The Black Hebrew Israelites Do Downtown Dallas

Categories: Religion

BlackHebrewIsraelites.JPG
In 1997, back when major metropolitan dailies apparently had enough cash lying around to send staff writers to Israel, The Dallas Morning News profiled the Black Hebrew Israelites, a group of expat African-Americans claiming to be descendents of the tribe of Judah and, therefore, Jews.

It was an unexpected mashup of '60's black nationalism and Old Testament literalism, a tiny but close-knit community stubbornly clinging to the fringes of Israeli society and mainstream religion.

The Black Hebrew Israelites are still around. Some of them, apparently, are spending weekends in Downtown Dallas. A Friend of Unfair Park sends word that he spotted a group on Main Street this weekend and passed along a YouTube video showing them demonstrating a couple of months back:

It's a bit like watching a military drill, with shouted commands ("WE CAME ALL THE WAY OUT HERE AND Y'ALL SOUNDING LIKE SOME DAMN WUSSES. WHO'S THE KING?") and a yelled response ("CHRIST!").

The cameraman, a white guy, engages one of the leaders in a brief debate on biblical exegesis:

BHI: You know what your biblical name is? Esau.

Cameraman: God hated Esau, didn't he?

BHI: That's right.

Cameraman: You think God hates me?

BHI: I don't think.

Cameraman: You know he hates me?

BHI: That's right.

Cameraman: You guys hate me? All you guys hate me because I'm white?

BHI: I wouldn't say it's a personal thing. It's not personal. It's just biblical.

Cameraman: Do you think you're a Jew and I'm a gentile?

BHI: I know I'm a Jew.

Cameraman: Do you think I'm a gentile?

BHI: Not a gentile for salvation. A gentile for destruction. There are two types of gentiles in the New Testament. See that's what you don't understand. That's why a lot of people think the Bible's a universal book. It's not it's not a universal book.

Cameraman: You think it was written for me?

BHI: It's not.

Just in case you were wondering what all the yelling was about.

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

My Voice Nation Help
27 comments
igphayme
igphayme

THATS RIGHT THE HEBREW ISRAELITES ARE TAKING BACK THIS WORLD ESAU IS THE DEVIL EDOMITES READ THE BOOK OF OBADIAH READ THE BOOK OF OBADIAH AND TELL ME DIFFERENT!

WhyDontYouJoinNAMBLA
WhyDontYouJoinNAMBLA

Does this mean we can expect a Soul Vegetarian restaurant to open in Dallas? That would be awesome 

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

This is really great shit Mrs Pressky.

Better than last ten years of snl.

paula.crisp
paula.crisp

This group is always at Pegasus Plaza on the weekends.  I live downtown, so I see them regularly.  They are sort of the joke of downtown.  Personally, I really love walking by them, minding my own business and hearing "whitie" getting called out to me.  I wish something could be done about them... they are a hate group, pure and simple.  

Beernutz
Beernutz

Messianic Jews? Why don't they take a note from Garvey and return home. And I don't mean that in a "immigrant or forced immigrant go home" kinda way. Just get away from here.

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

Fascinating stuff.  Hatred and bigotry is always rooted in ignorance.

TexMarine
TexMarine

Never heard of this comedy troupe.

monstruss
monstruss

Gross that the guy recording came out specifically to argue with guys. 

pnd2131
pnd2131

If these guys are Jews then damnit I'm now African! Or, If we are going to play pretend, I may pretend I'm a racist Eskimo. Gotta love racist, ignorant people who believe nonsense.

P1Gunter
P1Gunter

I've seen these guys a few times holding signs on the corner walking to the downtown Which Wich. Whatever floats your boat I suppose.

RealWhiteJew
RealWhiteJew

As a practicing Jew, Christ never enters the picture. We don't talk about him or study the New Testament. I wish these black Christians would leave us out of their racist equation.

doublecheese
doublecheese

I'm think there is a group of black Ethiopians than claim Jewish ancestry, and it has been confirmed by genetic testing.  These guys have no connection to them whatsoever.

doublecheese
doublecheese

Maybe it was explained in the video, but I had to watch it on mute.  What's with the two Latino guys in the group?  How are they any more black or "Jewish" than the camera man?

srslyguyz
srslyguyz

I like the costumes - fringe, gauntlets, capes.  Thought maybe this was a GoT flash mob?

onelove1643
onelove1643

@paula.crisp  I agree. And I've had much worse than "whitey" yelled at me. It's useless trying to talk to them too. They just insult, insult, insult. Oh well, tho. Downtown patrol doesn't seem to care. 

markzero
markzero

@RTGolden1  Not just ignorance, but fear. Plenty of stupid people around who love everyone they meet by default.


Someone should ask these people what they're afraid of, but it won't be me :)

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@whocareswhatithink

No, cue the scientist(s) who came up with Paragordius obamai

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@doublecheese

Maybe this is the counterpart to Nation of Islam. It would be interesting to see them encounter each other's rally in the street, would war break out?

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@doublecheese

See the Einstein Brothers bag? There's your answer.

paula.crisp
paula.crisp

@onelove1643 @paula.crisp  I don't think they can do anything legally until a certain line has been crossed and I'm not sure what that is.  I know people who will bait them to cross that line... once they do the police that are usually close by will remove them.  I think it has something to do with the fact that they are on private property (the park is owned by the Magnolia or something...). If I remember right, I had a safety patrol officer tell me that the owner of the property has to do something (and they don't)... that's why they stand on the corner but close to the park.  I'm not sure... but there is some legal reason behind it. I know, I suck... I'm a total wealth of information.  I've just learned to ignore them.  

wcvemail
wcvemail

@TheRuddSki  
I'll bet the bow ties. The purple tunics and the sloppy rank-and-file are a give-away that they didn't make it in JROTC.

Now Trending

Dallas Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...