxx, also gave a presentation to students on “how sound, imagery and language impacts their thinking and guides their actions.”
Among those attending the event was Jill Carter, a member of the Maryland House of Delegates and Pastor Jamal Bryant, the nationally known pastor who was arrested in October while protesting in Ferguson.
According to the Baltimore Sun, Bryant said he was arrested when he and a group of other pastors and rabbis called for the police of Ferguson to “repent for being an evil citizen.”
Special guests included Pam Africa, founder of the International Friends and Family of political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal, former Defense Minister of the Baltimore Black Panther Party, and “dozens of other Christian pastors, Muslim Imams, Nation of Islam officials and members of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.”
To mark the conclusion of the conference, Farrakhan addressed attendees with a more than two hour long speech that included a reference to white people as “crackers” and a call for “retaliation” for the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson.
Specifically, Farrakhan held up what appeared to be the Quran and said that both it and the Bible have a “law of retaliation” in them. “A life for a life,” he said.
As long as they kill us and go to Wendy’s and have a burger and go to sleep, they’ll keep killing us. But when we die and they die, then soon we’re going to sit at a table and talk about it! We’re tired! We want some of this earth or we’ll tear this goddamn country up!”
Farrakhan also condemned President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, and others for telling protesters to “cool it,” stating:
They know an explosion is going to come. You leaders are the worst. Tonight in Ferguson everyone is on edge. White folks ain’t never been on edge after they’ve killed a Black man. Tonight they’re on edge. So on edge that our president has come out from behind the curtain to ask Black young people, ‘cool it.’
You leaders are the worst. When you talk to young people, you can’t feel that you’re missing them? Parents, you can’t feel when you’re talking to your children that this is a new generation and they don’t want to hear your compromising? But time has moved on. Your day of leading our people is over.
You preachers—your day of being the pacifier for the White man’s tyranny on Black people is over. You’ve got to know they’re not going to hear you anymore.
The Nation of Islam publication, Final Call, was founded by Louis Farrakhan in the 1930s as the Final Call to Islam. The paper often publishes articles on Farrakhan’s push for reparations to be paid to African Americans for slavery.
In April of this year, Farrakhan spoke in Chicago on the subject of “Revitalizing the Reparations Movement.” Also a speaker at the event, which was attended by Chicago State University students, was President Obama’s former pastor, Reverend Jeremiah Wright.