PHILADELPHIA, Penn. — President of the Philadelphia’s NAACP Nation of Islam Minister Rodney Muhammad attacked Republican Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan for comments he made about inner city poverty when he was the 2012 vice presidential GOP nominee. He made the remark Muhammad referred to when he appeared on Bill Bennett’s radio show in March of 2012.
Ryan said to Bennett, “We have got this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning to value the culture of work, so there is a real culture problem here that has to be dealt with.”
Muhammad started in on the racial conflicts happening in the U.S. recently saying, “We know how this fight got started. And I’m going to close out by saying the attitudes in the land are hardening today. People are becoming less generous. Hostilities are growing—even murder in our houses of worship.”
“I am reminded of a man that ran for vice president with Mitt Romney against our current president. Paul Ryan I believe his name is.” Muhammad said.
Muhammad went further saying, “He talked about inner-city dwellers being lazy. Let me tell you something. Lazy people don’t pick cotton. Let me tell you something. Lazy people don’t cook and clean and sew for two families for four hundred years. Lazy people don’t build railroads. Lazy people helped to build this country. If lazy people really got lazy and sat down, you might have to get up and (inaudible).”
He said, “They took our money. They took our talent. They took our dignity. But until we get our freedom, justice, and equality you can expect the offices of the NAACP to remain open.”
Muhammad, Philadelphia’s first vice president and leader of the Nation of Islam Mosque No. 12, was elected to his local NAACP position in December 2012. He defeated retired union official Thomas Logan and West Philadelphia pastor Pamela Williams at the time.
According to Philly.com, Muhammad’s election was controversial, as Williams wanted to contest it claiming it was not right to withhold individual vote sums and that candidates for lower offices had inappropriately served as election workers.