It Takes a Village

Malcolm X (right) and grandson Malcolm Shabazz
I was doing a little browsing while I had some freetime in my first class this morning and came arcoss an article about Malcolm Shabazz (Malcolm X’s grandson) that’ll appear in the May 30th issue of Newsweek. Here’s a little segment of that article:

“Malcolm X’s grandson didn’t get to see the celebrations in Harlem last week honoring his late grandfather’s 80th birthday. Not the debut of the exhibit “Malcolm X: A Search for Truth” at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Not the dedication of the Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Education Center at the Audubon Ballroom, where his grandfather was gunned down 40 years ago. The 20-year-old has missed many a family event. But in this year of nostalgic reflection, which Malcolm X’s family has dubbed “the Rebirth of the Legacy,” Malcolm Shabazz is ready to make amends. “I’ve had a lot of time to sit in my cell and just think,” says Shabazz, who is set to be released this summer from Clinton Correctional Facility in upstate New York. “I know I let a lot of people down. I know people expected more.”

Shabazz has spent a third of his life behind bars, first for setting a fire that led to the death of his grandmother, and then for attempted robbery. But the African-American community is ready to forgive and embrace the prodigal son, a young man so haunted by family tragedy and the glare of inherited fame. High-profile friends and admirers of Shabazz’s grandparents – including rap mogul Russell Simmons, former New York mayor David Dinkins and actor Denzel Washington – say they plan to support and keep tabs on the heir to one of the most significant figures in African-American history. Washington, who has portrayed the late civil-rights leader on stage and screen, says the reason is simple: Malcolm X’s grandson is much too important to be forgotten. “I think we all just want to see him have a good life and get on track,” the actor says. “There’s a lot of pain that’s been suffered by that family, and it’s just time to see some healing and better times.””

For the entire article, check out Newsweek’s website or the March 30th issue of the magiazine. Feel free to leave any comments.


~ by Steve L. on May 25, 2005.

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