Dick Gregory



“Good evening ladies and gentlemen. I understand there are a good many Southerners in the room tonight. I know the South very well. I spent twenty years there one night.
Last time I was down South I walked into this restaurant and this white waitress came up to me and said, "We don't serve colored people here." I said, "That's all right. I don't eat colored people. Bring me a whole fried chicken."
Then these three white boys came up to me and said, "Boy, we're givin' you fair warnin'. Anything you do to that chicken, we're gonna do to you". So I put down my knife and fork, I picked up that chicken and I kissed it. Then I said, "Line up, boys!"

"Segregation is not all bad. Have you ever heard of a collision where the people in the back of the bus got hurt?" .


Dick Gregory (born Richard Claxton Gregory on October 12, 1932 in St. Louis, Missouri) is a comic who has used his performance skills to convey to both white and black audiences his political message on civil rights.
Influenced to stand up for civil rights by his early surroundings of poverty and violence, Gregory was one of the first comedians to successfully perform for both black and white audiences
As a poor student who excelled at running, Gregory was aided by teachers at Sumner High School such as Warren St. James. He earned a track scholarship to Southern Illinois University Carbondale . There he set school records as a half-miler and miler. His college career was interrupted for two years in 1954 when he was drafted into the U.S. Army. The army was where he got his start in comedy, entering and winning several Army talent shows at the urging of his commanding officer, who had taken notice of Gregory's penchant for joking. In 1956, Gregory briefly returned to the university after his discharge, but left without a degree because he felt that the university "didn't want me to study, they wanted me to run".



In the hopes of performing comedy professionally, he moved to Chicago, where he became part of a new generation of black comedians that included Nipsey Russell, Bill Cosby, and Godfrey Cambridge. Gregory drew on current events, especially the racial issues, for much of his material.
Active in the civil rights movement, he came to Selma, Alabama and spoke for two hours on a public platform two days before the voter registration drive known as "Freedom Day" (October 7, 1963)
In 1973 the Gregory family moved to Plymouth, Massachusetts, where he developed an interest in vegetarianism. In 1984 he founded Health Enterprises, Inc., a company that distributed weight loss products. In 1985 Gregory introduced the "Slim-Safe Bahamian Diet", a powdered diet mix. Economic losses caused in part by conflicts with his business partners led to his eviction from his home in 1992. Gregory remained active, however, and in 1996 returned to the stage in his critically acclaimed one-man show, "Dick Gregory Live!"
Dick Gregory's first TV appearance was on the late night Jack Paar show. He soon began appearing nationally and on television and his 1964 autobiography, Nigger, has sold ten million copies. At the same time, he became more involved in struggles for civil rights, activism against the Vietnam War, economic reform, anti-drug issues, conspiracy theories, and others. As a part of his activism, he went on several hunger strikes. Gregory began his political career by running against Richard J. Daley for the mayoralty of Chicago in 1967. Though he did not emerge victorious, this would not prove to be the end of Dick Gregory's dalliances with electoral politics.
Gregory unsuccessfully ran for President of the United States in 1968 as a write-in candidate of the Freedom and Peace Party, which had broken off from the Peace and Freedom Party. He won 47,097 votes with fellow activist Mark Lane.


Martin Lawrence 1st Amendment Stand Up: Dick Gregory
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ej5FwzhUDcM

Dick Gregory Speaking
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQ9SGlyTnC4

No comments:

Post a Comment