Interview with Wyatt Tee Walker
QUESTION 6
INTERVIEWER:

BACK TO THE TENSIONS BETWEEN THE ORGANIZATIONS, IT IS SAID THAT YOU WERE THE PRIMARY REASON THAT THERE WAS TENSION BETWEEN SNCC AND SCLC. HOW DO YOU SEE YOURSELF?

Wyatt Tee Walker:

Well, it has been said that I was the primary reason for tension among the organizations. If they need somebody to put it on, my shoulders are broad enough to take it. That wasn't…that isn't really accurate. Because I was Dr. King's Chief of Staff, then of course, I was the point man. In any kind of organization or movement, your charismatic leader, in our tradition, there's always somebody who's got to make the tough decisions. And I was the organization man. And so, whereas they would not want to confront Dr. King, in his presence, then I became the lightning rod. But properly so, because I insisted that if you want Dr. King's presence and you want his resources, that is the money of SCLC, then Dr. King's got to have some say-so about the methodology and the strategy that's going to be utilized. And I was in charge of that. So, in that view, probably so, but, as I say, in my judgment, for sound reasons.