Interview with William Rutherford

Okay, it's the same time period, SCLC has to go on with Resurrection City. What were your expectations for Resurrection City?


Well, The purpose and the goal of the poor people's campaign was to focus the attention of the nation and the world on poverty. The technique, the tactic being used, was to gather the poorest of the poor in the nation's capital, the heart of the wealthiest country in the world to camp them, these homeless, hungry people in the heart of this city and its fabulous mall situated between the Lincoln memorial and the Washington memorial** take the plea and the complaint of the poor to each of the government agencies, to each of the instances of the United States government with their complaint, to take them to the Department of Agriculture where they deal with food. to take them to the Department of Justice where they deal with laws and the application of laws, to take them to the Department of In--of the Interior where the Chicano and the Native Americans have very serious problems of land tenure and so on. The thrust, the tactic of the Poor People's Campaign was in dealing with our own government to focus and attract the attention of the world on these problems which are ever present but which by and large, then, as now, are largely ignored by the masses of Americans or which are not really focused on, on the masses of Americans.