Interview with Stokley Carmichael

And how did you personally feel?[inaudible]


Well, I worked with Project Awareness. And I remember very well saying to them that I'm going to do all the work that needs to be done before Malcolm X gets here. I will sweep floors. I will lick envelopes. But the night that Malcolm X comes here I am doing no work. I am sitting in the audience. As a matter of fact I had reserved seats in front, you know, and the place was packed. At first they thought they couldn't even get in. But since I was working on the project, I reserved it. I sat in front through the whole debate. I did all the work for the committee. But during the debate I was in front. As a matter of fact, the National of Islam in their newspaper "Mohammed Speaks" carried my photo—nobody knew who I was at that time—you know, as students who are enthusiastic at Malcolm's report. Malcolm finished them. And for me, after that, anytime they said anything I just used to send them straight to Malcolm. He gave us all the intellectual arguments and opened up the way for us to show clearly an intellectual basis for a nationalism and an ability to smash all ideas that were in contradiction to it. Malcolm opened up the way and more importantly, he opened up the way for non—for violence as a legitimate weapon in a struggle for human rights.