Redirecting to: www. What did it all mean?
Was the Chicago Eight Trial merely, as one commentator suggested, "a monumental non-event"? Was it, as others argue, an important battle for the hearts and minds of the American people? Or is it best seen as a symbol of the conflicts of values that characterized the late sixties? These are some of the questions that surround one of the most unusual courtroom spectacles in American history, the trial of eight radicals accused of conspiring to incite a riot at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
Culturally and politically, was one of the most turbulent years America has ever seen. As the Vietnam war became the longest war in U. When the Viet Cong mounted their Tet offensive, anti-war protests grew larger and louder on college campuses.
At Columbia, students seized the office of the President and held three persons hostage to protest the school's ties to the defense Department. Following the April assassination of Martin Luther King in Memphis, riots erupted in cities leaving 46 dead. Senator Robert Kennedy entered the race after Johnson's withdrawl, only to be shot and killed on the night in June that he won the California xhicago.
Although there was some loose coordination between the two groups, they had different leadership, different agendas, and favored different forms of protest and demonstrations.
chicwgo Davis told the group that he "wanted the world to know that there are thousands of young people in this country who do not want to see a rigged convention rubber-stamp another four years of Lyndon Johnson's war. The group of about forty, including attendees Davis and Tom Haydengenerally supported the fourth strategy. A twenty-one document, authored by Hayden and Davis, was distributed at the meeting. The document recommended non-violence.
Meanwhile, another group was making its own plans gjrl Chicago. Plans for the Festival of Life, as they were developed by Yippie founders Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin, called for a "festival of youth, music, and theater. Rise up and abandon the creeping meatball! Come all you rebels, youth spirits, rock minstrels, truth-seekers, peacock-freaks, poets, barricade-jumpers, dancers, lovers and artists! We are there! There are 50, of us dancing in the streets, throbbing with amplifiers and harmony.
We are making love in the parks. Bring blankets, tents, draft-cards, body-paint, Mr.
Leary's Cow, food to cchicago, music, eager skin, and happiness. Edgar Freako will not stop us. We are coming! We are coming from all over the world! We demand the Politics of Ecstasy! We are the delicate spores of the new fierceness that will change America. We will create our own reality, we are Free America!
And we will not accept rooom false theater of the Death Convention. Begin preparations now! Chicago is yours! Do it! Rubin announced plans to nominate a pig, Pigasus the Immortalfor President.
Hoffman talked about a demonstration of public fornication, calling it a "fuck-in. Two-hundred thirty rebel cocksmen under secret vows are on a hour alert to chicqgo the pants of the daughters and wifes and kept women of the convention delegates. Chicago officials, led by Mayor Richard Daleysaw the Grl National Convention as a grand opportunity to promote their city to fucl world. They resolved not to have anti-war demonstrators spoil their plans.
Pre-Convention sparring between the City and protest groups concerned the request of the Yippies to allow demonstrators to sleep in city parks. City Administrator Stahl indicated on August 5, that the request for permission to sleep in the parks would be denied and that an 11 P. On August 23, officials ordered city police to post s in parks announcing the curfew.
As the Convention opening approached, Daley put the city's 12, police officers on twelve-hour shifts. In addition, 7. In late August, mostly student-age anti-war and counter-culture activists began arriving in Chicago. Several thousand would eventually participate in the Convention week protests a far below the ,person estimate that some organizers had predicted.
Several days before the convention, demonstration leaders began holding classes in Lincoln Park on karate, snake dancing, and other means of self-defense. Preparations were woefully inadequate for the level of police violence that demonstrators would face. On Friday, August 23, MOBE learned that a chicago girl fuck room district judge had denied their request for an injunction that would have forced the city to allow use of the parks after 11 P.
