Interview with Bayard Rustin
QUESTION 21
INTERVIEWER:

ISN'T THAT TRUE THOUGH THAT KENNEDY INSTRUCTED THE LEADERS OF THE MARCH TO GET JOHN LEWIS AND HAVE HIM CHANGE HIS SPEECH?

Bayard Rustin:

No, that is not true. The fact is that John Lewis wrote a speech which was not within the guidelines of what the leadership had agreed to. There was an agreement there that if we were trying to urge Congress to do something, then there should be no attack upon Congress, and John Lewis made an attack upon Congress [cough] and some of the leadership said, "Well, if you have not followed the rules," and he saw fit to change it. There was great pressure put on him to change it and he did.