U.S. Federal Judge Julius Hoffman ordered Black Panther Party activist Bobby Seale gagged and bound to his chair during his trial after he repeatedly asserted his right to an attorney of his own choosing or to defend himself.
This injustice was commemorated in the song “Chicago” written by Graham Nash.
It’s also mentioned in the poem and song “H2Ogate Blues” by Gil Scott-Heron: “The chaining and gagging of Bobby Seale- Somebody tell these Maryland Governors to be for real!”
Robert George “Bobby” Seale is a political activist. He is known for co-founding the Black Panther Party with Huey Newton.
Bobby Seale was one of the original “Chicago Eight” defendants charged with conspiracy and inciting to riot, in the wake of the 1968 Democratic National Convention, in Chicago. The evidence against Seale was slim as Seale was a last-minute replacement for Eldridge Cleaver and had been in Chicago for only two days of the convention.
Read more about this case at: Daily Black History Facts