Paul Robeson’s speech at American Labor Party rally, Madison Square Garden, October 26, 1950

I am happy to be here tonight. I come certainly not at the invitation of the management of the sports arena and not because of the protection which federal, state, and municipal authority is a Ford the constitutional rights Of free speech and assembly these days – but rather Because of the courage and fighting spirit of progressive and anti-fascist America and particularly in this instance the hard-working members and leaders of the American Labor Party.

And most emphatically I am here because I am privileged to share the strength and devotion to democracy of masses of the Negro people – their will to be free at any cost.

And they will be free!

The guarantee that our day of liberation is not far offIs that this is the time of colonial liberation. It is the time in dark men and women in Asia and Africa are putting off shackles of exploitation which have kept them bound for centuries.

They are following The glorious example of people’s China in refusing any longer to be “the white man’s burden” – the tools and play things and source of great wealth for European and American millionaires. As they succeed in Asia – soon you may be sure, in Africa — as more than half the world escapes the clutches of the Dulles, the MacArthurs, Rockefellers, and Firestones, they lend a powerful stimulus to our freedom struggle at home.

We still have a long way to go

(…)

Should Dr. W.E.B Du Bois go to the United States Senate? One of the tragedies of American political life is that for so many years so many mediocrities, who do not deserve to sit in the same room with him, have gone to the head of the State Department, other places in the cabinet and to the Presidency itself. The Negro people will not forget that the ALP’s turn to a Du Bois for leadership and not to the sycophants and flunkies of monopoly wealth and plantation power to clutter up the tickets of the twin parties of reaction.

Published by minervasperch

All offerings by R. Divya Nair

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