Ebony S. Muhammad (EM): Days after the protests began in Ferguson we started to see photos and various tweets of the Fruit Of Islam (FOI) assisting the residents/protestors and providing protection and aid. What was the initial response of the members of the Nation Of Islam, especially Fruit Of Islam (FOI) the moment it was released of the murder of Mike Brown?
Sean Muhammad (SM): Of course, as you may imagine, there was an immediate shock. Our brother, Anthony Shahid along with a few other FOI, were likened unto some of the “first-responders” on the scene. So, the immediate response seemed to be, “We need to (and must) get involved immediately.”
EM: What was the most important thing to do first in response to this local incident as FOI under guidance of Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan?
SM: In my humble opinion, it is always best to reflect on the Words and Teachings of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, as taught to us by the Honorable Minister Farrakhan, who has given us study material in the form of Self Improvement (Study Guides). Immediately, Respect for Authority, Characteristics of Humility and Rising Above Emotion into The Thinking of God are the of the first that come to mind. The Hour and Time is so critical that we must be wise – but wise so that we do not go “out in front” of The Minister’s instructions and guidance. We also have to be wise to know when he’s already given us instructions and guidance (as in the case of the Study Guides, etc.), and move out! This is why constant study of him and of his work (as he walks in the footsteps of The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad) is so imperative.
EM: How has the past few weeks been in providing assistance, order and comfort to the residents of Ferguson and the family of Mike Brown?
SM: Well, we can always do more, as we have a lot to do and a lot to overcome. Our mobilizing to unify our efforts (for a common agenda and approach) is tantamount. It has been an honor to serve in various capacities. Student Minister Akbar Muhammad mentioned to us a week ago the conversation he had with Minister Farrakhan and how the Minister was proud to see the FOI locking arms to deter and/or stave off nuisances during one of the nights looting took place. When the National Guard was brought in and when the tear gas, etc. began, many of the FOI acted as “Peace-keepers” delivering rational thought by standing with backs turned to the military mobilization and between them and facing the protesters, attempting to push them back and out of harm’s way. Due to the militarization of the police in Ferguson “check points” were set up on just about every block entering into the area off West Florissant and Canfield, and many people, not familiar with the area either, could not get into the area (or didn’t know how to do so) and/or they were deterred by the nearly 2-mile area they would have to park then walk just to get to what’s now being called “Ground Zero”.
There were times when law enforcement officials saw the FOI entering Ground Zero they would greet us with the Greetings of “As-Salaam Alaikum” or say to us “Glad you guys are here, gentlemen.” and “Please be safe.” However, once into Ground Zero, there were rules likened unto a slave plantation, whereas there could be no stopping, standing or talking in groups. Anytime law enforcement officials saw this, they were instructed to break people up and say very rudely, “Keep moving!” Many were arrested for resisting and/or questioning these “order”, or they were arrested for not “moving quick enough”, as was the case of our brother, Antonio French, an alderman who was on the scene seemingly all day every day.
EM: What hasn’t been reported regarding the involvement and aid given by Nation Of Islam (NOI)?
SM: Well, of course the family thanked us very publicly during the funeral, but there has been very scarce reporting by the media – especially locally – of our involvement, etc. I really believe our very presence during this Time has assisted in bringing MAJOR calm to the situation as a whole – from the people to the law enforcement officials to the climate of the environment. But again, I know that there is so much more to be done that even taking the time to focus on what hasn’t been said regarding us is very irrelevant at this point. Allah is God, and He sees our work, and He sees our defaults and/or lack of duty. So, we let it rest with that.
I think the only group I didn’t touch on a lot already regarding this question are the residents, who constantly were telling the FOI they were glad to see us. There was an ongoing mix of emotions – a lot of crying, a lot of anger, a lot of talking about political issues, because people are feeling their voice is not being heard. As a Hubbard Dianetics Auditor, I saw firsthand how and why (I think) this tool and technology is so needed. Communication is so important and creating that affinity among individuals is going to be so critical in this hour. It is my belief that we must enlist in this study now more than ever, and I am so thankful to The Honorable Minister Farrakhan for instructing us to add this technology to our studies and to what we already have.
EM: What is the tone of Ferguson now and what do you all see the weeks to come to hold?
SM: Both Iyanla Vanzant and Al Jazeera have released pretty solid documentaries on what is happening in Ferguson. You should see them. The tone is somewhat calm now, but people are still seething, because there are so many media reports constantly being released regarding Mike Brown’s murder, but the officer, Darren Wilson, has not been arrested and/or charged.
EM: What words would you like to offer to other cities regarding this case?
SM: GET INVOLVED!!! Please get involved in your respective communities to reach, organize and mobilize our people, especially our youth in a productive way, so that we may first stop killing one another. Additionally, support Muhammad’s Economic Blueprint so that we may able to buy land and produce food, clothing, shelter, jobs, etc. for our people and for poor and oppressed people across America and ultimately throughout the world. When take to the streets in our efforts, make sure we study what Minister Farrakhan has presented in “Justifiable Homicide” – all three parts…Youth In Peril, Executive Decision and American Gangster. Cross-reference this with the Minister’s “The Time and What Must Be Done” lecture series and “The Troubled World: What Should We Be Doing?“, all of which can be found online and studied over and over for Right Guidance and Instruction to move forward to success in our mobilizing. This will give us the voice our suffering people need, want and need to hear; the Minister is the ONLY leader the youth, etc. are listening to. Why not go with his message in the name of Allah (God) and His Christ?
EM: Thank you very much Brother Sean for your words and account in Ferguson. Will we not allow the media to sweep this or any of the other cases under the rug. May Allah continue to bless you and us all in this critical hour.
SM: Thank you for your time and support, Sis. Ebony. As always, it’s a pleasure to speak with you. I’m always at awe at your desire and conviction to see our people in a better condition, and I thank Allah for you and for you utilizing the talent He’s Blessed you with to help HEAL us.
You are welcomed to follow Brother Sean Muhammad on Twitter @THeINKGOD