Transcript prepared by Fielding M. McGehee III. If you use this material, please credit The Jonestown Institute. Thank you.
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Part 1: Conversation between Tim Carter and Delancey Street Foundation
Man: Good evening. Delancey Street Foundation. May I help you?
Carter: Yes, you may. My name is Tim Carter, I’m one of Reverend uh, Jim Jones’ assistants, and I’d like to speak with uh, John Maher, if I could please.
Man: (Pause) Uh, Mr. Maher isn’t in right now, uh, could I take a message?
Carter: Um, yes, it was regarding ah, a service tomorrow, and he mentioned he might be able to stop by, so I was calling to uh, confirm that with– But I wanted to speak to him also. Do you have any idea when he might be back in?
Man: Uh– You want to hold on for a moment? Let me uh, call upstairs, see if I can find out.
Carter: Sure. Sure.
Placed on hold for several moments
Part 2: Jones dictating letter during conversation
Jones: We’ve brought out in our Peoples Forum with 600,000 circulation. We thought it was an injustice. (Long pause) Some sister talking about that Catholic Church that was supporting us. We should (unintelligible under other conversation) take money from the Catholics, you hear last night. She took money from Catholics, and they said, ha– who’s praised you in your church and your suffering from this (unintelligible under other conversation) pulpit.
Male 1: I guess a lot of ‘em don’t have no choice. Some of them (Unintelligible word)–
Male 2: (Unintelligible) ‘Cause they gone wish they had a (unintelligible)–
Tape turned off for several seconds
Jones: Something like that (unintelligible under other conversation).
Prokes: Should’ve always remembered our teaching about nonviolence.
Jones: (unintelligible under Prokes) –always remember. You should’ve– you should’ve remembered our teachings. Practice of nonviolence. It’s too bad you didn’t– you quit visiting us a year ago. You know. It’s too bad you quit visiting a year ago, ‘cause someone has certainly been– Someone must’ve given you awful advice to have reacted that way to an off– to an officer. (Pause) We certainly are praying for you, and our love goes out to you– to you. Uh. Uh, if there are any other ministry in any other church that you want to visit you or to write you– (Pause) Did you have membership in any other church after you quit coming to ours? (Pause) S– Something like that, you know, that we– we uh– (Pause) See, little things build– Uh, When we– When we told you had to quit certain things, quit using marijuana, little things lead to big things. (Pause) Little things lead– When we told you you had to quit with marijuana, you couldn’t remain in our church– (unintelligible under other conversation) (Murmurs)
Part 3: Cecil Williams TV interview in Jim Jones, recorded off monitors within studio
Williams: (unintelligible intro) talk about uh, people who are not only doing things, but people who are really bringing about change in our society. One cannot talk about it at all, unless one mentions the name, the Reverend Jim Jones. Jim Jones, who is the pastor of the Peoples Temple Christian Church, is charismatic, is uh, unique, is serious about what he’s doing, is an excellent spokesman, a, a great articulator– What– What– What else can I say about you, Jim Jones, except the fact that I’m delighted that you’re on our show today.
Jones: Thank you very much.
Williams: And we’re going to be talking to this– this man, and what he’s about, as soon as we come back.
Williams: Reverend Jim Jones, Peoples Temple Christian Church, uh, you know, I really don’t uh, I don’t sit and talk with uh, personalities uh, on a one-to-one basis that often, but when I do, I try to do is bring to you, the viewers, the very– the very most important uh, people, uh, in– in regards to this kind of thing. And I’ve brought to you a minister, you know. That’s something that’s very difficult for me to do, unless he’s a unique minister, and here he is. (Laughs) Here’s the man today. Jim, uh, I’m amazed by you. I’m– I’m– I’m uh, uh– you know, I really many times can’t find words, ‘cause you are sometimes indescribable. You’re a very important person, a very powerful person. You are a prophet in– in– in– in his time, and ahead of his time too. Jim, uh, how did you come about doing what you’re doing, starting what you’re starting, moving in the direction that you’re moving in?
Jones: I saw the need, I guess, and responded to it the best I could. It always seems insignificant, Cecil, compared to the vast needs around you. But that’s how I got started, just looking at the need.
Williams: And when he talks about looking at the needs, uh, uh, you’ve, of course, uh, related to a lot of needs, not only in– in northern California, and in the state of California, but needs throughout the country, as well as needs uh, throughout uh, the world. We’re going to be talking about some of those needs, but let’s– let’s focus in on why– why do you, uh, go in the direction you’re going? Why– I mean, why did you say, look, we gotta meet some needs and go about getting at those needs.
Jones: Which direction? I’m– I feel like I’m the jack of all trades sometimes, and master of none. Which direction (unintelligible under Williams)–
Williams: All right– All right– Let’s– Yeah– Let’s, let’s just talk about one in particular, uh, Jim. One has to do with the fact that uh– First of all, one of the– the things that you do, is when it comes to issues, and especially when it comes to defending people who– who have to face injustices, you are always there, one way or the other. I think about uh, for instance uh, the situation in regards to the communications industry, the press.
Jones: Well, I thought– I thought [President Richard] Nixon was coming down severely upon the press, and of course, without the Fourth and Fifth Estate, where are we? It has exposed certainly as uh, clarified very clearly in the Watergate situation. We were concerned about the repression that this represented, so we felt that we had to get out there and represent different newsmen who were under attack because of their sources. And I guess our support, funding spread all over the United States, [reporter Bill] Farr first and then the Fresno Bee, and then we gave monies to various news associations. We’re very concerned about a free press.
Williams: Some even here in the Bay Area.
Jones: Oh yes. Yes.
Williams: Uh, in regards to the free press, what were you really trying to say? That it should take place, that in fact, uh, any information that press uh, feels that it must keep confidential, it should be given that right and that privilege to do so.
Jones: It has to, because of the intimidations that we’ve seen in such instances as Watergate. The press has to be able to keep their sources, and I thought that our whole democratic fabric was being threatened. Not only myself, but our congregation here of 8000. It wasn’t something unique to me. We’re very much concerned that the press has the right to moner– monitor society and be able to uh, regulate excesses or help to bring conscience to the community. We just felt there was nothing less– left for us to do. We had to respond. Because it seemed that Mr. Nixon was uh, on a tirade against the press.
Williams: And yet there’re times, Jim, that uh, you and I and others uh, are approached by the press and uh, and they do disservice to us. Some– Some. Every once in a while, we are not– we get into uh– We are misquoted (laughs), we are taken out of context and that kind of thing. How do we deal with that kind of thing, you know, when it happens to you, ‘cause you– you’re often in the press. You’re often quoted. You’re often talked about.
Jones: I don’t know what one can do. I guess we have to take our chances for the negative aspects in order to allow the press to be free, we have to take the chance that there’ll be a few that will practice yellow journalism, and I think there are a few. You and I know of one (unintelligible under Williams’ laughter), so uh, I don’t– I don’t get too much worried about it, as long as they print my– as the old saying, if they can print my name right in the paper. But we have to take the chance to the excess. I think (stumbles over words), it hurts when press is not responsible, and I have seen that in your case, and in one case, I’ve seen it with– uh, with myself. But still, the press is the bulwark of democracy.
Williams: Jim, you’ve taken a chance. You’ve taken a chance, ‘cause you’ve got all kinds of people uh, in the Peoples Temple Christian Church. How far does your– does your constituency uh, extend? Uh, in how many places?
Jones: Well, we have 8000 in San Francisco. Then we have uh, a church that I’ve founded– We’re all related with the Disciples of Christ, which is a two-million denomination. And then I have 10,000 members in our Los Angeles parish. I don’t know the breakdown, in Fresno, and Bakersfield, and Sacramento, but it’s pretty sizeable. And then Redwood Valley, California, we have a pretty sizeable congregation up north in– in uh, around the Ukiah area.
