Most Read
  • The Ypsilanti mystery pooper saga continues

    Ypsilanti police are still searching for the person dubbed the “mystery pooper.” Someone has been, as the Associated Press politely puts it today, “soiling slides at an Ypislanti playground over the last six months.” So, of course, someone purchased an electronic billboard along I-94 near Huron St. at exit 183 that delivers multiple calls for action: For instance,”Help us flush the pooper.” The company that purchased the billboard, Adams Outdoor Advertising, knows how to reach the world in the 21st Century, branding each billboard with a hashtag for the public utilize in its efforts: #ypsipooper. WJBK-TV says the billboard also toggles through other rich lines, such as: “Do your civic doody, report the pooper #YPSIPOOPER” “Help us catch the poopetrator #YPSIPOOPER.” You can have the runs, but you can’t hide. They’re still looking for you, Mystery Pooper.

    The post The Ypsilanti mystery pooper saga continues appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DJ AvA, Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp preview Movement at Urban Bean Co.

    It’s a really, very cool idea. Paxahau, the good people behind the Movement Electronic Music Festival, are hosting a series of warm-up events, or previews, to the big festival which takes place Memorial Day weekend. On Thursday evening, Movement moved into the Urban Coffee Bean on Grand River in Detroit. While Dj AvA and Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp ably worked the decks, the regular coffee shop goings on continued behind them. It made for an interesting and amusing webcast experience – one guy was taking a nap on camera, while others supped coffee and tappd their feet. It should come as no surprise – the Urban Coffee Co. people have always been big supporters of electronic music. The place includes a DJ stand, and co-owner Josh Greenwood encourages customers to bring their own vinyl and spin on the open turntables. Not on Thursday night though. This being a coffee shop, and it not being particularly late at night, the music remained pretty chill throughout. DJ AvA (real name Heather McGuigan) includes Beth Orton, Madonna, the B-52’s, Daftpunk and David Byrne among her list of influences, so you know that she’s capable of both whipping up a storm and also […]

    The post City Slang: DJ AvA, Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp preview Movement at Urban Bean Co. appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County

    CNN has a message to all prospective landlords: Head to Wayne County! Occupancy and rental rates are increasing, the report says, creating an opportunity for serious returns on investments. In fact, after comparing the median sales price of homes to average monthly rents in nearly 1,600 counties, RealtyTrac found that Detroit’s Wayne County offers landlords the best return on their investment in the nation. Investors who buy homes in the metro area can expect a 30% gross annual return from rents. That’s triple the national average of 10%. RealtyTrac, an online real estate information company, says the county offers investors low prices for larger homes — with a median price of $45,000. “We’ve got some steals here,” said Rachel Saltmarshall, a real estate agent and immediate past president of the Detroit Association of Realtors, told CNN. “There’s a six-bedroom, 6,000 square-foot home in a historic district selling for $65,000.” For more, read the entire report here.

    The post Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit

    This Saturday, audiophiles across the world will venture out to their favorite independent record stores in search of limited releases that quickly become collectors items. The third Saturday of April marks the fairly new international holiday Record Store Day. There are certainly dos and don’ts to know for RSD — like where to shop, and how to shop. That’s right, there is an etiquette to shopping on Record Store Day and violating that code makes you look like a real asshole. In my experience of celebrating Record Store Day, I’ve seen stores use a few different tactics as far as stocking the special releases. Some establishments will set up a table, somewhere in the store, where a few shoppers at a time can flip through records in a calm and contained manner. Other places will have a similar setup, with all the releases at a table, but shoppers ask the store employees for the releases they want. It’s like a record nerd stock exchange. This process gets loud, slightly confusing and incredibly annoying — this is where elbows start getting thrown. Then, there are places that put the releases on the shelves, usually categorized by size — twelve inches with the twelve inches, seven inches with the seven inches and […]

    The post The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled

    The Detroit Electronic Music Festival, which was supposed to be making a triumphant return this year, has been canceled. A statement on the website says that the festival will be back in 2015. Back in November, Ford Field hosted an announcement party for DEMF, where it was revealed that a new DEMF festival would take place at Campus Martius Park in Detroit over the July 4th weekend. “I’m proud to be involved in the biggest and best electronic music festival in the world,” said Juan Atkins. “The future’s here. This is techno scene.” Not the immediate future, apparently. The DEMF people claim that the M-1 rail construction is partially to blame for the cancellation/12-month-postponement. Read the full statement here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards

    Despite a turbulent 2013 which saw Metro Times change owners, move buildings and change editors twice, we picked up eight awards at the Society of Professional Journalists Awards on Wednesday night. The big winner was Robert Nixon, design manager, who picked up a first place for “Feature Page Design (Class A)” for our Josh Malerman cover story, first for “Cover Design (Class A)” for our Halloween issue (alongside illustrator John Dunivant), and a second in that same category for our annual Lust issue. In the news categories, our esteemed former news editor and current contributing writer Curt Guyette won third in “General News Reporting” and third in “Best Consumer/Watchdog” – both Class A – for the Fairground Zero and Petcoke Series respectively. Music & Culture Editor Brett Callwood placed third for his Josh Malerman cover story in the “Best Personality Profile (Class A)” category, and former editor Bryan Gottlieb picked up a couple of Class C awards for “Editorial Writing” and “Headline Writing” (third and second, respectively). We were also pleased to learn that our investigative reporter Ryan Felton won first place and an honorable mention for work published while at the Oakland Press. The MT ship is steady now, […]

    The post Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



Search thousands of events in our database.


Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.


Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

MT on Twitter
MT on Facebook

Print Email


Malcolm X — still controversial

A recent biography stirs debate as the iconic black nationalist is honored in Detroit

Photo: , License: N/A

Malcolm X in 1960

Ask Herb Boyd about Malcolm X and he'll tell you about his first meeting with the man who forged a path for his political development. He'll tell you about being a young black man in late '50s Detroit enthralled by the magnetism and brilliance of the convict-turned-minister. Based at the Nation of Islam's Mosque No. 1 on Linwood, Malcolm X castigated the white man as a devil, called on the Herb Boyds of the world to rise up and embrace their blackness; the Nation of Islam's decades as an "obscure sect" were at an end, largely thanks to the dynamic proselytizing of its No. 1 spokesman.

Boyd will tell you about the power of the firebrand's handshake, the warmth of his smile — "I always remember the smile he gave me" — about seeing him a half-dozen or so times subsequently in Detroit and New York, about joining the Nation to follow Malcolm, leaving when he left ("it was over for me"). He'll tell you about once, while in the military, hitchhiking across Europe to North Africa in hopes of meeting up with Malcolm X's entourage in Casablanca. 

Ask Boyd about the late African-American scholar Manning Marable and he'll tell you that they worked together on radical causes. He'll praise Marable's seminal 1980s book How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America, for instance, and his introduction to the reissue of Detroit I Do Mind Dying, about Motown radicalism of the 1960s and 1970s.

So Boyd, a noted New York-based author (and one of Metro Times' founding editors), admits to a certain discomfort about where he finds himself now, the point where the unfinished legacies of two men intersect in discord. 

"I was a member of the Nation of Islam and a member of the Black Radical Congress with Manning Marable, and I sort of have a bird's eye view on both of these individuals. I get sort of conflicted sometimes when I talk about both of them, both of whom never had a chance to enjoy the fruits of their labors."

Malcolm X died in a barrage of gunfire on the stage of the Audubon Theatre in New York in 1965. Gunmen connected to the Nation of Islam were convicted, but the identities of all the killers, plotters and possible government provocateurs are heatedly debated to this day. Also debated are Malcolm X's final positions and philosophy and the meaning of his life, notwithstanding The Autobiography of Malcolm X, the posthumously published book that has became a best-seller and a classic.

Marable died April 1, 2011, following a years-long battle with sarcoidosis, a battle that he'd lost despite undergoing a double lung transplant the year before. Three days after his death at age 60, his long-awaited biography of Malcolm X was published. Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention should have been Marable's crowning achievement, and in some quarters it was received as such. It came with cover endorsements from leading African-American academicians Henry Louis Gates, Cornel West and Michael Eric Dyson; laudatory mainstream press reviews followed, from The Boston Globe to The New Yorker. Finally, last month, Marable's Malcolm X won a Pulitizer Prize for history. The committee hailed "an exploration of the legendary life and provocative views of one of the most significant African-Americans in U.S. history, a work that separates fact from fiction and blends the heroic and the tragic."

But the reception to the book has been far more complex among African-American activists and scholars, where besides praise there've been numerous critiques and outright dismissals. Dozens of errors have been underscored, conclusions attacked, interpretations challenged. Marable's suggestions of a homosexual liaison and marital infidelities, for instance — that elsewhere may have been interpreted as "humanizing" — have been challenged on evidence and intent. 

The controversy has led to what's largely a rebuttal of Marable's work in By Any Means Necessary — Malcolm X: Real, Not Reinvented (Third World Press), with Boyd as a co-editor along with Kwanzaa founder Maulana Karenga, political scientist and strategist Ron Daniels and poet-author-publisher Haki Madhubuti. 

Like Boyd, Madhubuti, who grew up in Detroit, will be enacting his own homecoming as he joins Boyd and others for a day honoring Malcolm X at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. 

For Madhubuti, Marable's work is "an attack on [Malcolm], his family and, by extension, all conscious Black people ... white supremacist slander." 

Boyd, talking by phone from New York the other day, recalled his own initial reaction to the book as "engrossing," despite the "sins of commission and omission" that jumped out for him. But he watched the controversy grow, including attacks on things as basic as the "reinvention" in Marable's subtitle. The view of the editors, said Boyd, was that "reinvention seemed to suggest a kind of manipulative self-promotion on his part for personal gain — and Malcolm was never about any kind of personal gain." 

Boyd wonders what kind of book Marable might have written had he not been racing to finish while battling for his life. He thinks Marable may have rethought some interpretations and certainly would have caught glaring errors. 

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus