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March 11, 1970 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1970-03-11

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~Iw idit~jan Daih
Seventy-nine years of editorial freedom
Edited and managed by students of the University of Michigan
420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich. News Phone:
Editorials printed in The Michigan Doily express the individual opinions of staff wr
or the editors. This must be noted in otl'reprints.

Birth of the Ann Arbor housing gyp





Summary suspension:.
For an ecumenical revolt

Hays, in close cooperation with.Presi-
dent Robben Fleming, has taken a major
step in the attack on the radical move-
ment and the student body at large.
Dean Hays has summarily suspended
Robert Parsons, a political science stu-
dent, on the basis of charges arising
from the GE recruiter protest. Haystook
his action on the basis of "sworn affi-
davits," without allowing Parsons even
the courtesy of a hearing before he
ordered suspension.
There are a host of issues involved.
FOR ONE THING, Hays acted first -
presuming guilt - and now offers
Parsons a hearing if the latter wishes to
try to prove his innocence. The distortion
of due process involved here (". . . guilty
until proven innocent"?) is excrutiatingly
NTot, it seems, to Dean Hays.
Second, even had Hays employed the
most scrupulous due process here, he had
no jurisdiction in the case in the first
place. By no stretch' of the imagination
can the charges -leveled against Parsons
be construed as "academic offenses." By
what right ,then, does the faculty (either
the dean of the faculty-dominated ad-
ministrative board) presume to mete out
justice here?
AND .FURTHER STILL: Parsons is al-
ready scheduled to face criminal
charges of the same nature and based
on the same incident as the charges
enumerated by Hays. Parson's suspension,
therefore, is a flagrant case of double
jeopardy (if not in strict legal terms,
then in fact), and it goes a long way
toward prejudicing the result of his civil
trial. No University court - not admin-
istrative, not faculty, not student - has
any business claimingjurisdiction when
civil officials are already involved.
As Marty McLaughlin points out else-
Where on this page, the thrust of this
particular act of repression is not directed
solely - or even primarily - against
Robert Parsons. The suspension is really
aimed at two, often-overlapping move-
ments which have now evidently pressed
the administration to the breaking point.
First, this is a specific attack on a
specific front. We know that when stu-
dents campaign for changes whose im-
pact is primarily internal, they can un-
doubtedly bring on repression. But when
student attacks go beyond the' Univer-
sity - when they strike directly at the in-
terests which the University serves -the
pressure upon administrators to react
strongly increases tenfold. They mnust
show their overseers - the military or
Editorial Director Managing Editor
JIM NEUBACHER ......................News Editor
NADINE COHODAS ...... ........Feature Editor
ALEXA CANADY ................Editorial Page Editor
BRUCE LEVINE ................Editorial Page Editor
B. A. PERRY.......................Arts Director
LAURIE HARRIS.................Arts PageD dtor
JUDYr KAHN ...............Personnel Director
DAN ZWERDLING................Magazine Editor
ERIC SIEGEL, Sports Editor
PAT ATKINS, Executive Sports Editor
PHIL HERTZ..............Associate Sports Editor
LEE KIRK .................Associate Sports Editor
BILL DINNER...........Contributing Sports Editor
CHRIS TERAS ..t........contributing Sports Editor

