Million Man March (166481)
Credit: Mel Wright Photo

Believers, non-believers, the inspired, the hopeful, the jaded, the skeptics and the eternally optimistic—this Saturday, many of these folks headed to Washington, D.C., for the 10-10-15 “Justice or Else” rally called for by Minister Louis Farrakhan to observe the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March in 1995.

“This is an hour of a brand-new beginning of a brand-new world,” Farrakhan told the Amsterdam News. “We are living during the time of the end of racism, sexism and petty nationalism.”

“All of us—a million-plus, gathering in D.C.—will put fear in the hearts of the racist white establishment and those who terrorize our communities by way of the out-of-control police departments,” Assemblyman Charles Barron told the Amsterdam News. “But it will also demonstrate a display of Black unity that will reverberate with people of African descent all over the world.”

As folks prepare to board buses from all corners of the tristate area and the nation in general, not to mention international travelers, Barron noted, “

Assemblyman Charles Barron

This would be a great opportunity for the first president of African descent, President Barack Obama, to deliver a message to us at the rally to Black people, calling for unity and solidarity, and affirming his commitment to delivering justice for us—and if he can’t, then we have to do it or else.”

This would be a great opportunity for the first president of African descent, President Barack Obama, to deliver a message to us at the rally to Black people, calling for unity and solidarity, and affirming his commitment to delivering justice for us—and if he can’t, then we have to do it or else.”

As the Nation of Islam promoted this rally throughout the year, getting the attention of the youth was a big part of their strategy. “This is the most fearless generation of youth that we ever produced,” Minister Abdul Hafeez Muhammad Farrakhan’s East Coast representative told the Amsterdam News. “And the enemy of our rise fears their connection to a movement that will define the purpose of their life now and forever. This is why young people should be at 10-10-15, ‘Justice or Else,’ in Washington D.C.”

Workshops and pre-rally events led and attended by New York’s own Tamika Mallory have been going on throughout D.C. this past week, as folks make plans to attend the historic event. Organizations such as Operation POWER, the December 12th Movement and Sankofa Community Empowerment are organizing buses for residents, alongside a myriad of churches and school groups.

“We called for 1 million and nearly 2 million men showed up,” Farrakhan said at a recent Harlem gathering of activists, electeds and concerned residents. “They went back home to their families, wives, children. We took 25,000 orphans and gave them homes. Brothers and sisters registered to vote.” That is the impact Farrakhan is hoping this weekend’s rally will have.

As Farrakhan prepares to deliver his keynote address on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the 83-year-old head of the Nation of Islam told the Amsterdam News, “This is a terrible world. A world that has put tribe against tribe, ethnicity against ethnicity, race against race, male against female and female against male, rich against the poor and poor not able to deal with the rich. This is a terrible day for the wicked, a great and dreadful day at the same time. Great for who and dreadful for who?

“Our people have suffered under white supremacy, where the enemy has made the darker people of the Earth feel that they are less, and they made those who are white feel that they are better. This has affected the psychological development of the darker people of the Earth.”

“We are talking about the youth and the future,” said Dakari Muhammed, 22, a Medgar Evers student, who is attending the rally with his entire family. “We are going to be a part of something significant, historic and powerful. We will be there with our local, national and international community.”

Brooklynite Daquan Muhammed, 30, told the Amsterdam News, “We expect more than 2 million people who came to the 1995 march, since now Minister Farrakhan has called the brothers to bring their entire family—the women, the children. And also the Nation of Islam is inviting all the oppressed, the disenfranchised and all those who are suffering from injustice in this country.”

Speaking on the Breakfast Club this summer, Farrakhan asked young people to assess their roles and responses. He broached several topics, including the most recent police killings of unarmed Black people. “The only thing they want to know is when they kill us, are y’all going to be peaceful? Well, should we be? That’s a question we have to keep asking ourselves. How can peace be there if there’s no justice?” he posited.

Farrakhan speaks harshly on police brutality, but he also slams inner-city violence and called for “10,000 fearless men to go inside the Black community, stand between the guns of the gangs and then settle this with conflict resolution and bring peace within our own community.”

Folks can expect to hear Farrakhan’s call to check racial, economic and social injustice. From political ineptitude to the assault on the poor, with homelessness, under-unemployment or unemployment and the deliberate influx of drugs and guns in Black communities, Farrakhan is known to not hold back his most fiercesome sentiment.

“Going to 10-10-15 is important to me because I understand the impact and magnitude of the time and what must be done,” said Daiyaun Muhammad, 18, a SUNY Cortland student. “There will be no other leader or Black man who will stand up for his own people as dedicated as Minister Louis Farrakhan will. Attending 10-15-15 will be a milestone in my life, something I will tell my children that I was apart of a cultural revolution and that I was apart of change: ‘I was at 10-10-15.’”

For more information, visit http://justiceorelse.com.