Interview with Bobby Rush

You brought up this issue of police repression. As the Panther party was growing and, and, and, becoming more active and , and, and more involved in the community, what were some of your personal experiences with the way the police were responding to the Panthers?


Well, I think that, that the police, they made a concentrated effort, and I'm not just, when I say, I'm not j--just talking about your local cop, okay? I'm talking about those guys who provide the foundation and the, and the, and the theoretical basis for police actions, okay? I mean, in the hierarchy, the, the Justice Department and, and various other police agencies, they concentrated on the Panther Party because I think the Panther Party, for two reasons. One is that the Panther Party developed a rationale that was acceptable by a lot of, of, of Black and progressive White folks in regards to what needed to be done, okay? And two, the second reason, rather, is that I think that the Panther Party allowed itself, because of the rhetoric that we were espousing, allowed itself to become a victim of, of, of police attacks and things like that.