Civil Rights Movement Archive
Our Thoughts and Commentaries

Retrospectives, analyses, and opinions by Movement activists. Open to any veteran of the Southern Freedom Movement during the years 1951-1968 who is listed in the Activist Roll Call. See Submissions Policy for more information.

See also: The Southern Freedom Movement for articles written by veterans at the time the Movement was active.

Disclaimer: The viewpoints expressed in these commentaries are the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Civil Rights Movement Archive.

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Quantifying White and Jewish CRM Participation and SupportBruce Hartford
Lessons Learned in the Southern Freedom MovementChude Allen
The Freedom Movement Changed So Many LivesHeather Booth
An Introduction to John O'Neal's Work and SNCCCharlie Cobb
Mr. Say Ain't Nothing, Mr. Do's the Man (five short videos) Courtland Cox
What I Learned from the Freedom MovementFatima Cortez
Mass Movements & Social RevolutionBruce Hartford
Lessons LearnedMarion Kwan
Moving From Freedom to Black Power and Beyond Jennifer Lawson
Bob Moses: Neither Victim Nor ExecutionerMike Miller
SNCC Changed Me... ForeverJudy Richardson
What I Learned from the Freedom MovementKaren Haberman Trusty
Unsung Heroes & Sheroes of the Movement in New Orleans Raphael Cassimere Jr.
Paul and Patricia Bokulich: Civil Rights Workers in Greene County AL Paul T. Murray

An Introduction to John O'Neal's Work and SNCCCharlie Cobb
Bob Moses: Neither Victim Nor ExecutionerMike Miller
Death Knell for the Voting Rights Act ~ Yesterday & TomorrowBruce Hartford
Thoughts on the Supreme Court's ruling
on Affirmative Action Admissions
Raphael Cassimere Jr.
American HypocrisyBruce Hartford
From Stokely Carmichael to Kwame TureCharlie Cobb
Letters of Support for Expelled Tennessee LegislatorsSNCC Legacy Project (SLP)
Dr. King ¡Presente!Ted Glick
The White Supremacist Attack on EducationSNCC Legacy Project (SLP)
I Have Seen FreedomSi Kahn

Registering Black Voters one Soul at a TimeSherie Labedis
"Politics is white folk's business!" The Citizens' Councils of Mississippi Mike Sayer
More Than Condolences, My Late Husband Needs You To Vote  Shirley Sherrod
Statement on Presidential Medal of FreedomDiane Nash
Commencement Address & Hall of Fame Induction Raphael Cassimere Jr.
The U.S. Supreme Court's Attacks on DemocracySNCC Legacy Project (SLP)
MAGA: Back to 1868Bruce Hartford
Civil Rights Activists Fought for America's Democracy ...David Dennis Jr.
Interview on Being a Freedom School TeacherChude Allen
J'Accuse! Power, Control and Sexual AbuseFatima Cortez
Unsung Heroes & Sheroes of the Movement in New Orleans Raphael Cassimere Jr.
The Ukraine WarBruce Hartford
From Georgia and Virginia to Harlem and Beyond...Peggy Trotter Dammond Preacely
The Civil Rights Movement Did Not FailBruce Hartford

SCLC & Me (Taliaferro Co. GA movement)Terry V. Howard
Banning Critical Race Theory Ignores Truths All Students Must Hear Charles Prickett
Returning to 'Normal' in Education is Not Good EnoughBob Moses
Jane Stembridge – A SNCC Origin StoryMaria Varela
Selma, and the Long Struggle for Voting RightsBruce Hartford
Teachers: We've Seen This Before and We Stand With YouSLP & CRMA
Oh, That Can't Happen Here — Can It?Bruce Hartford
Statement on the 60th Anniversary of the Freedom Rides  Bob Zellner
"More Than a Hamburger"Courtland Cox
Jim Crow Voting Laws ~ Then and NowBruce Hartford
Hate Against Asian Americans & Asian WomenMarion Kwan
Wasn't That A Time: ... Freedom Singers Matthew & Marshall JonesSusan Erenich

