[Editor’s note: Although published 19 years ago in 1993, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan’s book “A Torchlight For America,” to this very day still has the guidance and solutions for the problems that America has not been able to solve, and which continues to destroy her from within. The following article contains excerpts from the chapter titled, “Developing America’s Moral Backbone.”]

In The Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful.

The War on Drugs

Most of the violent crime on the streets is drug-related. In 1992, $12 billion was allocated to fight the war on drugs, according to former President George H.W. Bush’s Budget for Fiscal Year 1993. The bulk of the money was spent on law enforcement and about a third went to treatment and prevention.



We need to promote observance of God in everything that we do. This will repair the relationship between male and female and lead to lasting, happy marriages, and the elimination of rape, incest, molestation, assault and the abuse of women. It will also repair the relationship between the governed and the governors.

According to a 1989 survey by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Blacks only make up 12 percent of drug users, but FBI figures indicate Blacks account for 44 percent of all drug possession arrests. In spite of the fact that Whites sell most of the nation’s drugs and account for most of its customers, Blacks and Latinos continue to fill America’s jails.


According to the Wall Street Journal, a survey in California revealed that where 70 percent of people sent to prison for drug offenses were Black, more than 63 percent of public drug treatment slots went to Whites. Again, racism at work.

Ridding Mayfair Mansions in Washington, D.C. of dope traffic and rehabilitating the addicts is a success story of The Nation of Islam, at no cost to the country. We have a Dopebusters program that has been very successful and is applauded by the communities in which the Dopebusters or Nation of Islam security are present. How is it that with nothing we can do what the government has not been able to do with $12 billion?

We are an example for America. If America sincerely wants to rid the society of the scourge of drugs, it should let us help. It only makes sense to follow what works, and fund what works. The Dopebusters program, if properly funded, could help to rid the nation of drug traffic and addiction. We have a proven record. Since America is either unwilling or unable to curb addiction, it should let us rehabilitate our own. We are getting the results. Why should America back us? The government can help us by patrolling the borders and keeping drugs out of the country. But let us help in handling the streets. It’s in America’s own self-interest.

Recognize and Penalize White-Collar Crime

All of the street crime that has been committed does not add up, in terms of dollars, to what Mike Milken and Ivan Boesky did with their junk-bond scheme.

In a White supremacist world, white-collar crime gets overlooked relative to the focus on Blacks and street crime. Why make Blacks the focus as the real criminals? W.E.B. DuBois wrote:

“Even today the masses of the Negroes see all too clearly the anomalies of their position and the moral crookedness of yours. You may marshal strong indictments against them, but their counter-cries, lacking through they may be in formal logic, have burning truths within them which you may not wholly ignore, O Southern Gentlemen! If you deplore their presence here, they ask, who brought us? When you cry, deliver us from the vision of intermarriage, they answer that legal marriage is infinitely better than systematic concubinage and prostitution (that we experienced during slavery). And if in just fury you accuse their vagabonds of violating women, they also in fury quite as just may reply: the rape which your gentlemen have done against helpless Black women in defiance of your own laws is written on the foreheads of two million mulattoes, and written in ineffaceable blood. And finally, when you fasten crime upon this race as its peculiar trait, they answer that slavery was the arch-crime, and lynching and lawlessness its twin abortions; that color and race are not crimes, and yet it is they (color and race) which in this land receive most unceasing condemnation, North, East, South, and West.”

I am not excusing street crime. But justice is a two-edged sword wielded by truth. It cuts both Black and White and has no regard for one’s station in life. But in America there is no justice in the courts and in the penal system for Blacks and the poor. We have nothing more than a system of laws—laws to protect the interests and the property of Whites.

Support The Nation of Islam’s Prison Reform Ministry

The prison system is not set up to reform. It’s a dead end. In a Philadelphia study, it was found that 35 percent of all males had been arrested at least once. Fifty-four (54) percent of those arrested at least once were arrested a second time. Sixty-five (65) percent of those arrested twice were arrested a third time. And 72 percent of those arrested three times were arrested a fourth.

