Interview with Bobby Seale
QUESTION 21
INTERVIEWER:

Okay. Could you talk a little bit about your coalitions with the White radical organizations? When did that begin and what were some of those working coalitions?

BOBBY SEALE:

One of the first working coalitions we had was with the anti-draft movement. They had, see, you have to understand something. Huey P. Newton and I was in and about, around these guys many times, way before the party started and sometimes after. Now, we sometime would be around University of California, we would arguing with them. "You don't know what police brutality is!" and I would make jokes, "You guys need a course, Police Brutality 101, before you understand what I mean." "What do you mean?" "You need to get brutalized by some police so you understand what's happening in the Black community." And I used to say, "Maybe you need a, an advanced course. Police Brutality 405," and once these guys got brutalized out there in front of the induction center in Oakland, California. I'll say, "Eh, interesting. Police Brutality l05. Fine."


INTERVIEWER:

--patience.

BOBBY SEALE:

I guess mainly because we saw a resource w--

INTERVIEWER:

Once again, if you could rephrase the question.

BOBBY SEALE:

I guess we begin most of our coalitions with the young White radicals because of a resource but initially it was the young White radicals who sort of identified with Huey being in jail after the vicious police brutality upon the draft resistors. And that initiated the coalition. What, in effect happened though, was we, when they wanted the coalesce with us we demanded of them that they support us and that you don't run our organizations. And from there it became with the Peace and Freedom Party, who wanted to get on the ballot, we thought that was a nice thing to do and a third party factor, so we let them into the Black community to register in the Peace and Freedom Party. But a third of the people wound up registering the Black Panther Party anyway. Ah, that was, and as we looked at it and as we saw the anti-war protest and the young Whites who did really get out in the streets demonstrated against structured racism. We saw that as a resource in that, it, another aspect of our analysis was that we're talking about power to the people. We made a new analysis of what nationalism was about, Black nationalism. That, whatever Black unity we had, it was really a sort of a catalyst to help humanize the world and we were that catalyst here in Afro-America or Africa, that's what it was about. And that the world was composed of more than just Black folks, you know. So, the coalition aspect to us being what one defined as a minority United States of America, if the White community showed some split, then we should side with that aspect of the group that seemed to be or would act as friends to us.

INTERVIEWER:

Okay.




BOBBY SEALE:

The whole Black Panther Party contingent, we all arrived at the airport, Huey says, "Line everybody up." Some policemen in plain clothes come out, say "What are you doing with these guns?" Huey says, "That's irrelevant. It's none of your business." So more policemen come out. He says, "Where you going?" Huey says, "We're going to the airport." The policeman says, "You can't go in the airport lying there with guns like this." He says, "This place accommodates over 200 people. Any place that accommodates over 200 people, we can exercise our constitutional rights and guns are not illegal. Be quiet. Bobby let's go." I said, "All right, forward, hup." We started marching. We walked into the airport. Walked all the way to the gate. Waited for Sister Betty Shabazz. She got out, we surrounded her. We came out. Police are walking everywhere. People with their eyes all bugged out. "What are these guys doing with these guns?" We come out. We get into the car and we take off and we go to Ramparts magazine for Eldridge Cleaver to interview Betty Shabazz. The police came up, because there's two Panthers standing out in front of Ramparts. Several more police came up. Then some police came up and little Bobby Hutton was cussing this policeman out, telling him, "You ain't coming in here. You ain't got no warrant," because, for the brothers beginning to know a little law, etc., etc. And as we came out Sister Betty Shabazz said she did not want any cameras. And so when we came out, Huey came out. So Huey had a magazine and he put it up in front of this Channel 7 camera and the guy knocked it down. Huey put it back up. And then the guy hit Huey. And then Huey turned around and popped the cameraman. And then turned around and said "Police officer arrest this man, he assaulted me." Imagine Huey is telling the policeman to arrest this White reporter with the, et cetera, "He assaulted me." And the police come around and start grabbing their guns. Huey says, "Spread. Don't turn on your back on these back-shooting M.F.s." And the next thing you know we spread. I put my hand on my gun. The police says, "Don't put your hand there." I said, "Don't you put your hand on your gun." We spread it and we backed up, a real Mexican standoff. The other guys with the other group were gone with Sister Betty Shabazz. She'd been gone. And we got in our cars and we split and left. And then we found that the other guys, the five people didn't have their guns loaded.