corporations, in the forefront - that
their campus is still safe for recruiting,
for war research, for the training of
WE RECALL, for example, that the last
time administrators at Michigan ser-
iously discussed political suspension was
two years ago. The object of those discus-
sions were a handful of radicals who had
refused to leave a secret conference be-
tween University officials and a Penta-
gon research attache.
The parallel to the Parsons case is ob-
vious. The reaction of University admin-
istrators becomes more hysterical t h e
closer those activists strike at the powers
which those administrators serve.
Secondly, the Parsons suspension is
aimed at the student movement in gen-
eral, especially at its hard-won gains' in
power terms.
For years students on this campus have
been fighting step by step to wrest power
over their lives away from administrators
and faculty deans. Few struggles in re-
cent memory have not had to deal with
this question of power, either directly or
in the cou'rse of fighting for some other
Thus far, the fight against general ad-
ministrative authoritarianism has been
going well for us. Thus far we have been
on the offensive.
IF SUMMARY suspension can be handed
down now - and if it is accepted
without a struggle - the setback for the
student body would be tremendous. It is
an old tactic to introduce an unpopular
innovation when reaction seems unlikely:
in that way it can be used again and
again in the future, each time in the
face of less and less indignation.
Just so in today's case.
If the campus does not resist summary
suspension now - no matter how cloudy
or confused the specific details of the
case - it is that much less likely to fight
the next time, even when the details are
It has become a truism on the left that
the only way to fight repression is to ig-
nore it, swear that it "won't stop us," and
to continue doing what you were doing
in the first place., The truism is useful in
part. Certainly we cannot allow ourselves
to be totally thrown onto the defensive.
But to refuse to recognize repression as
a danger and to fight it as such is the
same as declaring in war that one will
fight only offensive campaigns - and
to refuse to counter the enemy's own of-
fensive thrusts..
In short, the administration's goals are
both immediate and long-term, b o t h
specific and all-inclusive. Our reaction
must be equally ecumenical.
A COALITION of groups is calling a diag
rally for Thursday at noon. T h a t
group intends to march on to the LS&A
building, there to occupy Dean Hays's
office. This seems to us a proper action.
It is specific as to its immediate target.
It is determined in its nature. All who
are concerned' with maintaining the
strength of students' rights and the radi-
cal movement must work to build t h a t
Thursday action.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: Daniel Boothby is a
member of Ann Arbor International Social-
ists. This is the second of three parts.)
DURING THE fifties the rapid expan-
sion of the. University's Ann Arbor
campus combined with slow growth of
private apartment facilities to produce
law vacancy rates and high rents for Ann
Arbor students. But students were not
the only ones affected by Ann Arbor's
high rents. According to the Ann Arbor
City Planning Department, "The Univer-
sity student population places high de-
mand on rental housing and results in
atypical housing characteristics."
Just how atypical these housings char-
acteristics are is easily shown. First, it
must be realized that in 1960, 46.4 per
cent of Ann Arbor's housing units were
rented, as opposed to 26.9 per cent in
urban Michigan. Thus Ann Arbor's rental
market has a disproportionate influence
on the total Ann Arbor housing market.
Ann Arbor median rent per month in
1960 was $99, as compared to $77 for
urban Michigan. Median rent per person
for Ann Arbor was around $49.50, as com-
pared to $32.92 for urban Michigan.
Median 1960 rents in Ann Arbor were
obviously high. Was this due to a pattern
of a normal number of inexpensive apart-
ments? A quick glance at rental distribu-
tion data furnishes the answer.
IN 1960 APPROXIMATELY 15 per cent
of all apartments in urban Michigan rented
for between $40 and $59. In Ann Arbor
around 6 per cent fell within this range.
In urban Michigan around 33 per cent
of all apartments rented for $60 to $79;
12 per cent of Ann Arbor apartments fell
within this range. At the other end of
the scale, 23 per cent of Ann Arbor

rents were over $120 compared with eight
per cent for urban Michigan.
From such data as this, Professor
Thomas Moore, formerly of the Univer-
sity of Michigan estimated a need of
1,401 units of low-income family housing
for Ann Arbor in 1960. However, P r o f.
Moore made no attempt to estimate the
additional need for single student orient-
ed and moderate income oriented apart-
Arbor are also priced much higher than
in urban Michigan as a whole: $18,100
median for Ann Arbor in 1960, $12,500 for
urban Michigan. Not only is Ann Arbor's
owner-occupid sector less important than
urban Michigan's, prices of owner-occu-
pied homes are concentrated in the upper
half of the urban Michigan market.
The effects of Ann Arbor's high-priced
housing market on its population's char-
acteristics are perhaps best summarized
in another statement made by the City
Planning Department. "Because of Ann
Arbor's desirable image as a living en-
vironment, it has become the home of
many affluent residents who commute to
employment in the Detroit area. Con-
versely, the relatively high cost of living
prompts many low and middle .income
wage earners to work inAi Arbor but
live elsewhere."
A quick glance at figures drawn from
the 1960 population census and the 1958
busines census reveal just how true this
statement is. For instance, from 1950 to
1960 employment of residents in retail
trade grew more slowly for Anti Arbor
than for Washtenaw County. During the
same period employment of sales people
grew more rapidly for Ann Arbor firms

