Interview with Amiri Baraka
QUESTION 36
JUDY RICHARDSON:

Go back again for me to the, to when you're going that night, delegation after delegation after delegation, to try and keep them together because you're afraid that it might unravel. Can you give me a description of that?

AMIRI BARAKA:

Well, a lot of the delegates felt, you know, the masses felt that they had been, ah, used. That they had been betrayed...

AMIRI BARAKA:

--that they'd been...

JUDY RICHARDSON:

Sorry.

AMIRI BARAKA:

A lot of the delegates thought they'd been, ah, treated undemocratically, that they'd been roughed off, chumped off by, you know, Black electorate officials, Black elected officials. Charlie Diggs was up there and he was, you know, chairing and you see there was the perception that whoever was chairing was running the meeting, you know. Although, it was true to a certain extent, you know, that Diggs and his electoral folks did not want certain things to come up, did not want them to get voted on, and their, ah, line of reasoning was that if you take this position, you're going to destroy this, ah, organization or this, ah, united front attempt. You're going to destroy it as a mass vehicle because, ah, people will shy away from it. Well obviously they were talking about their relationship to, ah, the mass media and their relationship to the Democratic Party, more than they were talking their relationship to Black people. Because I don't think the majority of Black people shied away from the idea of a Black political party.