The Bogalusa LessonBruce Hartford
The Big SpinBruce Hartford
Statement on the 2020 Presidential ElectionSNCC Legacy Project
Nonviolence, Self-Defense & ProvocateursBruce Hartford
We Have to Learn to Do the Work of ChangeJan Hillegas
Statement on the Actions Taken by the NBA PlayersSNCC Legacy Project (SLP)
Immediate Consideration and Justice for Imam Jamil Al-AminSNCC Legacy Project (SLP)
Matt Herron — R.I.P.Ron Carver
Eulogy for John LewisRev. James Lawson
Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our NationJohn Lewis
The First Time John Lewis and I Integrated the BusesBernard Lafayette Jr.
Let Her Shine! A Memorial for Connie CurryTimothy L. Jenkins
I Remember the Lynchings of the 1960s. They're Still HappeningRon Carver
To a Foundational Level of LiteracyBob Moses
Was Ahmaud Arbery Lynched and Why Does it Matter?Margaret Burnham
Jean Wiley: A Life Well Lived in a Liberated State of Mind  Daphne Muse
Voter Suppression in Minority CommunitiesStatement by John Lewis
Voter Suppression in Minority CommunitiesTimothy L. Jenkins, congressional testimony
How We Fought for a MLK Texas HolidayMario Salas
Crises 4     Bruce Hartford
To Our Brother, John LewisSNCC Legacy Project
Thoughts & Comments on the Mass Protests & Anti-Racist Movement of 2020
   Many VoicesThoughts & Comments of Freedom Movement Veterans
   Courtland Cox & Charlie CobbProtest, Race, and the American Future
   National Council of EldersNCOE Condemns Police Killings of George Floyd and Police Violence Against Protestors
   Peggy Damond PreacelyReflection on the Night of May 30, Los Angeles
   Mike MillerBlack Lives Matter and the State of the Union
   Sheila LongFifty-Five Years Later
   Marion KwanMy Take: Protesting in 2020
   Josh GouldI Ain't Mr. Jones
   Michael Rooke-LeyImpossible to Ignore Any Longer:
   Harcourt KlinefelterSpeech at Black Lives Matter Protest, Almere, Netherlands
   Joyce LadnerDemocracy Dies in Darkness
   Jan HillegasLinking Past, Present and Future
   Sherie LabedisProtest March
   Rubye Howard BrayeBlack, Female, and Awake in America — 2020
   Eric MannThe Struggle for No Police in the Los Angeles Schools
   Ron RidenourLooking Back at Today's Uprisings

From Protest to PowerMike Miller
Statement by SLP on the racist assaults against Latinx people SNCC Legacy Project
Fifty Years On, Looking Back on the Freedom MovementBruce Hartford
You Are Your Ancestor's Wildest Dreams!Daphne Muse
Presentation to a Mennonite congregationChude Allen

Power and HopeHarry Boyte
Trump and the Incitement of ViolenceSNCC Legacy Project
Remembering Mattie Bivens DennisSNCCC Legacy Project
In Memory of Mattie Bivens & George GreeneDorie Ladner
The Kavanaugh CourtBruce Hartford
Southern White Activists on Why They Joined the MovementMultiple authors
Meditation on July 4thBruce Hartford
Selma: The Bridge and BeyondAlma Jean Billingslea Brown
Building & Transferring Informational Wealth: SNCC Digital Gateway   Multiple authors
A Funeral Sermon for Charles F. McDewTimothy L. Jenkins
Statement on Misuse of My NameDiane Nash
The Great SilenceBruce Hartford
Teacher Training: Freedom Summer StyleMark Levy
Citizenship Then and Now: Launch of the Obama FoundationHarry Boyte