than for Washtenaw County firms. In
1958, 56.4 per cent of Washtenaw County's
salespeople were employed in Ann Ar-
bor; by 1963 the figure had reached 59.1
per cent. However, in 1960 only 39.3 per
cent of Washtenaw County's salespeople
lived in Ann Arbor.
Because retail trade employs a h i g h
percentage of female and part-time em-
ployees, many of whom work to supple-Y
ment family income, it is among the
low paying jobs least likely to force em-
ployees to commute. Yet to quote the
Planning Commission once again: ". . . a
substantial number of non-residents are
employed as salespeople in Ann Arbor."
to-low-income groups is a new phenomenon
in Ann Arbor. In 1938 Prof. Richard Rat-
cliffe of the School of Business Admin-
istration studied housing conditions of
non-academic University employees and
Ann Arbor industrial employees. He found
that 101/ per cent of the University em-
ployees and 401/ per cent of the indus-
trial employees were forced to commute
due to lack of low-cost housing.
This report furnishes us with a starting
point for a brief history of the Ann Ar-
bor housing market.
In 1938 Ann Arbor was basically a
small town with a big university - ,its
population was around 40,000, including
students. The housing supply was pro-y
bably typical of Michigan towns of 25,000
to 35,000 at the time. However, the pre-
sence of the University created an un-
usually large demand for low-cost rental,
housing. Married students and non-aca-
demic employees probably occupied most of
the low-cost housing, forcing the lower
paid industrial employees to commute.

Due to rent control during and after
the war, this situation for non-student
renters probably lasted until around 1950.
During the fifties University expansion
led to increasing student encroachment on
the low-cost rental market. This led (as
previously mentioned) to falling vacancy
rates and rapidly rising rents for what
had previously been low and moderate
rent units. It was no longer simple "ex-
cess" low-income families who could not
find housing in Ann Arbor. During the
fifties almost all low- and moderate-in-
come families were forced out of Ann Ar-
JUST HOW SWIFT and how complete
this banishment was is revealed by com-
parison of 1950 and 1960 income distribu-
tion figures. In 1950. Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti
and urban Michigan's family income dis-
tributions were remarkable simfilar. Ann
Arbor was slightly underrepresented in
low and moderate incomes and slightly
over-represented in high incomes. A n n
Arbor median income was $3,881, Ypsilanti
median income was $3,401, and urban
Michigan median income was $3,839.
By 1960 the situation had changed dra-
matically. 55 per cent, of Ann Arbor
families made over $7,000, as compared
to 41.8 per cent for Ypsilanti and 36.6
per cent for urban Michigan. 31.3 per cent
of Ann Arbor families made over $8.000, as
compared to 18.8 per cent for Ypsilanti
and 15.8 per cent for urban Michigan.
Ann Arbor median family income for
1960 was $7.550; Ypsilanti's was $6.304 and
urban Michigan's $6.590. Low income
families (aside from students) had almost
disappeared from Ann Arbor by 1960; the
percentage of medium income families had
dropped precipitously.


