Interview with Robin Gregory

I was wondering how your coronation and the reaction, the energy grew out of it connects to other political things that started going on at Howard, the anti-war movement especially. How were you aware of the ?


Well, I was aware that, I was aware that my coronation and the whole, you know, thing that I was the queen was, became a pivotal point for other activities that were to follow. Um, people that had been wanting to get involved, and wanting to get information about a lot of the political stuff that was happening around there were beginning to come out of the wood-work, so to speak. Um, one of the things that followed that was, was a demonstration against General Hershey, who was the head of the draft board at the time. And in order to see the larger perspective, I think it has to be realized that Howard University was run like a plantation. Ah, Washington, D.C. could not vote. The people of, of Washington D.C. could not vote. It was run by a southern committee of, of southern senators called the District Committee. And as well, the university was controlled by those funds. And so, there were these White, southern senators who were essentially very racist, who were telling us what we could and could not do on the campus. And, General Hershey, you know, was a, kind of a part and parcel of that whole thing. And I can't remember who invited him to the campus to speak, but it was a very touchy time. People were just beginning to wake up to the fact that a war was going on in Vietnam. And that people were getting drafted and sent over there, and we were trying to focus on that, too. So, when General Hershey came to the campus, we decided to mount a protest. Ah, you know, we were outraged that he was coming. It was a sensitive subject for, you know, a lot of young men who didn't want to be drafted. And then there was the racial issue, too. You know, a lot of Black people were being drafted and being sent over to Vietnam. So--