Bertha Lewis (ACORN) & Malik Zulu Shabazz (born Paris Lewis): Separated at Birth?
Posted by danishova on July 8, 2010
Malik Zulu Shabazz of the New Black Panther Party was born Paris Lewis. To my eye, he bears an uncanny resemblance to Bertha Lewis of ACORN fame. His birth date is a bit vague – The ADL says he was born in 1968, while others say he was born “in about 1970”. As an aside, the leftist SPLC has his bio included among…hold on for this…40 to Watch: Profiles of the Radical Right.
Bertha Lewis’ biographical details are also sparse, and none that I can access make any mention of any trips to the West Coast (and I don’t know where she got the name “Lewis” – was she born “Lewis” or did she marry a Lewis?) but she was involved with the theatre, and L.A. is a go-to place for people in the theatre, so it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that she spent some time there (and it’s entertaining to ponder the possibilities).
This is how Malik Shabazz recounts his somewhat mysterious life story, in a rather fawning 1998 Daily News piece:
He said his father, James Lewis, who also was a Muslim, was killed while Shabazz was a child "under mysterious circumstances that have not been explained to this day." He declined to give details of his father’s death.
Shabazz said his grandfather and mother were the most influential people in his life.
His grandfather introduced him to the Nation of Islam and instructed him in the practice the religion. He also introduced his grandson to Farrakhan.
Shabazz was raised by his mother, who he said is a successful businesswoman he declined to give her name or her business who grew up dirt poor in a one-room house in Mississippi.
"She scrubbed floors as a domestic in Iowa, where she met my father," he said. "We started in poverty, and because of my mother’s success, we became middle-class."
Certainly my separated-at-birth query is no more radical that Malik Shabazz’s ideas, such as his belief that ‘the AIDS virus was created by the U.S. government to “destroy the darker peoples of the earth.”’ And it’s much more fun to contemplate. I’ll let you be the judge…
Update: Title adjusted for clarity (thanks to freeper “Smoothsailing”)