Scanned image of the page. Keyboard directions: use + to zoom in, - to zoom out, arrow keys to pan inside the viewer.

Page Options


Something wrong?

Something wrong with this page? Report problem.

Rights / Permissions

The University of Michigan Library provides access to these materials for educational and research purposes. These materials may be under copyright. If you decide to use any of these materials, you are responsible for making your own legal assessment and securing any necessary permission. If you have questions about the collection, please contact the Bentley Historical Library at bentley.ref@umich.edu

October 31, 1980 - Image 88

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1980-10-31

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

88 Friday, October 31, 1980


New Biography of Cla ► ence Darrow, Champion of Freedom


In his closing statement
to the jury in the first trial
for murder involving Dr.
Ossian Sweet and 10 other
blacks, defense attorney
Clarence Darrow said: "I
speak for a million blacks
who have some hope and
faith remaining in the in-
stitutions of this land."
It was before Judge Frank
Murphy had declared a mis-
trial in a suit that could
have ended in the convic-
tion for murder of the De-
- trod black physician who
faced the murder charge in
the killing of a white man
when the blacks were
molested in a housing riot
that was fomented in the
rising prejudice against
This is one of the inci-
dents recorded in a remark-
able biography, "Clarence
Dar-row: A Sentimental Re-
bel" by Arthur and Lila
Weinberg (Putnam).
This is one of the many
important cases re-
viewed by the two
authors who devoted
many years to research
about the life and activi-
ties of one of the most
prominent lawyers in
American legal history.
Among the very famous
cases was that of Nathan
Leopold and Richard Loeb,
the two young geniuses who
murdered a young boy as a
cruel prank, who were
saved from death by Dar-
row's appeals to the Chicago
Then there was the
Scopes trial and the teach-
ing of evolution in the
Tennessee schools.
The anti-evolution reso-
lution was adopted by the
Legislature of Tennessee,
making that state one of the
first to prohibit the teaching
of evolution in tax-
supported schools. A school
teacher was on trial for
teaching evolution. Clar-
ence Darrow was the de-
fense lawyer and he was op-
posed by former U.S. Secre-
tary of State William Jen-
nings Bryan.
John T. Scopes, a 24-
year-old substitute
teacher, was the accused
law-breaker who be-
lieved in the evolution
theory. Dayton, Tenn.,-
became the center of at-
tention when the famous
trial was conducted
there. Darrow became
even more famous as a
'result of a trial in which
he failed in his appeal de-
fending the supporter of
the evolution theory.
-Scopes was convicted,
fined $100 and the fine was
paid by the Baltimore Eve-
ning Sun. Later, in an ap-
peal, the verdict was re-
versed on a technicality.
These are just a few of the
famous cases 'which_ per-

*lived through it, and per-
haps have been stronger.
But it is a terrible test for
any people to go through!


petuated the name of Clar-
ence Darrow in legal his-
The authors portray him
as a man of great compas-
sion whose chief aim was to
battle for the underdog.
Darrow hated bigotry
and fought against racial
and religious prejudices.
He participated in
movements to fight anti-
Semitism. It was as a
member of the Illinois
State Legislature that he
joined in protests against
the 1903 Kishinev pog-
rom in Bessarabia.
It was on April 18, 1903,
that Clarence Darrow, Jane
Addams and Peter Sissman,
who was to become Dar-
row's law partner, ad-
dressed a meeting in the
Chicago Stock Theater to
condemn the officially-
fostered pogrom in Russia.
He condemned anti-
SeMitism everywhere. He
said: "The one weapon at
hand is moral-suasion."
The Weinbergs point to a
single factor of a lack of
vision by Darrow when he
failed to anticipate success
in Zionist efforts in a debate
with Dr. Stephen S. Wise in
which he opposed the
Zionist ideal.
Darrow's opposition to
persecution of Jews despite
his disapproval of Zionism
is related by the Weinbergs
in a description of the emi-
nent lawyer's condemna-
tion of Hitlerism, as follows:
"Persecuted peoples
were Darrow's business.
Again in 1933 he would
voice- his protest againSt
the persecution of Jews,
this time in Germany
under Hitler. He was not
as optimistic as he had
been in 1903. 'There is one
thing that seems to have
been made pretty clear
by this terrible move-
ment against the Jews,
originating in Germany
and closing, I don't know
where. I don't know that
it will ever end. So far as I
can read, and under-
stand about the Jews,
they have been perse-
cuted by almost all
people on the face of the
earth! And still, they have

