Interview with Marian Wright Edelman

OK, we're back in Mississippi in April of '67. How did you end up touring the delta with Bobby Kennedy and what did you guys do?


Well, I ended up touring the delta of Mississippi with Bobby Kennedy because he came down as a substitute for Teddy Kennedy when Joe Clarke's Senate Committee on Labor and, and Education came to Mississippi. I had been having enormous numbers of head start battles. And I had gone up to testify before the committee in Washington about the growing hunger, ah, in Mississippi and the fact that many Blacks were being pushed off the plantations. And I told the committee, "Please come and see yourselves," because they didn't quite believe me when I talked about how, ah, the conditions of life, the poverty was getting worse and the people really didn't have enough to eat in Mississippi. And so they came, and, ah, Bobby Kennedy came with them and while they were there to examine the impact of the poverty program, ah, on Mississippi Blacks and Whites, ah, I used it as an opportunity to tell them about growing hunger in the delta and they were shocked and happily, ah, one or two of the senators agreed to stay over and to go up in the delta to see for themselves, if, whether it was true that people were starving, so Bobby Kennedy agreed to be one of those senators and happily he went and he saw and he made hunger an issue.