Founded in 1993, the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM) describes itself as “an organization of Afrikans in America/New Afrikans whose mission is to defend the human rights of our people and promote self-determination in our community.” The phrase “Afrikans in America,” as opposed to “African Americans,” is intended to emphasize that black people are not actually “Americans.” In much of its literature, MXGM makes reference to “amerikkka,” whose lower-case spelling conveys contempt, and whose triple k’s identify the nation with the Ku Klux Klan. The term “New Afrika” is intended to serve as a reminder of the “shared oppression” that continues to afflict black people worldwide, even those far away from “the landmass on which our ancestors toiled and bled.”
Asserting that “the collective institutions of white-supremacy, patriarchy and capitalism have been at the root of our people’s oppression,” MXGM fights for the “liberation” of black people—“by any means necessary”—from the “genocide” and other abuses historically perpetrated by whites. Toward that end, the organization demands “reparations, or repayment for four hundred years of slavery, colonialism and oppression of our people in the United States of America.”
MXGM’s major organizational programs and initiatives include the following:
* The Free the Land campaign seeks to form an “independent Black Nation on land in north amerikkka,” to be situated in what is currently the Southeastern U.S. This “Nation” would have a socialist economy where “the major means of production and trade” were placed “in the trust of the state.”
* The Black August program was established in the early 1970s by members of the Black Liberation Movement as a means of “resistance against white supremacy in the United States.” Its “Black August Hip Hop Project” uses music as a way to “politicize the culture” of young blacks and radicalize them.
* The New Afrikan Women’s Caucus, emphasizing that America is sexist as well as racist, “opposes any form of oppression that limits girls and women from becoming self-determining individuals and reaching their fullest potential.”
* The People’s Self-Defense Campaign is founded on the premise that blacks are “routinely stopped, searched, and detained [by police] without probable cause or reasonable suspicion,” and are then funneled into “the Prison Industrial Complex, a system to reintroduce free labor, i.e. slavery in America.” The campaign’s purpose is to “observ[e], documen[t], and preven[t] incidents of police misconduct and brutality through educating and organizing our community and supporting survivors/victims of this misconduct.”
* The Political Prisoners program claims that there are currently more than 100 people incarcerated in the U.S. “because their beliefs and/or actions were in opposition to the repression of this government.” These include Mumia Abu Jamal (a convicted cop-killer and former Black Panther whom MXGM calls “an award winning journalist” who “has struggled for the justice and human rights of people of color”) and Leonard Peltier (a convicted double murderer whom MXGM describes as an “American Indian Movement leader” who was wrongly convicted and now “writes, paints, and organizes from behind bars”). In the past, MXGM also supported such former prisoners as onetime Weather Underground terrorist Laura Whitehorn and convicted murderer Geronimo Pratt.
* The Take Back the Land campaign asserts that all the foreclosed properties which the federal government purchased through the Troubled Asset Relief Program “are now in fact public housing [and] must be used as such to fulfill the U.S. government’s human-rights obligation to provide adequate housing to all the citizens and residents under its jurisdiction.”
* Crystal House, recognizing “housing as a Human Right” that “must be provided to all persons regardless of income or access to economic resources,” is a place where radical activists “sharpen” the “skills” they will need in order to “transform oppressive power dynamics and environments” and promote “revolutionary change.”
* The New Afrikan Scouts program helps black youngsters (ages 6-17) “rise to meet the challenges of being young in these times and in this place,” teaching them a blend of basic survival techniques, arts and crafts, and radical politics.
* The Community Education Workshop Series offers workshops and seminars on a wide variety of topics.
To help spread its message to a new generation of black activists, MXGM has established a Student Committee whose mission is “to reignite black radical politics on college [and] university campuses and academic settings.”
In early 2011, MXGM announced its “solidarity with the revolutionary spirit and action” of the Arab Spring that was sweeping North Africa and the Middle East. By MXGM’s reckoning, that movement represented a welcome “end to neo-colonial and neo-liberal regimes propped up by U.S. imperialism in the region.”
In October 2011, MXGM praised the anti-capitalist Occupy Wall Street movement’s efforts “to highlight the economic struggles of the 99% and in particular those of New Afrikans.” Charging that “the agricultural and industrial strength that laid the foundation for U.S. economic power exists because of the blood, sweat and tears of the Afrikans who were enslaved,” MXGM cited “a direct link between corporate profit and New Afrikan suffering.”
In the wake of the controversial February 2012 interracial killing of a black Florida teenager named Trayvon Martin, MXGM said, “The murder of Black men and women by police and other state officials and by self-appointed ‘keepers of the peace’ is standard practice in the United States, and essential to the very fabric of the society.”
For additional information on MXGM, click here.