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Volume 68, Issue 99, Wednesday, February 19, 2003 

Opinion

Honoring X

Malcolm X believed in Islam, peace for all people regardless of race

Shazia H. Siddiqi
Guest Columnist

As we all celebrate the accomplishments of great black leaders this month, today, during Islamic Awareness Week, I would like to highlight some great victories of a great black and Muslim leader. His name was Malcom X.

It may seem X did a lot for his race and religion. But when you take a glimpse back at his life, you can see he didnit. What he did was make a difference for all races, for all of humanity.

The religion he embraced did not contain an exclusive message for any group of people, whether they be black, white, brown, yellow, or people of any religion, because no man is a true believer in Islam unless he wishes for any other human what he wishes for himself.

X said, "True Islam taught me that it takes all of the religious, political, economic, psychological, and racial ingredients, or characteristics, to make the human family and the human society complete."

X came to this conclusion when he went for Hajj (the Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca). There, he saw tens of thousands of pilgrims from all over the world. They were of all colors, from blue-eyed blondes to black-skinned Africans. But they were all participating in the same ritual, displaying a spirit of unity and brotherhood that Xis experiences in America had led him to believe never could exist between the white and the nonwhite.

America needs to understand Islam because this is the one religion that erases the race problem. Throughout my travels in the Muslim world, I have met people who in America would be considered white -- but the "white" attitude was removed from their minds by the religion of Islam. I have never before seen sincere and true brotherhood practiced together by all colors.

After X learned the truth in Mecca, his dearest friends came to include all kinds -- Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, agnostics, atheists, capitalists, Socialists, Communists, moderates, conservatives and extremists.

He believed that only when mankind would submit to the God who created all would it even approach the "peace" so many talked about.

Malcolm X was a man who always tried to face facts and accepted the reality of life as new experience and new knowledge unfolded it. He always kept an open mind, which is necessary for the flexibility that must go hand in hand with every form of intelligent search for truth.

He said: "I feel like a man who has been asleep somewhat and under someone elseis control. I feel what Iim thinking and saying now is for myself. Before, it was for and by guidance of another; now I think with my own mind.

"I know that societies often have killed the people who have helped to change those societies. And if I can die having brought any light, having exposed any meaningful truth that will help to destroy the racist cancer that is malignant in the body of America -- then, all of the credit is due to Allah. Only the mistakes have been mine."

Iill leave off with his simple and clear message: "I am not a racist in any form whatever. I donit believe in any form of racism. I donit believe in any form of discrimination or segregation. I believe in Islam."

Siddiqi, a junior psychology major, can be reached via dccampus@mail.uh.edu.
 

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