Williams: Why did you begin to work with various racial and ethnic groups, trying to bring them together?
Jones: It seems to me that– of course, it’s just right that we be together. And I thought uh, of all places, if Jesus Christ did not teach inclusiveness, he said, we were our brother’s keeper, and God is no respecter of persons. And certainly I believe in the voluntary type of approach to social problems. (unintelligible word) somewhat Jeffersonian, that the government that governs least governs best. And if the church doesn’t take its responsibility, where are we?
Jones: Seems to me that the church had to uh, to initiate responsibility here.
Williams: Well, you’ve taken a great deal of responsibility. For instance, uh, let’s talk uh, just a little bit about uh, some of the things that you’re engaged in, in regards to the treatment of people. One in particular, drug addicts, uh, people that are strung out on, on dope, uh, uh, things like that. Wha– What do you do, Jim? What– What have you come up on in regards to that kind of issue? How– How do you get at that kind of issue with people?
Jones: In our situation, we bring them into our homes, I’ve had many (unintelligible answer for several sentences under conversation at recording end. See Q 645 for clearer transcript). And just a little bit of love. You don’t have to have a great deal of professional skill. Our recidivism rate is very low on heroin, for instance. But the– the savvy uh, professional know-how, I don’t– I don’t think we have so much in that area. We have some psychologists working with us, but I’d say the great achievement’s been uh, made– uh, be– been made by the– the nuclear family, where someone will just take someone into their home. Of course, those few days of withdrawal, we have facilities, and we go through that, and that’s a hell indescribable.
Williams: Yeah. Yeah. Withdrawal, I guess, is a very difficult thing, isn’t it? Yeah.
Jones: Terrible. Terrible.
Williams: Takes you a lot of your time too, doesn’t it?
Jones: Great deal. Great deal.
Williams: Uh, Jim, you got involved in one particular case of uh, of a black young woman.
Jones: Marie Decker.
Williams: Marie– That’s right. Uh, tell us a little bit about, uh, about her and about what happened.
Jones: She was an amazing person. She came hooked on a habit of about four hundred dollars a day, and of course she was involved in every type of crime that she could possibly get into to maintain that habit. And as she went along– course, she– it was no– no time, ‘cause she completely rehabilitated herself. And I think a lot of it– I have to keep the emphasis on the individual. Uh, we gave her support, acceptance, and she had a very prestigious job. But we found out later that she had actually uh, left probation, she uh– she had been a fugitive uh, from two different uh, senten– sentences, and uh– when– when she brought this to our attention, the church decided, well, we’re going to get in there and fight to straighten up her record, and we were able to achieve that by solidarity and appealing to the probation department, and the judge was most sympathetic, he uh, uh, allowed her probation to continue, and I think it’s going to be finished about April seventh– about uh, May seventh, I believe.
Williams: Mmm. You know, uh– (Clears throat) I’m just gonna move along with you here, because we got so much to cover, uh, Jim. Uh– let’s talk about other people that you’ve given support, other causes that you’ve given support. Uh, for instance, Angela Davis [University of California professor who was fired over her membership in the Communist Party].
Williams: Uh, you did support her.
Williams: Why did you feel that you had to support Angela Davis?
Jones: I believe that when one person’s rights are affected, everyone is. We supported a John Bircher on one occasion. It seemed to me that Angela, uh, was the victim of political oppression. I don’t care whether she’s a communist or if she’s a member of the Nazi party. I believe in the right– the First Amendment rights. I think that’s very essential. Wasn’t it Pastor [Martin] Niemoller that said when they came for the communist, I did nothing, because I wasn’t a communist. They came for the Jews, and I had typical Protestant prejudices, and I didn’t react. When they came for the Catholics and the trade unions, the same type of response. When they got around to coming after me, there was nobody left to– to defend my ci– to defend him. And I think uh, there’s enlightened self-interest. I– I– I doubt– I don’t believe we can restrict anyone’s right of freedom of speech.
Williams: Mmm. Mmm. Well, you know, now, that puts you in a category of being– you know, you could easily be called a communist, just by supporting the rights of a communist.
Jones: I know what they call me. I don’t really care.
Williams: (Laughs) Jim, uh, you’ve been involved in– in a more recent uh, defense and– and– and uh, standing up for, for a person, namely uh, [Native American activist] Dennis Banks. Now, before we get into that, I just got a sign from the man who says, Take a break. And so we’re gonna take a break. We’ll come back and talk to Jim Jones about Dennis Banks in just a minute.
Music. Tape edit. Music.
Williams: Uh, we’re talking to Jim Jones, the Reverend Jim Jones from the uh, Peoples Temple Christian Church. A vast number of people that he’s brought together, of all colors, all ethnic backgrounds, all socio-economic levels. Jim, uh, you have been working very hard to uh, to guarantee at least uh, Dennis uh some, some equity uh, in regards to uh, what he’s going through as it relates to his extradition. Uh, what are you doing in regards to Dennis Banks at this point? What have you done? I– I read a, a very fascinating, uh, uh, little story not too long ago about something that you did in bringing his family and to other things. Tell us about that.
Jones: His wife, Kamook, you know, was arrested in another state, and uh, and– and suffered a great deal of maltreatment. Her baby was born behind bars, they named her (unintelligible name) and uh, she wasn’t even allowed the normal process of her breasts to be uh, uh, for the milk to be taken care of, so that she developed infections. And she’d been there for four months, and we felt as a congregation, we had to respond. Dennis Banks is a good man. We’ve helped a lot of people, Cecil. And when they get their health, they’re gone, but the moment we helped this man – I think we raised $20,000 as a bond for her – he came back time and time again, responding with such graciousness and– and warmth and compassion. He wept before a congregation of several thousand, and it was really spontaneous. This is a good man. I think Scrimerhorn [phonetic] said in the Examiner, that uh, all of his witnesses, and even his counsel, had been intimidated back in the state where he had come from, and– even the Iowa Methodist– Iowa Methodist conference put up his bond, and they said he had no other choice but to leave, because there was even threats put out on every one of those witnesses, and most people have the feeling– in one of the, I think, one of the district attorneys said that if he comes back, the best– He said the best resolution for the Indian movement is a bullet in Dennis Banks’ head. And we have to face the fact that the one that was arrested with him, Annie, I’ve forgotten her last name [American Indian Movement (AIM) activist Anna Mae Pictou Aquash], they said she died of exposure, but there was pressure brought to bear, and she was exhumed, and they found a bullet at close range. And it looks pretty ba– much like a conspiracy.
Williams: See, that’s why you’re so important, because uh, you get out there, uh, when the– when the– when the water is rough, uh, you see, you get out there when the wind is blowing, uh, very strong, uh, maybe uh, currents against people. And you uh, in many ways, and the people that you– you work with, help change that current and that tide, in regards to, to the lives of people. I– I want to deal with that in just a few minutes, but I want– let– I want to get at some– You did something in the Tenderloin area for the senior citizens. They were about to lose protection, uh, you know. Uh, what happened in that situation? That’s my area now, you know, that’s where I’m located. And yet you come down there, uh, get me in on the – on the– on the problems that we face down there.
Jones: Well, you get into problems everywhere so (unintelligible phrase under Williams’ laughter), we can help you out a little bit.
Williams: Thank you. (Laughs)
Jones: Uh, this uh, situation touched us. Here was an inter-racial group of ex-Vietnam veterans who had a– a warm relationship, a– a deeply warm, family relationship with the predominantly white citizens, who had no love in their life, couldn’t even get – some of them – to give them some groceries, and out of their salary, their meager– meager salaries, they were helping support these senior citizens in that area. And so again, the church felt that they should respond. The program was about to go down the tubes, and we came up with the six thousand dollars to tide them over until they got funded. And now they’re funded, and I’m very happy that that was one of the successes.
