David Harris: The courage of convictions

Reply Mon 11 Nov, 2019 04:51 pm
Few resisters from the Vietnam antiwar era had a bigger impact than David Harris, who inspired generations to have the courage of their convictions. Now dying of cancer, he wants his message heard again.
By Alan Goldfarb
November 4, 2019

On a chilly afternoon in the spring of 1967, David Harris stood before an audience of nearly 60,000 in San Francisco’s Kezar Stadium. Clad in a denim jacket against the cold, the 21-year-old sported muttonchops and a prodigious mustache, and his six-foot-three frame seemed too large for the simple lectern. Speaking with an inexplicable New England accent, he preached that “the brutality in Vietnam is simply a reflection of the brutality of American life” and warned that “you will do her murdering [until America is] confronted by young men who will not murder!” The crowd roared in approval, and he urged the men in the audience to return their draft cards and to refuse military conscription.

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