Malik Zulu Shabazz

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Malik Zulu Shabazz
Born Paris S. Lewis
September 7, 1966
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Lawyer, political activist, lecturer

Malik Zulu Shabazz (born Paris S. Lewis; September 7, 1966)[1][2]) is an American attorney and former National Chairman of the New Black Panther Party. As of 2013, he is the current National President of Black Lawyers for Justice, which he co-founded.

Shabazz announced on an October 14, 2013 online radio broadcast that he was stepping down from his leadership position in the New Black Panther Party and that Hashim Nzinga, then national chief of staff, would replace him.[3] He is an occasional guest on television talk shows.[4]

Early life and legal career[edit]

Shabazz was born in 1966 as Paris Lewis, and raised in Los Angeles, California. Shabazz says his father, James Lewis, was a Muslim who was killed when Shabazz was a child. Shabazz was raised by his mother, whom he describes as a successful businesswoman. His grandfather, who introduced him to the Nation of Islam, was also a strong influence.[5][6]

Shabazz graduated from Howard University and Howard University School of Law.[5] In 1994, Shabazz was fired from a position with then Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry, who criticized Shabazz for statements "regarding other people's cultural history, religion and race that do not reflect the spirit of my campaign, my personal views or my spirituality."[7]

In 1995, while he was a law student, Shabazz ran his first unsuccessful campaign for a seat on Washington, D.C.'s City Council.[6][8] In 1996, Shabazz founded Black Lawyers for Justice.[2] In 1998, Shabazz was named "Young Lawyer of the Year" by the National Bar Association, the nation's leading black lawyers' association,[9] and ran, unsuccessfully again, for a seat on the Washington D.C. City Council.[9]

Public attention[edit]

Shabazz first came to widespread public attention in 1994, when Unity Nation, a student group he founded at Howard University, invited Khalid Abdul Muhammad, chairman of the New Black Panther Party, to speak.[10][11] Introducing the speaker, Shabazz engaged in a call and response with the audience:

"Who is it that caught and killed Nat Turner?"
"The Jews!"
"Who is it that controls the Federal Reserve?"
"The Jews!"
"Who is it that has our entertainers... and our athletes in a vise grip?"
"The Jews!"[8]

A year later, Shabazz told an interviewer that everything he said was true, with the possible exception of the assertion concerning Nat Turner.[6]

New Black Panther Party[edit]

Shabazz followed Muhammad's lead and joined the New Black Panther Party about 1997. When Muhammad, who greatly expanded the organization and rose to its chairmanship, died in early 2001, Shabazz took over as National Chairman.[9]

The principles Shabazz purports to promote include the following:

The Anti-Defamation League describes Shabazz as "anti-Semitic and racist"[2] and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC)'s Intelligence Project's Intelligence Report, which monitors what the SPLC considers radical right hate groups and extremists in the United States has included Shabazz in its files[9] since a 2002 Washington, D.C. protest at B'nai B'rith International at which Shabazz shouted: "Kill every goddamn Zionist in Israel! Goddamn little babies, goddamn old ladies! Blow up Zionist supermarkets!"[7]


  1. ^ Birthdate per
  2. ^ a b c d "Malik Zulu Shabazz". Anti-Defamation League. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  3. ^ "New Black Panther Party Announces New Chairman, Same Hateful Message". Access ADL. Retrieved October 17, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b Williams, Kam (January 15, 2009). "The New Black Panther Party". Memphis Tri-State Defender. Archived from the original on July 17, 2011. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Fenner, Austin (September 5, 1998). "Afrocentric Lawyer Force Behind the Youth March". Daily News. Archived from the original on October 10, 2010. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c d Plotz, David (April 21, 1995). "The Revolutionary's War". Washington City Paper. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Beirich, Heidi; Potok, Mark (Summer 2012). "Malik Zulu Shabaz profile - Intelligence File". Intelligence Report. Southern Poverty Law Center. Retrieved July 24, 2012. 
  8. ^ a b Hentoff, Nat (September 29, 1998). "Keep Your Eye on Malik Shabazz". The Village Voice. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  9. ^ a b c d Beirich, Heidi; Potok, Mark (Fall 2003). "40 to Watch". Intelligence Report. Southern Poverty Law Center. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  10. ^ Kitwana, Bakari (2002). The Hip-Hop Generation: Young Blacks and the Crisis in African-American Culture. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 978-0-786-72493-2. 
  11. ^ Masters, Brooke A. (February 25, 1994). "Ex-Farrakhan Aide Gets Mixed Reaction on Howard Campus". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  12. ^ Muhammad, Ashahed (March 10, 2005). "One-on-One: An Interview with Malik Zulu Shabazz". The Final Call. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 
  13. ^ a b Muhammad, Ashahed M. "TEI Exclusive Interview with Attorney Malik Zulu Shabazz". The Truth Establishment Institute. Retrieved May 31, 2012. 

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