I’ve tried to make one key point about Keith Ellison’s alleged eighteen-month involvement with the Nation of Islam as the enthusiastic servant of a hate cult. Slightly modifying the words of the Frank Sinatra song, it was very long year. It extended at the least from Ellison’s days as a law student from 1987-1990 at the University of Minnesota Law School to his first run for office under the name Keith Ellison-Muhammad in 1998. Among the media that have missed this key fact in their stories on Ellison are such notable organizations as the Minneaoplis Star Tribune, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek and Reuters.
Today Aron Kahn of the St. Paul Pioneer Press takes note of Ellison’s very long year: “Controversy gnaws at Ellison lead.” Kahn reports:
Ellison, 43, a state representative, has said his work for the Nation of Islam consisted of an 18-month drive to organize Minnesota’s role in the 1995 Million Man March, a widely embraced effort to empower black men economically and socially.
Ellison’s account has been extensively reported, but the assertion of an 18-month affiliation does not entirely sum up his relationship with the organization.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, as a law student at the University of Minnesota, Ellison was among those who brought speakers to campus who railed against Jews, Israel and often white Americans