During a speech at the Metropolitan AME Church in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan took aim at the American flag and addressed the recent controversy over the Confederate flag.
Farrakhan was asked during his speech about the controversy over the Confederate flag in the wake of the mass shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, last week, which left nine African Americans dead. The Charleston shooter was a white supremacist who was pictured with Confederate flags on his social media accounts. Since then, many leaders -- both Democratic and Republican -- have called for the removal of the Confederate flag from statehouses and stores, calling it a symbol of racism.
“We need to put the American flag down,” Farrakhan said in response to the controversy, according to DC's WMAL. “White folks march with you because they don’t want you upsetting the city, they don’t give a damn about them nine.”
Farrkhan is the leader of the Nation of Islam, an Islamic religious movement that was founded in Detroit in 1930. Although it says its mission is to improve the spiritual, mental, social and economic condition of African Americans in the U.S., it has often been labeled black supremacist and is associated with anti-Semitism. It is also listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Farrakhan is also no stranger to sparking controversy — most recently making threatening comments towards people who “physically” confront his group, The Examiner reports. He also called for violence after the events in Ferguson, Missouri, last year.
“What flag do the police have?” he asked during the speech. “What flag flies over the 'non-Justice' Department? What flag flies over the White House where a black man lives that's called (expletive deleted) every day? We fought in wars under that flag. And came back and were hung and were murdered and brutalized under that flag.”
Photo Credit: theblaze.com, WikiCommons