Sara Criss’ Civil Rights Memoir #18: The Spin Game

“As I stood watching one of the demonstrations one of the FBI men from Cincinnati, Ohio, told me ‘We are on your side in this thing but are just sent down here to do our job. Where I live we have more segregation than you do.’ When I heard remarks such as his it reinforced my feeling that if we would just treat them a little more kindly they just might go back and tell some of the ‘other side of the story.’

“The news folks were not fooled by what was going on even though they might not agree with the way the blacks had been treated. One of the network reporters told me, ‘We are just as sick of this as you are and realize it is all being staged for us.’ When I asked one of the reporters why they would not stick to the facts concerning the demonstrations, etc., he gave a pretty good answer. ‘When your editor is a thousand miles away and wanting a good story, it is a lot easier to make the story bigger than it is because you know he won’t know the difference.’

About sec040121

Hello....I'm in possession of a priceless collection of memoirs and memorabilia left by my mother, Sara Evans Criss. She was a native and lifelong (88 years!) devotee of our small town, who covered this peculiar and volatile corner of the world for 30 years as the Memphis Commercial Appeal's Greenwood bureau chief, a job that started out with debutantes and high school football and wound up spang in the midst of one of the twentieth century's most enduring social upheavals. This blog is dedicated to her memory and the legacy she left behind, both for her family and her community.
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