Friday, March 8, 1967
TI E MICHIGAN DAILY
Frdy- arh8-97 H IHIA-AL
'STOP ARMS RACE':
Cavanagh Pleads For 'Sanity'
In Dealing With Riot Rumors
To Close Inner Core Schools
DETROIT 0P)- Asserting thatt
"wildly irresponsible rumors" ini
newspaperless Detroit have causedt
both whites and Negroes to arm
themselves in unprecented num-
bers, Mayor Jerome P. Cavanaghc
pleaded via television yesterdayw
for "return to sanity."
"This arms race must be stop-t
ped," said Cavanagh, in whose
city 43 persons were killed ands
millions of dollars damage donei
in racial rioting last July.t
Detroit has been without itsi
regular daily newspapers for 114t
days because of a Teamsters strike1
at the evening News and an in
sympathy shutdown by the morn-
ing Free Press.
Cavanagh's speech was carried
by the city's three major televi-
sion stations. Several radio sta-,
tions were to carry it or parts of
it at different times.
The mayor said the "wildly ir-
responsible rumors" concerneds
"what might happen next sum-
He said at one point, however,6
"riots are not inevitable, and It
ca n n o t emphasize that toot
Cavanagh did not describe any
of the rumors.
But two weeks ago the city's
police and fire departments were
placed on a full standby when a
suburban police force received a
letter saying that Black Power
extremists had organized a dis-
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turbance that was to involve steal-
ing autos and burping them on
the major expressways.
The letter also said that'homes
were to be burned in several all-
white suburbs as well as some
stores in the downtown section.
There were no incidents during
the period of the alert.
Pistols registered with the city,
as required by law, totaled 6,029
in 1966. There were 9,988 regis-
tered in 1967, with a sharp upturn
in August. In January of this year
there were 1,090 and in February,
Cavanagh said that if a citizen
"accepts uncritically every rumor,
if he buys a gun, if he endorses
vigilante, groups, he has contri-
buted to an atmosphere that may
well bring about the very violence
he has been seeking to avoid.
"All of these things have been
happening in the Detroit area. We
seem to have lost our judgment
and our perspective.
"Without newspapers in this
city, these rumors have been
spread by word of mouth until
they have taken on the aspect of
truth and a basis for action.".
The mayor said Detroit police
now are equipped and organized
to prevent-trouble and that "ex-
tremism which takes the form of
acts of violence or of provocation
will not be tolerated."
Cavanagh directed his Commis-
sion on Community Relations to
establish a "Rumor Control Cen-
ter" to check out citizen reported
rumors, establish the facts and
dispel any false rumor "before it
can do any more damage."
"In the absence of newspapers
and in the light of the present
situation, I urge every citizen of
the Detroit metropolitan area to
make use of the Rumor Control
Center," the mayor said.
The strike is Detroit's second
major newspaper strike in three
years. In 1964, both the News and"
the Free Press were shut down for
143 days during a strike by the
Three interim papers, the De-
troit Daily Express; the Daily Press
and the Daily Dispatch were pub-
lished during. the early weeks of
the strike, but all were shut down
by the Teamsters.
MILWAUKEE, Wis.(P) - School
Superintendent Richard P. Gou-
sha met in a marathon session
yesterday with Milwaukee Teach-
ers Educations Association leaders
who have threatened to close some
Inner Core schools unless they
were made "safe for children and
Under discussion was whether
the problem, climaxed in recent
weeks by rowdy demonstrations
for "integrated" history courses,
"soul food" in school cafeterias
and more Negro kitchen_ help,
could be solved by a series of
'neetings with parents and stu-
Vapdalism in city schools
amounted to $215,063 last year,
the board reported earlier, com-
pared with $146,940 in 1966.
T h e association, bargainingt
agent for city teachers, said that
as many as six fires have been
reported in a single day at one
school, and added that "fire alarms
are turned in at such frequency
that the children now fail to res-
pond to a real fire."
Donald Baer, executive secre-
tary of the MTEA, wanted im-
mediate action. The school board's
attitude, he said, "seems to be that
we'll wait until the kids run out
MTEA President Donald A. Feil-
back, said in a complaint present-
ed to the board Wedensday night
that he could offer no easy solu-
tion, but said it was clear that
"it may be necessary to close the
buildings until such time as you
can insure safety for the children
and the staff.
"Disturbances in several of our
schools have reached the magn-
itude that the staff is no longer
able to control. Our teachers have
The demonstrations began last
October, to support demands for,
'I - = ---- - ---- --
'integrated" history courses show -
ing the part Negroes had in the
development of the United States.
Arthur Rumph, social studiesI
coordinator for the system, said
that textbook publishers ''virtually
ignore 'the Negro" in standard
books on American Negro history
texts, but ordered several hundred
as supplementary material for five
high schools. The school system
issued a booklet of its own as
well, but Rumpf said both mea-
sures offered only a "tempor-
Librarians said the voluntary
texts got little use and demon-
strators insisted that they wanted
the Negro oriented material made
part of regular courses.
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