The Infamous Detroit Red and the Ever-Changing Malcolm X

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The Infamous Detroit Red and the Ever-changing Malcolm X

In a time full of zoot suits and whiskey bars, it was only natural that a youth would get caught up with the current trends. For Malcolm Little, life was all about his "image," or what he wanted people to see him as. Throughout his life he spent his time identifying who he really was and what he felt in his heart to be right. Throughout certain periods, he allowed outside circumstances to influence the way he felt about things, yet in the end, he was able to come to his own conclusion about his life, and the lives of his fellow men. Early after his childhood, Malcolm moved to Harlem, New York, where he decided from then on that he wanted to pursue the life of a hustler. During that time, the lifestyle of the rich and famous was glamorized and for Malcolm, that was the life for him. He soon adopted the name "Detroit Red," in the fact that he lived close to Detroit and he had unmistakable red hair. Malcolm soon immersed himself in the streets of Harlem, becoming more and more acknowledged around town for robbery, pimping and drug dealing. Eventually he gained the mentality that in order to survive in his world, he had to look out for himself, and only himself. His life of crime eventually caught up with him, and in 1946 he was arrested and sentenced to seven years in prison. It seemed that in prison, his life made a sudden change, he realized that in order to truly free himself, he could not rely on his street smarts, and hustling ways. It was then that he immersed himself in the teachings of Elijah Muhammad. During his stay in prison, Malcolm continually lashed out at the guards and fellow inmates. After realizing that this would never get him anywhere, he began to study the teachings of Islam. With the aid of a fellow convict he cam to the mindset that it was his new mission in life to convert fellow blacks in order to unify them as a people. He felt that there was no real way...
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