From The Ramparts
Junious Ricardo Stanton
What Would Malcolm X Say About Fake News?
“I’m for truth, no matter who tells it. I’m for justice, no matter who it is for or against. I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” Malcolm X
Eric Arthur Blair who wrote under the pen name George Orwell stated, “During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.” We live in a time of universal deceit, massive falsification and lies are disseminated globally by an extremely pervasive and sophisticated electronic media the likes never seen before by humanity. Television screens and smart devices, are everywhere instantaneously blasting information, disinformation and propaganda either from a right wing fake perspective or a disingenuous left wing slant both propagating global white domination and we are caught in the middle.
In prior times we had vocal warriors, scholars, dissidents and resisters who helped us see through the maze of disinformation and propaganda to recognize the lies and propaganda aimed at us and help us engage in a process of mental decolonization to view the world from a liberation perspective. Of course over the years the powers that be targeted them and attempted to eliminate the threat these courageous Sistahs and Bruthas posed to their mind control over us. Men and women like David Walker, Ida B Wells, William Monroe Trotter, Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Noble Drew Ali, Elijah Muhammad and his ministers like Malcolm X and Louis Farrakhan and fearless educators like Angela Davis exposed the mendacity, subterfuge, oppression and violence of the American system so it demonized them and on numerous occasions killed them.
Malcolm X aka Malik El Hajj El Shabazz was uncompromising in his denunciation of the American social, economic and political system built upon racism, imperialism, violence and chicanery that he and his Nation of Islam brethren called tricknology. Malcolm knew there was a constant battle going on for our minds.
On one occasion Malcolm had this to say about the US press and media, “One of the shrewd ways that they use the press to project us in the eye or image of a criminal: they take statistics. And with the press they feed these statistics to the public, primarily the white public. Because there are some well-meaning persons in the white public as well as bad-meaning persons in the white public. And whatever the government is going to do, it always wants the public on its side, whether it’s the local government, state government, federal government. So they use the press to create images. And at the local level, they’ll create an image by feeding statistics to the press—through the press showing the high crime rate in the Negro community. As soon as this high crime rate is emphasized through the press, then people begin to look upon the Negro community as a community of criminals.
And then any Negro in the community can be stopped in the street. ‘Put your hands up,’ and they pat you down. You might be a doctor, a lawyer, a preacher, or some other kind of Uncle Tom. But despite your professional standing, you’ll find that you’re the same victim as the man who’s in the alley. Just because you’re Black and you live in a Black community, which has been projected as a community of criminals. This is done. And once the public accepts this image also, it paves the way for a police-state type of activity in the Negro community. They can use any kind of brutal methods to suppress Blacks because ‘they’re criminals anyway.’ And what has given this image? The press again, by letting the power structure or the racist element in the power structure use them in that way.” From a speech given at Ford Auditorium on Feb. 14, 1965 several days before he was assassinated on Feb.21, 1965.
Imagine what Malcolm would say about the Black Lives Matter movement, social media, fake news, the grotesque caricatures of Black people on BET, VH1, MTV, the fake reality shows, the various networks and news programs?What would Malcolm say about six conglomerates owning almost all the media in the world? Malcolm was well aware of the power of the media and its organized and systemic propaganda on one occasion he said, “The media is the most powerful entity on the earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and he guilty innocent and that’s power because they control the minds of the masses. The press is so powerful in its image making role it can make the criminal look like he’s the victim and make the victim look like he’s he criminal. This is the press and irresponsible press. It will make the the criminal look like he’s the victim and the victim look like he’s the criminal. If you aren’t careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.”
Malcolm X was extremely astute, well read, well traveled and he loved Black people. What would Malcolm say about us not continuing the liberation struggle? What would Malcolm say about us acquiescing to fake news, fake reality and falling for the proverbial okey-doke?