Interview with James Forman
QUESTION 26
INTERVIEWER:

OK LET ME STOP FOR A MINUTE JOHN. OK, GO RIGHT AHEAD.

James Forman:

Well, the uh, we disagreed with the, the character of the demonstrations uh, uh, in Selma, and we disagreed privately with the dally confrontation with the state troopers headed by Al Lingo because we had been up against Al Lingo many, many times before and that this man was extremely brutal in his command to the state troopers of Alabama, I mean that they had cattle prodders being used against people you know, I mean up in Anniston, Alabama this had occurred. And that uh uh we had even some people from Hollywood who came to try to help us out; Marlon Brando, and a couple of other people to try to help us with the state troopers, you know of, of Al Lingo, you know who were brutally uh, uh putting these cattle prodders on individuals. So we felt that there should be some way to break the impasse between the state troopers lining up and saying you can't come any further, and at the same time we had been doing some local organizing at Tuskegee and there were 700 students who wanted to uh participate so we decided to meet the students at Montgomery and to have demonstrations in Montgomery rather than you know to further reinforce a kind of a positional confrontation between the local citizens and the state troopers, uh, and there were you know there were these barricades you know and the state troopers saying you know you can't go, you know you can't cross these barricades, and we didn't feel that that we should participate in that any longer and that's when we began to go to Montgomery and have demonstrations.