This is a book that explains, defends and accuses: it explains the background leading to the civil rights demands of 1963; it defends the issues at stake in the Birmingham Crusade as well as the methods Rev. King and his colleagues employed there; and it accuses the white church of the South, the disparaging press and U.S. Steel of general negligence and abdication of responsibility in regard to Negro rights. The author points to the wide spread demonstrations of 1963 as an answer to the demeaning question, "What is the Negro doing for himself?" In surveying the events of 1963, he underlines the position that political assassination took in this country; the horror that was President Kennedy's death also came to Medgar Evers, William Moore and 6 Negro children. His letter written from a jail cell in Birmingham, in answer to the published criticism of some Southern clergy, is destined to take its place among the great prison letters of history. His tone is temperate rather than bitter and the style is personal without loss of perspective. Well written and short, this has a great deal to say to both critics and followers.