In 1995, Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation Of Islam called for one million men to congregate at the National Lawn in Washington D.C. 20 years later, some of those same individuals who attended in 1995 once again answered the call to assembly. They were asked what they would like the future generation to remember in the next 20 years. These are their thoughts.
“We are to the point where we need to get some action done. We are tired of coming together marching and demanding the same thing. But what I would tell them is that they need to find out, so that we wont have to repeat history like we are doing. We are repeating history. 20 years from now, if someone is born and is not aware of this here, they shouldn’t have to have another event like this here. It is incumbent on us to do something so that they don’t have to do this.”
Jabar, Rob, and Bashir
" I guarantee you that when you look at the news about this, they will find all the negative aspects of it. That’s why it is important you are here. To show the real story of what is happening"
"The next generation are the ones that are 13, 14, 15. You are the one that has to put something in their heads. It is your responsibility. If you don’t, the same shit will happen. We will be back in here 20 years asking for the same shit.”
"When we came in ‘95 it was to bring the men together so they can gain back control of their families and homes. Now we are here again, 20 years later, and it is because they are killing those very same men that we are trying to encourage to go back home and take care of their families and take charge. It is obvious that they are out to annihilate the black man. The black man has the key to all life. They recognize that, even when we don’t recognize that. Therefore, when they saw the numbers in ‘95, it scared them. When they hear us keep coming back and keep coming back it scares them. They have to pay for what they have done to our people. And they know that, so they are trying to annihilate all of us so that they do not have answer for what they have done. What they do not understand is that we have a direct connection with Allah and Allah is going to bring the wrath upon them. It may not be this year, it may not be 100 years from now, but it is coming. And it is obvious from how everything is going on in the world today. The time is coming in."
"In ‘95 it was us coming together, atonement. And what Minister Farrakhan was sayingwas more based in economics. Let’s come together, let’s put our money together. And now, it’s more or less fed up. You are killing our kids, you are killing our people, and nothing is being done about it. So what I want them to take from it is that Black people, can come together and assemble, peacefully. In ‘95, I was a senior in high school. And one thing I used to tell everyone about the march, coming from an inner city high school, was that anytime there was a lot of us, you expected something to happen. And when I got here in ‘95, and I just saw all of these black people just cool, waving at me, it was like euphoric almost. It was a great feeling. So I want to give them that, that black people can come together. Don’t listen to the status quo. I’m living proof, you can do it twice. Because that is the main thing, we don’t have unity. But we can come together for the event, and if we can take that and channel it into some type of unity to come together, that would be great. So I think step 1 is that we can come together. You call for us and we came. The next step is the next one. So if it is another 20th anniversary, I’ll be there too. I will."
"I just want them to know we gotta stop meeting like this. We are here for a reason and we are revisiting what we did 20 years ago. Certainly we have made some progress, but we’ve digressed as well. You know we need some young leaders. If you look at Farrakhan , he is 83 years old. I’m 61 years old. We need some young 22 year olds, with that same passion, that same fire about justice. Not for some people but for all people. That’s what this is about to me. I have my grandchildren here, my daughter. I want to see justice for all people. Not just a few, not just the elite. I would love to see us not repeat the same thing, not just here for the same reasons."
"We need to come out of this damn mess we are into right now. And I hope today we get some instructions on how we finally once and for all get out of this. We did this 20 years ago; we are right back again talking about the same thing. Except for we came for atonement and reconciliation, but we were still addressing the same issues."