Interview with Jerris Leonard
QUESTION 16
LOUIS MASSIAH:

OK. We talked earlier about the radicalization and particularly how it seemed to focus on the youth. Ah, in your, your position in the Justice Department, how did you, how did you measure what was going on in terms of this, this, this radicalized youth, ah, we're going to stop. That was very good.



LOUIS MASSIAH:

OK, the, the question is about radical youth and your responsibilities in the Justice Department at that time.

JERRIS LEONARD:

I think it's important that we all try to put in perspective in content the role that young people were playing in the '60s. I think it's fair to say, having been young once myself, that young people get very impatient. I think it's important that government not overreact to the impatience that youth has, and yet at the same time, it has a role to see to it that that impatience doesn't boil over into unlawful activity which results in the death of people or massive destruction of property. At the same time, the federal government most certainly has a role under the Constitution to see to it that those people have every right to exercise their freedom of speech and their freedom of movement. I think that was a conflict in, in, in those periods of time that which, which many people and maybe myself overreacted to. I think there was a lot, as I look back on that period of time, I think there was a lot less violence when you look at the country as a whole than what we were reacting to at the time. I think we saw a lot of hobgoblins that really weren't there to the degree we thought they were.