An interview with Huey P. Newton
This is Collin Edwards at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday March 7th. I went down to the Alameda County Courthouse to cover the preliminary to the trial of the young Black Panther leader Huey P. Newton who was accused of the murder of one Oakland policeman and the wounding of another. Charges which Mr. Newton vehemently denies. For the first time at a court appearance of Mr. Newton or any other Black Panthers or young radicals I was barred from entering the courthouse for lack of a police pass. Also excluded were a French news photographer and a people's world photographer so I didn't get to see Mr Newton in court. However an hour later I was able to my surprise to record Mr. Newton in the detention quarters on the 10th floor. As he talked with three American reporters and myself and his lawyer Mr. Charles Gary Mr. Gary had earlier brought me up to date on the status of Mr. Newton's case when I was finally admitted to the courthouse after the trial preliminary had ended and after Mr. Gary had held a press conference on the
fourth floor. Mr. Gary I was I was kept outside the courthouse until now could you very quickly summarize it for KPFA the situation is of no situation as of now the court has. A. Big day. Trial judge Judge Monroe Freedman in the department eight cases been set for trial on made of six thousand nine hundred sixty eight. And to be any change in the situation we've got a charge of a dropped any charges. They all brought up new evidence that they showed you any evidence. No they have not dropped any of the charges. We have a substantial amount of the so-called evidence. But we do not have a list of the witnesses so that we can interview them and be able to prepare for this case. And normally the defense is given these things names of witnesses. Normally they're given those names. If the defense attorney makes the proper motions and we have made progress.
Before meeting Mr. Newton and indeed before I even knew I could interview him I met his sister and his fiance. Now because members of Mr. Newton's family have been subjected to unpleasant haddest meant I will not identify them by name. Mr. Newton Sr. turned out to be a lady of great dignity. The picture of respectability but added to that a gentle serene countenance. Poor people the Negro people. I mean he's. Always been very strong about this in different things that happened on shoes what drove him more to believe that something needed to be done about it was a gradual progression to this stage. Bradley. Well yes I guess yes it was all a jumped up thing if that's what you mean. Yes oh yes pleasure we are all along. Like I said. You know. He. Thinks I'm.
The better man. Mayor. Things that need doing. He should get up and do something about it. He's always been this way. Even as a child he liked. Sports. He liked music. And. He's very interesting in history and I think in reading ministry and seeing how the world really is another thing that. Encouraged him. Do you feel that he re stands any chance of having a fair trial. Some time a hellhole and some time list. I. Doubt it. After senile. Passed. Out I don't feel that Hopi hair milkers in our head but the little we have. Feel bad. I mean personally. I. Don't think they're up to this point haven't Goldband this is what I based on. It haven't gone bad. Looked at this point so naturally I don't have much hope.
Good point Barry and you. Must be a very drastic thing to happen to any family here. My mother is 11 fathers too. He tries to go into work but my mother can never make it to court she said she got the better I have to take to a lawyer for the do you work but study about. My mother's family. New family and suddenly this happens time although the minister. Is here. Now with some of the press here have been branding. Here we met leaders in the Black Panther Party as anti-white racist would you like to say something about hereis attitude on this question of course she wasn't in court this morning another lady I was not allowed in. He was allowed. In which was a name that is to use gear from. There. But before he met he was grandpa and was quite clear. So this crude people begged she was a Filipino there
so this proves that he has no problem. He's not pretty at all. My father is Hale. So. This goes kind of far back so we have no connection with the white family but I mean this would kind of be toward the pedestal. Mr. Newton's field say an extremely attractive young black lady with classic features is like Mr. Newton himself very musically inclined and she has shown great promise as a singer. I asked her too about the anti-White label applied to Mr. Newton. This fire is being anti-white. This is ridiculous I think this is just retaliation on the part of the system to you know try and knock the Panthers to try and say that the Panthers are wrong into using any sort of devious methods against them. He has always expressed that he is anti oppressor and
I am anti oppressing. And I think that. Any person that believes in right would be anti oppressed to not is not and eye color of any kind is just the oppression Huey's. The severe inner Jadick person. Dynamic. Very kind in general. For instance every time he passes me although we are in the same house or in the fame room he'll say hi you know you you know he's very considerate towards people. Did he talk much to you about his his future or his plans as hopes. Were. We believe that. This is just another obstacle and that it will soon be over. From there his future to mend hasn't been mapped out.