Williams: There’s another thing I want to say to our viewers today also, is that uh, on November thirtieth last year, uh, when I uh, had uh, it was sort of like a culmination of my ten years in San Francisco, and we called it uh, uh, the uh, uh, change agents coming together, celebration for change, at that particular time we – the Center for Self-Determination, a new program that we began at Glide – uh, had a, had a benefit, and it was Jim Jones who brought 1500 people to that benefit, who bought tickets, and, and uh, what, six– close to 6000 dollars worth of tickets to that, to that benefit. It was this man who– and his people that did that. Jim, let– let’s go on. Uh, you know, I want to publicly say that to the people about what you’ve done for me, too, my man. But not only there, just being a brother, and– and being a close friend, where we can talk with each other.
Jones: Well, I wasn’t doing it for you personally, Cecil, I think that the community has to realize that if they are concerned about tyranny, communistic or fascistic, they better support groups such as yourself and get involved in everything, and show the people that feel alienated that they have a chance to work within society. So, it wasn’t just a personal friendship. We approve of the things you’re doing.
Williams: Thank you, my man. Thank you. Uh, let’s talk about something that you’ve got going uh, in other countries. South America, for instance.
Williams: Uh, you’ve got quite a– quite a resourceful uh, relationship, and uh, some very fascinating things taking place down there. What– What are you engaged in down there?
Jones: We have an agricultural mission there on several thousand acres that’ve been granted us, and uh, we’ve acquired from the uh, Republic of Guyana. And we’ve been– For instance, last week, we brought in 60,000 pounds of yams. That goes a long way to help with the poverty. Plus it’s not a paternalistic-type of Christian mission. We give employment to about 200 people. And again, that– that helps to alter the ugly American image.
Williams: Yeah. Sure.
Jones: And– and– and uh, combat the forces of tyranny, right or left.
Williams: Um-hmm. Yeah. And that uh, that kind of uh, response, uh, certainly means a lot, I’m sure. Where you say, you know, it’s important to give jobs to people, it’s not a maternalistic kind of response of relationship, but you see, that’s the way you are. You do that constantly. Uh, you– you’ve made your stand. You keep making your stand. You will continue to make your stand. You know, the interesting thing about this man is the fact that uh, that you have a lot of uh, resources, uh, uh, in regards to taking care of uh, of uh, not only people, but animals. What do you do that, Jim? Why did you get interested in animals there?
Jones: Well, I’m subjective and very sensitive about animals, but I think sensitive to li– to life, there’s some sort of correlation, I wouldn’t want to generalize. I’ve notice people who are hardened to animals often– It carries over, and they’re hardened to humans. Of course, you have strange contradictions, where someone will give all sorts of regard, as Adolf Hitler did, for his animal, and have no regards for human beings. But we feel that you have to have sensitivity for the total life, uh, and– and– and we’re concerned that uh, we take in as many animals as we can and neuter them – there’s a terrible overpopulation and such cruel treatment. I am sure you’re familiar with the way they’re exterminated, some of them are crowded into a vat, or a gas chamber meant for one, they throw 16, 17 dogs in this kind of a situation. We just– We’re just opposed to cruelty. We– We like to help wherever there’s need, and there’s a great need with animals. And so, we find ourselves in every facet of life, we have geriatric homes, we have a children’s home for retarded chil– for retarded youngsters, uh, I can– and we have a free legal services, a medical examination facility under doctors’ auspices, physical therapist and nurse practitioners and R.N.s, particularly senior citizens in the lower socio-economic income level, they have a time with arthritis, and we have– we’re equipped with (unintelligible medical term) ultrasonic uh, treatment, that we–
Williams: Do you treat everybody?
Jones: Oh yes. Anybody–
Williams: You wouldn’t hold back on anybody.
Jones: No, uh, there’s no membership requirement.
Williams: You don’t have– They don’t have to co– beco– become members, nor do they have to start uh, uh, you know, uh, following some kind of a discipline that you, you know–
Jones: No, no, no.
Williams: –put on their heads.
Jones: I don’t– I don’t believe in this business of having to say a prayer before you get (unintelligible word under Williams’ laugh)–
Williams: Yeah, right. (Laughs) That’s what I was getting at, but you caught– (Laughs) Exactly. Jim, uh, you do have a great ministry. Uh, one thing uh, that, that’s involved in it, has to do with uh, something that uh, that uh, you and I call a healing ministry. Both of us. And a lot of people talk about the healing ministry. I had a sister who had cancer 12 years ago, uh, she was operated on, the doctors gave her uh, said in three months she would die. My sister is still alive, teaching school, back to health. It was cancer of the pancreas, by the way, very serious.
Jones: Considered incurable.
Williams: Con– considered incurable. She’s– she’s– she’s fine today. Uh, she had a lot of faith. She said, I will not, I will not give up at this point. What– talk a little about that.
Jones: There’s a place indeed for a responsible and sane spiritual healing. It must be in conjunction with medical science, because we know there’s no panacea. We’ve had similar remissions. I was just thinking while you talked, of a lovely Russian lady who, uh, her– the metastasis of cancer was so thorough that each of her lymph glands was swollen like a ball. And uh, similarly, she had faith. Give purpose. There’s a tremendous dimension that we’re unfamiliar with, and of course, if even in the Soviet Union, a materialistic nation supposedly, is spending, what is it, $12 million a year, something like that, to study paranormal faculty, therapeutic healing, many medical science– uh, scientists now, in nursing schools, medical schools, are emphasizing therapeutic healing. The– the laying on of hands in– in direct correlation with uh, physical treatment, so undoubtedly there’s a dimension there that the responsible church must take over. And if we don’t, what are we going to leave it to? The uh, the type that says, “Trust God, and don’t go to the doctor.” So many of the people involved in healing want to knock medical science. And many then die. I think they do far more harm than good, because they’ll keep people from going to medical science. When we find someone who thinks they have a healing, we say, get to the doctor and verify it.
Williams: Good! We’ve gotta take a break, and we’ll come right back and conclude our program with the Reverend Jim Jones.
Music. Mike moves. Tape edit. Music.
Williams: Jim Jones. Uh, Jim, where do you get your money from? How– How do the people– You know, how do you– how do you maintain all these, you know, these great programs that you’re part of, that you give leadership to? How do you maintain them?
Jones: People are pretty generous when they see how their money is being used. They see– They see definite results. We got a community center, an indoor swimming pool, and all these rest (stumbles over words), I think we have a novel thing in geriatric facilities, where the senior citizens themselves manage and direct. The only input is manual labor. We don’t dictate to them how– what about their diet, the décor, everything. Uh– when they see results, people give generously. We don’t have a mandate about tithing. Some do. But of course, we have a large membership, and that explains uh, the support, and they’ll put on projects of various sorts. We get no outside help from the community to speak of, but uh, our people are very, very generous.
Williams: Jim, where are we going to go? Where are we going? When–
Jones: In terms–
Williams: In terms of uh, of society, of America, of the world, where are we going to go? Can you give it to me in 30 seconds? (Laughs)
Jones: I think we have to be very careful that we must do something about the alienation of the ethnic groups and rac– racism. As even [NAACP Executive Director] Roy Wilkins– Roy Wilkins, a conservative, and the Senator that just retired. We’ve got a problem, and we’ve got to overcome that, because a house divided against itself can’t stand. We must do something about racism quickly.
Williams: Here’s a man, I have to tell you, that I think is a– If I, you know, being honest, I think he’s a genius, I think he’s a prophet. He’s charismatic. He’s one of our great leaders. I’m glad to be associated with you. Brother, we gone stay together, ‘cause I know, if I stay with you, we gone make it. (Laughs) We’ll bring about justice. Walk that walk, and talk that talk. And be that be, and love that love, and struggle that struggle. Look for us. We’ll be there.