" 'Mr. Hitler is'not the
only man who has engaged
in the laudable purpose of
persecuting the Jews!' he
sarcastically told a forum at
the Washington. Boulevard
Temple in Chicago. 'The
thing which shocks me and
the rest of the world is that
at this stage of life, when
many people have thought
that human beings were
_growing more intelligent,
when we believed that men
and women were broader
and more understanding
and more liberal, there
should come a man with the
power and strength to make
a warfare upon a race out of
the clear sky; and the most
destructive warfare, as I
read of it, that has ever been
carried on against the Jew!'
He recalled his first ex-
perience with Jews, more
than 60 years ago, in a little
country town. 'We seldom
saw one; that, I believe is
why we didn't like them. I
happened to be born in a
family which had no reli-
gious prejudices, and who

believed in freedom for all wouldn't be anything left in
men, but I heard the'same the way of protest meetings
stories at school that all the in this country. They are
other children heard. I came strong in every organiza-
to look upon them the same tion that stands for human
way. It was a long time be- liberty. They are strong in
fore I . . . knew the debt that every movement for free-
civilization owes to the dom.'
"Stressing that the Jew
"It was a long time before
I knew the debt that liberal- has stood not only for free-
ity and freedom owe to dom of the Jew but for all
Jews! You don't need to men, Dan-ow told a cheer-
leave your seat to find that ing audience, 'I would hate
out. You can test it any- to see the Jews banished
where! Let any meeting be from the country in which I
announced, in any part of may ever live.' The last
Chicago of New York, or people to betray freedom
any big city in the United would be the Jews: 'In every
States, when a body of great cause for human lib-
people are called to protest erty, they have always
against injustice and fought, not only in the case
wrong; where they are for human liberty, but in
called upon to unite for lib- the cause of equality. They
erty; and you will find that have stood against wealth
meeting is largely made up and power and influence,
of Jews! And it makes no dif- and stood for the common
ference whether they are man. That is why I am for
protesting for a Jew or a them! That is why I know
Gentile; whether they are we need them! That is why I
protesting for a Socialist or know the world needs
for a Communist, you will them.'
find them there and
"Again, as in his
everywhere raising their Kishinev speech, he looked
voice for freedom.
upon anti-Semitism as part
" 'And if we took them out of a worldwide illness. As
of our community there :long as injustice prevails

against a people or any reli-
gion, .no one is safe, he in-
sisted. It was this world
theme that governed Dar-
row's lack of interest in
Palestine as a homeland for
the Jews and his conviction
that Zionism was not the

Currently, because a
question relating to the
evolution theory was ad-
dressed to Republican
Presidential Candidate
Ronald Reagan, the resolu-
tion adopted by the Tennes-
see Legislature on March
21,1925, once again invited
special interest. That 5'
year-old resolution stated: /


"Be it enacted — that it
shall be unlawful for any
teacher in any of the uni-
versities, normals, and all
other public schools of
the state which are sup-
ported in whole or in part
by the public school
funds of the state, to
teach any theory that de-
nies the story of the Di-
vine Creation of man as
taught in the Bible, and to
teach instead that man
has described (sic) from a
lower order of animals."