The next day radical leaders held a contentious meeting to discuss whether demonstrators should abide by the city's curfew. Among those favoring compliance with the curfew was Jerry Rubin; among those urging violation of the curfew was Abbie Hoffman. Some people were tear-gassed. Sunday, August 25 was to be the much heralded "Festival of Life" featuring rock music and Yippie revelry.
Only the band MC5 showed up, but even they were reluctant to perform. They feared that police would destroy their sound system.
The young people who gathered in the park on Sunday evening handed out flowers, smoked pot, made out, and listened to poetry. Abouta police officer with a bullhorn walked through the park saying, "The park is closing. If you stay in the park, you'll fuckk arrested. At 11 P. The clearing of the park continued for hours.
Some kids ran around smashing car windows and vandalizing buildings.
Police cracked chicgao he and fired more tear-gas grenades again the next night. They attacked about 3, demonstrators gathered in the southeastern corner of Lincoln Park shortly after the 11 P. Testifying later about that night, Robert Piersonan undercover officer working as Hoffman's bodyguard, said that the Yippie leader announced, roomm going to hold the park.
We're going to fuck up the pigs and the Convention. An officer spotted Hayden letting the air out of the tires of a police car.
A half hour later, Rennie Davis according to a prosecution undercover witness stood at the barricades in Lincoln Park with a megaphone shouting at people to "fight the pigs. It began with a sunrise service of chants, prayers, and meditation in Lincoln Park, led by Allen Ginsberg. Bobby Seale arrived in Chicago and addressed a crowd of about 2, in Lincoln Park. Abbie Hoffman, furious with MOBE for its continued advocacy of non-violence, allegedly met with the Blackstone Rangers to persuade them to come to the park chicago girl fuck room weapons that night.
In the Chicago Coliseum, about 4, persons gathered to hear David Dellingerfolk singer Phil Ochsnovelist William Burroughs and a variety of other peace movement celebrities. Shortly after 11 P. Some enraged demonstrators smashed windows and streetlights. Convention week violence peaked on Wednesday, August The day began with Abbie Hoffman being arrested while having breakfast and charged with public indecency for having written the word "Fuck" on his forehead. Hoffman said he did so to discourage the press from photographing him.
In the afternoon, Dellinger, Seale, Davis, and Hayden addressed 10, to 15, demonstrators at the bandshell in Grant Park, opposite the Convention's headquarters hotel, the Conrad Hilton. Tom Hayden allegedly told the audience: "Make sure that if blood is going to flow, let it flow all over the city. If we're going to be disrupted and violated, let the whole stinking city be disrupted.
I'll see you in the streets! When the police moved in to retrieve the American flag, Jerry Rubin yelled "Kill the pigs! Kill the cops! Police stopped a nighttime march of about 1, people to the Amphitheatre. The clubbing and the tear-gassing finally let up on Thursday, but protest activities continued. Froines allegedly said that the demonstrators needed more ammunition to use against police.
Weiner reportedly then suggested Molotov cocktails, adding that a good tactic might be to pick a target in the Loop and bomb it. Weiner told Bock and others to get the bottles, sand, rags, and gasoline necessary to make the Molotov cocktails. The Trial Until enactment of the Civil Rights Act, rioting and incitement to riot chicago girl fuck room a strictly local law enforcement issue.
Congress, however, felt compelled to respond to the ever-increasing s of anti-war protests around the country. The new law made it a federal crime to cross state lines with the intent to incite a riot. Clark viewed what had happened in Chicago as primarily a police riot. The Attorney General expressed more interest in prosecuting police officers for brutality than in prosecuting demonstrators for rioting. Daley convinced a close friend and federal judge, William Campbell, to summon a grand jury to consider possible violations of the anti-riot law.
On March 20,the jury returned indictments against eight demonstrators, balanced exactly by indictments against eight police officers. By the time the grand jury returned its indictments, the Nixon Administration had begun.
The new attorney general, John Mitchell, exhibited none of his predecessor's reluctance about prosecuting demonstrators. Mitchell gave the green light to prosecute.