Cynthia Stokes Brown Stood Firmly in Her Power and Honored Her Truth   Daphne Muse
Remembrances of Mrs. Hamer on her 100th BirthdayMany friends
SLP Statement on the Rescinding of DACASNCC Legacy Project
Response to NY Times Op-Ed "Waiting for a Perfect Protest?"Many Movement activists
Remembering the Mailman's March of 1963Muriel Tillinghast
Nonviolence after CharlottesvilleHarry Boyte
Three Responses to Charlottesville:
     We Did it Before, We'll Do it Again
     Free Speech vs Hate Speech
     The Measure of Our Stride
Bruce Hartford
The Cluster Bomb of 110 Trump AxiomsTimothy L. Jenkins
John Dewey and Citizen PoliticsHarry Boyte
Three Voices on Horror, Defiance and LoveAllen, Bridgeforth & Hartford
This Button Was My BadgeStuart Ewen
Honoring Their DepartureDaphne Muse
The Limits of "Clicktivism"Bruce Hartford
Citizens as Co-Creators of a Democratic Way of Life   Harry Boyte

A Spirit of PowerHarry Boyte
St. Matthews, SC and Fifty-one YearsLynn Goldsmith Goldberg
To Our Brothers and Sisters of #BlackLivesMatter Movement SNCC Legacy Project & many Movement veterans
Testimony to the Democratic Platform Committee on
Voting as a Constitution Right
Robert (Bob) Moses, SLP, SNCC
Thoughts on Freedom SongsPenny Patch
Bernie Sanders PhotographsDanny Lyon
Bernie SandersMuriel Tillinghast
Five Myths About ReconstructionJim Loewen
Are you thinking of Writing Your Civil Rights Memoir?Maria Gitin
In a Season of Rage, Populist Lessons From The Movement   Harry Boyte
Vernon F. Dahmer: Civil Rights Martyr and American HeroJoyce Ladner
Howard Zinn: Remembered and MissedAnnette Jones White
Laudato Si', Civic Studies, and the Future of Democracy, ...Harry Boyte
2016 Election: Thoughts & Comments by Freedom Movement activists
    SNCC Legacy Project: Statement on the 2016 Presidential Election.
    Heather Booth: Terrifying result. Traumatic time.
    Bruce Hartford: A Note From the Wilderness.
    Julius Lester: We Shall Overcome.
    Mike Miller: Quick Thoughts on the Trump Victory.
    Ron Ridenour: USA Elections: A Revolutionary View.
    Eugene Turitz: Some Thoughts.

InvitationsMaria Varela
Memories of JulianJudy Richardson
Julian Bond Neither Gone Nor ForgottenTim L. Jenkins
Ghettos, Segregation, & Poverty in the 1960sBruce Hartford
A Long Hot Summer Ahead?Maria Gitin
What Would it Look Like? If You Had Criminal & Civil JusticeMichael Wright
The Historical Context of Voting RightsBruce Hartford
Letter of Appreciation to the Widow and Family of Claude Sitton ...Timothy L. Jenkins
Nonviolence & Hypocrisy of U.S. Promoting Democracy AbroadC.T. Vivian
Selma to Montgomery: But What About SNCC?Junius Williams
From Hawai'i to SelmaMarsha Rose Joyner
The Way We Were: The SNCC Teenagers Who Changed America  Judy Richardson
Call to Selma, a Review From the Bridge"Arkansas" Benston
Evaluating the Southern Freedom MovementGene Turitz
Anniversary of the February 1st, 1960 Sit-insCasey Hayden
SNCC Should Have Won/Win a Nobel Peace PrizeDaphne Muse
Selma the Movie: Thoughts & Comments by Freedom Movement activists
    Ira Grupper: Some Say it Distorts and is Biased, But Selma Must Be Seen.
    Bruce Hartford:   They Got the Heart Right.
    Don Jelinek: Selma the Movie.
    Marsha Joyner: Selma a 2014 American Historical Epic Drama Movie.
    John Lewis: John Lewis tells his truth about Selma.
    Danny Lyon: A SNCC Photographer Reviews Selma
    Daphne Muse: Initial Ten Responses to Selma.
    Diane Nash: LBJ Doesn't Deserve Credit for Selma.
    Dennis Roberts: What did I think when I wasn't weeping?
Celebrate the Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Joseph Ruggerio
What Did You Learn in School Today?Mark Levy