BAM gets the run-around

(Editor's Note: The following ar-
ticle was written by a member of
the Black Action Movement (BAM).
ON FEB. 5, 1970 BAM presented
specific and carefully re-
searched demands on the Univer-
sity. While the University admin-
istration graciously decided not to
ignore our demands, we were given
familiar and largely ritualistic re-
-Prediction of dire conse-
quences: If the University increas-
ed black admissions and financial
aid to the levels which BAM de-
manded, this would lead to lower-
ed standards and would place an
impossible burden on the Generall
Fund Budget.
-Now is not the time: Natural-

-We must not yield to press-
ure: If BAM takes extralegal steps,
we will not get what we want; if
BAM takes legal steps, we will not
get what we request. Quite simply,
every administrator takes the
position: "I'll do it, but I don't
want it to look like I was forced."
Read the words of objective am-
bivalence: "You are alienating
your support" (Who? the silent
majority?) ... "If you don't like
it here, leave!" (Back to Africa?)
.. "You want preferential treat-
ment." (Eighty-two per cent of
the college age population of the
state is white, over ninety-five per
cent of the. University is white)
..n" Standards will fall." (What
about teaching standards?) .. . .
"You want quotas or open admis-

'. .we have raised questions and made de-
mands which have a basis in justice and moral.
ity. Being a place of dull and tawdry intrigue,
and being an institution that fosters the pettiest
ambition and deprives men of their humanistic
instincts, the University is at a loss to deal with
moral questions."
S .}:'s. :"a.? :" "{.?"r:': s}:"}:?S} .... "" . .. }

ards. and services are political
considerations long before they
become matters of conscience at
the University. Though our de-
mands have always brought forth
highly creditable displays of feel-
ing, state politics dictates that our
program remain substantially un-
met. Because black people do not
have their fair share of political
power in the state, we "can not
expect to" get what we need at the
University. Our role must be as
supplicants to the throne clutching
at the hem of power.
WITH RESPECT to our de-
mands, top University administra-
tors have concluded that it would
be feasible to try to double the
number of "disadvantaged" stu-
dents by the fall of 1973. It was
agreed by all that. it was great
pity that the University could not
do more, but then it would be
hard enough to do even this. Of
course, after 1973, the administra-
tion cannot forsee where the
money will come from to continue
the program.
A cursory look at the University
will show that not only the ad-
ministration is to be faulted for
its negligence. We can agree that
the power to change the Univer-
sity for our betterment is not
found only in the Administrative
Palace. BAM members are aware
that deans, department heads,
Senate Assembly, and other fac-
ulty groups have benignly neglect-
ed our demands. Silent majorities
have a way of expressing their
feelings, irrespective of commit-
ments handed down from the
throne room.
Moreover, we need not look any
further than top administrative,
and faculty positions to see that
black people were not miraculously
made as free as white people with
the passage of a few civil rights
laws. The extraordinary solutions
which black people seek cannot be
built on assumptions of black in-
feriority and fear of white re-
BAM has made its minimum
demands; the University has made
an. unacceptable response to us.
It is time to stop playing games
with the BAM demands.

ly, the University is not opposed
for all time to increasing black
admissions to ten per cent and
providing sufficient financial aid,
but the pressure now is too great
in other areas. This argument,
which tends to be repeated and
put to permanent use suggests
that BAM can always expect to
compete in the scramble for
crumbs leftover from the general
-The costs are clear, but the
gains are uncertain: The commit-
ment being proposed is that the
University's direct investment in
its opportunity program be raised
from $1,000,000 to $3,000,000 with-
in four years . . . . (However) at
some point it is clear that the
student is far better off to enter
a college where the .competition
is less severe and where the course
options are less academically
-How would we do it? We
wouldn't want to get rid of the
intercollegiate athletics program
or the History department, now
would we?

sions." (Don't put words in our
mouths.) . . . . Be realistic. (We
are.) . . . . "Be rational." (By
whose definition?) ....."You can't
win!" (When we lose, you lose
THESE, NOTIONS are so fam-
iliar that we see them not as sug-
gesting a well-defined political
tendency, but as a miscellany of
slogans and sentiments to be
trotted out on ceremonial occa-
sions like the Regent's meetings.
Unfortunately, we have raised
questions and 'made demands
which have a basis in justice and
morality. Being a place of dull and
tawdry intrigue, and being an in-
stitution that fosters the pettiest
ambition and deprives men of
their humanistic instincts, the
University is at a loss to deal with
moral questions.
Rather, the University perfers
to deal with "political realities."
Politics result from a conflict of
interests, not of consciences. Pure
self-interest leads to more intense
opinions. Status, salaries, stand-

