If you want to piss off anyone who participated in the 1964 Freedom Summer all you have to do is bring up Mississippi Burning. The 1988 movie stars Gene Hackman and Willem Dafoe and is a white-centered flick about the investigation into the murders of Goodman, Chaney and Schwerner. The movie depicted the FBI as the heroes in the case and glossed over any black heroism that took place that summer. And it never once mentions Dick Gregory.
When my father talks about the movie, he always goes back to one fact: those bodies would not have been found if not for Dick Gregory. And the placement of the FBI as heroes is nothing but propaganda. In fact, in 1964, Gregory had a message for the government organization: It sort of looks like the FBI has been going out of its way to gather information to clear the FBI rather than to solve the crime…It’s not so much what more the FBI could do. It’s what they have not and are not doing. You know, this whole business is crazy. If these Mississippi white Klansmen, who do not know how to plan crimes, who are ignorant, illiterate bastards, can completely baffle our FBI, what are all those brilliant Communist spies doing to us? A plane crashes and two weeks later the FBI patches up that plane so good that United can damn near use it again. And know exactly how it happened, and who did it. Do you mean to tell me that the FBI can’t go into the South and make arrests for racial killings that were not planned, which were not done by clever people? Frankly, I think the FBI is lying and hiding…No one else on the face of the earth today is blowing up churches and getting away with it. We all know that if a Negro would blow up one church any place, the FBI would not sleep until they brought him in. So, this proves to me that the FBI is not only a very vicious group, but also shows that the FBI, as far as the Negro is concerned, is a second Klu Klux Klan.