[Editor’s note: The following are excerpts from a message entitled, “The Role of Detroit in the Rise of Black People in America and the World” delivered by Minister Farrakhan November 14, 2004 in Detroit, Michigan as the keynote address for a two-day symposium, “Black Men Taking Responsibility: A Plan of Action” sponsored by the city’s African American Men’s Organization.]

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


Minister Louis Farrakhan

The scripture says, “As by one man, sin entered into the world,” then death came as a result of sin. All men have sinned, thus death then covered the whole of humanity. What you are living in right now is the culture of death. You live in the underworld. That’s why you say heaven is up. You are looking up for heaven, but it’s not in the sky.


Get a telescope. One telescope can spy far planets, but they have not seen heaven yet. They can send a contraption to Mars, peeping around. They can see the far planet Pluto, which is four billion, six hundred million miles from the sun, but they have not seen heaven nor its “golden streets.”

You have to wake up today. If you are a preacher, you have to preach the reality of the scripture and not make-believe, because the scripture does not challenge science and mathematics; the scripture is the highest manifestation of science and mathematics.

You say in the church, “We are climbing Jacob’s Ladder. We are climbing Jacob’s Ladder,” and every round goes higher and higher. Where are you going? You sing a song, “I can’t remain on this earthly plane, I’m bound for higher ground.” Do you remember that song? What is the song talking about? You realize you are trapped in the underworld and you are trying to get out to reach heaven, because heaven is an elevated state of life. Heaven is where there is peace, joy, the love of brotherhood and a creative mind that can say, “Be” and bring into existence what you say, because it’s all from God. Unfortunately, you do not live in the bliss of a heavenly life.

The greatest joy of all is when the soul is united with the Creator. “Oh soul,” the Holy Qur’an says, “that is at rest. Well pleased and well-pleasing” to God. That’s the ultimate pleasure. We don’t have that in this world. Some of us can get it for a moment. When we are in that state of extreme joy, with nobody around but us and the Creator, that’s a wonderful feeling. In the heavenly life, you would have that all of the time. The next highest level of pleasure comes from a creative mind that can vision something and then organize and bring it into reality. Then, your heart is filled with joy for your vision that has come to pass. That is pleasure on a high level.

The next form of pleasure is—as the scripture says—“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.” At the Million Man March nine years ago, nearly two million Black men traveled to Washington, and those men felt a joy, spirit and pleasure that they had not experienced before with one another. That was a moment in time.

But now, where do you find pleasure? You find it in the underworld, from the navel down, your pleasure centers. Sex has become the instrument of pleasure, so the enemy can feed you AIDS through the instrument of pleasure. Then, he has crafted a drug that is so diabolical that when it touches the pleasure center of your brain, you do not even want food or sex as pleasure. The drug is a higher pleasure. A people are in pain in a world where there is no justice, no equality under the law and no freedom to become what God has put within them. Yet, they call this a democracy. This is your pain trying to fit into a system that is diametrically opposed to the very nature in which you were created. You were not created to be a Democrat or a Republican. You were created to be a servant of the Most High God.

Every one of you, when you get in deep trouble, you fall down on your knees and call out to God. At that moment, your prayer is sincere. You pray, “Lord, Lord! If you just get me out of this, this one time, I promise I’ll serve You for the rest of my days.” So this inclination to God in your very nature should make you know that you are a servant of God.

But you have become a servant of democracy. In the underworld, demons rule. This is why they can talk about same-sex marriages, because it’s demonic. It is against the natural order of things. The Bible says, “This wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign.” We are involved in behavior that is not righteous, even though we are the natural, righteous servants of God. We have given ourselves over to the underworld, finding pleasure in drugs, gangs, drive-by shootings, pumping iron, beating your wife, beating your brother, cheating, stealing, conning, pimping and hustling. This is the state that you are in, but it is not your natural state. But democracy does not care. They are building more prisons for you. That’s the new industry now, prisons.

They use the “star power” of our celebrities to tell boys and girls, “Stay in school and get an education.” Why? So they will be as stupid as they are? You say, “Farrakhan, I was going along with you, but are you making mockery of my Ph.D. degree?” No, we respect and honor your degree, but don’t ever say you are a doctor and can’t heal your profession. White people give degrees, but they are mocking you by calling you a doctor of psychology while all of these mad people are in the world. You do not have a solution for what’s going on, not only in their mind, but in your own sick mind.

How are you educated, and fathers are having sex with their daughters? Uncles, grandfathers, cousins and brothers are ruining the females in their families. How can a man be considered educated, but he does not know the value of a female? What kind of doctor are you that he does not know the value of a woman? Our women are practically destroyed because their virtue and innocence are destroyed when they are young. Can you imagine what kind of sick mind is in a man who would play with a 2-year-old girl? My daughter was a nurse in a hospital, and in the middle of the night they brought in a girl who was split from the vagina to the anus, because a crazed man tried to enter her.