The rate of recidivism, or tendency to return to criminal habits, indicates that there is no real reform. In fact, the inmate’s propensity toward criminal behavior only worsens after going to prison. And $18,000 of the taxpayer’s money is spent per year per inmate to keep them in prison. In effect, billions are spent each year to create and maintain hardened criminals that remain the outcasts of the society.

When you look at what the Muslims are doing with our prison program, in the midst of you, here again you see a torchlight. Muslims are relatively crime free, and our rate of recidivism is lower than in the main. We respect law and order. Since so many of the inmates are our people, why not let us reform them and help to save the inmates and lessen the taxpayer’s burden? We can handle the inmates for less than what America is paying now. And better, we can reform our people and make them productive members of society.


America has not found a way to curb crime and reform those in her society who consistently break her laws, particularly in the Black community. The fact is that due to the high rate of recidivism, most of the street crime in this country is perpetrated by the same set of people. Instead of being reformed, a substantial number of people are recycled through committing crime and then being incarcerated again and again. The threat of street crime to life and property, and the great cost to the American taxpayer for warehousing people in jails and prisons, continues unabated.

We have an idea for addressing the problem of crime and reforming the so-called criminal, that can at the same time relieve some of America’s burdens and even elevate her stature in the eyes of God and the nations of the earth. …The Muslims have shown a tremendous ability to reform those of our people who break the law. The movie Malcolm X demonstrated how the Teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad could reform an eighth-grade dropout student and so-called criminal into a world leader. How many future world leaders are languishing in prisons who may never have a chance to demonstrate to the world what the Almighty Creator has put in them? Our prisoners need a chance to do something constructive with their lives.

America should be willing to support the Nation of Islam for the next three or more years, to teach unhindered in the jails and prisons to begin the process of reform.

What The Nation Of Islam can offer America

We offer ourselves to America as an example of what can be achieved when we have the proper state of mind and connectedness with the Lord of the worlds. We can show what that Bible (that many Americans have right on their shelves gathering dust) can do when properly used. Although we use the Holy Qur’an, the Bible was the main tool used by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad because it was the book that we knew best. What product is America making with the Bible? We’re making clean, productive Black men and women from the same Bible that you read. That’s our goods. That’s our services.

Our people respect us. We don’t go to our people with guns. We go with love and a moral imperative that appeals to their nature as the People of God.

The National Institute of Mental Health wants to say that we are genetically prone to crime. So they want to promote a drug that they say will curb crime among Black people. Does America want to promote that same drug with White people, who have killed millions upon millions of Blacks, Native Americans, Africans, Jews, Asians and even their own Gentile brethren?

Crime is a consequence of an unjust society and a corrupt political, economic and social system. If manufacturing is brought back to the cities instead of being continually ceded to foreign countries, then we can offer our people an alternative and we can lift the poor in this country and save the cities.

When you have a relatively drug-free community you have a relatively crime-free community where the ties of family are strong and there is very little domestic violence. None of the members of the Nation of Islam are allowed to carry or possess weapons. Recently we received a contract to patrol a Los Angeles apartment complex. In just two months’ time the police reported that crime decreased 75 percent. What do we have that the police don’t have? We love our people.

We need to promote observance of God in everything that we do. This will repair the relationship between male and female and lead to lasting, happy marriages, and the elimination of rape, incest, molestation, assault and the abuse of women. It will also repair the relationship between the governed and the governors.

It is necessary to sit and reason with us. We are ready to sit down and talk with America’s leaders, if they are ready to break the mindset of a slave master and cancel that old master/slave relationship. We’re ready to talk about instilling core values among our people, generating jobs, sacrificing to reduce the federal debt, rebuilding the cities, making the streets safer, educating our children to be the envy of the civilized world, curing AIDS, providing a future for ourselves and for all of America.

Is America ready for us?

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