Twenty years after the historical Million Man March, Black men, women, and children from across the country celebrated the anniversary by meeting at the National Mall on Oct. 11. The march served as barometer for the issues that continue to affect Blacks two decades after the initial march.
Minister Louis Farrakhan delivered a riveting two-hour speech that touched on a multitude of problems that exist within the Black community. But there were several hits and misses throughout the speech.
Some of his most defining moments were his messages on the value of Black women: “Every woman is from the creator. Her womb is the workshop of God. So when a man sees a woman, he should bow in honor of her,” Farrakhan said.
He also took aim at mass incarceration of Black people and he called for 10,000 fearless men to take a stand in their communities to help end Black on Black violence and police violence against Blacks: “When I ask for 10,000 fearless men, we have to go in to out comity because our war is on two fronts. We have to stop killing in the inner city and we have to stop the killing of police wickedness. I want 10,000 men we can train. We have to stand between the guns. When we go to our community, guess who we will run into. We run into rouge cops and wicked black people who suck the blood of the poor,” he said.
But while Minister Farrakhan’s speech was inspiring and provided a thoughtful look at Black issues, there appeared to be a lack of an overall agenda for the masses who were in attendance. How should Black Americans move forward after the march? Who will confront the Justice Department on the killings of unarmed Blacks by the hands of police? How will the wealth gap between Blacks and Whites be eliminated? Those questions were addressed in some ways, but the solutions were often missing.
It’s difficult to solve every problem that plagues that Black community with one march. The anniversary of the Million Man March proved that Blacks continue to have the ability to mobilize, but there may be a need for 20 more marches to provoke real change.