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tified in the vast crowd, including Dick Gregory, the celebrated "message comedian." Roy Reuther of the United Automobile Workers; and Daisy Bates, heroine of the Battle of Little rock. An associate of Medgar Evers in earlier struggles in Mount Bayou and elsewhere in Mississippi, Dr. T. R. M. Howard, was the first speaker to pay a secular tribute to the foully murdered leader. Dr. Howard opened his remarks with a story of pained apology for his current absence from the Mississippi scene. (He now lives in Chicago). "Several years after the battle of Bull's Run an old veteran walked among the grave stones," Dr. Howard said in his parable, "A young man challenged him: 'How could you have survided such a battle, did you run?' 'Yes, it is true,' the old man replied, 'the only real veterans of this battle are the ones who are buried here.'" Dr. Howard invoked the Biblical quotation that "without the shedding of blood there can be no remission of sins" to serve warning on the minions of the law in Mississippi to stop murdering and torturing its Negro citizens. "For over a hundred years now, we have been turning first one and then the other cheek. Our neck has gotten tired of turning now!", he said to the accompaniment of a great roar of shouted approvals from the mourners, "we aren't going to absorb many more of their blows," he said. Dr. Howard likened Evers to the sainted John Brown and said he would live in history alongside the name of the old martyr of the anti-slavery struggle. He concluded his remarks with a call for 50 thousand Mississippi Negroes to take out memberships in the NAACP in the next 30 days. Local ministers, the Revs. G. R. Haughton, R. L. T. Smith and G. C. Hunt offered religious eulogies to the fallen hero around the theme that "greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for his brother." Their tributes were followed by the introduction of Roy Wilkins by the Rev. Charles A. Jones. Roy Wilkins funeral oration articulated the anger, and the unextinguishable and not to be denied resolve of the 20 million Negro Americans to secure now their full and un- [[end page]] [[start page]] circumscribed rights. He identified the segregation system and the ruling powers in the nation who have for so long failed to act to end it as the forces behind the madman who fired the assassination shot. Roy Wilkins declared that: "The lurking assassin at midnight June 11 - 12 pulled the trigger, but in all wars the men who do the shooting are trained and indoctrinated and keyed to action. "The Southern political system put him behind that rifle: the lily-white Southern governments, local and state; the senators, governors, state legislators, mayors, judges, sheriffs, chiefs of police, commissioners, etc. Not content with mere disfranchisment, the office holders have used unbridled political power to fabricate a maze of laws, customs and economic practices which has imprisoned the Negro. "When at times it appeared that the rest of the nation might penetrate the Kingdom of Color, there were those ready always to beat back the adherents of decency and justice. Speaking of the public school decision of 1954 of the United States Supreme Court, Senator James O. Eastland told a 1955 Senatobia, Miss., audience: 'You are obligated to DISOBEY such a Court.' "In far-away Washington, the Southern system has its outposts in the Congress of the United States and by their deals and maneuvers they helped put the man behind the deadly rifle on Guynes Street this week. The Killer must have felt that he had, if not an immunity, then certainly a protection for whatever he chose to do, no matter how dastardly. "Today as Americans and their President try to recover from their horror to devise ways to correct the evils now so naked in our national life, these men in Congress abetted by the timorous, the technical and the selfishly ambitious are raising the familiar -- and by now sickening -- chorus of negations: With surgery required, they talk of ointments and pills. With speed the essence, they cite their rituals of procedure. Man may die and children may be stunted, but the seniority system and the filibuster
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