I had the opportunity this weekend to meet a brother I’ve thought of as a friend for at least five years–Jelani Cobb. Jelani was in the area promoting his new book and I got a chance to kick it with him a bit.

We got to talking about nationalism and institutions–what we were just talking about in regards to the State of Black America 2007 event–when we got on the subject of Malcolm:

Thanks to the generous folks at Open Culture. I am reminded a bit of Barack Obama and I’m wondering whether Obama is channeling this on purpose. What also stands out a bit is Malcolm’s youth–I say that now being 38 years old. When we were talking about Malcolm what we were tripping on was the fact that the day after Malcolm’s house was firebombed he was delivering a speech in Detroit. Now at 38 years of age, a wife, and five children, I don’t look at that behavior as courageous, but rather as something else entirely.