Jones: I don’t like uh, (unintelligible sentences). We can also respect the privacy (unintelligible phrase) public inquiry, testifies (unintelligible phrase). That isn’t saying very much.
(Long pauses and low exchanges of conversation; tape edit)
Prokes: That’s like uh, the thing we put in about you, saving those dogs.
Jones: Well, whatever you can come up with. I– I just thought (unintelligible sentences). You gotta be careful (unintelligible phrase), realistically, you can’t hardly pin down, here’s a– here’s a child in the street. (Pause)
Prokes: Well, I’ll think of something.
Jones: You know, he broke up a fight, you know that we fight (unintelligible phrase), a young man attacked him, trying to use a knife on (stumbles over words), older man trying to use a knife on a young man. And he– he broke up the fight. You should say we could– we each could have been stabbed, (mike moves for two words) could have been stabbed. That’s–
Prokes: Okay. He’s now– He’s now a graduate of pati– He’s a graduate of Hastings Law School and working on his–
Jones: (beginning under Prokes) –graduated from Hastings Law School and he works in the uh–
Prokes: He’s on the D.A. staff.
Jones: – Mendoci– Mendoci– Mendocino County district attorney.
Prokes: –on the staff.
Jones: I guess staff–
Prokes: Can we say Casey [phonetic] Cartmell’s on the D.A. staff.
Jones: Duncan J– Duncan James is– Dr. James is the district attorney’s staff. (unintelligible phrase). ‘Cause when [Timothy] Stoen goes, our– our enemies up there think he got no (unintelligible word under conversation – “courage”?)
Jones: He gone shit bricks. (Pause) He is going to shit bricks.
Man: Nobody’s in the– Nobody (unintelligible phrase) state of California could take kind of thing to (unintelligible phrase) grand jury.
Jones: You know where he can take his six months trial (unintelligible phrase).
Prokes: No, they wouldn’t get–
(People talk over each other)
Man: They said we have– They say we have resumes of Harvard Law Review types that you couldn’t believe–
Jones: John could say, I believe he’s the first born of many brethren. But he (unintelligible word) an example for all of us to– to follow. (Pause)
Man: Do you believe anyone else was like Jesus Christ?
Jones: Oh, I believe everybody can be.
Woman: John? (unintelligible word)
Man: All right, next we have uh, Ronny James and Anita Kelly. We heard them sing the day, we don’t think too much of it one way or another.
Man: I have a question about that–
Jones: Wait, what– what– what’s this? What– what’s this?
Woman: There was–
Man: There– Senti– Art– Article in the Sentinel, which (unintelligible word) picture of Hue [Fortson], Ronny [James], Anita [Kelly], and John Harrison, quote, were all together.
(Low overlapping conversation about newspapers, including Oakland Tribune)
Woman: Coulda been just a misspelling, “Ijames.” You know.
Man: Did she say the Tribune? Did she get the ju– Tribune? I never gave her the Tribune. Did you give her the Tribune?
Man: I don’t know. I– I didn’t–
Jones: He can’t say. You can’t say. You can’t say. You don’t know. You better stick your name, what is a– who else was in that (stumbles over words)–
Man: That was Ronny James and Anita Kelly.
Jones: Well, Ronny James married Anita. Anita. Just got married. John, he– he married, so John here, he looks all right, there’s a lot to John Harrison, ‘cause he isn’t on welfare.
Man: What it is? What?
Man: Okay, they believe uh– they don’t think of it much one way or another.
Jones: Well, one of them– Both of– Ronny should say I– I don’t think much about it, one way or the other. And Anita said, Well, I’m– I believe in the traditional. I think somebody ought to say, I believe in the traditional teachings of the Christian church. (Pause) (unintelligible word). Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. God is the father of all living things. Got that, Anita?
Jones: In fact, you should get it in there somewhere. All right, what is (stumbles over words). What else?
Man: Okay, Dick– Dick Tropp and Lois–
Jones: I’ll bet you we don’t get much of this kind of question. Go on. What?
Man: Dick Tropp and Lois?
Man: I got them not believing in it, and not believing in anything. (unintelligible word)
Jones: He’s Jewish. Say, I– I lost my loved ones in tc– German concentration camps. I lost too many of them. I don’t have faith in a benevolent being, a benevolent divinity. And she should say, well, I– I do. But I’m not anthropomorphic about it. Can you remember that?
Another Woman: Look up the words and–
Jones: Anthropomorphic about it. (Pause) She probably not gone go any further than that. Anthropomorphic. Can you keep saying that word over to her. It means you don’t uh, project human– your image into God. You– and that’s usually what (unintelligible word). I don’t make God after my image. I cannot fathom what God is. It’s first cause. You got that? First cause? Christ is the uh– (Pause) the huma– human side of God. That’s a ne– That’s a new twist. She’ll think we’re–
(Low woman reply)
Jones: Okay, what else, what, uh, what else?
Man: Okay. Next we have uh, Peter and Mary Wotherspoon.
Jones: What about them?
Man: And I got them saying, yes, they believe in– that there’s a heaven, but there’s no hell.
Woman: Everybody’s saying that.
(Several people talk over each other)
Jones: I’d say, your– your lying runs– You– You show your absence of theology. Um–
Man: I got fine more points, and they all sort of–
Jones: Peter– Peter says, uh-huh.
Jones: (excitedly) No, fuck, no karma. Don’t get no karma, don’t get no karma. Don’t you mention that word, karma. They’ll throw us right in the (unintelligible word). (Pause) Uh, stay away from that karma, reincarnation, all that shit. (Pause) I would say– I would say– Huh?
Man: That’s Catholic.
Jones: That’s Catholic, yes. Well, uh, Peter came and say, I came from a background that believed in purgatory. (Stumbles over words) –being in this church, I’m more concerned about humanitarian things, I don’t think about theological things. Peter, got that?
Peter: Yes, sir.
Woman: He said, yes sir.
Man: Got it?
Peter: I’ve got it.
Woman: We need a belief for Larry Schacht–
Jones: Mary, uh, believe, I believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God, and God is the Creator of the universe. Huh? Yes, Archie [Ijames].
Ijames: I wouldn’t say, (unintelligible phrase) said, gonna be more– immortality, but also perpetuity of li– of life–
Ijames: (unintelligible phrase) Probably would take advantage of it, right, would I said, yes, I believe in immortality and perpetu– tuity of life?
Jones: (unintelligible word) no problem. No problem. Go ahead.
Man: Okay, next we have uh, Tim Carter and Christine Chavez, uh–
Jones: Mr. and Mrs. Carter.
Man: Yeah. Mr. and Mrs. Carter.
Jones: Go ahead.
Man: Uh, I’ve got them saying here that uh, they don’t really think much of it, one way or another.
Jones: All right.
Man: Okay? Okay, then we have Jim and Harriet Randolph [aka Harriet Sarah Tropp].
Jones: They don’t think of it– Both of them think– (slurs words)
Man and woman talk over each other.
Man: Well, wouldn’t it be good to have some couple who agree at least?
Jones: (Emphatic) No.
Man: It’s not. Okay.
Jones: I don’t think it should come up on those kinds of questions the same. I think it shows more creativity. No. But does– Carter says what? (Pause)
Woman: He doesn’t really think much about (voice fades)
People talk over each other.
Jones: All right, say, I come to church– I come to church here because of what the minister and the people do, or (slurs overs words) what this congregation does for people.
Man: Some people could agree on that one too. (voice fades)
Jones: Then what?
Man: If he said that, uh, some oth– others–
Jones: Yeah, others could say, yeah, that’s true. If there’s a background. Yeah, that’s true, a few of ‘em could– and she says um, (Pause) Well, I’m a disciple in my teachings, disciples, uh, Disciples of Christ teach that Jesus Christ is the son of the savior of the world. (Pause) And God is, is Love. (Pause) You got that? Christine? (Pause) Go, next.