But I'm sure we'll be working on it. How do you feel about this trial do you think that he stands any chance of getting a fair trial. If it's stands now as far as fairness. I don't think that fairness is being displayed in the many things that have been brought up in the trial. I think that it's a deliberate attempt to railroading. But I believe that because he's right and I believe that he is innocent. And I believe in him. But I think that things will work out. We look forward to them working at it. Have you suffered any victimization or Harris-Moore of any sort as a result of having been close to Mr. Newton. Well calls to mind my home being followed. Being followed by whom. I don't know. Just men in cars you know. Just the regular intimidation with typical but this
guy. Because of. My belief in Huey and in the philosophy of the Panthers. I don't let anything like that. Have you suffered any ostracization the toll for instance that you work in an office to do you a secretary I know I'm a counsellor. Have you suffered any sort of reactions from people there as a result of this case or the whole Black Panther movement song your work with white people I take it to that it's you know I work with primarily black people I work with some wine. And oddly enough. Some of the Austrian ostracization going to. Be. You know should I shouldn't say black people I should say include negroes I mean. And. But I think that everyone is just sort of resolved to the fact that I'm with you and there's nothing anyone can do about it. So it's sort of swallowed it.
Well now let's meet Mr. Newton himself. He's a rather handsome young man a sort of darker skinned version of Haast Bucholtz or Warren Beatty. The photographs on the posters and pamphlets I've seen really do not do him justice. With me interviewing him in the cell with Mrs. Joan Didion who is a Saturday Evening Post columnist. Mr. Ray Rogers of the Los Angeles Times and Mr. Eldridge Cleaver an editor of Ramparts magazine and himself a prominent figure in the Black Panther Party. Mr. Newton's attorney Mr. Charles Gary was also present and he put in a question or remark once or twice. Copyright to this group interview belongs to the Huey P. Newton Defense Fund. Without specific consent no reproduction or publication of Mr. Newton's remarks can be made. The next voice you hear would be that of Mr. Huey P. Newton. We ran into the problem of people misinterpreting it as a political
party. They use the word for self defense as they define this thing as a group that were a paramilitary group or body guard nature. But we found that it was very difficult. And our program we describe or define ourselves as a political party but yet people seem to misinterpret the definition of what self-defense is all about. We realize that when we're assaulted in the community by the Gestapo tactics of the police this is also a political thing. We're slaughtered because we're black people and because the power structure finds it to their advantage to keep us imprisoned in our black community. And as a colonial or colonial people are killed
by some foreign power. So the police. It's only an arm of the white power structure uses very similar military force which it is a military force of their local police and you have a National Guard and the national police and then you have the regular military as the international police and the police are used to to occupy a community just as the foreign troops occupies territory they don't live in our community the police and don't. And they have no respect for black people who live in a community yet they occupy the community and they're not occupying the community for the welfare and the benefit of the people who live there. They're in it to make sure that the businessmen who are systematically robbing our community are safe. So this was one part of our political stand and to make to make the party
for basically for the intellectuals because the grassroots of the community the people who were most concerned with because the lower class black who represents about 95 percent of the black population throughout this nation they understood very well what we stood for. But to make it clear to everyone we change the name to the Black Panther Party and to make it clear what our political stand was about Mr. Newton. Some newspapers and radio stations television stations sort of brand the Black Panther leadership you and Mr. C and others as anti-white racist sort of counter racism. Would you like to clear up this matter. Yes the Black Panther Party is against racism. We're not racist but we stand to protect the black community and to rid America of racism. The worst were subject to the tactics of races by the white establishment.
