- 0:05:30 The chase
- Schwerner: Uh-oh.
Goodman: What is it? What do they want?
Schwermer: I don't know.
. . . . . . .
Schwerner: What the fuck are those jokers playing at?
Chaney: They ain't playin', you'd better believe it
Goodman: Whatta we going to do?
- 0:07:24 The murder
- Schwerner: You had us scared to death, man.
Klansman1: Don't you call me man, Jew-boy.
Schwerner: No sir, what should I call you?
Klansman1: Don't call me nothin' nigger-lovin' Jew-boy, you just listen.
Klansman2: Hell, you're even starting to smell like a nigger, Jew-boy.
. . . . . . . . . . . .
Voice 1: Ho-Ho, shit, we into it now, boys!
Voice 2: Y'all only left me a nigger. But at least I shot me a nigger.
- 0:09:50 Getting things straight
- Ward: Let's get this thing straight. I haven't had a pimple in years, I shave every morning, I even go to the bathroom by myself, so you can quit the boss stuff. They put me in charge because I've been through this before. . . . Oxford, I was with Meredith at Ole Miss . . . shot in the shoulder.
Anderson: At least you lived, that's what's important.
Ward: No, Meredith lived, that's what's important.
- 0:12:30 Tough guy
- Anderson: Listen to me you backwoods shitass you. You've got about two seconds to get the sheriff out here or I'll kick the door in.
- 0:15:17 Colored seating
- Waitress: What y'all gunna do wait or leave?
Ward: There's some empty seats down there.
Anderson: Uh Mr. Ward, that's colored seating down there. Don't even think about it, there some people right here about to leave.
Ward: Aren't you hungry Mr. Anderson?
- 0:16:22 Tongue biting
- Ward: Apparently, after they came back here, they talked to some locals down the road. I think that's where we should start.
Anderson: Oh, they won't talk to you. These people have to live here long after we're gone. They'd rather bite their tongue off than talk to us.
- 0:19:34 Burning Hate – Anderson recounts a story about his dealings with racism
- Ward: Where does it come from, all this hatred?
Anderson: You know when I was a little boy . . . there was an old Negro farmer lived down the road from us, name of Monroe. And he was…well, I guess he was just a little luckier than my daddy was. He bought himself a mule. That was a big deal around that town. My daddy hated that mule. His friends kidded him that they saw Monroe ploughin' with his new mule . . . and Monroe was gonna rent another field now that he had a mule. One morning that mule just showed up dead. They poisoned the water. After that there was never any mention about that mule around my daddy. One time we were drivin' past Monroe's place and we saw it was empty. He'd just packed up and left, I guess; gone up North or somethin'. I looked over at my daddy's face . . . and I knew he'd done it. And he saw that I knew. He was ashamed. I guess he was ashamed. He looked at me and he said, "If you ain't better than a nigger, son, who are you better than?"
Ward: Do you think that's an excuse?
Anderson: No, it's not an excuse. It's just a story about my daddy.
Ward: Where does that leave you?
Anderson: With an old man who was so full of hate that he didn't know that bein' poor was what was killin' him.
- 0:26:05 Scrapin' bodies
- Mayor Tilman: We got a real peaceful community down here, Anderson. Course, they're just like any other folks, I reckon, when you push 'em too far.
The way I figure it, it's like three sticks of old dynamite. You shake it up . . . and we're gonna be scrapin' bodies off the street.
- 0:27:01 You in Mississippi now
- Mayor Tilman: Simple fact is, Anderson, we got two cultures down here. White culture and a colored culture. That's the way it always has been. That's the way it always will be.
Anderson: The rest of America don't see it that way.
Sheriff Stuckey: The rest of America don't mean jack shit. You in Mississippi now.
- 0:31:30 White over black
- Mrs. Pell: Do you honestly think you people'd be down here at all if it weren't for those two white boys?"
Anderson: Maybe not, Miss.
- 0:35:40 War
- Agent Anderson: Don't do it Mr. Ward. You'll start a war.
Agent Ward: It was a war long before we got here.
- 0:39:19 Igniting a War – Sheriff Stuckey makes a mockery of civil rights groups
- Sheriff Stuckey: I'll tell you somethin' else. I think it's a stunt dreamed up by NAAC people.
Reporter: NAAC people?
Sheriff Stuckey: N-A-A-C-P…Bet you don't even know what it stands for? Niggers, Alligators, Apes, Coons and Possums. Tell you what you got. You got your N-A-A-C-P. You got your S-N-C-C. You got your C-O-F-O. You know what all that mess is? B-U-L-L-S-H-I-T. You got it?
- 0:40:15 Riffing on Sheriff
- Aaron Williams: One day there will come a time when we won't have to say "good morning sir, Mr. Sheriff" maybe there will come a time when we won't have to say "Mr. Stuckey," one day there will come a time when we say "Stuckey, a sheriff," and one day there will come a time when the sheriff won't even be a white man.
- 0:41:25 Who's the law?
- Aaron Williams: The reason people don't want to talk to you is because they're afraid it'll get back to the law.
Ward: We are the law.
Vertis Williams: Not around here, you ain't.
- 0:45:30 Three fingers
- Anderson: Did you see the wedding photograph?
Anderson: His three pals, the ushers, had their thumbs hooked in their belts... ...with their three fingers pointing down.
Ward: So what is that? Some sort of Masonic thing?
Anderson: No! KKK.
- 0:46:47 Flirting with Danger
- Mrs. Pell: My husband's not here.
Anderson: Actually, it was you I wanted to talk to.
Mrs. Pell: Me? OK. You'd better come in, then.
Anderson: Just take a minute. My boss, he's kind of a pain. A college kid. He has to dot all the i's and cross all the t's.
Mrs. Pell: What is it you wanted to ask me about?
Anderson: It's a time thing we're not so clear about.
Mrs. Pell: Should I put your flowers in some water while you're here?
Anderson: Yeah. Actually they're for you.
Mrs. Pell: They're beautiful.
Anderson: They are pretty, aren't they? They don't smell so nice but they're pretty.
Mrs. Pell: Can I get you anything? Some tea?
Anderson: Yeah. Thanks.
Mrs. Pell: Oh, don't you look at that. It's a terrible photo.
Anderson: Oh, I don't know about that. - Is this recent?
Mrs. Pell: No. I wish.
Anderson: Well... this here looks recent to me.
Mrs. Pell: We were married years ago.
Anderson: Are you kidding me? No! Come on.
Mrs. Pell: You take sugar?
Anderson: Sure do. You know, I grew up in a town like this.
Mrs. Pell: You were smart enough to leave.
Anderson: Why didn't you?
Mrs. Pell "For better or for worse." How about you? Are you married?
Anderson: Well, I was, as I remember. It didn't last very long. I was never home. I guess she got fed up with... phone calls from Miami, postcards from Des Moines. There was always a guy around. Any guy that could spare the time for a movie or a beer... ...or a quarter for the jukebox. She left. - How about you?
Mrs. Pell: Well, you know the South, Mr Anderson. You leave high school and marry the first boy who makes you laugh.
Anderson: Hey, your husband's quite a guy. You know, my boss has this thing about an hour - minutes, to be exact - ...that your husband says that he was with you.
Mrs. Pell: And I guess he was.
Anderson: Guess he was. Well, that's a pity. That means that I don't have an excuse for hangin' around here any more.
- 0:55:10 Crossing color lines
- Mrs. Pell: Well, Mary, is that your Betsy's kid?
Mrs. Pell: She's growin' up real quick, ain't she?
(Deputy Pell watches from the doorway, Mary becomes frightened)
Mrs. Pell: Tuesday'll be just fine on those, Mary.