Man: Next we have uh, Jim and Harriet Randolph. And I got them both saying no, (Voice fades)–
Jones: Harriet should say I’m Jewish, and I do not– I do not have a personal belief in God. I believe much from the great Judeo trad– traditions. (Pause) The Hebrew traditions and culture. (Pause) And he should say, (Pause) I came from the Southern Baptist Church, he sounds relatively southern, I come from the Southern Baptist Church and I guess I still hold some of its theology, which is orthodox, but I’m not as orthodox as I used to be. All right?
Man: Okay, next we have Hue and Rhonda Fortson, and uh, I got them saying that they– that they don’t uh, believe one way or another, as far as an afterlife, but that hell uh, seems to be to them, poverty and starvation on earth.
Jones: Then say hell, uh– Hue ought to say, hell is the absence of love. (Pause) And heaven? I’ve always taught– been taught to believe in. My Mom and Dad taught me to believe in heaven. (Pause) Personally, I take it by faith. You got that? Rhonda should say uh, (Pause) I believe in immortality. (Pause) Jesus brought it to light through the gospel. Hmm? (Pause) You got that? Somebody can quote scripture any goddamn place, I guess. Go ahead.
Man: Okay, Paul Flowers and Rosie? (Pause) Uh, I got them as saying uh, (Pause) saying that they think it’s important. (Pause)
Jones: Being in law enforcement– (Pause) Uh, oh, let me see, Paul, maybe we can pick up with a first name different than Paul.
Man: What’s your middle name, Paul?
Flowers: Joseph. It’s Joseph.
Jones: Joe. Joe Flowers. I– I find it uh– (Pause) Being in law enforcement, I see so much cruelty, I find uh, it difficult to understand the mystery of creation. (Pause) The mystery of creation. And I believe everybody should live by the teachings of Jesus Christ. You got that? That sounds typical law and order. Everybody should live by the teachings of Jesus Christ. And his wife should say (Pause) God is uh, (Pause) the heavenly father.
Man: If he says he works in law enforcement, uh, don’t you think that she’s going to ask him where? It makes a difference–
Jones: He said he’s already told her that, I can’t go into it now, my–
Woman: (Talks to low about cruelty)
Jones: That he sees cruelty, he sees cruelty. Hell, law– in law, you see cruelty, so much cruelty. (Pause)
Man: Okay, next we have uh, Gene and Phyllis Chaikin, I’ve got them both saying no to both–
Woman: (talks under man, too low)
Jones: Rosie said she believed that God is the heavenly father and Jesus Christ is his son. They’ve got to have some of this tradition in here. What’s that?
Man: Okay, it was Phyllis Chaikin and– and uh, Gene Chaikin, (unintelligible word). Uh, I’ve got them both as saying that they don’t believe in it, because of (unintelligible word)
Jones: I don’t know whether– We’re Jewish, and we ought to– we are– we are lib– we are the– we are the liberal– what is it? What is it?
Man: Reform. He’s reform Jewish.
Woman: Reform Jewish.
Jones: Reform Jewish position, and then just give whatever the hell that is. You people know what it is.
Man: I personally don’t belong to this.
People talk over each other.
Woman: Sort of like the Unitarian. They just believe in the (unintelligible word) now.
Jones: Say, it’s sort of like the Unitarian position. (Pause) Okay.
Man: Okay, uh, then you have uh, myself and Susie, I’ve got us both us saying that uh, we don’t think of it, one way or another.
Jones: You’re close– You’re close to me. What?
Man: (unintelligible sentence). You know, they say, no, you know, I don’t believe in any God that let my child die, you know. Or–
General cries of dissent.
Jones: All right, now, where you come off with– You come off with shit like this to make you– that makes me– it makes me nervous about you when get in a situation, you’re a very good worker, but you come off with (unintelligible word) crazy shit, that’d be the dumb thing to say to fucking ass reporter, if you want uh– (Pause) You always ask questions before you speak, when you get in a mess like that. (Pause) No, I– I– I’d say– I like the law– As a lawyer, as a, as a lawyer, uh, say, he’s a graduate from law school. Graduate from law school, I– (Pause) I appreciate the law of the New, the Old and New Testament. (Pause)
Woman: Shouldn’t you assign a (unintelligible phrase)?
Jones: What? How would I– you like to hear this done? If you folks got some really germane thing. I’m in a lot of agony. I’m just trying to get my fucking wo– self through it. If it’s bad, then tell me it’s bad when I give it to you. (Pause)
Woman: (too low)
Jones: Yes. Throws my mind off with God, God, God. And so, I– I– I– I– I find myself um, (Pause) I think through (slurred word) the culture, or the culture, ethics and culture of Judeo-Christian tradition have, has built Amer– uh, American– helped build American democracy. (Pause) Sue should say uh, God is love, and Christ means (Pause) anointing. It means Jesus was the anointed son of God. (Pause) Now I wouldn’t go, if I were you, if you believe Jim Jones is anointed, oh, no, Jim– I don’t know what he– she– she may find out what your dad, I– He never says anything about that, I– I think he just, my dad. He’s just my dad, that’s all.
Man: If she dredged up that self-styled prophet stuff, (unintelligible phrase as Jones talk over)
Jones: She may dredge it up, but just say, it’s just another one of his goddamn fantastic lies. “Self-styled prophet.” We don’t– we never use that term. We don’t use such terminology. This man– I– He said, with the stuff he wrote, Reb [James Edwards], I just don’t understand how he could write that, or others could say he’s a liar. He’s a liar, that’s all. (Pause) Yeah. And all of you have been here since that time with [newspaper columnist and Temple antagonist Lester] Kinsolving. All of you should have been here that long. It seems to me.
Jones: Where did he write? He wrote in the Examiner. Kinsolving wrote in the Examiner. Some kind of a rever– reverend. Said he was very strange, though. I– I understood we– we were having a– Say, we were having a convention up in the valley that day, and uh, he didn’t even come inside the– the– our rest homes. (Pause) Schacht should tell about his drug– All of you now– And different ones of you ought to have drug problems, the younger ones should have come from drug problems. Except those in sensitive areas, like law enforcement. Say, I– I– Instead of being in law enforcement, I’d end up in crime, though, if it hadn’t been for this church. (Pause) Huh?
Woman: Should Larry tell (unintelligible end of question)
Jones: Well, uh, he’s in, uh– I don’t know. (stumbles over words) drug. And he didn’t– Didn’t you tell them that, or did you?
Man: (unintelligible phrase)
End of Side 1
Several minutes in, burst of conversation, several seconds long
Part 6: Test of equipment
Man: I am testing this microphone. (Whistles). Softly, softly, very softly. (Tape edit) (Pause) Testing one two, testing one two three, testing one two three, testing one two three, testing testing testing testing testing testing.
(Microphone moves, TV on, baby cries, general hubbub) (Phone dial tone)
Man: Testing testing testing. (Whistles) Testing one two three. Hello, hello, hello, hello, hello.
Part 7: Conversation between Mike Prokes and writer named Dick
Prokes: Well, it uh, went really well.
Prokes: Uh, you weren’t uh– We had so many people here that it was unbelievable. And I– I think there was 4000 people. And uh, it uh, it was, it was really a, a moving service.
Prokes: It uh– We had uh, so many different people represented. I guess there was about 12 different ministers of various faiths, and uh, Dennis Banks came with uh, William Kunstler.
Dick: Oh, good.
Prokes: Nation of Islam was here. Willie Brown and uh, uh, oh gosh, I– Cecil Williams came, and (laughs) lot of people just dropped in unexpectedly.
Prokes: So I’m s– sorry you couldn’t uh–
(Tape edit? Same conversation? Several moments of electronic hum)
Dick: (unintelligible intro) – and set up something. Do you think that– that uh, you– you’ve worked– been working on the Tenderloin on some– on some projects uh, with uh, Gene Weller, I think– I understand.
