Formerly known as Louis Eugene Walcott, Louis Farrakhan was a well-adjusted young man, graduating with honors from Boston English High School, where he played the violin and was a member of the track team. He attended the Winston-Salem Teachers College from 1951 to 1953, but dropped out to pursue a career in music and even performed professionally in Boston nightclubs.
Farrakhan is known for his advocacy for black interests and as the National Representative of the Nation of Islam. He joined the Nation in 1955. He emerged as the protégé of Malcolm X and one of its most prominent members. Under Farrakhan's leadership, the Nation established a clinic for AIDS patients in D.C., and promoted social reform in African American communities. Farrakhan was a driving force behind the Million Man March in 1995.
Perhaps Farrakhan is best known for his "passionate" views on Jews, whites and gays. According to the Anti-Defamation League, Farrakhan has said the following:
“Do you know some of these satanic Jews have taken over BET? …Everything that we built, they have. The mind of Satan now is running the record industry, movie industry and television.”
“These false Jews promote the filth of Hollywood that is seeding the American people and the people of the world and bringing you down in moral strength.”
“How can you be a Jew and promote homosexual marriage?”
“You are wicked deceivers of the American people. You have sucked their blood. You are not real Jews, those of you that are not real Jews. You are the synagogue of Satan, and you have wrapped your tentacles around the U.S. government, and you are deceiving and sending this nation to hell.”
“White people are potential humans…they haven’t evolved yet."
“God don't like men coming to men with lust in their hearts like you should go to a female. If you think that the kingdom of God is going to be filled up with that kind of degenerate crap, you're out of your damn mind.”
Farrakhan underwent prostate cancer surgery in 1999 after being diagnosed. He had major abdominal surgery in 2007 to correct damage caused by the radioactive seed that had been implanted into him. From what I can gather, he is doing well at 76 years old. He is the grandfather to Mustapha Farrakhan, a guard for the UVA basketball team, which stinks yet again this year.
Like the millions of other survivors, let us hope that Louis can remain healthy and cancer-free, and can continue providing us with his—if nothing other than provocative—passages.