Words From The Wise: Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin

“When you understand your obligations to the creator then you can understand your obligations to society.”

– Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin (formerly known as H. Rap Brown)

Honoring those who sacrificed for the collective should be a mandatory sentiment amongst African people. Many revolutionaries gave their lives to the cause without any regard for their own individual comfort, and they deserve the utmost respect. One, in particular, is Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin (formerly known as H. Rap Brown).

Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin is a Black liberation leader who’s best known for his service as the chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and Justice Minister of the Black Panther Party. His election as chairman for SNCC came after Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) was ousted. There, SNCC’s philosophy changed from one of nonviolence to one of “Black Power,” which became a cultural/political movement for African Americans.

Al-Amin’s name, which means “the trustworthy” in Arabic, was adopted while he was serving time for the alleged incitement of a 1967 riot in Cambridge, Maryland. His iconic quote that set off the crowd is as follows:

“Black folks built America. If America don’t come around, we’re going to burn America down, brother. We’re going to burn it if we don’t get our share of it.”

Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin is currently serving life in prison for the killing of a Fulton County sheriff in Atlanta, GA.

I want to share a 1990 lecture of his that I found interesting, where he addresses Islam. If you’d like to discuss any of the following content, feel free to comment below.

Until Next Time…


Photo Credit: AP News

Prisoner Solidarity. (n.d.). Retrieved January 19, 2021, from https://prisonersolidarity.com/prisoner/jamil-abdullah-al-amin


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