Saturday, April 18, 2015

Murray Rothbard on Malcolm X

As a follow-up to my post, More on the Absurd Idea that Murray Rothbard was a Racist, Jason Peirce points me to an essay where Rothbard wrote:
I had the privilege of seeing Malcolm speak on two occasions in the year before his death. It was a delightful experience. His answers to questions were a match for any political leader, for intelligence and wit. He was, for example, a lot more impressive than Bill Clinton. 


  1. A forgotten point (at least in my experiences) with Malcolm X is that he was very pro-gun and knew coproaches didn't exist to protect people.

  2. I was only eleven years-old when Malcolm X was assassinated, but the quality of his mind and true spirit were evident to me because he was someone who was searching for answers. He was studying how we as individuals could come to respect ourselves and one another as spiritual beings who had failed to keep that at the forefront of our approach to one another.

    Recently at the age of 61 I had chance to look back at his body language and eye contact when talking to people in a causal setting. What I saw was a man who was at ease with himself, a man who was gangly and at times awkward in his movements, but open to others with an expressive smile. He was not a man who should have struck fear in anyone if they took the time to look at him as a human being. Malcolm X was not simply a caricature of the angry black man, but he spoke way too honestly for the "Greatest Generation" to ever allow him to point out the fanatical nature of the religion of American exceptionalism.

    Malcolm X death came on the heels of the vile reaction of Ronald Reagan and J. Edgar Hoover to the Free Speech Movement on the campus at U.C. Berkeley in December 1964. It was there that Mario Savio had stated before the TV cameras "There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part! You can't even passively take part! And you've got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels…upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop! And you've got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all"! Those powerful words stated before the TV cameras were what condemned Mario Savio to a life sentence of Federal harassment that surely played a major part in his premature death at the age of 53.

    In the span of 3 months it became obvious that individuals who spoke against the repressive and militaristic nature of government in America was going to be forcibly and permanently silenced. Freedom of speech was only allowed within the confines of a narrowly defined framework that negated anything that might impede the power of the state. This spoke volumes to me at age eleven and it is why I could never revere this country again as being worthy of my respect.

    1. Powerful stuff Switchblade: "Freedom of speech was only allowed within the confines of a narrowly defined framework that negated anything that might impede the power of the state."