(Mary takes the baby and quickly exits out of harm's way)
Deputy Pell: Funny. Their kids are so cute.
- 0:56:52 Protecting the American Way
- News: Your name, please?
Townley: Clayton Townley. Local businessman.
News: Are you, sir, a spokesman for the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan?
Townley: I told you. I'm a businessman. I'm also a Mississippian. And an American. And I am sick and tired of the way many of us Mississippians... ...are havin' our views distorted by your newspapers and on TV. So let's get this straight. We do not accept Jews because they reject Christ. Their control of the international banking cartels are at the root of communism. We do not accept Papists because they bow to a Roman dictator. We do not accept Turks, Mongols, Tartars, Orientals nor Negroes... ...because we're here to protect Anglo-Saxon democracy... ...and the American way.
News: Thank you, sir.
- 0:57:48 Intimidating Opinions – Frank Bailey unleashes his racist opinions
- Frank Bailey: All I know is we got 5,000 niggers in this county who ain't registered to vote yet…and, as far as I'm concerned, they never will. So tell your stiff suits up in Washington, DC they ain't gonna change us one bit; unless it's over my dead body…or a lot of dead niggers.
Anderson: You'd kill, Frank? Is that what you're sayin'?
Frank Bailey: I wouldn't give it no more thought than wringin' a cat's neck. And there ain't a court in Mississippi that'd convict me for it.
Anderson: How about you, Deputy? How are you with wringin' necks, huh?
Deputy Pell: Just keep pushin' me, Hoover boy.
- 1: 57:20 We are all guilty
- Ward: Mr. Bird. He was guilty. Anyone is guilty who watches this happen and pretends it isn't. No, he was guilty, all right. As guilty as the ones who pulled the trigger. May be we all are.
- 1:06:47 Won't do no good
- Ward: Mrs. Walker, I know this is difficult for you, but I really need your help. If you could just persuade your son to press charges . . . then we could pick up the deputy at least, right away.
Mrs. Walker: He won't talk to no one -- And it won't do no good anyway.
Ward: I promise you, it will.
Unidentified older black male: Leave him alone. Maybe then they'll let us alone.
- 1:07:24 Rattlesnakes don't commit suicide
- Ward: If this is a pattern, I guess at least we know what happened on June 21st. Pell stopped the three boys for speeding at three o'clock. He held them in jail until the Klan could get organized. Then he released 'em at 10:30 . . . And by that time, his buddies were ready and waiting.
Anderson: No. Pell went with 'em that night. I'm sure of it.
Ward: Do you think he'll crack?
Anderson: Down here they say rattlesnakes don't commit suicide.
- 1:13:50 Leniency
- Judge: In this country a man's home is his castle. That is one of the principles by which this community survives. You men have done violence to that principle. But I want you to know that the court understands that the crimes you have committed have been, to some extent at least brought about by outside influences. Outsiders have come into Jessup County and they've been people of low morality and unhygienic. And their presence here has provoked a lot of people. So the court understands, without condoning them, mind you, that the crimes to which you men have pled guilty were, to some extent at least, provoked by these outside influenced. So, with all this, I'm gonna make your punishment light. I'm gonna sentence you each to five years' imprisonment. But I'm gonna suspend these sentences.
- 1:20:36 If I was a negro
- Anderson: Look at those flames, Mr Ward. That's why they sent you down here, wasn't it?
Ward: It would've happened anyway and you know it.
Anderson: If I was a Negro, I'd probably think the same way they do.
Ward: If you were a Negro, nobody'd give a damn what you thought.
- 1:25:00 Arguing over media and minutes
- Ward: I don't understand you, Mr Anderson. Not at all.
Anderson: Let's get somethin' straight, all right? This whole thing was fucked up the moment we turned it into a show for the newsmen.
Ward: The moment those three kids disappeared, it was news.
