ASA,

In light of the ADL's recent attack on Russell Simmons and The Hon. 
Louis Farrakhan, please see the enlightening interview by Bro. Cedric 
at http://www.blackelectorate.com/articles.asp?ID=790

Here is an excerpt related to Min. Farrakhan:

Russell Simmons: Well that's OK. I have criticisms of him [Rev. 
Sharpton] too but I am not going to get into it. You know I just feel 
and that is why I am such a big, big fan of Farrakhan's. I am a big fan 
of Louis Farrakhan more than, anybody...by far he is ten times more 
powerful; done more; saved more lives; I shouldn't say done more 
because some of what Jesse has done in terms of inspiring voters and 
moving the Democrats' agenda and whatever they hire him to do that 
stuff is OK. I don't know what Sharpton has done. He put racial 
profiling as an issue on the map and kind of made that expression 
popular. And we had a serious rally and I was part of it and I went to 
that meeting with Janet Reno and I saw that it was pushing something. 
But then it was still Farrakhan's power, and I know because I talked to 
Donna Brazile almost every single day when I helped to organize the 
Million Family March. It was the pressure. The follow-up pressure, when 
(Senator)Lieberman got up the day before the March and said that he 
would work to immediately work to end racial profiling and all of these 
issues. That came because they were worried what would the Minister say 
the next day. He was the one. He didn't have 40,000 people. On his bad 
day he has 500,000 people. I think the guy is a person, because of his 
relationship with God and his clear understanding of what some of those 
scriptures mean....and he's very open minded. I think everybody has 
some racial stereotypes and issues - not that they are racist because 
the word racist gives you only one kind of image. But all of us have 
some kind of an array of race-related issues. Farrakhan has the least. 
And his statement that he made when we were kids that inspired us so 
much when we were kids and so angry, were merited. The white man was 
the devil. I was happy to say it and I could say it all of the time, I 
could say it now. The guy who kept us from going to the bathroom or 
from drinking water? He was a devil. And that was the movement at that 
time and the statements that were being made at that time. But at the 
same time, you call those Black Jews that moved to Israel. Ask those 
guys about Farrakhan. They are very, very pro-Israel and pro-Jewish in 
every way. They would never think that he (the Minister) was racist in 
any way. They have a different view. They don't think it is based on 
him being racist. And you can't be racist toward a religion anyway. But 
the Minister believes those scriptures are beautiful. He is the guy who 
really, to me, as a person really aspires to be like Muhammad, or Jesus 
or Abraham or Buddha. He is the guy that reminds me that all of those 
guys are the same. No religious leader do you hear like that. When he 
made that speech at the Million Family March, dude, that was heartfelt. 
He walked out there with no notes. Those three hours were about 
reaching out to people and I know because I have been in the middle of 
his outreach and trying to have a better dialogue with the Jewish 
community. He is the most moderate world leader; the most moderate 
leader in the Muslim world who has a real influence on those religious 
sheikhs all over the world in places that we don't have relationships. 
And he's the one that got up during the time of 9/11 - along with 
Muhammad Ali and Wallace Mohammed and made the most beautiful speech 
that no one ever saw. And the courage that he has had in trying to 
reach out and be helpful in the conflict in the Middle East is 
commendable but never mind that. What he has done for American Blacks; 
people went home after the Million Man March and changed. No matter 
what they say, I know so many people who have. And I saw the 
half-a-million people at the Million Family March in the crowd and they 
were crying. And they don't do what he said; they do what he says. In 
other words when I had a meeting two days ago with the Murder Inc. and 
the Violator company and the Brothers (from the Nation Of Islam) were 
there as security - yo, there respect level for everybody was so 
impressive. And I have Ben with me down the hall and I gave Brother 
Gary down with me so I am close enough to know what I am talking about. 
The people who are taught by him (Minister Farrakhan) and who listen to 
him today are told to love, to operate from love, everyday. And 
everytime I take a Black Muslim to the yoga class that I go to, it is 
something. I took Andre Harrell one time and he just bust out laughing. 
But the place that I really enjoy going the most to for yoga, where 
they really study scripture and promote the other 7 steps that no one 
talks about in America - it is very spiritual. We emphasize these steps 
very heavily in the practice that I go to. But every time I take one of 
the Muslims they fall in love and go everyday. It doesn't matter to 
them. Because they really have this aspiration and they really are 
taught a very inclusive and open-minded view of spirituality. And that 
is why Minister Farrakhan can speak to so many Christians and so many 
non-Muslims in a way that is inspiring. He's not teaching tolerance as 
much as he is teaching love.

end of excerpt