And but it's a very common thing for the people who are control of the mass media to define the victim as the criminal or to define the victim of racism as the race is. This is just a propaganda device that's used by a power structure so that they will gain support throughout the white community a small portion of it happened not to be racist but in order to consolidate their troops. They will claim that we want racism therefore turned on all white people against us. Have you felt good about some young white people sort of coming out in support of your case and taking a political position on it. Yes the white revolutionaries are the enlightened part of the white community has responded and came to the defense of the black community and come to the defense of the Vanguard Group of the black
community which is the Black Panther Party and that we think we'll see more of this in the future. For more about yourself you're going you know before the march. I think that before the Black Panther Party that my life was very similar to most black people in the country I'm from a lower class black family working working class family and I suffered the abuse of the power structure just as all black people in America and I responded and that black people are responding now. So I see very little difference and my personality than any other black person living here and race in America I mean which your attitude towards these institutions which are you're going to
live in here in America it reminds me of a quote that from JANE BOWEN. He says that to to be black and conscious in America is to be in a constant state of rage. And I think this is very true of black people in general in this country many black people. Most black people as I said that and educated and they're not used to handling academic things and administrating So their response might have been somewhat different than mine but. They will rally behind a political party that representing their grievance. So all the Black Panther Party had done is to articulate and bring out the grievances of the black community. When you think of some recall some incidents of that sort of brought home to you the attitude of the majority of white people towards negroes and the attitude of the black of the
white establishment. You like a specific incident. And you know people can bring home to people you know how this can scar one's work. I can understand that it's very difficult for me to cite one specific incident because it's a very long process that I started to say that or a white person understand let him come to the black community but this would be a good example because he could experience the alienation and the antagonistic attitudes of black the blacks that we receive in the white community. And we live in the white world and the white white America here and any time a white person goes to the black community or a black country I
doubt very seriously whether he experiences this alienation because black people seem to have some priority on upon being human is for some reason perhaps it's a historical reason that I can't pinpoint why but we seem to be more fair as a people to other people than anyone else in the world. If you had a chance to see this the President's Commission on Civil disorders the report I read a couple of accounts think it's getting pretty close to the mark. I think that some of the statements in the report hit the bark but as for the conclusion our solution to the problem. I think they were running in that in that direction. You think the white establishment and white people in the as a whole will take it to heart and do
something really effective to solve this problem of racism that it betrayed. I doubt seriously whether white America is mature enough and mentally well enough to have this problem without a great catch trophy. Are you optimistic about the trial and you think it will be a fair trial. Well I think that black people will make very sure that I receive a fair trial. I have no faith at all in the in the court system because I've already suffered an injustice by being indicted by a white middle class grand jury. And so from my prior experiences that I would expect for them to I would expect no change. But I also expect black people come to my aid and put pressure and by any
means necessary that all black men receive a fair trial including those who are held in the various prisons and county jails at the present time we're demanding an immediate release for them because we realize that they've suffered the same kind of injustice that I'm suffering now. You know Peace and Freedom Party. And the runners are kind of interesting. You understand. Peace and Freedom Party would endorse the important program of the Black Panther Party. Right. That's very true. The Black Panther Party feels that the essentials that we cited in our platform the ten point program is necessary for any group to accept if we're going to work in coalition with them.
It's a it's the basic things that the black community the basic demands of the black community and without accepting the basic demand we would feel that the person who is seeking Coalition who is insincere if you cannot accept these 10 10 basic philosophy. Let me recall. People from the. Right. Yes that's part of it. We have a 10 point program of what we want and what we believe and that we state that black people should not be made to fight in a war and to fight to serve in the military and to serve a government that is not working in our benefit. And that's not working for our general welfare. That if the government is working against
black people and for the destruction of black people we don't see any need at all for black people to serve in that military that's oppressing us and other colored people throughout the world. So we demanded all black men be released from the military service and not serve at all until this government writings the wrongs that have been perpetrated against us. It's working. It's an objection to the specific war in particular and the government in general. We don't see where we would fight anyone for this racist government that's only oppressing people for economical reasons and race reasons as there are present us in our black colonies throughout America really. But if.
