Race and Law—A Belated MLK Day Post

I was searching for some of King's anti-war speeches when I came across a site that also included links to some of Stokely Carmichael's (Kwame Ture's) speeches. In the following Carmichael reminds us who does and who doesn't need the civil rights laws:

....I maintain that every civil rights bill in this country was passed for white people, not for black people. For example, I am black. I know that. I also know that while I am black I am a human being, and therefore I have the right to go into any public place. White people didn't know that. Every time I tried to go into a place they stopped me. So some boys had to write a bill to tell that white man, "He's a human being; don't stop him." That bill was for that white man, not for me. I knew it all the time. I knew it all the time.

....[T]he failure to pass a civil rights bill isn't because of Black Power, isn't because of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee; it's not because of the rebellions that are occurring in the major cities. It is the incapability of whites to deal with their own problems inside their own communities. That is the problem of the failure of the civil rights bill....

Berkeley, 1966

I miss bold, precise, and true statements like this, especially now.


Post a Comment

<< Home