This is democracy? The White man does not care about pedophilia. He’s been doing this since we were in slavery. He does not care about freakishness. In our Lessons from the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, the question is asked, “Why does the devil keep us apart from his social equality?” The answer given is “because he does not want us to know how filthy he is and all his affairs. He is afraid that, when we learn of him, we will drive him from among us.” But today, he opens up his world of social equality and we have fallen in love with the degenerate nature and way of this world. This is democracy? This is the freedom that you have—freedom to be a freak, a pimp, a whore. Freedom to be nothing. Then, you join the military to protect this degenerate way of life.

“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom come.” I can’t wait for that Kingdom to come. As long as I have breath in my body, I will work to bring that Kingdom to the earth. And that’s your job.


I heard that a Brother in this city came up with the idea to have, in Detroit, an Africa Town. Maybe the language in the plan was not right, I don’t know. But I heard that some said this was reverse discrimination or racism. We have to deal with that criticism, because God is not going to raise us up to be what we condemned the Caucasian for being. Justice must flow down the mountain like a mighty river, if you represent God. So we do not countenance discrimination or reverse racism.

I do not think that that was Claud Anderson’s idea, to racially discriminate against others in the city of Detroit. But if this city is 85 percent Black, and you have a Greek Town, an Arab Town, a China or Korea Town, and a Mexican or Hispanic Town, then wait a minute. That’s not racism, is it? No, that is affirming who they are and what they contribute to the city in which they live.


There is nothing wrong with celebrating who you are, as long as you are not depriving another person of the celebration of who they are. I was fascinated by the concept of Africa Town because, if anything can be done by Black people, it should be done in Detroit.

Suppose we had an Africa Town, wherein Black architects can show their genius, Black construction people can show their ability, and Black entrepreneurs can open businesses. We can show that we, too, can do for ourselves as others are doing. We ought to do it for ourselves!

New York is watching; Chicago is looking; Baltimore, which is 85 percent Black with a White mayor—is looking. If Detroit does it, then Detroit will set an example for the rest of America. Detroit, God has put you in the position. Don’t blow it! Don’t blow it! Use it and inspire a people to get up and do something for themselves.

The mayor has a budget of $3.3 billion. That’s a nice little “taste” of wealth for a Black man to manage. The Honorable Elijah Muhammad told me how God raised him to manage funds. You don’t start a man who has never managed anything and put millions in his hands. For God’s sake, that’s a prescription for horror.

When the Honorable Elijah Muhammad was in this city, and they started the Nation of Islam, everybody was poor, but our job was to support the Messenger and his family. So, they gathered canned goods and sent them to his house. Soon, he had so much canned goods, he could not only feed his family, but he could also look out for the poor in the community who didn’t have any food. He had more than he could use, so he used it to help others. He said, “God showed me how to handle $5 bills, $10 bills, $100 bills. Then, He graduated me to thousand dollars, then tens of thousands, then hundreds of thousands, then millions.”

What happens to Black people is that one day we are unknown and the next day we have a hit record. One day we’re poor and the next day we have money that we don’t know how to use. So the first thing we want to do is show off to our friends, that we have money. So, we start bling-blinging, but in a short while we are famous but broke. We’re famous but do not know how to handle fame.

The first verse of the Holy Qur’an says, “Praise belongs to God, the Lord, Nourisher and Sustainer of all the worlds.” If praise belongs to Him, why are we trying to grab some of it for ourselves? Whatever you do of greatness, Mr. Mayor, the glory belongs to God. If you try to take it on your shoulder, your shoulder may be big and broad now, but it can’t handle praise. Soon, you will get all puffed up.

Have you ever seen a drunk man urinate on himself without knowing it? That’s what happens when fame, money and power comes too quick. You can’t handle it, so it begins to handle you. It becomes a means of your corruption and destruction. We cannot have corruption in government and be successful. That is the White man’s game. That is not the way of God. You cannot siphon the money off, saying, “This is for education and this is for my education. This is for the police, but I’m the chief. This is for the firemen, but my house is on fire, too.”

Corruption will destroy your house, even though you can’t see it. Corruption is like a termite, it eats away the foundation of government. Corruption is the enemy of the freedom, justice and equality that God wants to give. It brings consequences that undermine our ability to govern, minister, teach, and be a good husband, a good father and a good brother. Corruption will undermine us.

I would like to see us sit down with those who oppose the idea of Africa Town, and help them see that we are not intending to harm Arabs, Greeks, Mexicans or White people by having an Africa Town. We are not trying to be reverse in discrimination, but we want to lift a people who are on the bottom and give them some symbol that has some substance to it that can inspire hope in Black people all over America and the world.

Once Africa Town is set up, then we can go to Africa and say that we have an Africa Town in Detroit. They have gold, diamonds, coffee and other natural resources and materials. Let us set up an arrangement between Africa Town in Detroit and Ghana, Zimbabwe, Libya, Sierra Leone and Nigeria.

When the rest of Black America sees what you have done, there will be Africa Towns all over America. Then, some of the $750 billion that we take out of the American economy can start revolving in our own community, allowing us to build hospitals, schools and independent institutions that serve our own needs.