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Rapper Chuck D of the politically charged group Public Enemy once proclaimed that the Black Man did not land on Plymouth Rock as the white pilgrims are believed to have done but instead Plymouth Rock landed on the Black Man It had taken nearly four hundred years for the Black Man to climb from beneath this proverbial rock Leading the climb during the civil rights movement was the Nation of Islam the most influential and directional group in the history of Black America The history of the Black American begins not in America but in the Black Mans native continent Africa Some four hundred years ago the first Black Man was kidnapped from his home and forced onto a ship taking him to the unknown wilderness of North America The first Black and the many that followed were to serve one purpose the white mans slave Here in North America the Black Man was to pick the white mans cotton and tend to his every need Slavery continued up until January 1st 1863 with the announcement of the Emancipation Proclamation The end of slavery was not the end of oppression for another one hundred years the Black Man was forbidden to drink from the same fountain or even be educated in the same building as his white counterpart These implications were due to Americas vicious segregation laws Any Black man who chose not to comply with the rules of the South could expect harsh consequences the worst of all being lynching Elijah Muhammad often recalled hi s experience with lynching to crowds Young Elijah had come upon a group of white men trailing a Black man at the end of a rope they kicked and insulted him unceasingly when they reached a sturdy tree one of the men untied the rope from the Black mans wrists and threw it over a branch He formed the other end into a noose and slipped it around the
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