Anyways, I will breakdown this overall analysis of what I read based on where my thoughts were headed in each of his chapters.
Young Malcolm:I have not led a life like young Malcolm at all, but I would be remiss if I couldn't relate to his golden black boy status. I have to think that up until high school and even at times during it, being the only black student in the class never meant much when I was younger but made appearances as many people starting in middle school prized me in a sense. However, I did have the distinction of growing up in an overall diverse city which Malcolm did not. It is tragic then through how much his mother, father and family went to its familial breakdown which is nothing new as I have seen it in many families and my own brother's family several times. The needling by the government, followed by foster care, the loss of a male role model and many other deconstructions show just how much they destroy family. As it was in slave times, Malcolm X's family dismemberment is nothing new and is still not unchanged.
*Small note: his mom disliking her heritage is intriguing to me, I love my Portuguese side, but I can't deny how much some of my black love, like her, is related to having gorgeous dark offspring
Boston/New York Detroid Red: Living how they think they want you to. Whether it was shaping himself to subservient to white men shoe shining, loving white women, hustling hard (in a myriad of ways - I personally liked him being the go to man for the kinky dominant black women), and robbing. Or if it was him trying to shape himself to blend in with culture lindy-hopping, getting conks, or grabbing a zoot suit. All of this suggests how the world was before and hasn't changed since -athletes playing for entertainment(on display), chains, cars and bling, trophy women, hustles (yes even in the 2000s does someone occasionally come up trying to sell me a copped watch), and of course the lottery (all that money for nothing). I found myself relating to some of this in how I was not exception either from my once strong love of white women, rocking chains, listening to hood music, baggy clothes and rolling to the occasional hood party which would all probably surprise my brother now. I think it's hard for every black child, certainly black man, to not be tempted by the life as Malcolm was. Thankfully he resurrected himself to become a better person.
Prison to Muslim Malcolm X: Much of the mythos of Malcolm X comes from his prison stint that washed away the hustler and created the activist leader. The book does an intriguing of highlighting the Muslim, specifically black Muslim, movement in America while explaining Malcolm X's intelligence, need for glasses, change in hair and more. It is macabre in how the prison seems a natural order of life for black men and many other minority men and I'm glad that for a time Malcolm X created a hope to walk away from that. It is another subjugation of black men in modern times and most recently as prison possibilities seem on the verge as my brother again scares me to death of his future. A man or woman has a lot of time alone in prison, Malcolm X made a strong use of it that led to him become a strong orator for Muslims. Seeing his persistence, his love for Betty and his strong support of ideals that led to what imagine to be some of the best speeches in existence. Of course, this was a militant all black stance that pushed him to be so anti-white that it didn't see that ways that other racial groups including whites could help. In this reflection, I apologize to those who I alienated during my strong two years of militancy. As Malcolm X would learn that while his more for militancy and self-defense he is far more partial to the changes and necessity of all races than you would think.
Malcolm Shabazz from Mecca's Revelations: While I immensely enjoyed Malcolm's journey in Mecca and can't imagine that great sense of spirituality he gained from that trip. However, just as one travels, one learns more about themselves and the world than they can imagine. Malcolm learned about the world of Islam that had people of races helping each other and making improvements regardless of blackness or whiteness. Thus, he returned to the US realizing that every race and person has their place in making their country less racist. It was at this point that I realized I had been going about some of my pro-black everything a little blindly and forgot the wonderful people I had known of all racial backgrounds and how we can each help for all black lives matter. If one of my idols had come to this conclusion, I certainly could. While some people still don't exactly get it and I'll call out a white guy's party for having only red and blue bandanas (I did say something about it), there are several wonderful people of any race who get it or have their own difficulties too.
In the end, I still want to go to his memorial in Wash Heights that I'm pleased exist, but I'm saddened by how soon he left us. And while I had always and still do enjoy Martin Luther King Jr.'s non-violent sit-ins, which if you've ever lived or been to the South for awhile made perfect sense (Martin would've been shot from the get go if said some of the remarks that Malcolm said), I find myself relating more with Malcolm X in the long run since his Northern civil rights style suits my overall being more than the methodical Southern preaching. Either way, these two leaders and certainly Malcolm in regards to NYC and Harlem made such great changes that I wish we still had them to handle the wave of changes we're going through today.
Thank you Malcolm for letting me read your journey and how you have helped mine. By Any Means Necessary.