As Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan met with social and political leaders in Detroit to organize this year’s 20th anniversary of the Million Man March, he took time out to have dinner with the city’s most famous cultural export – rapper Eminem.
According to the Detroit Free Press, Farrakhan, Eminem, and the rapper’s manager, Paul Rosenberg, met for a two and a half hour-long dinner on August 25, where the trio reportedly discussed social responsibility and rap music’s potential to inspire.
Troy Muhammad, a student minister and leader of the Nation of Islam’s Detroit affiliate, told the paper that Farrakhan spoke to Eminem about “using his influence and using his power through rap music and hop-hop culture to influence people positively, so our children, our youth, can grow into more positive humans.”
“It was a beautiful discussion,” Muhammad added. “Eminem was engaged. His manager was engaged. It was a great time and experience.”
Farrakhan was in Detroit to organize and discuss his upcoming JusticeOrElse event, a 20th anniversary celebration of the Million Man March that will be held in Washington D.C. October 10.
In addition to Eminem, Farrakhan reportedly met with other area rappers and a couple hundred local political and religious leaders, including Detroit Police Chief James Craig. Farrakhan singled out Craig for praise during a speech at Detroit’s Fellowship Chapel.
“I want to thank the mayor and the police chief for the wonderful work of the police that shepherded me wherever I went in the city,” Farrakhan told the crowd, according to the Free Press. “I told Chief Craig, I think he’s a good man. I think he’s compassionate. He’s caring. He has a hard job. He really has a difficult job. He talks about community-based policing. I think that’s a good idea.”
During his speech, the paper reported that Farrakhan criticized “white people for their actions historically, some Jewish people and same-sex marriage.”
“I represent the Messiah. I represent the Mahdi. I represent a man who comes to end this world,” Farrakhan was quoted as saying. “I hate this world… I hate a world where everything is upside down. … I am with Jesus Christ to destroy it.”
Earlier this month, Farrakhan delivered a sermon at the Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Miami, where he called for “10,000 fearless men” to “rise up and kill those kill us.”