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Monday, October 24, 2011

Historical Perspective

Lest you think frivolity has always been a priority, I introduce Anita in her twenties-a seriously dressed fighter for free speech and civil rights. The first photo was taken at an overnight sit-in, in Dec. 1964 in the UCBerkeley, administration building: Sproul Hall. It was the culmination of our successful struggle for Free Speech; pre-dawn the next morning 800 of us were arrested-an event that galvanized the world into activism. The second photo is of Candy, one of my round-the-clock bodyguards, and me, in September, 1965, Bogalusa, Louisiana. Until my life was threatened by the KKK I never thought much about guns. That was one of two guns I've even held in my whole life. I'm not a gun advocate, but was thankful for the situational protection. The Bogalusa Voters League was working to enforce the new Civil Rights laws of the US. The KKK was very, violently active in trying to preserve a Jim Crow South in Bogalusa. After lynchings, dog attacks and fatal shootings the blacks formed an organization to defend themselves against the brutality committed in the name of white supremacy by many, including police dressed in hooded white robes. They called themselves The Deacons for Defense and Justice. You can now rent/buy the excellent movie, "Deacons for Defense" with Forest Whitaker, Jonathan Silverman and Ossie Davis.

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