i am malcolm x

today is malcolm x's birthday. he's one of my heroes.

when i was in the 11th grade my grandmother sent me a book of malcolm x's speeches. it was undoubtedly one of the best gifts i have ever received. the book, which i read from cover to cover in less than a week, awakened my revolutionary spirit and serves as the foundation for the career i am building as a PR practitioner and social justice fighter.

using my PR skills I will launch the #ugotjuice movement later this year. i will provide advocacy training for organizations and communities on how to build their advocacy voice and create long-lasting community change. in that spirit, i have developed a few advocacy tips (juice tips) that seek to empower and embody the spirit of malcolm x.

as my friend ahmad daniels says: "to your journey."

juice tip 1: be fearless.

"a man who stands for nothing will fall for anything."

juice tip 2: seek root cause solutions.

"if you stick a knife in my back nine inches and pull it out just six inches, there's no progress. if you pull it all the way out that's not progress. progress is healing the wound that the blow made and they haven't pulled the knife out much less heal the wound. they won't even admit the knife is there."

juice tip 3: understand the system and policies that keep people oppressed and how you can impact that system. there should always be a return on your investment in politics. if there isn't a candidate who you can trust, make one.

"the political philosophy of black nationalism means that the black man should control the politics and politicians in his own community; no more. the black man has to be re-educated into the science of politics so he will know what politics is supposed to bring him in return. don't be throwing out any ballots. a ballot is like a bullet. you don't throw your ballots until you see a target, and if that target is not in your reach, keep your ballot in your pocket."

"so our people not only have to be re-educated to the importance of supporting black business, but the black man himself has to be made aware of the importance of going into business. and once you and I go into business, we own and operate at least the businesses in our community. what we will be doing is developing a situation wherein we will actually be able to create employment for the people in the community. and once you can create some employment in the community where you live it will eliminate the necessity of you and me having to act ignorantly and disgracefully, boycotting and picketing some place else trying to beg him for a job. anytime you have to rely upon your enemy for a job you’re in bad shape."

juice tip 4: organize because #ugotjuice.

"i don't usually deal with those big words because i don't usually deal with big people. i find you can get a whole lot of small people and whip the hell out of a whole lot of big people. they haven't got anything to lose, and they've got everything to gain. and they will let you know in a minute, "it takes two to tango; when I go, you go."