Prokes: Right. (Electronic interference) We uh, alternate weekends.
Dick: Oh, I see. Oh, I see. That kind of thing– or is anybody in your uh, temple that, that might have information about that?
Prokes: Well, uh, I think you– you should uh, at least check with– with that organization. Uh, I’m trying– there’s s– s– uh, one young man who uh, is one of the escorts but his name– let’s see. Paul Godsey.
Prokes: And uh, he– he– he might uh, know of some that are in, you know, predicament, where they aren’t getting enough uh, food, or medical attention, or whatever.
Dick: Right. Uh-huh. Do– Do you know his number?
Prokes: No, but it’s with the North of Market uh, Senior Organization, I think it’s called.
Prokes: So– It’s listed that way. And uh– I think– Yeah, I think you– that uh– And that– There are a– Isn’t there a– I’m trying to think of a hunger organization here in the city. Um. I think there– there’s at least one major uh, program deals with that exclusively.
Prokes: That uh, might know of– of uh, you know, what– what areas are affected, what people are affected. But I can’t think of their name.
Dick: Huh. There’s a food day coming up, you know, uh, on uh– Let’s see, I think it’s coming up next uh– (Tape edit; short burst of another conversation) –at USF on the eighth.
Prokes: And– let’s see, USF on the eighth. On the eighth of–
Dick: Right. Of uh, of uh, this month.
Prokes: Oh really?
Prokes: Oh. At the university.
Dick: Uni– University of San Francisco.
Prokes: I’ll be darned. Uh– I’m trying to think. The– You know, they had a, a recent uh– well, it’s been a c– few months, I guess, the– a world (clears throat) food uh, convention. And uh, there’s an organization called uh, Bread for the World.
Prokes: Which is– strictly deals with hunger. They might have a local chapter. (Pause) They– I– ‘Cause I know they do have uh, various branches.
Prokes: And we have uh, we have helped, helped them, but I– I’m not sure if it– we did it locally or uh, at their headquarters. But you might check on that.
Dick: Huh. Okay. (Stumbles over words) Are you gonna have anything this week?
Prokes: Uh, yeah, poss– Friday night, but uh, but I’m not sure whether it’s gonna be business yet or not.
Dick: Uh-huh. (Pause) Okay, is there anything you think I should (unintelligible phrase), any– any– you know, I’d like to work with you on anything– you know, any projects, that– You have my number.
Prokes: Right. And uh– let’s see. I can uh– So you’ll be here uh, throughout the week?
Prokes: Yeah. Okay. And what was the uh, the woman’s name that–
Dick: Loretta Smith?
Prokes: Loretta Smith. Right.
Dick: And then the week after, you’re gonna have a, a– that’s going to be Easter, right?
Dick: Or Easter– no, no, Easter’s gonna be this week. Uh, I mean, it’s the 18th. On the 25th, you’ll be back, uh, on Sunday.
Prokes: Right. Right.
Dick: What func– What uh, thing is going to be then, do you know? What uh– What uh–
Prokes: What– What– When will the meeting be?
Dick: Yeah. Yeah, like on Sunday.
Prokes: Eleven. Be at uh, eleven. Or twelve, it would actually be a, a better time, ‘cause we’ll be through announcements and business, that kind of thing. But uh–
Dick: Okay. ‘Cause maybe I could come by then.
Prokes: Sure. Uh– It was uh, really good meeting you.
Dick: (Enthusiastic) Yeah, I enjoyed it very much. You know. Sorry I didn’t get a chance to talk to uh, uh, Jim Jones more, or– you know, I’d like to at some point.
Prokes: Yeah, he’s very much in demand. (Small laugh) Uh–
Dick: Yeah, I know. I was very impressed with the–
Prokes: The unique uh– unique man is ki– really the kindest person I’ve ever met.
Dick: Express my thanks to him, if you get a chance.
Prokes: I will do that.
Dick: All right.
Prokes: And uh, I wish you– I kinda wish you could have been here Sunday, ‘cause it was a, a different sort of service. It was really– I don’t know, it was just a, a really, a real feeling of uh, brotherhood with uh–
Dick: Uh– We came by, but we were late. We got there by about– about one o’clock.
Prokes: Oh, you did.
Dick: Yeah. I had to get to another uh, thing, you know.
Prokes: Oh, we were on the way over, I think, to the uh–
Dick: Right. Right.
Prokes: To the Nation of Islam. That’s really been a breakthrough, you know, Dick, uh–
Dick: Well, that sounds good, really, I’m really, you know, happy about that.
Prokes: It’s– It’s almost uh, unbelievable how they’ve– they’ve turned around with uh, slow cultivation and just, you know, working together and offering our services. It’s– It’s– They’re– They’re as uh, friendly as can be, I mean, we’re just uh, we’re really uh, on close terms now. And uh, I mean they– they don’t have any sort of uh, you know uh, rhetoric that’s hate-filled like you once heard it to be. And uh, they’re generally concerned with uh, you know, working within the system for, for change.
Dick: Are there going to be more meetings like that?
Prokes: Yes. Yes, there will. We’ve done it quite a few times now. In fact, uh, Jim has been uh– I don’t know if I mentioned it or not, but uh, their chief minister in Chicago, Wallace D. Muhammed, who uh, was a friend of uh, a close friend with Malcolm X, uh, he is going to be uh, having a joint meeting with us, and they want, you know, Jim to have equal billing. It’s really sort of a, a breakthrough, but uh, it’ll be taking place in May in uh, Los Angeles. And then, depending on how that works out, they may have one here too. But uh, they– they usually have it uh, run closed-circuit throughout the country, and uh, it’s uh, I don’t know– a lot– lot of good could come out of it, if it works.
Dick: Sounds good.
Dick: Okay, Mike, I’ll– Keep me– Keep me posted and– and I’ll, you know, uh, you know, and I’ll maybe call you. When are you going down to L.A.? Friday?
Prokes: Uh, yeah, Friday night.
Dick: Oh, okay, maybe I’ll call you before then.
Dick: And when are you getting out another– another newspaper (unintelligible phrase)–
Prokes: Working on one now. And uh, it uh– so it should be out by the weekend, I think.
Dick: Hmm. And you get– How often do you get them out?
Prokes: Well, uh, at least once a month.
Dick: And how many copies do you get out?
Prokes: Six hundred thousand.
Dick: Oh, really?
Prokes: Yes, we have uh– we have a large donation of paper, we have our own press, we have uh, people with journalistic experience who are donating their time, you know, when they get off their regular jobs, they– they donate time in putting it together. And also we have members from our church who uh, distribute it, and uh, it goes throughout the city. So, uh, we, you know, we want to reach people with uh, news that uh, is really an alternative that hopefully uh, they want to hear about. (Beginning of next sentence under interruption)
Dick: Six hundred thousand uh, copies you get out. All over San Francisco?
Dick: Gee, that’s great.
Prokes: Yeah. I– (Laughs) I think that it’s more than the Chronicle.
Dick: Yeah, sure. Do you– Do you uh, uh, would you be interested in articles like uh, that, that, you know, if we could supply them? Not of a political nature, but I mean, articles like things of what’s going on, like for example, uh, uh, I had a recent meeting with [U.S. Representative Ron] Dellums, and we talked about some of the real dangers of, of the suppression of the uh, congressional investigation of uh, co– covert activities.
Prokes: Oh, really?
Prokes: I– I wish you could come and he– and speak about that. When did you talk with him?
Dick: Oh, I’d love to. Uh, (clears throat) I talked to him about uh, two weeks ago.
Prokes: Oh, really.
Dick: And he was very concerned about that.
Prokes: Is he in town?
Dick: No, he’s not now.
Prokes: Oh, he was then?
Dick: He was, yeah.
