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June 14, 1967 - Image 2

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1967-06-14

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Seventy-Sixth Year

r. a.

'She's Not Crazy

., u- -

ere P ntin a2Ale 4 2,ANN O MICH.
Trruth win pMau~ MAYNARD ST., ANARBOR, Mc.

NEWs PHONE: 764-05521

Editorials printed in The Michigan Daily express the individual opinions of staff writers
or the editors. This must be nioted in all reprints.





An Hour With Muhammad Ali

m. I

Muhammad Ali is one of today's
most controversial personalities. His re-
fusal to enter the armed forces because
of his intense moral and religious be-
liefs has made him a symbol to to-
day's youth; vigorously chastised by
those who support 'the 'present sys-
tem, and just as zealously defended by
those who look beyond the system to
the rights and freedoips of the indi-
vidual. In either case, one is either for
or against him: there is no middle
During an interview in his room at
Detroit's Sheraton-Cadillac Hotel, I be-
came increasingly aware of the real
Muhammad Al.
Not the wild-emotion-irrational-
popoff showmanship of Cassius Clay,
but the intense, dedicated, intelligent
and sincere personality of a man deep-
ly concerned with the world in gen-
eral, his race and himself in particu-
He felt, that because of his pending
court cases and appeals, within the
Selective Service System, he could not
discuss his personal problems concern-
ing the draft, but he appeared eager
to discuss and explain his philosophy
of religion and his views on civil rights.
The interview lasted close to an hour,
and because Ali was kind enough to
allow the use of a tape recorder, every-
-thing said is printed verbatim.
The following is the first part of a
text of selected portions of the inter-
view. No changes, or corrections, were
made in the champ's style of speech.
DAILY: How would you like to begin?
Ali: This is the heavyweight cham-
pion of the whole world, the fastest,
the quickest, the most classiest, skillful,
scientific creative fighter that was
ever born. The onliest sport, the onliest
prophet that ever hit the boxing game:
Muhammad All, live, in color reporting
to you from ABC's Wide World of
Sports with Howard Cosell.
Daily: More seriously now. What do
you feel your religion offers you?
Ali: Well, number one: peace, peace
of mind; being happy, a knowledge of
self, a knowledge of my history, a
knowledge of others, a knowledge of
the times that we're living in today,
and also it offers me a knowledge of
living clean, and offers me freedom,
justice, and equality, it offers me a
'unity and brotherhood with some 750
million more people, that I couldn't'
cling to and recognize as brothers un-
der the Baptist-Christian religion, and
it offers me the brotherly love and
unity of some 500 more thousand Mus-
lims throughout the United States.
And I could go on days talking about
the things it offers me. It offers me a
dignity and race respect, it teachers
me what to do and what not to do,
where to go and where not to go, and
this keeps me from getting into all the
mob fights and riots and the racial
conflicts that we have with the forced
integrators and it keeps me out of that
bunch, and it offers me, as 'I said,
peace of mind, freedom, justice and
Daily: Turning the question around,
what do you feel you can offer to your
Ali: Well, all I can offer to my re-
ligion, and all of us who would like
to go down in history as doing some-
thing great, I'd like to do what I am
doing; ministering, and traveling the
country and ministering to youth and
teaching them about the clean living,
no smoking, no drinking, no chasing

around after all-type women and liv-
ing a clean life morally and spiritual-
ly, and this is what I like to offer
converts to it. And teaching people to
obey the laws of the land as long as
it don't conflict with their religious be-
liefs, and also what I'd like to offer
is the spirit of the self-help program
of our leader and teacher the Hon-
orable Elijah Mohammed, of doing for
self, quit begging and asking the whites
to clean up the ghettos and the slums,
and get out and clean up your own
slums and your own ghettos; quit beg-
ging people and make an effort to'
clean up yourself. How can we expect
to be the equal of our master when

