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The Men of the Tenth Inc.

Life and Times of Sister Shabazz

March, 2013

family was leaving the Nation of Islam. He and Betty X, now known as Betty Shabazz, became Sunni Muslims.

Betty Shabazz, also known as Betty X, was born Betty Dean Sanders. Although her birth records have been lost, she was likely born on May 28, 1934. Shabazz married Nation of Islam spokesman Malcolm X in 1958. After her husband’s assassination in 1965, Shabazz went on to a career in university administration and activism. She died from injuries sustained in a fire on June 23, 1997.

On February 21, 1965, Malcolm X was assassinated while giving a speech at the Audubon Ballroom in New York City. Shabazz was in the audience near the stage with her daughters. Angry onlookers caught and beat one of the assassins, who was arrested on the scene. Eyewitnesses identified two more suspects. All three men, who were members of the Nation of Islam, were convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

Betty Dean Sanders was born on May 28, 1934, to the teenaged Ollie Mae Sanders and Shelman Sandlin. While Betty spent most of her childhood in Detroit, she may have been born in Pinehurst, Georgia. At the age of 11, Betty began living with businLessman Lorenzo Malloy and his wife, Helen. Helen Malloy was a local activist who organized boycotts of stores discriminating against African Americans. After high school, Sanders studied at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. The extreme racism she encountered in the Jim Crow South shocked and frustrated her. In 1953, she left Alabama to study at the Brooklyn State College School of Nursing in New York City. While less overt, the racism that she observed in New York deeply affected Betty.

Shabazz never remarried. She raised her six daughters alone, aided by annual royalties from her husband’s book The Autobiography of Malcolm X and other publications. In late 1969, Shabazz completed an undergraduate degree at Jersey City State College, followed by a doctoral degree in highereducation administration at the University of Massachusetts. She then accepted a position as an associate professor of health sciences at New York’s Medgar Evers College. She worked as a university administrator and fund-raiser until her death.. For many years, Shabazz and her family suspected the Nation of Islam and its leader, Louis Farrakhan, of arranging the assassination of her husband.

During her second year of nursing school, Sanders was invited by an older nurse’s aide to a dinner party at the National of Islam temple in Harlem. She enjoyed the evening but declined to join the organization at that time. During her next visit to the temple, Sanders met Malcolm X, who was her friend’s minister. Sanders began attending Malcolm X’s services. She converted in 1956, changing her surname to “X” to represent the loss of her African ancestry. Betty X and Malcolm X were married on January 14, 1958, in Michigan. The couple eventually had six daughters. In 1964, Malcolm X announced that his

In 1995, Shabazz’s daughter Qubilah was prosecuted for hiring an assassin to kill Farrakhan. Farrakhan reached out to the family to defend Qubilah, prompting a public reconciliation between Shabazz and Farrakhan. While Qubilah attended a rehabilitation program, she sent her 10-year-old son, Malcolm, to stay with her mother in New York. On June 1, 1997, Malcolm set a fire in Shabazz’s apartment. Shabazz suffered severe burns and died on June 23, 1997. Malcolm Shabazz was sent to a juvenile detention for manslaughter and arson. Betty Shabazz is buried beside her husband at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York.

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The Men of the Tenth Inc.

March, 2013

Good Rap, Bad Rap and what it means to youth By: Kopano Muhammad

J. Cole is not your average 21st century Black rapper. Honestly, I wouldn’t even call him a rapper. Cole would be an artist that would fall into my exclusive list of poets. His music speaks and follows your heartbeat as you listen to his every word and the meaning of his lyrics. His music is something that I would describe as pure genius. Now, this isn’t meant to be a biography. It’s certainly not a devoted tribute to (in my opinion) one of the greatest rappers of all time. This is a simple article that I hope makes you think. Hip hop or otherwise known as rap music originated from the South Bronx of New York during the 1970s. It was well known throughout the New York streets. It was used to describe and talk about what was really going on in the Black community. At first it was good, it was cool. The beats easy, simple and were dope as ever. Lyrics were even more impressive. If you could rap in your neighborhood you were made. Rap music had been thought of very favorably in the Black communities. But now it has branded itself a bad name. Parents of any race do not approve of this type of “hoodlum” music. It’s thought of to be shameful, and bad

representation of the community that it originated from. What used to be an expression of hardship has been turned into music about gangs, sex, drugs, alcohol, and partying. If you were to listen to the lyrics of one of the most popular songs right now, it would sound a little something like this, “All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe,” or “Bands will make her dance,” and even more provocative phrases that probably should never be spoken even though they are. They are spoken, listened to, and repeated by everyone. Rap music continuously degrades women—calling them words that no one used to want to be associated with at all. Now Black girls go around calling themselves a “Bad B----h” as if in any way shape or form that is a good thing. Rappers have now convinced women that turning your clothes into strips of cloth is beautiful. That whatever hair is not yours is beautiful. That giving yourself up easily is beautiful. And I could have sworn that is not the meaning of beauty that my parents taught me. It’s told our young men that using girls is right. That going out into the streets killing each other is cool. Encouraging youth to get involved