We the People (Freedom Summer 50th Commemoration)Bob Moses
Where Do We Go From Here?SNCC Legacy Project (re police shootings)
People and Places of the Civil Rights Movement in New Orleans:
St. James A.M.E: A Study in Courage, Commitment And A Cause
Raphael Cassimere Jr.
The Real News Network InterviewsBob Moses
   Constitutional People and Slavery by Another Name (Long view racial issues)
   Growing Up in Harlem (Mississippi Freedom Summer)
   Patriotism and Lynching (World War II)
   Founding SNCC and Taking on Mississippi (Amzie Moore & voter registration)
    Fannie Lou Hamer and the Racist Dixiecrats (COFO & MFDP)
    The Road to Freedom Summer
   An Earned Insurgency (The thinking behind Freedom Summer)
   "We the People" Force Confronts Democratic Party Leadership in '64 (Convention challenge)
My Parents Said Yes!Chude Allen
Letter to the Family of Charles SherrodCourtland Cox
Getting Past the Grand JurySNCC Legacy Project
Changing the Culture of Blue-BigotryBruce Hartford
Reading "Ferguson" in Faulkner's Intruder in the DustPeter de Lissovoy
Reflections from Bob Moses ... On the Passing of John DoarBob Moses
Wilcox Churches: Sanctuaries & Action Centers  Maria Gitin
The Meaning of "Radical"Bruce Hartford
As Mississippi Moves on, a New Struggle ArisesRon Carver
Fannie Lou Hamer & the Democratic PartyMarsha Rose Joyner
Mississippi Movement Set Example for Female LeadersJoyce Ladner
The Missing WordBruce Hartford
The Mississippi Summer Project 50th Anniversary Notes ...Mike Miller
Why I Am Proud of the 1964 Civil Rights ActThomas Armstrong
Address to Freedom Summer 50th CommemorationJulian Bond
In the Mississippi River: Heroes and Sheroes:Judy Richardson
An Epitaph That Keeps GivingTimothy L. Jenkins
Union Organizing: Lessons From SNCC WorkLarry Rubin
Remembering John Perdew (1942-2014)Sam Mahone
Wiping Away the TearsHeather Gray
The MFDP: 50 years Later a Time for EvaluationMike Miller
Courage Was the KeyBruce Hartford
The Value of Nonviolence Comes FirstIvanhoe Donaldson
Joseph Rauh & the MFDP's Democratic Convention ChallengeMike Miller

My Homage to Mandela's LifeL. Zapata
Thoughts on the Passing of Nelson MandelaHunter Bear
African American Women and Jewish Women ...   Yvonne Hilton
Harassment Didn't Stop Civil Rights WorkCorinne Barnwell
A Memory from ... when Viola Liuzzo Was Murdered  Peter de Lissovoy
Memories of the MarchFatima Cortez
Aug. 28, 1963 Was a Day of Joy, Anger and HopeJoyce Ladner
Homily for the Jonathan Daniel PilgrimageGloria House
Reaction to Supreme Court Overturning VRAMaria Gitin
Supporting SNCCNeal Hurwitz
Leo Branton: A Sterling Brown Kind of Strong ManDaphne Muse
Fifty Years: Remembering Medgar EversHunter Bear
Food for ThoughtMaria Gitin
A Global Spotlight on Voter SuppressionRon Carver
Voting Rights Act: Friend of the Court BriefVMCRM
The Roots of PovertyBruce Hartford
When MLK Thrilled L.A. — and MeEllen Broms
Our Week with Rosa Parks...Daphne Muse

