Was there at one point more of a mesh between the black leadership and blacks in general?
Well, there’s no particular reason to think that the leadership of any ethnic group is going to be in sync with the actual desires of that group. … The initial leaders of such insurgencies go in with very little to gain and a lot to lose. But once the insurgency succeeds, the people who were concerned about the problem tend to begin to lose interest, whereas for the people who are opportunists, now is the time to move in. You attract an entirely different type of person, and there’s a change of leadership. When people complain about the decline in the quality of the civil rights leadership these days, I say, you know, if there were still 150 black people lynched every year, you’d have a higher quality leadership in the civil rights movement. [italic emphasis added]
Obviously, lynching is not something to be wished for. But it does make clear the quality of play is related to the stakes.