You can't get everything in the first place that the Black Panther Party is a political party I don't believe that that Ron Karenga claims to be a political organ. Secondly that Ron Karenga and other some other nationalist groups seem to be somewhat hung up on surviving African isms or what we call cultural nationalism and cultural nationalism deals with a return to the old culture of Africa and. But we were some how become free by returning to this culture of Africa say that was in the 11 hundreds or before then. And somehow they believe that they will be free through
identifying this matter as far as we're concerned we believe that it's important for us to recognize our origin and to identify with the revolutionary black people of Africa and people of color throughout the world. But it's far from returning per se to the ancient customs. We don't see any necessary necessity in this. And also we say that the only culture that we're really holding on to is revolutionary culture or change or of the better and that we say the only way we're going to be free is by seizing power political power which comes through the barrel of a gun and we say that we will identify so that we will have this consolidation of people so we have strength and that we will respect ourselves and have the dignity of our pants. But many things connected to the culture that we don't feel it's necessary to return to.
The Black Panther title and symbol was introduced I believe by Nick and Mississippi and Alabama when they started the Black Panther movement down there. Was this what gave inspiration to the creation of the Black Panther Party here. Yes I was very impressed by the political party and loungers county that calls itself a Freedom Organization. They use the Black Panther as their son Beau and they use the Black Panther because of the nature of a panther that panther will not attack anyone. He will back up first. But if the assailant is persistent then the Black Panther will strike out and wipe out his aggressor. Verily holy absolutely and completely. So we thought that the symbol would be very appropriate for us and also that we were there I was very proud of the move that black people in LA County made.
If you had any expressions of sympathy or support from overseas you know at this time that black people all over the world are supporting each other. We realize that we are being treated by the race of America within the country itself as other colonized people are treated abroad. Because for economical reasons just as we are. Abused it also for a race result like a communications are kind of bad. Between Huey and we have a world press be imposed restrictions on newspapers and magazines and he will be three for three so forth that would keep him informed on what's going on around the world. Very essential information in it. He won't be able to get the news from the outside he would know that past talk to Carmichael was in Africa and there was a free hearing rally held in Tanzania. And that has required me
to see who to reign have issued public statements to me fact that hearing should be set free. There is an awareness. New stripy and so forth are still around. People around the world are aware of the nature of. This. Come now if you are unsure. If you are acquitted and set free I presume you will continue into political clear have you thought of returning to law or you know bound definitely onto a political career to change those laws in the Congress or state government. That's one of the career I have one desire and that's to go on fighting for the liberation of black people throughout the world and particular the black people here in America. Now I would like to relate to the Black Panther Party and our political stand that black people must arm themselves. I think this has been
misinterpreted a number of ways. Many times that we've made the statement quoted it from Chairman Mao that political power comes through the barrel grows through the barrel of a gun and the Black Panther Party and analyze the statement and come up with the clear realisation that any time a people are armed and the people and the administrators of that country maintain a regular police force in a regular military those people the people of the country either slaves are subject to slavery at any given moment that that administration desires to inflict the full force of the military or police upon the people. So we say that as long as the military and the police force an army then black people are. Should arm themselves and the many people who have spoken violence Well
we're advocating violence we're not advocating violence but we are advocating that we defend ourselves from the aggression and that if America is armed and if it's right for America to arm herself and even commit violence throughout the world then it's right for black people to arm themselves and then if it's wrong for America to to to commit this violence then or it's wrong for black people to commit this violence in their own self-defense then it's wrong for America to commit this violence against people in America throughout the world. So it's a statement that reminds me of a statement that Ronald Reagan made shortly after our appearance at the Capitol. He said something to the effect of paraphrase that in this unlike in time that people cannot and should not
