Diane Nash, a Chicago native, first became actively involved with the Civil Rights Movement in , when she enrolled in Fisk University in Nashville. Although Martin Luther King, Jr. and others had hoped that SNCC would Students from Nashville, under the leadership of Diane Nash, resolved to finish the rides. election compromised SNCC's relationships with more moderate civil rights. Feb 10, The film may have focused on Martin Luther King, Jr., but Nash was the reason he was Tessa Thompson plays Diane Nash in Selma . She was a leader of the negotiating the tense relationship between SNCC and SCLC.
She recalled how that same Kennedy administration, which was lukewarm at best to the freedom riders, tried to offer her and other organisers the promise of federal money if they would only end the freedom rides and shift their attention to the less contentious work of voter registration.
Nash was given the choice by state officials: Many cut deals with the administration that they would not be drafted if they would agree to disengage from freedom rides. Mississippi Goddamn Nash wound up in jail a number of times during the s, like almost everyone in the movement.
Usually the activists were released in short order, but in Nash faced the possibility of a two year sentence in Mississippi. The state had concluded that by training college students to take non-violent action she was encouraging the delinquency of minors. Nash showed up at the courthouse well prepared for the prospect of going jail.
Diane Nash - Wikipedia
Mentally she had spent three days in prayer, meditation and deep thought about the ordeal that laid ahead. Materially she had come prepared too: A spare set of clothes, a toothbrush, a hairbrush. Lawson's workshops included simulations in order to prepare the students to handle verbal and physical harassment that they would ultimately face during the sit-ins. In preparation, the students would venture out to segregated stores and restaurants, doing nothing more than speaking with the manager when they were refused service.
Lawson graded their interactions in each simulation and sit-in, reminding them to have love and compassion for their harassers. Nash, with John Lewisled the protesters in a policy of refusing to pay bail. In FebruaryNash served jail time in solidarity with the "Rock Hill Nine"  — nine students imprisoned after a lunch counter sit-in. Chosen as spokesperson, Nash said to the judge, "We feel that if we pay these fines we would be contributing to and supporting the injustice and immoral practices that have been performed in the arrest and conviction of the defendants.
He didn't have to respond the way he did. He said that he felt it was wrong for citizens of Nashville to be discriminated against at the lunch counters solely on the basis of the color of their skin.
That was the turning point. That day was very important. They had two children together, a son and a daughter. The couple divorced after seven years of marriage and Nash never remarried.
When local white youths started egging the picket line and punching various people, police intervened. They arrested 15 people, only five of whom were the white attackers. The year-old activist had insisted on her arrest with the other blacks, and once in jail, refused bail. In earlyNash and ten fellow students were put under arrest in Rock Hill, South Carolina for protesting segregation. Once jailed, they would not accept the chance for bail.
These dramatic events began to bring light to the fight for racial justice that was beginning to emerge. It also highlighted the idea of "jail, no bail", which was utilized by many other civil rights activists as the fight for rights progressed.Martin Luther King and Malcolm X Debate
She spent 30 days in a South Carolina jail after protesting segregation in Rock Hill in February Inalthough she was four months pregnant with her daughter Sherri, she faced a two-year prison sentence in Mississippi for contributing to the delinquency of minors whom she had encouraged to become Freedom Riders and ride on the buses.
Despite her pregnancy, she was ready to serve her time with the possibility of her daughter being born in jail. Nash took the weight of this possibility seriously, spending two days praying and meditating before coming to a decision and penning an open letter. Though years later, Nash is clear about how she saw herself in relation to King, stating "I never considered Dr.
I always considered myself at his side and I considered him at my side. I was going to do what the spirit told me to do. So If I had a leader, that was my leader. She would also split from SNCC in when their directives changed under Stokley Carmichael 's leadership, taking particular issue with the organization's departure from the founding pillar of nonviolence.
Designed to challenge state segregation of interstate buses and facilities, the project was suspended by CORE after a bus was firebombed and several riders were severely injured in attacks by a mob in Birmingham, Alabama. They traveled to the South to challenge the states. The Nashville students, encouraged by Nash, promptly decided to finish the trip that had been suspended at Birmingham. Nash talked with the students of the Nashville Student Movement and argued that, "We can't let them stop us with violence.
If we do, the movement is dead. Kennedy called the Alabama governor and the Greyhound bus company to implore them to allow the Rides to continue. Kennedy insisted that his special assistant John Seigenthaler travel to Alabama to get directly involved in the matter.
Seigenthaler informed the reluctant Alabama governor that it was the government's duty to protect these citizens during the Freedom Rides. Nash spoke with Seigenthaler on the phone, and Seigenthaler warned her that the Freedom Rides could result in death and violence for participants. She responded, "We know someone will be killed, but we cannot let violence overcome nonviolence. They continued the action to a successful conclusion six months later. He responded to her sternly: After gathering the final list of Riders, she placed a phone call to Shuttlesworth.
They knew their phone line had been tapped by local police, so they worked out a set of coded messages related to, of all things, poultry. For instance, "roosters" were substituted for male Freedom Riders, "hens" for female Riders and so on.
When Nash called Shuttlesworth again on Wednesday morning to tell him "The chickens are boxed," he knew that the Freedom Riders were on their way. On May 20,the Riders left Birmingham for Montgomery with the promise of protection from the federal government, including police escorts and planes flying overhead. After about 40 miles, all signs of protection disappeared, and the Riders were subjected to a violent, angry mob armed with makeshift weapons such as pipes and bricks.
Both white and black Riders were injured by the mob, including special assistant John Seigenthaler who exited his car to help one of the female Riders who was being beaten. Others called Nash directly, to inform her of the chaotic situation that had occurred.