On Malcolm and the Void
The revolutionary leader is often tasked with sacrificing present comforts in exchange for being on the right side of history. Being on the right side of history requires a vision for progress that colleagues and contemporaries may not understand. Malcolm X was a definitive leader and visionary, but more
importantly, he was a selfless revolutionary who sacrificed his life for change. And while Malcolm’s death has defined a generation, how he lived his life will continue to be an example for timeless generations to come.
Malcolm’s legacy is not just found in the pop-culture romanticized version of militancy often commodified by American culture. For every “by any means necessary” t-shirt sold on the street, there is a young person inspired by Malcolm’s constant reinvention and growth. His commitment to the internal
shadow work was evidenced in his conduct, discipline and consistent growth. This growth and authentic commitment to truth informed Malcolm’s genuine and unpretentious ability as an intellect and activist. Malcolm was so authentic that he never had to code shift. His truth was as relevant to pious observers as it was to street gangsters. And that was Malcom’s gift to us.
At the Bklyn Combine, we are committed to removing the dividing lines of class, race and economics from our community’s access to resources. But we are not trying to invest in a broken value system or get a seat at the table of oppressors. We are simply expressing the full spectrum of our humanity through thought, work and advocacy. And we are inspired by Malcom’s example but also empowered by Malcolm’s groundwork. Malcolm fought an unpopular fight on many fronts. And while history has been kind to Malcolm, many of his contemporaries were not.
And so, on Malcolm’s shoulders we reject capitalism, greed, classism, racism, imperialism and every other social illness that seeks to dehumanize the underserved and historically marginalized. We honor Malcolm’s legacy by remaining committed to telling the truth, even when it is not popular. And even when society attempts to run from the truth, we will run to it because it is the only thing that a legitimate society should embrace.
We miss you Malcolm. we miss you every time we are confronted with black leaders seeking participation in the white nationalist agenda. We miss you every time we see docile negroes trying to fit in to the capitalist regime. We miss you every time we see black leaders commodifying black trauma for
personal gain and pawning it off as a civil rights movement. But more importantly, we love you Malcolm. We love you for transforming without ever conforming. We love you for teaching us that our enemies do not have white skin, they have white nationalist values. We love you for teaching us that humanity’s common enemy is an ideology, or more commonly, a lack of ideology. We love you for your commitment. But since love is best expressed unconditionally, we simply love you. Period.