Anderson: The moment the three civil rights workers disappeared, it was news. To me they're just kids. They're still missing.
Ward: What's missing is the 50 minutes Pell said he was with his wife.
- 1:25:50 I love Mississippi
- Townley: I love Mississippi. (Cheering) They . . .they hate Mississippi. They hate us because we present a shining example of successful segregation. These Northern students, with their atheist, communist bosses that have come into our community this summer with the wish to destroy it. This week have taken a terrible blow. This week their cause has been crippled. This week all of these federal policemen you see out here prying into our lives violating our civil liberties have learned that they are powerless against us. If every single Anglo-Saxon Christian one of us stands together!
- 1:27:42 Key Witness – Mrs. Pell provides Anderson with some useful information
- Mrs. Pell: Have you any idea what it's like to live with all this? People look at us and only see bigots and racists. Hatred isn't something you're born with. It gets taught. At school they said segregation is what is said in the Bible…Genesis 9, verse 27. At seven years of age, you get told it enough times, you believe it. You believe the hatred. You live it. You breathe it. You marry it. My husband drove one of the cars that night…the bodies are buried on the Roberts farm, in an earthen dam.
- 1:29:40 Hatred isn't something you're born with
- Mrs. Pell: People look at us and only see bigots and racists. Hatred isn't something you're born with. It gets taught. At school they said segregation is what it said in the Bible. Genesis 9, verse 27. At seven years of age, you get told it enough times, you believe it. You believe the hatred. You live it. You breathe it. You marry it.
- 1:37:00 The Tables Are Turned – A eulogy inspires sadness along with frustration
- Eulogist: They want me to say, "Let us not forget...that two white boys also died helping Negroes help themselves." They want me to say, "We mourn with the mothers of these two white boys." But the state of Mississippi won't even allow these white boys to be buried in the same cemetery as this Negro boy. I say, I have no more love to give. I have only anger in my heart today…and I want you to be angry with me! Now, I am sick and I am tired... and I want you to be sick and tired with me! I…I…I am sick and tired of going to the funerals of black men who have been murdered by white men! I…I am sick and tired of the people of this country who continue to allow these things to happen! What is an "inalienable right" if you are a Negro? What does it mean, "equal treatment under the law?" What does it mean, "liberty and justice for all?" Now I say to these people - look at the face of this young man and you will see the face of a black man. But, if you look at the blood shed, it is red. It is like yours! It is just like yours!
- 1:40:04 Intimidation
- Black man: "You . . . I'm going to tell you a story. A young kid named Homer Wilkes lives about 50 miles north of here. He'd just taken his girlfriend home and was walking back along the road when a car pulled up. Three white boys took him for a ride. Now . . . he hadn't done anything . . . except be a Negro. And they took him to a shack, a shack like . . . like this one. They took out a razor blade, regular old razor blade like this one. And they pulled down his pants and they spread his legs and they sliced off his scrotum. Put it in a coffee cup. Do you much how much you bleed when somebody cuts off your balls? HUH? When they found Homer they say it looked like he'd been dipped in blood up to his waist. He was barely alive when they got him to the hospital. He can hardly walk now. Mayor, we know you know who was there when those three civil white boys was murdered! We know you know who pulled the trigger.
- 1:49:57 A stupid smile
- Anderson: You got a stupid smile. You know that? Can you see it? Did you smile when the bulldozer ran over the black kid's body? Did you? Did you smile when the bodies were covered over? Get up. Come on. Did you smile that same stupid smile? Huh? Did you?
- 1:59:06 Not going anywhere
- Anderson: Where are you going?
Mrs. Pell: I am not going anywhere. I am staying. This is my home. Born here. probably die here. If I wanted to leave I would've done it a long time ago. Things will work out. There is enough people around me who know what I did is right.
- 2:05:37 End card
- This film was inspired by actual events which took place in the South during the 1960s. The characters, however, are fictitious and do not depict real people either living or dead.