influence other people by the use of physical force and the gun. But at the same time that we see throughout America the police being heavily armed and now not only being armed but escalating the war against black people and our black communities by a already and heavy military equipment. And we think that Reagan should take a look at it. Look at what he's doing and what this American government is doing before you criticize black people for arming themselves to defend themselves against the aggression of America. Did you see the surface playing a part. Things assume an orderly process now towards reforms playing a part in the political scene through the present political structures. I think that the present political structure is bankrupt and this is what the big game is all about that the player of the present political structure has perpetuated and protected racism and inflicted
racism. So we say that there has to be a drastic change in the political structure. As for it is my running for office that I would only serve one purpose there as a spokesman to articulate the grievances of the black community. And as for us playing the game that some black politicians have traditionally played the day has come for this kind of action to be over. For instance this is one of the reasons that we feel it's necessary to arm myself in a political fashion. It's a very important thing. For instance when any candidate is going up for political office that he always in the white power structure he always has political power behind him and political power. You can find it on a number of areas you have. Feudal power or the farmers who own much land. And of course they will put a candidate up who will
serve their welfare and speak in their behalf and the other political colleagues are the people who have to work with. I understand that he has this power behind him for instance. If the partners don't get what they want been they will let the crops rot in the field if they don't get the price of what they want for the crops. And then you have big business power or economical power where the people who own big businesses will get behind a candidate and this candidate was simply relayed the message of the people in big big business. And it goes on you have the cat owners and so forth and we see that black people black people don't have this political power they don't have economical power they don't have land power we've been run for instance our black politicians have been any effective not much of a time it's not their fault it's simply
because they don't have a grassroots political organization behind them. Even if they did vote from black people simply to have a vote doesn't mean political power in the political arena. I think it's not political unless there's a political consequence if the people don't get what they want. And black people in the past haven't been able to offer this consequence. For instance according to John Hope Franklin The reason the black reconstruction phase where you had many black candidates holding office in the South was because these black candidates were ignorant or any fish and many of many of the black candidates had been educated in France and Canada in England and they were very efficient. But the reason that it failed is because there was blacks did not have economical or military power that after they put their man into office that he was still subject to these people who own the land.
But he was still subject to these people who own the military. So black reconstruction failed and we say no we can develop a political consequence we can develop political power by being a potentially destructive force that black people arm themselves in a political fashion. And then if the aggression is continued against us will be able to offer a political consequence. We are similar to Detroit. It's just quite a phenomenon going on in the black community these days it's quite clear that while you were out there a lot of groups and people who opposed your program and refused to approve the Black Panther Party. But since you've been in jail a lot of people who oppose you have turned over and are now members of your party. Also it's becoming
necessary for people to take a public stand on this issue because the black community demanding that one thing be demanding that Willie Brown particular and all of the black elected and appointed officials take a public stand be asked the ones who are members of the legislature to stand up on the floor of the registry and speak out in your defense here demanding that he's having a you know a political effect of this is an election year received from John Devore and Byron Rutherford are trying to run for the same office in open the 17th simply district I will Brown is running again and John George is seeking to be elected to Congress. And all these people have before them the whole question of where they stand on he knew not a meeting goes down without better coming up I thought you might be interested in knowing Ed would you expect that. Well know that I'm very surprised that it did happen but after it happened.
