Interview with Stokley Carmichael

Right, but specific to '65, why does SNCC invite Malcolm to Selma? [inaudible]


Well, they invited him, number one because SNCC took a trip to Africa in 1964, invited by President Sékou Touré incidentally of Guinea, and from Guinea, the SNCC delegation continued. Malcolm X had also taken a trip to Africa and had preceded SNCC on this trip and, a—through some coincidence it seemed that the SNCC people followed in Malcolm's footsteps in the same countries. And I remember John Lewis when giving the report, having to say that he said, you don't know the effect that Malcolm X has. Every country we went into where Malcolm X spoke we were asked in our position in relationship to Malcolm's position. So, many people in SNCC who didn't even know who Malcolm was began to sit up and take notice. So here in SNCC it became first of all, right Malcolm X is having effect where you don't even think he's having an effect, so people began to look closer. Of course, the closer they looked at Malcolm X, the quicker they got hooked on Malcolm X. So by 1965 Selma, Alabama was prepared to invite SNCC into Selma to speak. No one in SNCC could oppose it. As a matter of fact, everyone was happy. Of course the Mississippi Project since 1964 had made contact with Malcolm X, with Mrs. Hamer, and we had sent our youth wing out from the Delta where I was congressional director to have a meeting with Malcolm X. So the meetings in[sic] Malcolm X were continuing. But its real profound impact was probably the 1962 debate with Bayard Rustin. I go back to this point because Bayard Rustin had an effect also upon SNCC people.


OK, so, cut.