The Road to Internationalism: A SNCC Movement Worker ReflectsGloria House
The Rolling of the Busses (March on Washington)Bruce Hartford
On Being a Militant and Radical Organizer...Hunter Gray
Living With Others: Challenges and PromisesBob Zellner
Lawrence Guyot's ThoughtsLawrence Guyot
Political Animals Likely to Confuse History of the CRM  Diane Nash
Thoughts on Port HuronBob Zellner
Quilt Story: Black Rural Women, White Urban ...Linda Beckman


The Intolerable BurdenConnie Curry
The Dark and Poor Must Join OWS!Curtis Muhammad
The Onion Theory of Nonviolent ProtestBruce Hartford
Another Account of the Second Freedom SummerJo Freeman
Schools to Prison Pipeline, Today's Civil Rights IssueConnie Curry
Fred Shuttlesworth: Civil Rights LionCharlie Cobb
Doing the Right ThingRobert & Helen Singleton
You Came Here to Die, Didn't You?Jo Freeman
My Country, My Mother, and MeHelen Singleton
The People's Revolution Does Not Seek to Lead Nations  Curtis Muhammad
And a Song Shall RiseBruce Hartford
Thoughts on The Help Book & Movie
   Joyce LadnerNo thanks Kathryn Stockett, I don't want to be "The Help"
   Casey HaydenThe Help the Movie
   Ruby SalesThe Help
   Theresa El-Amin  The Help
   Penny PatchThe Help


Letter to My Adolescent SonJean Wiley
SNCC Truth Telling TimeTimothy L. Jenkins
100 Years of Nonviolent StruggleBruce Hartford
Might you know where I can find a rehab center for my country?Daphne Muse
Freedom is Not Free: The Meridian Movement of the Mid-60sSmith & Morse
Learning from the Long Civil Rights Movement's First GenerationVirginia Durr, Sue Thrasher
I Owe a Debt of Gratitude to the Civil Rights Movement  Daphne Muse
Clyde KennardRon Hollander
Statement on Mississippi Freedom Ride 50th ...  [Group]
SNCC at 50Charlie Cobb
In the Attics of My MindCasey Hayden
SNCC & Today's Education StruggleBruce Hartford
Review of The Great Pool Jump: & Other Stories ... SW Georgia  Stephen Saltonstall
SNCC, Fifty Years LaterMarian Wright Edelman
SNCC's LegacyCurtis Muhammad
Letter to Young RadicalsCurtis Muhammad  
The Two AmericasBruce Hartford
Rev. Willie Blue shares a half century of SNCC history...Rev. Willie Blue
The Tao of Social StruggleBruce Hartford


Generational Narrative by a Black Woman on ... Senator Edward Kennedy  Ruby Sales
Audacity & Humor — Tactics of NonviolenceBruce Hartford


The Legacy of J.L. Chestnut, Jr. Raising Hell in the South Heather Gray
Long Time Coming (Election of Obama)Wally Roberts
21 Months (Election of Obama)Helen Singleton
Activists and ActivismBruce Hartford
That Darned "Why did you..." QuestionBruce Hartford
"Atlantic City Revisited" — Mondale & "The Movement"  Mike Miller
The Importance of SNCC (A Discussion)[Freedom Movement veterans]  
UNO: Birth of a University; Rebirth of a City Raphael Cassimere Jr.


