Tuesday, January 03, 2006

BET You Can't Guess

You'll never guess who Black Entertainment Television (BET) named as their Person of the Year for 2005. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan.
"An overwhelming percentage of our users agreed that Minister Farrakhan made the most positive impact on the Black community over the past year and chose him as the person most worthy to receive the honor of BET.com's 2005 Person of the Year," said Retha Hill, BET.com's vice president for Content.

They agreed that he has done what no other African American leader has: "mobilize hundreds of thousands of Blacks around the issues of atonement and empowerment, and to convince the masses of our people that we must be the primary catalysts and engines for positive change in our communities," she said.
As blogger extraordinaire Michelle Malkin so subtly points out:
Yes, while fellow black American Lt. Gen. Russell Honore was actually rescuing Hurricane Katrina victims, mobilizing troops, and saving lives, Farrakhan was bloviating about levees being blown up and stewing in racial hatred.
Well, at least Tracy Stokes -- the BET.com Staff Writer who put this piece together -- did her homework when it came to the object of her research. According to Ms. Stokes:
In 1995, Farrakhan became the chief organizer -- and a leader -- of a large rally of African-American men in Washington, D.C. Known as the Million Man March, the event was designed to encourage Black men to take personal responsibility for improving conditions in Black America. The crowd was estimated to be up to a million people or more.

I love the wording, "up to a million people or more." I remember a former pastor who would joke that "a congregation of 100 is, ministerially speaking, just under a thousand in attendance." From the 1995 reports of that first Million Man gathering, there were "ministerially speaking" just under a million in attendance. Speaking from recollections, I believe there were in reality far fewer who made that first trek for Mr. Farrakhan. And in the subsequent offerings, attendance dwindled considerably to a fraction of the numbers expected.

A tip of the hat to reader The Dude for pointing me to this story. (Thanks, Mike!)


Anonymous Mike said...

And thanks for the hat tip! Happy 2006 to you and the Songbird family.

1/06/2006 8:03 AM  

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