Malcolm X

Civil Rights

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Malcolm X also know as EI-Hajj Malik EI- Shabazz was an African American Muslim minister and a human rights activist. To his admirers he was a courageous advocate for the rights of blacks, a man who indicated white America in the harshest terms for its crimes against black Americans; detractors accused him of preaching racism and violence.

He has been called one of the most influential African Americans in history from the early1950s till the early 1960s.

He was also founder of the Organization of Afro-American Unity. Malcolm supported using violence against whits because it was considered self defense. He says "White man can't help being white. We have to give the man a chance."

He is assassinated February 21, 1965 ( age 39 ) in New York City, New York, U.S when preparing to address the Organization of Afro- American Unity.

Impact on Civil Rights Movement

Malcolm X, the public voice of the black Muslim faith, challenged the mainstream civil rights movement and the nonviolent pursuit of integration championed by Martin Luther King Jr. He urged followers to defend themselves against white aggression "by any means necessary." He was born Malcolm Little but then changed his name to Malcolm X to signify his rejection of his "slave" name. Malcolm soon became an influential leader of the Nation of Islam, which combined Islam black nationalism and sought to encourage disadvantaged young blacks searching for confidence in segregated America. He laid the foundation for the Black Power movement if the late 1960s and the early 1970s.