4 Days with The Nation of Islam


Written by Steven
21 Monday 21st January 2008

I can see the light and it's energy efficient


The first thing I did is check these guys out. I found a shit-load of stuff on the internets about them. The stories ranged from sensationalist tabloid reports of forced conversion to Islam to touching tales of community support, brotherhood and self-sufficiency. There were also reports on how the NOI believed that nobody but black people could be Muslims and how the entire white race are devils born of a failed laboratory experiment conducted by "crazed black scientists" hundreds of years ago.

DAY 1: WEDNESDAY I did some sniffing about and found out that the NOI had a ‘mosque’ above a garage in Brixton. I went down there and knocked on the front door. Eventually it was answered by a smart-suited man known as Brother Jason. I told him my name was Mohammed and my dad was a Muslim and my Mum was a Christian and I wasn’t sure what to believe. He looked me up and down, disappeared back inside for a few minutes and returned with a flyer for a speech on Sunday. I took the flyer and left.


DAY 2: THURSDAY Despite being instructed not to return until the following Sunday I came back the next day and spent the whole day waiting around for their Thursday night meeting. With me was my cousin who had nothing better to do that day. We made up some more false names. Forgetting that I was supposed to be Mohammed I chose the name Faris. He was Alfred. We knocked on the secret door and told the guy that answered that Brother Jason had sent us. The dude ushered us in with an "AsSalaam Alaikum" and my cousin and I (with a hidden camera in my shirt) were frogmarched into a side room where an intimidating Brother Marlon explained to us that we were going to have to “go through the procedure”. This involved a thorough search and the removal of all extraneous clothing. He took our e-mail addresses and mobile phone numbers (I changed two of the digits) and that was that. BAM - we were in The Nation. But joining The NOI seemed way too easy... creepy but easy. I soon came to realise that the reason is because The NOI are far from the terrifying and revolutionary secret society of evil genii they posture as. They are actually a group of sad, disillusioned, old-men desperately lashing out against a society it perceives as persecuting them. Basically they're BNP members with a better tan.

They also make approximately 90 percent of their income from selling badly-made DVDs featuring Minister Farrakhan or Minister Farrakhan’s son or the guy that knows the guy that Minister Farrakhan’s son used to play football with back in junior school. Brother Marlon spent about thirty minutes giving us the hard sell, explaining to us what each DVD was about, who it was by and why we had to buy it or face eternal damnation in white-man hell. The DVDs were labelled things like Down with America. We patiently listened before plumping for a copy of the cheapest item on the table, a copy of their Sign of the Times newspaper for 75 pence. I only had pound coins so Brother Marlon shuffled off to get me some change. While he was gone I got a shot of the table. The next three hours were a painful combination of pre-recorded sermons and group (three people) discussions.

FRIDAY I headed down to Friday’s meeting alone after my cousin told me he would rather punch himself in the face then return to the “most boring place I ever went to ever.” I headed down alone and was once again welcomed into the fold by Brother Jason. Brother Jason knew all about my coming the day before and excitedly told me he was going to be “my keeper” for the remainder of our time together. I was shoved into another big room and was immediately surrounded by suit-wearing NOI types. None of them introduced themselves and just stood, staring right through me.

Brother Jason sent me into another side-room. In it were two ‘sisters’ dressed in the white wedding gown-style uniform they all wore all of the time. One asked me lots of questions. I slipped up when I gave her the same false name I used on the second night two minutes before Brother Jason walked in and called me by the completely different false name I gave him on the first night. I was ushered back into the room with all the staring guys. An old guy in a grey suit began lecturing me about the "youth of today" and bad influences and blah blah. I guess he was pretty important because everybody else kept silent as he ranted. Halfway through his speech my mobile phone went off, resulting in my phone being confiscated. Finally we went into the main hall for another video sermon. It lasted about two and a half hours and centred on the twin themes of anti-Semitism (boring) and how wonderful and amazing Minister Farrakhan is. We were taught all about how America is out to destroy the black man and how the Jews secretly control everything in the Jew-niverse from their secret Jew-base on the Jew-death star. The main thing we learned about though was minister Farrakhan. It seems minister Farrakhan is the embodiment of everything good and great in the universe. The preacher even went on to suggest that Minister Farrakhan actually IS god, not a god mind, I mean actual god. And there's me thinking the Islamists believed in the total transcendence of god. Silly me, eh? After three-plus hours of declarations of man-love for the great minister, the DVD ended and the event wrapped up. Brother Jason attempted to sell me a copy but once again I declined, said "AsSalaam Alaikum" and left.


SUNDAY Sunday was my final day and the day of Farrakhan’s speech. Brother Malcolm was opening. A few (about twenty-five) minutes into the sermon he started ranting about Darfur. I raised my hand and asked how long the conflict over in Darfur had been raging and if it was more a social or economical conflict. Stunned, he dodged the question with an anti-American comment. I asked him what the conflict actually revolved around, religion or oil. It was fantastic watching him squirm.

Finally brother Marlon stepped in, angrily closing ‘question time’ and starting up another DVD. As the assembled congregation zoned out, trance-like, into the sermon, I settled into my seat and tried to avoid the angry glare of brothers Marlon and Malcolm. Soon after minister Farrakhan appeared on the screen.

For all of his finger-wagging, Jew-bashing and KKK-styled rhetoric Minister Farrakhan failed to leave much of an impression. When real hate groups like the Taliban, the BNP or the Tories want to brainwash people they talk about exiting stuff like race-war, bombs and “rivers of blood.” The Nation should learn a little more about spin. They should stage events and rallies and say mean things about the Polish like all the other hate-mongers do to rally up support. The whole thing was just soo fucking boring. Halfway through I realised I needed a piss. Brother Malcolm got out of his seat and followed me out. I asked him what was up and he suggested I leave. “Brother James will escort you out.” I sighed an "AsSalaam Alaikum" and walked out of the door.

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