Prokes: Yeah. ‘Cause I’d like– he– he should uh– I think he’s been here, but uh–
Dick: ‘Cause he’s a great speaker. Really.
Prokes: Yeah. Yeah. Maybe I’ll see if uh, when he’ll be back. Do you know when he’ll be back next?
Dick: Well, see, I, uh– We tried to get him at– to come out at one of our functions on the 16th, but he– he, uh– he– he– he thought he might be able to make it, then he couldn’t. So I don’t know when he’ll be out again. He– He comes out, uh, you know, oh, about once a month.
Dick: He’s a good friend of mine, so I’ll be–
Prokes: He is?
Dick: Yeah. He’s supporting me.
Prokes: Good. Good. Well, uh– Yeah, if the next time you talk to him, you could uh, uh, suggest that, you know, we’d like to meet him, have him meet our– our people, ‘cause we su– our people support him.
Dick: Yeah, he’s– I– I think he’s one of the most honest, uh, congressmen.
Prokes: I think he’s well aware of our support, but he needs to uh– I think it’d be good for him to see it.
Dick: Would you uh– Would you like an article on that?
Dick: Okay. When– When’s your deadline for the thing?
Prokes: Uh, well, let’s see. (Pause) Thur– I– I think it’s probably over for this issue. It’s already been uh– You know, it’s already been composed and uh, and uh, just– it’s ready to go to press.
Dick: Oh, okay. When’s the next one gonna be out?
Prokes: And the next one uh, well, it’ll be for sure within, you know, within a month, hopefully sooner.
Dick: Umm-hmm. (Pause) Okay, we can–
Prokes: But uh, the– the paper will be uh, you know– (Stumbles over words) That was just the first issue that you saw, and so–
Dick: It was good. I thought it was very good.
Prokes: Well, uh, that’s– I’m– That’s encouraging, because we want to make it longer and you know, better quality in the future. It was uh, got out in– pretty hastily, but uh, we want to uh, you know, increase it and, you know, make it better, as far as uh, the amount and uh, and the– the range of things that it appeals to. (Pause) So uh, I think uh, you know, we’re gonna be uh– We’re asking for any kind of contributions like that, and uh, whatever space will allow, we’ll print.
Dick: Umm-hmm. Umm-hmm. Okay. Sure. I– I think that would be excit– I think this is one of the most important issues in this country, is, for example, is that if– if Congress– let’s say Congress investigates, you know, the FBI and the CIA, and the– Con– Dellums himself couldn’t even see the full report of the investigation, and he was one of the key members of the committee. I mean, you know, it sat in [President Gerald] Ford’s of– office, and it was never released. The press hasn’t talked about that in (stumbles over words) you know, regular media. And I think that’s something that’s really, uh, you know, uh, dangerous.
Prokes: Yeah, I do too. I think it’s very dangerous. And uh, I don’t know, it’s uh– there’s really a climate in the country that uh, could– there’s no telling where it’s headed. If something like Senate Bill 1 could get uh, proposed, and a lot of congressmen not even read it because it’s so long. (Small laugh)
Dick: Mm. Sure.
Prokes: What was it, 750 pages? And it– If that–
Dick: Sure. Really dangerous stuff in there.
Prokes: Well, it would’ve uh– It would’ve virtually set up a police state, if it’s passed.
Dick: I would like to talk on that sometime, you know (stumbles over words), on this whole– which is a big– I– key part of the campaign, is– is– is calling for investigation, uh, of the uh, covert activities in– in California, for example, secret army organization uh, which is directly uh, supported by the FBI, there’s proof of that, uh, and– You know, they bombed churches down in uh, San Diego.
Dick: Uh, and what (unintelligible phrase), one of the dangers what they’re– what they’re going to do is set up quasi– uh, uh, uh, go– uh, agencies, uh, like the secret army organization, which are not directly working for the government, but they’re infiltrated. And they use them to assassinate people on the left. You know?
Dick: And I’ve, you know, called for, you know, a full investigation of that.
Prokes: Yeah. Well, that’s some– that’s something, you know, we want to know about, and uh, become enlightened about.
Dick: Okay, I’ll uh, you know, I’ll–
Prokes: We feel we have a duty to uh, you know, be– be informed, but– and uh, this is, you know, part of our program.
Dick: I’ll– We– we’ll work something up for your next uh, next issue, and I’ll be looking forward to seeing, you know, next one you got.
Dick: And I’ll– I’ll probably get– get back to you probably the middle of the week.
Prokes: Thanks for calling.
Dick: Tha– Thanks, Mike.
Prokes: Talk to you later.
Dick: Bye, bye.
Part 8: Conversation between Bonnie [Simon?] and unknown caller
Caller: Oh, hi, Bonnie would you tell him if– if he wants to get a hold of the church for anything or he wants to talks to Miss Tomkis [phonetic], there’s one line that gets through.
Bonnie: Oh, you have one of those too. (Laughs) Okay.
Caller: Yeah. At the moment, everything’s on the blink over there.
Bonnie: Oh, really?
Bonnie: 5-7-8-0. Okay.
Two woman talk over each other.
Bonnie: Just like kind of like this one, I gave you. It’s sort of a get-through-to number.
Caller: I have called Cuba–
Bonnie: Umm-hmm. (Sneezes?)
Caller: I– I left word of the Riviera Hotel but I– he hasn’t, uh, returned my call yet. I called about 6:30 this morning, I was sure he– I’d catch him.
Bonnie: Mmm. You were up early, (unintelligible word; could be “an early bird”).
Caller: Yeah. That’s unusual for me.
Bonnie: Me too. (Laughs)
Caller: But I didn’t catch him, and I left word with the hotel. (Pause) But I did talk to Mr. Rizzo too, and he said that it would be imperative for him to be on the list, ‘cause other– so– uh, Dr. Gerlach could easily arrange it, if I could get to him.
Bonnie: Yeah. Now if– is there a group flight going out from here–
Bonnie: –or do they just make it to Jamaica?
Caller: Oh, no, it– it– it’s just a ha– handful of people going on this lap. Uh, as a matter of fact, maybe three or four. And the flight out of Havana– I mean, out– .
Caller: –to Havana, is at 1:30 in the afternoon.
Caller: Umm-hmm. And it’s not that easy to make connections. ‘Cause we got to Kingston, I think sometimes you arrive at 1:15.
Bonnie: Yeah, well, that’s just what I was trying to figure out, how to get Don, well, I guess to New York, and then to Kingston?
Caller: (Slowly) Uh, yeah. Uh– When we looked into it, there was one leaving from, oh, something like Newark.
Caller: And– (Pause) And it– (Pause) It flew directly to Kingston from Newark. And that would g– give him, I think, plenty of time.
Bonnie: You know, well, I was just going to see if there was anybody else going from here, you know, that would give me an idea–
Caller: Oh, I know. There isn’t.
Caller: There isn’t. (Pause) So I just don’t know what to do, until Dr. Goodlett [Carlton Goodlett, Sun-Reporter newspaper publisher] calls. I’m sure he will.
Bonnie: Yeah. Oh, I am too.
Caller: If he gets the message. He may be out in the back country chopping sugar cane or something. (Pause) Although that would be strictly out of character. (Laughs)
Bonnie: Well, nopt for down there.
Caller: Oh, he got a bad back, though.
Bonnie: Ohh, that’s not too good.
Bonnie: No, he shouldn’t be doing that, then. Definitely. So. Well, then, I guess maybe I better go ahead and try to set up something, for Don.
Caller: Why don’t you– Why don’t you set it all up, and we’ll hope he calls. Because if he does call, he can easily send a wire to the proper people, even tomorrow, uh, to Kingston.
Bonnie: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, ‘cause I would imagine Don would have, you know– I don’t think we should have Don leave until we’re sure, though.
Caller: Uh, I rather think so, too. It’s a long trip to Jamaica.