Repression at the 'U'
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Mart :McLaughlin is President of SOC and a member
of Ann Arbor International Socialists.)
THE SUSPENSION of Bob Parsons last weekend could be a cross-
roads for the radical left on this campus. The University adminis-
tration has removed the gloves and revaled the P"-ntial pithoritar-
ianism of the University and the naked force which is necessary to
keep any totally undemocratic institution functioning in times of
Parsons has been accused of assault by the director of the Engin-
eering Placement Services, John Young, in connection with t h e
demonstration against the recruiter for General Electric. A criminal
case is now pending in the Ann Arbor civil courts; but there 'has been
no conviction by a jury; so, under the law,Parsons is innocent.
the law or the truth, as President Fleming's testimony in the LS & A
sit-in trials demonstrates. In complete disregard of due process, the
dean of the LS & A school, William Hays, summarily suspended Par-
sons without giving him any chance to defend himself before a jury
of his peers, i.e. students, and with no notice or warning of any kind.
Instead, there will be, some time in the future a hearing of the
LS&A Administrative Board to determine whether the suspension
should be lifted. Parsons is thus presumed guilty and punished; then,
if he can positively 'prove his innocence, the punishment may cease.
This procedure is so clearly a violation of basic civil liberties that
it is hard to see why the administration even attempts to get away
with it. Even during McCarthy's time, civil libertarian sentiment'on
this campus was strong enough to prevent such arbitrary, star cham-
ber proceedings.
Those faculty members in Senate Assembly who were so incensed
when people from SDS infringed on the inalienable right of students
tot be recruited into the Army, go to Vietnam, and commit genocide:
will they be equally disturbed about this question of liberty? One of
the niost interesting developments of the next few days and weeks will
be the reaction of liberal faculty members. It should be a fascinating
THERE ARE SEVERAL FACTS about this case that illuminate
the strategy of the University administration. Parsons has already
satisfied, all the requirements for graduation. The administration
knew this .when they decided to suspend him, and apparenty they
knew the suspension would only serve to put 'SUSPENDED' on his
Now certainly the effect of this should not be played down. Un-
like students who voluntarily withdraw from school, Parsons cannot
now re-enter Michigan at will. And when he leaves here to apply
either for a job or to another University, his transcript ("SUSPEND-
ED" verdict and all) will follow ham.
Nevertheless, for the amount of risk they are running here, Hays
and Fleming are certainly not getting their money's worth. Suspen-
sion is neither the most retributive nor the most deterring response
which these two could have cooked up. Why, then, have they done it?
THE ONLY EXPLANATION that comes to mind is that they de-
liberately chose Parsons because his case appears confused, in the hope
that the libertarian sections of the campus community will be dis-
tracted by the plethora of Irrelevant details and will ignore the real
issue. Thus, this is a test case: the administration's purpose is to set
a precedent so that any time they feel that a given student is a dan-
ger, that student can be pitched out on his ear. Clearly, then, the
people who are threatened by this type of arbitrary repression are
not just Bob Parsons and SDS, but all radicals and dissidents gen-
It strikes me as very unusual for the sophisticated corporate lib-
erals who form the core of the administration at this University to
resort to the mailed fist as a response to student agitation. Has the
master of comprom and cooptation, Robben Fleming, finally run
out of room to maneuver? We can hope so; for if so, his days are
More likely though, the administration has been taken off bal-
ance by the force and vigour of the campaign against military and
corporate 'recruiting.
ed by all this that they cannot adopt the, traditional stall-until-finals
tactic. Since SDS is an easier (because more isolated) target than
BAM, SDS is being readied for the chopping block.
Perhaps 8DS is not without responsibility for its own isolation.
Nevertheless, the left had btter not stand idly by while individuals
and groups are picked off one by one.
The administration's action against Bob Parsons should be fought
directly and physically. Many students will become involved in this
issue because of the civil liberties aspect - that is all to the good.
Civil liberties is a real political issue that deserves attention.




Page Editor

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