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On the closing day of this Convention my husband announced his resignation from the staff of the Southern Negro Youth Congress to take an appointment as State Chairman of the Communist Party of Louisiana. He thought that the time had come to give his talents and leadership to building the Party which he was convinced could lead to the freedom of his people and to the emancipation of the whole South. We were given a tremendous demonstration and many testimonials and gifts, by the hundreds of leading young people, in tribute to our years in the upbuilding of the organization. We value highly a book signed by the delegates who attended this historic conference whose foreword said in part, [[italicised]] "In humble recognition of your careers of unexampled service to the youth of the South; and as an inadequate testament of the high esteem and fraternal love with which you will always be regarded by the emerging generation of this nature; and as a means of expressing our renewed dedication to the cause of security, civil liberties, free franchise, cultural growth and world peace which you have so richly advanced...." [[/italicised]] So much is written today about the "intrigues" of the Communists to "infiltrate and take over" organizations in order to "subvert and destroy them." Let them look to the life history of the SNYC and the CIO Tobacco Workers Union. In both cases it was when a Communist (in these instances, my husband), was a factor in their leadership, that they enjoyed their greatest successes, largest growth, lived their finest hours in the service of the people. contrary to the slanders against the Communists - to the effect that they always seek partisan advantage in the institutions in which they work - the instances cited above reveal that the Communists are the most ardent, devoted and loyal builders of the unity of the people's organizations. 30 [[end page]] [[start page]] A Communist Leader [[line across page]] MY HUSBAND, who had previously been a volunteer teacher of Marxism-Leninism in several states of the South, was elected State Chairman of the Communist Party of Louisiana in the fall of 1946. His tenure was short lived, however. One of his first functions was to address a public meeting celebrating the Twenty-ninth Anniversary of the socialist revolution in which the oppressed Russian people wrested their freedom from the corrupt and reactionary Tsarist regime and took the government in their own hands. The leaflet advertising the New Orleans meeting stated, "The American Revolution of 1776, the French Revolution of 1789 and the Russian Revolution of November 7, 1917, are the great landmarks in the advancement of mankind toward a universal condition of economic security, brotherhood, peace, democracy and freedom." While he was speaking, a mob escorted by the police, attacked the meeting and Jack and a number of his colleagues were arrested and imprisoned. When his case came to trial, the main contention of the prosecution was that, by making a favorable reference to the Soviet Union, my husband had thereby provoked the patriotic "true-Americans" in his audience to acts of force and violence against himself and his comrades; hence, he was guilty of inciting to riot and criminal mischief which threatened the security of the state! During the same period a mob surrounded the house where he lived in New Orleans and tried to break in a window and seize him. The attempt was thwarted. But when the police arrived they promptly arrested him - the victim! In spite of a lynch-charged courtroom and hysteria-inciting newspaper headlines and radio bulletins, my husband conducted himself in prison and in the courtroom in a most heroic fashion, reflecting credit to the cause of his work. The charges were later dropped. 31
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