Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Malcolm X Becomes First Black Honoree in Nebraska Hall of Fame

Malcolm x - connecticut-capitol-BettmannGetty-Images
Malcolm X (Getty)

*Civil rights icon Malcolm X is the first Black honoree to be inducted into the Nebraska Hall of Fame.

On Monday, the organization’s commission chose Malcolm X with a 4-3 vote, beating out late University of Nebraska educator and author Louise Pound, NBC News reports.  The Nebraska Hall of Fame Commission initially voted 4-3 then agreed to vote unanimously, as reported by Per Journal-isms

Martha Stoddard reported Monday for the Omaha World-Herald that “Both actions were greeted by cheers and applause from a delegation of Malcolm X supporters,” including former Omaha State Sen. Ernie Chambers.

“Chambers called it ‘a monumental thing for a state as backward as Nebraska, as racist as Nebraska’ to have commission members be willing to add Malcolm X to the Hall of Fame. He said he felt appreciation that Malcolm X had ‘transcended so much negativism’ to finally be chosen. . . .”

READ MORE: Man Exonerated in Killing of Malcolm X Sues NYC for $40 Million

“Malcolm X used the lessons he learned early in life and his intellectual power, dedication and perseverance in the fight for freedom and equality for all during the civil rights movement in America,” said commission chairman Ron Hull, NBC News reports. “His work and his legacy continue to impact the citizens of the world.”

Malcolm X was first nominated for Nebraska’s Hall of Fame in 2004, but the all-white male commission passed him over and selected a homophobic mid-1900s U.S. senator, Kenneth Wherry. 

“Malcolm was unapologetic in his boldness and he was unapologetic in speaking truth to power,”  Rep. André D. Carson, D-Ind. told NBC News in a September 2020 interview. “He wasn’t fearful and he wasn’t trying to cater to a specific demographic. He spoke from the heart, he spoke his truth and I think that resonates with people.”

In 2007, the committee passed over Malcolm X once again for botanist Charles Bessey.

“Malcolm X was born 97 years ago in 1925,” World-Herald’s chief librarian, Sheritha Jones, wrote in an Aug. 28 column, per journal-isms. “He spent his first 18 months of life here in Omaha. He and his family might have stayed longer had they not been targeted and terrorized in their family home by the Ku Klux Klan.”

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is an entertainment reporter with over 15 years of experience working in the film industry in areas including production and post-production, marketing, distribution, and acquisitions. She has worked for legendary film producer Roger Corman, Quentin Tarantino's production team at Miramax, the late Larry Flynt, MTV/ VH1, Hallmark Channel, Paramount, Jim Henson Co., Parade Magazine, and various LA-based companies representing above-the-line talent.

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