By Brenda D. Muhammad
WASHINGTON– The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan recently met with NAACP leaders in a three-day religious summit to discuss new NAACP methodologies to reach the masses of Black people.
“I thank Chairman Julian Bond, Vice Chairman Roselyn M. Brock, President and CEO Brother Benjamin Jealous, National NAACP President, NAACP Board and Reverend Julius C. Hope, Director Religious Affairs Department for inviting me to participate in this most worthy discussion. We are in a time in history where we must prepare our leaders and our people on what must be done to get through this most dark period. I am deeply honored,” said Minister Farrakhan.
Working side-by-side for over two days, Minister Farrakhan met with an initial focus group of 12 to discuss revitalization strategies. Later they were joined by a delegation of approximately 30-40 influential religious leaders from across the country representing many different faiths including the African Methodist Episcopal, Baptist, Christian Methodist Episcopal and United Methodist Episcopal.
For over 100 years, the NAACP continues to dedicate its resources to equal social justice for millions of American citizens, and has on its staff, many of the brightest minds in the country. Under the local leadership of Hilary Shelton, Director of the NAACP Washington Bureau/Vice President for Advocacy, one of their many accomplishments was President Obama’s signature to the Matthew Shepard, James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law that assists local law enforcement officials in presenting and solving hate crimes while expanding protections.
Their aggressive agenda includes supporting the “Democracy Restoration Act,” that would clear the way to allow ex-felony offenders to vote in federal elections once they are out of prison; opposing attacks on Affirmative Action programs that calls for the elimination of all federal equal opportunity programs in contracting, education and employment; support of religious institutions remaining free of undue influence and control of partisan politics or political candidates; and the passage by the Key House Committee of the Crime and Violence Bill to reduce mandatory minimum sentencing and school zone drug laws, racial disparities that have lead to disproportionate numbers of Blacks, Hispanics and Native Americans being overrepresented in the criminal justice system compared to Whites.
In attendance were several officials from the Nation of Islam, Student Minister Ishmael Muhammad, National Assistant to the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, A. Akbar Muhammad, International Representative of the Nation of Islam, Student Regional Minister Abdul Khadir Muhammad and Sister Claudette Marie Muhammad, Director of the National Fundraising Office.
Also in attendance was Joshua DuBois, executive director of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.