Williams was a NAACP leader in the late 50s –early 60s South who advocated Blacks arm themselves for self-defense as a practical matter of survival against the Klan-dominated establishment of his hometown of Monroe, North Carolina. In this he predated Malcolm X, and this contrasted him sharply with the strategy of Martin Luther King. He drew international attention to the harsh realities of life in the Jim Crow South. All the while, Williams and other protestors met the constant threat of violence and death with their guns close at hand. The FBI attempted to frame-up Williams, forcing him into an eight-year exile in Cuba and Mao Tse-Tung’s China. While in Cuba he began “Radio Free Dixie” a radio show gave news of the black freedom movement and urged blacks not to fight in Vietnam. He became a model for the Black Panthers.
Sponsors: Loyola University Department of Sociology, Loyola Latin America Studies Program, Loyola Film and Digital Media Program, Chicago Committee to Free the Cuban 5
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