in the drug game, which honestly, is not a game at all. Now our men want to do manly things, without paying the manly consequences. As I drone on and on about the history and facts of rap, you’re probably thinking, “Okay Little Girl what is your point?” My point is that rap music has slowly become corrupted over the years. But honestly it’s not all bad. J. Cole is the first rapper I wanted to mention because his music is what inspired me to write in the first place. Jermaine Lamarr Cole grew up without a father, raised single-handedly by his mother. He experienced the struggle of growing up Black and that’s what his music is all about. Cole raps about how Black girls are lowering themselves and how they struggle with life. He encourages them to move on: “Now girl you is fine, ain’t no doubt about it, but why else you think he hit it and forgot about it? It’s cause your mind do not match what your a-- got. But cheer up; you gotta be your own mascot.” Cole reminds our young females that we are all we’ve got, and that we can measure up to things beyond our imagination. But that’s only if we let ourselves. Cole’s music speaks of things Blacks go through on a daily basis, from being pulled over by a policeman for our race to struggling with depression.


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The Men of the Tenth Inc.

March, 2013

Continued Another inspirational rapper would be Big Sean. Sean is mostly known for his more inappropriate music but there are a lot of inspirational songs he has written that many people do not know about. Sean mainly talks about how he always wanted to be famous, how he wanted everyone to know his name, his lyrics, and what he is all about. Now he is escalated to such a high point in fame that he does not like it. His music speaks of dealing with figuring out who he can and cannot trust and how much he misses his past. His life was once so simple but even then things were not perfect. In one of his songs he tells us how his friend got hooked on drugs and how he cannot deal with it.

lyrics to relate to our lives and finding a meaning in them. Those words help us understand the world and help us understand ourselves. It’s something for us to fall back on. When everything is slowly crashing down, we have our music to rely on to always be there. It’s something that we can relate to when we feel like no one else can.

Rap music has slowly evolved into different things. While mainly adults are appalled by the musical content played on the radio, many teens are entertained by it. If you think about it, there is bad rap music out there, but there’s good rap music out there too. It is just yet to be discovered. Rap music has helped a lot of teens in many ways—helped us find our ways out of difficult situations, using the

Life Lesson from a Lawyer By: Paul Butler

My story is different from those of most of the approximately 14 million Americans who get arrested every year. I had the best defense attorney in the city, because I could afford her. I knew how to appeal to a jury- hell, I’d prosecuted folks in the very courtroom where I was being prosecuted. In addition to carefully preparing my testimony, I made sure that my haircut was conservative and my shoes were

shined. I knew how to look like the kind of African American a jury would not want to send a jail. I was innocent. By the way. During the process, that fact seemed rather beside the point. Our criminal justice system works like a meat grinder. You are supposed to proceed, in orderly fashion, from arrest to guilty plea to sentencing. More than 90 percent of criminal

cases are resolved just that way. During the period between my arrest and trial, I kept feeling pressure to go along with the program. The prosecutor told my lawyer that I was eligible for “diversion” – a program for firsttime offenders of minor crimes in which the charges are dismissed if you do community service. “I’m sure he does community service



The Men of the Tenth Inc.

March, 2013

Continued already” was the line repeated to me.

Hip – Hop Quote of The Month Seeing is believin' Believe when you see it They saying I'm the best, shit I'm just trying to be it They tied me to a mountain of it I just try to ski it Long distance wireless Kinect like I Wii it Double-U double-I, spelled so you can see it Cause it's way over their heads when I Ray Allen 3 it I'm Rondo on the bongos and giving you my convo We ain't been home since we were snatched out the Congo Toast to progress as I'm staring out my condo Made it this far and I ain't never been like Tonto (yuh) As you compare me to a fuckin' rookie You can't respect the new school when you played hookie Cooked white, turned to tan so the world Snooki School of Hard Knocks- look at where the game took me To the limit like Montana with better grammar Bigger homes with bigger guns and better cameras

I actually considered it. However, my boss at the Department of Justice, a red-faced Irishman who looked more like a beat cop than a top government official, said, “If you take a diversion, everybody will think you are guilty.” That was all I needed to hear. I wanted my day in court. The system worked for me- to the extent that you can describe a system as “working” when a man is arrested and made to stand trail for a crime he did not commit. At least I was not convicted, which makes me as grateful for my money, my defense attorney, my social standing, my connections, and my legal skills as for my actual innocence.

Excerpt, from Lets Get Free: A Hip-Hop Theory of Justice

Pusha T from Open Your Eyes


The Men of the Tenth Inc.

March, 2013

You Can Always Improve “I am never satisfied. I’m a perfectionist. When I see the show is ready and the collection is out and they’re quite nice, I still say, I could do much better.” Fashion Designer, Carolina Herrera From: Notable Hispanic American Women, (1993)

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March 2013  

Teaching the Truth to the Youth