Then in retrospect I understand what's going on. For instance the black community is now forcing these political candidates into a direction that they won't. They realize they depend upon black people to vote for them and black people identify with the Black Panther Party and they identify with the party more so now than they did in the past even though we've had great a great reception from the black community in the past. And the reason for this in my opinion is that black people are always impressed by a reality that you could talk all day and articulate all sort of beautiful things. Oh how things could be and how things are and describe it to a point. And you won't get the response that you would. That when a reality is put before them black people have understood what I have talked about and down that I'm being subject to be the very thing for
the critics that they can sympathize with the party on this. And also it makes them look around and observe. It brings to their consciousness many things that are happening in the black community that are wrong. Many things that people have spoke about many things that people have suggested change and they have responded to Lou to the magnitude that they respond in now simply because this reality you cannot deny reality and anything that I see it in the paper. If it didn't relate to the situation then it was my fault and it wasn't the situation's fault so black people now only relating to the reality of their existence. They realize that it's not only Huey Newton who's been persecuted by the black community throughout America and they are responding in their own defense. There's been a lot of talk about the generational gap in white families between the young people dissolution to their parents and inundated from them with sort of certain amount of this among
black families and this is part of the problem you have in bringing more adult black people into the movement. I think that the only black people have realized for a very long time the problems but for a solution they've been wanting any solution because in the past the black political representatives have been somewhat misleading the black community. In other words that it's been thought in the past that if you can put a representative into office you automatically get justice. But now it's been realized to have a black man in office doesn't necessarily mean that you're going to get political justice was the reason you drop your studies of law that you got disgusted with the system of law. Of course I'm disgusted with the judicial
system. But more than that that I can only do so much. I can only be so many places at a certain time. And I felt it more important to work to organize within the community than to continue law school. Are you allowed to have any contact with other prisoners in this courthouse. No I'm kept in what's called the H tank and it's used as a hospital tank when someone is hurt but I recover very well and I've noticed that I have moved away from the hospital and I don't think the deputies here have any intentions of moving me because they don't want me to. It's been rumored that they don't want me to mix with the other prisoners many although I have converted many black people I should think inverted be it because black people are panthers anyway by the definition of the word. But many
people join the party who come through here simply by screaming back to me and I will define the party and give them some understanding of the political direction direction of the party. I haven't been abused here primarily for the reason that the Dept.. I've been admonished by the black people to keep their hands off. For instance when I first came here this is a rumor again not from a reliable source that the captain notified the deputies not to not to treat me any differently than other prisoners. So I haven't suffered any brutality here. The attitude of the deputies have been somewhat hostile and just yesterday France to that I got into somewhat of an argument with one of the deputies for a very petty
reason and the reason was this that the deputies here demand that when any of the prisoner addresses and he should address and serve are Mr. and of course they had dressed the prisoners as the prisoners first or last name. I was asking one of the deputies something yesterday. And he kept walking many abruptly turned around and came back and he said whenever you address me you call me Mister. You call me sir. And I told him very fine that I would do that but in return I would demand equal respect and that he would he would speak to me or as Mr.. And he got very upset and he stormed out and approached the lieutenant and told the lieutenant this problem that prisoner would call him sir and gave some
indication that he wanted to put me in the punishment where I was. Incidentally I was asking him if I could shave because we don't have to Sylhet these women with an Iraqi tank to shave we have to be taken to the barber shop. So the lieutenant then told him and this is hearsay that well don't take him until he says. And fortunately another deputy came around and gave me a shave because if he hadn't that I would be forced to grow a beard down to my knees before I would say serve if I wasn't given equal respect. This is only to relate an attitude but as far as physical brutality having receive that. While occasionally I get a paper about a day
late. I have a few books I've been reading. It's pretty difficult to get reading materials then. But I have received a few books so I spend most of my time reading and doing some writing. I wonder if you comment on something that struck me and lots of young white people young people especially in the middle class have dropped out from the middle class way of life but also from a lot of them from the activist role. This hasn't happened among young black people. They sort of more or less as a general shun the sort of the drift into the dropouts the marijuana and everything like that. Can you account for this. Yes that among the. Infer that you're speaking of a hippie Hate Ashbury. And if you if you analyze the hippies or the hippie movement you'll find that most of them were middle class or members of middle class
family upper lower middle class and these families have had about every material thing that they could desire. And also this class they have had the opportunity to become well-educated and through this they realized how brave grew up the American system is the government system and as for its forced them participating in it they've chosen not to participate. After the enlightenment you see after the education and after they've analyzed the system. So because they are in a state of dismay about change because of the tremendous technology of this country sort of broke their spirit and they dropped out because the country has a great military and economic power and they've they've concluded that they can make very little change so they dropped out. Black people in
general are not middle class that we are x socially and economically of the lower class. And that we haven't received the basic things that we won't because of the system because of a tremendous spirit because of a great revolutionary fervor that we've had that we've kept every since we were brought here to this country from Africa. We have not been broken and we're still striving. We say that our spirit is greater than a technology to technological developments and that we can and will make changes so we don't have time for anyone who's dropped out of the struggle for freedom. Or interested. Party. Yes the mandate.