Black Hebrews Seen Causing Problems
in Israel; Citizens Seek Their Expulsion


The Jewish News Special
Israel Correspondent

TEL AVIV — A few years
ago "Black Hebrews" ar-
rived in Israel from the U.S.
and African countries. They
came as tourists, - but de-
cided afterward to stay in
Israel. Later on they
ally brought their peers.
Some of them came with
forged documents, others
came as converted Jews. It
was proven later, that their
conversion was fake. They
settled in Dimona and
Arad and other places.
Shortly afterward the trou-
bles began.
It is a well organized sect
with specific mystic laws,
their leader has to be
strictly obeyed and sup-
ported by the community.
Some of them who have
tried to leave the sect were
severely punished.
The inhabitants of Di-
mona and Arad are
bothered by the Black
Hebrews. They protest
against their dirty living
conditions and their
noise. They even claim
that the sect educated
their children "to take
the land from the white
Jews." They are demand-
ing the government to
expel them from Israel.
For many months this af-
fair has concerned the gov-
ernment and the Knesset,

absorpotion against the blacks were
especially the Minister of Israeli
Interior Dr. Joseph Burg. A ministry ordered the used against the Jews in
few months ago, Burg is- ulpan to accept theta.
anti-Semitic countries.
sued an order not to admit
Meanwhile, the blacks liv-
They received nice four- ing in Dimona have de-
any more Black Hebrews as
tourists to Israel. A Knesset room apartments - in Arad. clared that if they are expel-
Although they declared led from Israel they would
commission has decided to
allot to the Black Hebrews a that they had converted to collectively commit suicide.
special area in the Negev, Judaism, their conversion The majority of the Arad
certificates proved to be and Dimona population
but the inhabitants of Di-
mona and Arad are not fake. They converted their warned that, if the blacks
apartments into a commu- are not expelled, they would
satisfied with this decision.
nity center and a kindergar- start demonstrations which
They insist on their demand
ten for their children. Mrs. would lead to bloodshed:
to send them back to the
Nizan fails to understand
countries from which they
Recently, there were
how these people obtained
their apartments so clashes between the
Amit Karmi, member of quickly, whereas other new blacks and the inhabi-
the commission of the in-
immigrants have to wait for tants of the Nitzachon
habitants, told us that the
a long time for flats. The suburb in Dimona. A few
sect is a danger to the coun-. committee declared that persons were hurt and
try. They try to settle in their fight against the some were arrested. It
different parts of the coun-
blacks bears no racial over- began with clashes be-
try by stages and teach their tones. They come illegally, tween children from both
children that they are the have mystical intentions sides. The parents were
real and true owners of the
drawn into the fight and
and, therefore, have to leave
the country. Nevertheless, the police had to inter-
They have no school
some of the Arad residents vene.
buildings and the children maintain that deporting the
A few days agao, the Di-
are taught in the street. The , blacks from Israel would mona blacks invited a TV
neighbors can hear how make a bad impression in team to cover a football
they are told that there the world.
match between their chil-
would be a war between
dren and Jewish children
white and black people. The
ager of the phosphate works from their neighborhood.
war will start in Israel. The
in Arad, who has lived in They wanted to prove that
black people will win and
Arad for the last eight years they do live in peace and
take over the land. Informa-
states that: "The blacks do there is no reason to expel
tion has also been collected
them. However, when t 1
from blacks who have left not disturb me. One must Jewish parents noticed t
not send them away; they
the sect.
behave well in general, event, they started a scan-
born sometimes better than some dal. Blows were exchanged
Esther Nizan is a member
Israelis. They are polite and and the television team dis-
of the residents' commit-
cultured. It is not true that appeared.
tee and manager of the they are dirty, they live in
The Mayor of Dimona,
academicians' ulpan in
their own community and
Arad. She told us that a
observe their own special Jaques Amir, who is also a
Knesset member, declared
year ago some blacks
that if the government
came to the ulpan with-
Mrs. Gabi Arad, who doesn't order the blacks out
out any recom-
mendations. They de- works in the office dealing of Dimona, it will have to
clared that they were with new immigrant aca- bear the responsibility for
new immigrants. It demicians told us, that the the developments of events
turned out that they were demand to expel the blacks between the blacks and the
not, since they did not from Israel has racial over- Jewish population of Di-
convert to Judaism. The tones. The arguments used mona and Arad.

Back to Top

© 2021 Regents of the University of Michigan