Umar Lee

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Umar Lee
Umar Lee 2019.jpg
Umar Lee 2019
BornSeptember 18, 1974 (1974-09-18) (age 44)
OccupationActivist, writer

Umar Lee (born Bret Darren Lee September 18, 1974 in St Louis, Missouri) is a writer and political activist.[1] Lee is a descendant of Richard "The Immigrant" Lee and a distant relation to Confederate General Robert E. Lee.[citation needed]

Muslim blogging[edit]

In 2007, Lee's blog won the award for "best series" in the Brass Crescent Awards.[2] In 2017 Lee criticized the Georgetown Islamic Studies Professor Jonathan Brown after he attended his lecture on slavery.[3]

Activism, writing, podcasting and personal life[edit]

Lee, while working as a cab driver, campaigned against the introduction of ride-share companies to the St. Louis Market.[4][5] In 2014, Lee covered the Ferguson Unrest and was interviewed on several national outlets. During his coverage of the Ferguson unrest, Lee was arrested on two occasions [6] Lee was subsequently fired as a cab driver and contended that it was for his political activities in Ferguson.[7] In 2016 Lee briefly announced he was running for St. Louis Mayor as a Republican.[8] Lee also writes Noir Literature that is based in St Louis.[9]

Lee's mother was murdered on December 18, 2018 in Kirkwood, Missouri by unknown assailants who broke into her apartment and shot her.[10]

Lee’s nephew, Shelbyon Polk, was also found dead with gunshot wounds to his torso on Thanksgiving Day 2017 in St Louis [11]

Since June 2018, Lee has been hosting St Louis Speaks, a podcast that fosters dialog about St Louis and the surrounding area. The podcast was co-created and is produced by historian Mark Loehrer [12]


  1. ^ "Umar Lee - The Nation".
  2. ^ "The Thirteenth Annual Brass Crescent Awards".
  3. ^ "Professor Uses Lecture to Defend Islamic Slavery".
  4. ^ Lee, Umar (April 19, 2014). "Why Progressives Should Think Twice About Embracing Uber and Lyft".
  5. ^ Pistor, Nicholas J.C. "St. Louis cab driver compares Lyft to Walmart, blasts 'hipsters'".
  6. ^
  7. ^ Holleman, Joe. "High-profile STL cabbie says he was fired for political stances".
  8. ^ Holleman, Joe. "Protest figure Umar Lee withdraws from mayoral race".
  9. ^ Post-Dispatch, Harry Levins Special to the. "'St. Louis Noir' isn't the sunny side of our city".
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^

External links[edit]