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Kenneth ClarkKenneth Clark
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accusation that Hoover made, you know, that Martin was the biggest fraud perpetrated on the American people, that he was a scoundrel and what not, and he just went on.

We met for a whole day, in the offices of the Legal Defense (Fund) -- I've probably told you this before. I think it was Columbus Day. It was some holiday, on which we were planning what to do in response, and the issue before us was: should Martin go down and make his peace with Mr. Hoover? Or should he defy Hoover to do his damnedest?

Well, there were two of us who were taking the hard line, Clarence Jones and myself, but all the others -- I don't remember whether Andy was there or not that day. I know that (Ralph) Abernathy was there, and I know that Jesse Jackson was there. I remember them very clearly. There were about four or five others, whose main argument was that to defy Hoover would be self-destructive; that Martin couldn't win. Like in a pissing contest with a skunk, you can't possibly win. They didn't use that language. That it would have damaged Martin's image if these things were/public. And third, that Martin could use this as a practical demonstration of his philosophy --you know, “love and embrace your oppressor,” etc.

And I lost my temper again and shouted out, “Damn it, Martin, you might be Christ-like but you're not Christ!”

Which everybody laughed about-- and that kind of made me aggry too, because they thought it was funny, and I wasn't being funny at all. I just thought that there comes a time when you put away, you know, any pretense of understanding or what not, and put on the brass knuckles. And I thought we should have done that,

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