Interview with Charles Diggs
QUESTION 26
INTERVIEWER:

IF YOU COULD RECOUNT FOR US AGAIN THAT, THE SOUTHERN MANIFESTO WHAT IT WAS AND ITS MEANING AND ALSO YOUR, YOUR REACTION AND THE REACTION OF OTHER CONGRESSMEN AND BLACKS TOGETHER.

Charles Diggs:

Well, the Southern manifesto was a statement of policy uh that was produced by uh southern representatives in Congress uh, senators and and and members of the House er also by southern governors and other elected officials er to uh, dramatize the position of the er South uh in justifying um se segregation and their determination to maintain uh segregation, uh, and uh to prevent any changes in uh in those policies in those particular states. Uh not only in the interests of southerners but in the interests of the United States as they as they saw it at at that particular time. And er of course um the reaction was er er quite er formidable on the part of Blacks and other people who er er who looked at er our social economic and political system er er for er solutions to the inequities uh that existed and er it it created uh quite a er um a quite a debate in the country. Um and um this debate was uh the basis upon which er er legislation was er fostered in in in the House er and in the Senate of the United States to to to overcome er this kind of resistance and it er dramatized to the er to the uh to the administration in particular, the national administration in particular, er the necessity for er uh um er modifying um um these these kinds of statements er and and for pursuing with a great deal more aggression er er um some positive answers to the problems that er uh that uh that the manifesto discussed.