A Word Or Two From The Chicago 7 – March 1970 – Past Daily Reference Room
. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – Kup’s Show – The Chicago 7 – March 16-17, 1970 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection
1968 was a pivotal year in America – we had the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy. Protest to the War in Vietnam had reached a fever pitch and the political system in the country was in a state of chaos.
In August of 1968, roughly 150,000 protestors came to Chicago to stage rallies and demonstrations at the Democratic National Convention. It turned into one of the bloodiest scenes of police violence since the Selma Civil Rights marches in 1963.
Arrested and held on charges of inciting a riot, traveling across state lines to incite a riot and a host of other charges, were 8 defendants; David Dellinger, Rennie Davis, Tom Hayden, Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Bobby Seale, John Froines and Lee Weiner. Originally called The Chicago 8, Bobby Seale, member of the Black Panther Party, was gagged and removed and The Chicago 8 became the Chicago 7.
The trial lasted from September 1969 to February of 1970 and the 7 defendants were found not guilty of charges, two of the defendants were acquitted and the remaining 5 were convicted of crossing states lines to incite a riot. On February 20th they were sentenced to five years in prison and fined $5,000 each. They were later re-tried and the convictions were overturned.
This program, part of The Kup’s Show, was an interview featuring Irv Kupcinet with 4 of the Chicago 7 as well as members of the Prosecution team. It’s a very lively discussion and one which points to similarities in what is going on now within our Justice system.
Fascinating that, 45 years later, issues of Police brutality and corruption are still very much at the forefront of our society. The discussion became so heated that it was carried over to another segment; and so a half-hour discussion became a one hour discussion.
Have a listen and see if you can spot the similarities between 1970 and 2015. It may surprise you.
Here is that discussion from Kup’s Show from March 16 and 17, 1970 featuring Rennie Davis, Dave Delinger, John Froines, and Jerry Rubin – along with Jerry Rubin’s wife, Black Panther Attorney Charles Garry, and Frank McGarr.