Reclaiming the Second ReconstructionJack O'Dell
Leadership: Freedom Movement vs New Left  Bruce Hartford
SNCC, Black Power & Black NationalismMike Miller
Constitutional People, U.S. Senate testimonyBob Moses




Hurricane Katrina (Multiple pieces)[Freedom Movement activists]
Democracy CharterJack O'Dell
Why Struggle? Why Care?Chude Allen
The FBI's Mississippi MyopiaRon Carver
Veterans Statement, "Eyes on the Prize"[Freedom Movement activists]
Adopt A Racist Boor For MLK DayBenjamin Greenberg
Georgia's Fraudulent Anti-Fraud Legislation  Julian Bond
Against DiscouragementHoward Zinn
In Memory of Dr. King — A Winter SoldierBruce Hartford


Qualities of Successful Education OrganizingBetty Garman
Bona Fide Community Organizing: Core Dimensions  Hunter Bear
Religion and the 2004 ElectionSales & Hartford
Chaney, Schwerner, Goodman 40th Memorial

   Donna Ladd: Jackson Free Press: I Felt the Earth Move

   Jim Benston: Letter from "Arkansas" (AKA "Strider")

   Ira Grupper: The 40th Neshoba Memorial

   David Kendall: Statement of David Kendall

   David Kotz: Statement of David Kotz

   Wallace Roberts: Highways to Nowhere

   Alan Schiffmann: Statement of Alan Schiffmann

   Andrew Sheldon: Statement of Andrew Sheldon

   Ira Grupper: Problems With the 40th Neshoba Memorial

   Jared Story: Misrepresentation and Mischaracterization


A Black Man Fights the Draft  Michael Simmons  
Say These Words With MeMoses & Ladd  


Justice for Jamil (H. Rap Brown)  [Freedom Movement veterans]


My Reflections of Years Gone By  Charles Person


Freedom in the Air program & study guideJulian Bond, C.T. Vivian, Media Works.
Undated (probably in the 2000s)
Conflicting Memories of the ... Albany Movement  Joan Browning
Review of Walking With the WindMike Miller
Renewing the Beloved Community (Walking Wounded project)Mike Miller


Shining in Sunflower, review of Silver RightsCasey Hayden, 1995
What the Civil Rights Movement ProvedHoward Zinn, 1994
On Time in Mississippi, 1964-1994Elizabeth "Betita" Martinez, 1994
Beloved Community, Mississippi Revisited  Susan Moon, 1994
Mississippi Stories I & IIBell Gale Chivigny, 1994
Mississippi Movement MemoriesMike Miller, 1991


A Pebble Thrown into the PondGlenn Smiley, 1989
Those Who Were Not There:
the Cold War Against the Civil Rights Movement
Anne Braden, 1989
Commentaries on the Hollywood film Mississippi Burning
Mississippi Burning, Judy Richardson, 1989
Mississippi Smoldering, Jim Kates, 1988
Letter to the Editor (re Mississippi Burning), Carol Hanisch, 1989
SNCC: How They StoodMartha Prescod, 1988
Civil Rights Movement in the 20th CenturyJames Farmer, class lectures & reflections, 1986

1960s & '70s
Taking A Look At Freedom NowJerry DeMuth, Newsday 1979
Mississippi Summer 15 years called a 'Turning Point'Jerry DeMuth, SNCC/RNS. 1979
Churches Still Lagging on Race SymposiumJerry DeMuth, SNCC/RNS. 1979
Address to Ella Baker 75th Birthday CelebrationBob Moses, 1978
How I Learned About the Right to VoteMrs. Classie McCullough (81), 1976
The Tyranny of StructurelessnessJo Freeman, 1972
Teaching the MovementMiriam Cohen Glickman, 1967
A Kind of Memo, November 1965
Sex and Caste, as published April 1966
Casey Hayen & Mary King
Four Essays on Mississippi: America's Only Police StateCarl Young, 1964
Some Thoughts About MusicAnnette Jones White, 1962

See also:

History & Timeline: 1951-1968 — Descriptions of Movement events.
Our Words — Articles & speeches by Movement veterans written at the time.
Letters & Reports From the Field — By Movement activists.
Documents — Movement publications, reports, materials, strategy, etc.
Photo Album — Movement photos, posters, etc.
Our Stories — Memories, narratives & interviews of Movement veterans.
Our Thoughts — Analyses and commentaries by Movement activists.
Discussions — Transcripts of group discussions by veterans.

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