Number three is this demand from the Black Panther Party speaking for the black community and we have it within the mandate we admonish the the racist police force that if they continue to break down outdoors and be aggressive towards and police brutality upon us that we will be forced to protect the home front part party members have experience. Bobby Seale the chairman in particular have experienced the police breaking down the door and coming in to his house without a war and acting in a criminal fashion and we maintain the right to protect ourselves from criminals. But when the police come in. To a house acting as a criminal he should be brought to justice by the occupants of that house. And because we in the mandate we relate
to the Valentine's Day massacre that gangsters dressed up in police uniforms on the leadership of Al Capone and because they were dressed up in police uniforms they were admitted into the house of these individuals who turned out to be their victims. And so in other words just because a man has on a police uniform doesn't make him a representative of justice. And Representative a representative of a peace maker our peace officer that he could be a wolf dressed in cheap clothing that we realize this and we would like the police to know that at any time they break down our door and justly without a warrant and without any provocation whatsoever that we're going to defend ourselves against them.
You and other Black Panther working the concept of what you would like this country to be like with some specifics of what will replace a system one day. Yes that the Black Panther Party you know has the band full employment. We demand decent housing. We demand good education and justice and we feel that this system as it is is cannot give this to us. And we say that any time a man is born a system the American capitalist imperialist system has never been able to employ all of all of its people and that particularly because of the greed of the private owner and the so called free enterprise. We know that when the American people speak of bring the enterprise that goes along with the idea of capitalism that they
assume that everyone has the freedom of competition to compete with the next fellow. And it turns out the man who works hard is a bit of will reap more. This doesn't hold true for black people but when the move to the west where this free enterprise was working fairly well for white people they were staking out the land and the one that would. As we are no we've we've never been given a chance to participate in the so-called free enterprise. We built this country because the industrial system was built up on slave labor in the south and that we made it possible for this country to industrialize and that we say because we've never benefited by free enterprise and private ownership then we could not stand for this. This is this is not a good goal for us. So we say that when ever a man is born on a soil he has a right to live
and to live it is going to have to work. And if you can't work because of some physical reason then it's up to the administrators of that country to support the individual because of his right to live. Now if the if the administration says well we just can't possibly employ our people then we say that system has to be changed and we say that we put in new administrators who are really interested in the welfare of the people of the country and therefore is the means of production. We say that if the if the weight of the means of production are being handled now it is not working then it has to change of private owners can't gain full employment. Then we say that then the means of production be taken away from them put in the people and we have managers or administrators to run our production system for the welfare of the people in general of the country. So we say that this is the richest country in the world and that we're sure that the country can give it full employment if it wanted to. If you didn't have the greed of profit and
racism in the country tomorrow you could have full employment was to come. Recently you said that socialism does not suit the black people companies and doesn't suit the black people but he admitted to say that capitalism doesn't suit the black people. Do you think that a significant toll from what you've said I take it you don't think capitalism has the interests of the black people. Prime Minister of the Black Panther Party Stokely Carmichael that communism had an answer to the problem. Black people because they didn't relate to racism. He that I remember him saying that capitalism didn't answer the question either. Perhaps I'm wrong on that but as I read it he said that capitalism did not answer the need of black people. Now that I don't project analysis I bring this up because it's
confuse some people and I think whatever case it is good one out of this. If you just if you would say that if you had a communist structure here in America a communist structure without relating to racism communism relates to an economical system that the means of production would be in hands of the people the people who put it ministers to run their production machinery. And there will be no profit. It won't be wages that will go back into the community or the general welfare of the people. Now if you just treated per se as communism in this country I would say that it wouldn't work. I would say until you get rid of racism racism is a psychological thing that stems all the way back to England and Europe in general. That when the when the European met the African and I have some of my own opinions about what happened during that time or some clues you know that I've drawn about it. For instance that I think it goes so
