In 1964 a small group of African American men in Jonesboro, Louisiana, defied the nonviolence policy of the mainstream civil rights movement and formed an armed self-defense organization--the Deacons for Defense and Justice--to protect movement workers from vigilante and police violence. With their largest and most famous chapter at the center of a bloody campaign in the Ku Klux Klan stronghold of Bogalusa, Louisiana, the Deacons became a popular symbol of the growing frustration with Martin Luther King Jr.'s nonviolent strategy and a rallying point for a militant working-class movement in the South." — Lance Hill, Deacons for Defense
"The Deacons for Defense and Justice was formed by African-American men in Jonesboro and Bogalusa, Louisiana, and Natchez, Mississippi. They were factory workers, farmers, common laborers, fathers, husbands, and church-goers who organized to protect themselves and their communities from the terrorism and oppression of the Ku Klux Klan organizations, White Citizens Councils, and police agencies." — Lester Sloan
On non-violence and self-defense, African Americans and the right to bear arms
Right after Barack Obama was elected there was a reported run on gun and ammo supply shops. News articles, and gun forums were reporting an alleged ammo shortage across the nation. Open carry demos have just taken place, and there is talk from the white right about the need for more armed militias. There has been quite a bit of discussion about this on Daily Kos.
|Editor's Note: Sis Dee's diary teaches us some history of the civil rights movement that many of us never learned in high school or college. She synthesizes that history with her current perspective in the unique way that she does so well on the Daily Kos front page every Sunday. This diary was an instant classic when first published on Black Kos, as a follow-up diary, and then again by the RKBA group. All that was before my time at Daily Kos and I was delighted to discover it when I was researching the history of armed self defense. I hope you find it as interesting as I did. ~ LilithGardener