Bonnie: Yeah, that’s what I think. Yeah, and then he’d be there and have to come back, wouldn’t be too good. So–
Caller: His name definitely was not on the list that– that I can recall.
Bonnie: Okay. Okay.
Caller: Although I– He, uh– (Pause) Unless, uh– But Jim can’t remember whe– whether or not he gave it to Carlton when he left. (Pause) It’s funny how these things usually work out all right. Just sitting here, it seems that it–
Bonnie: Oh, yeah, I have a lot of faith that it will–
Caller: Yeah– (Laughs) But I think we better wait for him to call.
Bonnie: Yeah, well, I’ll go ahead and try to make some reservations, with some sort of– Do you know any– Do you know which airline it was that flies there, or any– Do you remember? (Pause) Uh, well, no, you weren’t– (unintelligible under interruption)
Caller: Do you have a travel agent?
Bonnie: I think so.
Caller: Because we have a very good one we use, and she’s sort of up on this trip, because she just got him some tickets.
Bonnie: Oh, okay– Who’s– Okay, maybe I ought to check through her then.
Caller: It’s uh, Jackson Travel.
Bonnie: Jackson Travel.
Caller: On Polk Street?
Bonnie: Okay, I’ll check. I usually don’t get into travel stuff, so I’ll have to– you know (unintelligible phrase under interruption)–
Caller: Oh, well, they’ll do it all for you. You just tell them, they– they have to make a 1:30 connection, see.
Bonnie: Okay, well, I’ll check with them.
Caller: Now their number is 9-2-8-2-5-0-1.
Caller: Ask for Marsha.
Bonnie: Marsha. Okay. Great.
Caller: Uh-huh. Okay.
Bonnie: Okay, then I’ll go ahead and check for– check out and find Don and let him know what’s happening.
Caller: Well (laughs)– Yeah, he’s all packed (unintelligible word under interruption)–
Bonnie: Oh, yeah, he’s ready to go, and he’s got all of his stuff.
Caller: Uhh-huh. Okay.
Bonnie: So that’s no problem. And all his shots (unintelligible phrase under interruption)–
Caller: All right. Now, how about the malpractice.
Bonnie: Ohh, I– (Pause) Now, in what regard?
Caller: Well, uh, oh, I had a good talk with Jim last evening, and he– and he asked how– how the status of it was, and I said it hadn’t gone through yet. He was a little surprised. So maybe we better push it.
Bonnie: Well, I mentioned– Well, until we get, you know– I guess Ro– it’s in Ro– Now, have you written to Ron Newpower?
Caller: No. (Pause) I’ll call him up.
Bonnie: Yeah, because I think all he’s waiting for is that letter from you saying that they’re employed.
Caller: Well, then, I can do that immediately.
Bonnie: Yeah. Yeah.
Caller: Uh-huh. Okay. I’ll do that right now.
Bonnie: Yeah. Or, you know, that they’re supervised and employed, or they’re remunerated, ‘cause you (unintelligible word under interruption) that bit.
Caller: Oh, that’s right. That’s right. All right. I’ll do it.
Bonnie: All righty. Okay.
Bonnie: Thanks a lot.
Caller: Umm-hmm. Bye.
Part 9: Conversation between Mike Prokes and Bill Lenson over health clinic
Lenson: (unintelligible intro) lack of interim funding until the first of July, basically. Did John tell you this?
Prokes: Uh, no, he didn’t. At that time, he didn’t know.
Lenson: Okay, well, what happened is that uh, due to rising costs and everything uh, on medical malpractice et cetera, uh, we came up a couple of months short in our– in our money. And we used the Bifano [phonetic] money that we raised, which you people so graciously uh, contributed to, et cetera, and uh, we’ve dumped uh, uh, five thousand dollars worth of that, and we received 5000 from the San Francisco Foundation as a temporary funding. And uh, we basically have now received assurances from the City of San Francisco of fifteen thousand as of July one, and also some from you back up, uh, we think it’s going to be around twenty. It was 35 we asked for, but we reduced it by fifteen, ‘cause we got the other fifteen from the city. So uh, as of July one, the clinic will be able to stand basically on its own with uh, uh, you know, three or four thousand for outside contributions.
Prokes: So you’ll be uh, closed till then?
Lenson: No, uh, we’re here desperately working with other foundations right now uh, to– We need another 10,105 dollars to open a clinic uh, on the sixteenth of April. We gave everybody two-week vacation, is what we did, whether they wanted it or not. We didn’t have any choice. And uh, at the– on the sixteenth, if we uh, if we come up with the– this additional money, we will open up on the sixteenth. If not, uh, the clinic will be closed at least till July first, and maybe completely, because uh, we’ll lose our staff, we’d have to restaff, we’d lose a lot of our patients, it’d be very difficult to, uh, you know, to put the thing back together again, and right now, we have continuing support by Presbyterian, uh, for administrative and– and medical but uh, you know, we don’t know what’s going to happen July 1.
Prokes: So you got two weeks to come up with 10,000?
Lenson: We got about a week and a– (Laughs) Week and a half, yeah.
Prokes: Yeah. And uh, let’s see. What– what uh, what happened to the United Way? Weren’t you trying to get funds from them?
Lenson: Uh, we are. We are, we’re trying to get– As they said, right now, we’re uh applying for emergency funds from United Way, we’re applying for uh, some private funds, uh, we’re– we’re talking, again, to the San Francisco Foundation, uh– Yeah, you know, but everybody’s got– (Laughs) It’s like Catch-22, you know. Well, we meet on such-and-such a date, or we do this or we do that, and, ah, we have not received any firm commitment, although a lot of interest.
Lenson: Uh– and uh– So as we stand right now, we– we– we’re just kind of waiting.
Lenson: And it’s kind of a limbo period here, I don’t know what uh– what’s going to happen. You know, maybe we’ll get two or three people at once, saying, yeah, we’re going to help you, and maybe we won’t get anybody. (Laughs)
Lenson: But uh, we’re really working hard on this thing, and uh, we got a lot of people pushing and pulling, and uh, so, we’ll just see what happens.
Prokes: Okay, I’m glad you uh, let me know, uh– We’ve got uh, let’s see, a paper going out uh, the newspaper we started in–
Prokes: Uh, we want to try to get that in there. Uh– I hope I haven’t missed the deadline, it’s so uh– let’s see, when the next will be coming out. I’m not sure. It’s– Right now, it’s not on our regular schedule. But it’s going throughout the community.
Lenson: Throughout the community, yeah.
Prokes: And uh–
Lenson: There’s been quite a bit of press on it, we’ve got a lot of play at the papers and uh, TV. Uh, we had it, uh, a news conference. [Channels] 4, 5 and 7 were there, and uh, we– we’re getting response from the community, but nothing positive yet.
Prokes: Yeah. When was the news conference?
Lenson: We had our news conference, uh, a week before the first, so that’s around, what, the 27th or something like that. We said that we’re going to shut down on the first if we don’t receive money.
Prokes: I see.
Lenson: And we’ve had some private contributions come in, but you know, ten dollars here, five dollars there, fifteen– nothing uh, of any great uh, uh, (Pause) shakes that we can uh, count on, so we– we’ve marked all this money, and if the clinic does stay closed, we’ll re– obviously we will return all this money to the various people who’ve contributed.
Prokes: Yeah. Okay. Well, let me uh, communicate this to some people and uh–
Lenson: Okay. Any uh– any assistance would be uh, greatly appreciated.
Lenson: The fact is, we appreciate your inquiry.
Prokes: What was your name?
Lenson: Bill Lenson. I’m the president of the board.
Prokes: How do you spell that?
Prokes: Okay. Thanks so much, Bill.
Lenson: Okay? Thank you.
Prokes: Talk to you later. Bye.
End of tape.
Tape originally posted February 2003