deeply psychologically that the difference and the culture of the Europeans the difference in the culture of African and particularly and how no European worship for instance the European head this one guy that you say you find it all good and he was created in the image of God and of course God can do no wrong and that that since he was god like he could do no wrong. And as for sexual drives and so forth this had no place and so therefore it shouldn't have any place in the European man. And because of European perspire to be slick then because this was a big deviation from the human nature. So he was looking for witches and everything else to blame its own human nature own and he couldn't crawl beneath the grace of God so he would say that you know I'm not causing this within myself so someone else must be. Then you have the contact
with the African who had a long way to got there. That what we call it dualism and in Europe you have absolutism in Africa south of Sahara where most from where most black people came into this. You have dualism where the two or more heads and one get here and one band here and the African was created in its own image and that when he was out of the good graces of the good he would try to manipulate and get back in so that the bad hit couldn't do him any wrong but yet he recognized himself as both bad and good. So we have self-acceptance and he to me to put off his human rights on other people when the European met the African. This was a good person for him to say that these people are Borg or these people are or. Or pagans and every other kind of a
derogatory word. So this was it had nothing to do. Right at the present moment of any economical thing it was strictly a difference in culture and a sick mentality of the Europeans. And I say that you have the European coming to America here made up the American colony and he brought this psychological sickness with him and force an economical structure change in his sick man. I doubt if this will happen he needs he needs a psychiatric or some mental therapy. And I say that Explorer's economically black people cannot profit back capitalism within the structure and its Borisoff socialism solving the problem. Purslane altogether I doubt seriously whether whether he can I believe that he can solve the economical problem. But as far as the mental attitude. Who is to say that after we choose these representatives that everyone is profiting are supposed to profit by the wealth or the
material in the country who is to say even its not going to be. Handle it in a way of discrimination. So I say that any time we talk about a political or economic thing we can't just dismiss the psychological part looking for a more complete and fuller idiology and more advanced when it's true that racism got its birth through economic reason so that one group could superimpose its economic power over the others and I would agree with that I think that a prime thing was the economical rape of Africa but at the same time why did the European choose the African south of Sahara to enslave some account that Red Davis and MLB Herskovitz stated and it's on record that the. The pre-start in Spain
I think made a statement that no one in slave owes African south north of the Howrah because they wish one gun and but it's alright to be enslaved Africans South of the Sahara because they are pagan from there. They're not humans. Maybe they lack a slow so I'm saying that what has happened that needed this justification to condone their polluted their economical exploitation. But this sort of rain haywire after it started being embedded so to the economical structure to go on the black people don't have souls are here yet and now you run into a problem where that is handled love people who don't understand the economical situation has still been in bed with the value system that black is bad and black is the you you were black is evil. Thank you Mr. Newton. The focusing interview was copyright 1968 by the Huey P. Newton defense fund
- An interview with Huey P. Newton
- Contributing Organization
- Pacifica Radio Archives (North Hollywood, California)
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- Reporters from the national and international news media talk with Mr. Newton, leader of the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense, about his personal and political philosophy. Also interviewed is the Black Panther Party attorney Charles R. Garry, Newton's sister and Newton's fianc_e, unnamed for their personal safety. Recorded March 7, 1968 in a detention cell at the Alameda County Courthouse. Also The program was produced and narrated by Colin Edwards.
- Black Panther Party; Newton, Huey P.; African Americans--Civil rights--History
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- AAPB Contributor Holdings
Pacifica Radio Archives
Identifier: 20667_D01 (Pacifica Radio Archives)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Pacifica Radio Archives
Identifier: PRA_AAPP_BB1637_An_interview_with_Huey_P_Newton (Filename)
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- Chicago: “An interview with Huey P. Newton,” Pacifica Radio Archives, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (WGBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed September 20, 2020, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-28-b853f4m063.
- MLA: “An interview with Huey P. Newton.” Pacifica Radio Archives, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (WGBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. September 20, 2020. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-28-b853f4m063>.
- APA: An interview with Huey P. Newton. Boston, MA: Pacifica Radio Archives, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (WGBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-28-b853f4m063