During a May 9 speech at a Roman Catholic church on Chicago’s South Side, Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan, who was recently banned from Facebook, said he does not hate Jewish people.
Farrakhan spoke at the St. Sabina Church where he said he does not preach hate or incite violence.
Rev. Michael Pfleger invited Farrakhan to speak after he, conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, and far-right personality Milo Yiannopoulos were labeled “dangerous individuals” and banned from Facebook.
Farrakhan, who has been accused of anti-Semitism, homophobia and misogyny, said his critics have never had a real conversation with him.
“I’m not a misogynist. I’m not a homophobe,” Farrakhan insisted. “Do not be angry with me if I stand on God’s word.”
The minister also claimed his words have been unfairly categorized as anti-Semitic.
“I’m here to separate the good Jews from the Satanic Jews,” Farrakhan said, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. “I have not said one word of hate. I do not hate Jewish people. Not one that is with me has ever committed a crime against the Jewish people, black people, white people. As long as you don’t attack us, we won’t bother you.
“The enemy is so hateful of me,” Farrakhan added. “I have never been arrested. No drunken driving. What have I done that you hate me like that?”
When speaking about his Facebook ban, which Farrakhan referred to as “Facebook jail,” the minister told his followers he would not let the same thing happen to them.
“I’m not gonna let them put you in jail, what they call Facebook jail,” he said. “Some of us did not come out tonight because they did not wish to be censored.”
“I am a hated man today — you can’t even have a picture with me,” he added.
Although Farrakhan stood with the support of Rev. Pfleger, the Archdiocese of Chicago publicly distanced itself from Pfleger’s relationship with Farrakhan.
“There is no place in American life for discriminatory rhetoric of any kind,” the archdiocese said in a statement. “At a time when hate crimes are on the rise, when religious believers are murdered in their places of worship, we cannot countenance any speech that dehumanizes persons on the basis of ethnicity, religious belief, economic status or country of origin.”
Hours before Farrakhan was scheduled to speak, officials of the Illinois Holocaust Museum spoke out against Pfleger for “giving hatred a platform.”
Museum president and Holocaust survivor Fritzie Fritzshall said giving people like Farrakhan “increases the threat against all of humanity,” reported the Associated Press.
(Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)