Getting to Know the Chairman of the New Black Panther Party, Malik Shabazz

Posted on July 9, 2010

The Chairman of the New Black Panther Party, Malik Shabazz, came out to defend his group against the outcry over the Department of Justice dropping voter intimidation charges levied at a couple of its members. From Fox News:

The chairman of the New Black Panther Party, in an interview Friday with Fox News, defended his group amid an uproar over a voter intimidation case dropped by the Obama administration, a move that an ex- Justice Department official alleges was for racial reasons.

Malik Zulu Shabazz distanced himself from the actions of Minister King Samir Shabazz, seen in an amateur video from November 2008 brandished a billy club at a Philadelphia polling station, an incident that led to charges of coercion, threats and intimidation. The Black Panther chairman told Fox News’ Megyn Kelly that the actions caught on video “were outside of organizational policy.”

“We still do not condone the carrying of nightsticks at polling places and we have been consistent on that since Day One,” he said. “Any individual member that violates organizational policy cannot be attributed to the organization any more than any individual member of the Catholic Church, one of their acts can be charged to the Vatican.”

Fine, point taken.  His organization cannot be held accountable for the actions by some of its individual members, especially when they act “outside of organizational policy.” 

He then goes on to attribute the fury over the case to Republicans trying to drum up support for the midterm elections:

But Shabazz alleged that the story is being “overhyped and overblown” as “part of a right-wing Republican conspiracy to demonize President Obama, his administration, to demonize the New Black Panther Party and blacks in order to drum up white dissatisfied support for the midterm elections.”

Asked whether he agreed with the sentiments of Samir Shabazz, seen in other video footage calling white people “crackers” and urging blacks to kill them and their babies, the chairman said “no.” But he acknowledged he may have called whites “crackers” himself. (emphasis mine)

And, finally this lovely bit:

When asked whether Samir Shabazz is a racist, Malik Shabazz said, “I can’t speak for him on that. I would say the New Black Panther Party is not a hate group or a racist organization.”

So the New Black Panther Party is not a “hate group” or a “racist organization”.  I guess we’ll just have to settle for calling it a “Bin Laden Fan Club:”

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