a, A
+ 1967, The Rcgisr
1 and Tribune S ndicate ,

MT. VERNON, Ala.-"I'm not
crazy," said Miss Inez Pruitt. "But
if they keep this up, I'm sure
going to end up crazy."
As Miss Pruitt spoke, she was
sitting in a small visiting room in
Searcy State Mental Hospital. She
had been brought to the room un-
der guard, like a prisoner, and
nurses kept coming by to check
on her.
The 44-year-old Negro lady was
committed to the mental hospital
last week, after an incident in
the Mobile County welfare office.
Miss Pruitt was not examined by
a psychiatrist before she was put
away. Her sister, employer, and
friends opposed committing her.
But Probate Judge John L. Moore,
acting on the testimony of three
welfare officials and a Mobile
General Hospital intern, sent her
to Searcy on May 24.
Miss Pruitt hashad a crippled
left hand and leg since childhood.
She had an operation for can-
cer of the left leg last November.
Then in February, she spent a
month in the hospital with pneu-
the hospital, she began working
several days a week as a house-
keeper for Mrs. Darlene Alford
of Wilmer. But, says Miss Pruitt,
her left leg started swelling, and
her knee became as big as a vol-
leyball. On May 12, she went to
see Dr. William Thomas, an in -
tern at Mobile General.
"I told her she shouldn't work
for a month, but stay off the leg
and keep it propped up," the doc-
tor recalls. When Miss Pruitt said
she couldn't afford to quit work-
ing, Thomas gave her a statement
to prove her medical disability so
she could qualify for welfare.
On May 15, Miss Pruitt went to
the welfare office and gave the
medical statement to her case
worker, Miss Carolyn Gideon.
Thererare different versions of
what happened next.
According to Miss Pruitt, the
case worker "told me that I
couldn't have Any welfare money,
that I was faking, and that I
could really work. She made fun,
of my condition. When she raised
a leg to kick me, I lost my tem-
per and hit her with my umbrel-
la. I apologized afterwards."
But Miss Gideon denies abusing

Miss Pruitt or trying to kick her.
Miss Pruitt "did not hurt me with
the umbrella," Miss Gideon said.
WELFARE authorities arranged
to have the police take Miss Pruitt
to Mobile General Hospital on
May 19. There she was examined
by Dr. Thomas.
"I looked her over and classi-
fied her a paranoid schizophrenic."
the doctor said last week. "Of
course," he added, 'Ism not psy-
After being examined, Miss Pru-
itt was taken to the Holcumbe
Medical Unit, the psychiatric de-
partment of Mobile General Hos-
pital. Normally. Holcumbe patients
are examined by a visiting psy-
chiatrist before they are com-
mitted to Searcy.
But Dr Ronald B. Mershon, vis-
iting psychiatrist for May, said "I
don't know her. I never saw the
Was this proper procedure in
such a case? "Our interns are very
good." said Mershon, "and the
head nurse at Holcumbe is as good
as Someo f the psychiatrists."
But Mershon added, "Normally.
there would have to be an OK
from relatives to commit her (Miss
Pruitt). I've never heard of a
case handled like this."
the Mobile welfare office, said
that under Alabama law, appli-
cants must be "permanently dis-
abled" to qualify for welfare: "By
putting her in Searcy, we may be
able to get medical evidence that
can get her on welfare for the
rest of her life." However, the
law also says that. people can-
not receive welfare while they
are in a mental institution.
Mrs. Alford - who hired Miss
Pruitt after the operation - said
Miss Pruitt should not be com-
mitted. "She's not crazy, said
Mrs. Alford. "In fact, she's the
best housekeeper I've ever had.
My three children loved her."
Miss Pruitt said that because
of her health, she is supposed
to receive medication and to be
on a low-salt diet. But at Searcy,
she said, "they took my pills away
from me when I came here .
and they won't let me have my
special food."
(Reprinted from the Southern



The Wailing Wall
Letters to the Editor

tribute to my religion and spreading it.
DAILY: Now about the Negro working
for himself, must he accept his role
as depending only upon himself and
refusing the help of the white man?
Ali: Number one. We don't use the
term Negro.
Daily: Black?
Ali: Yeah. Now I didn't say we can't
trust the white man. It's good to have
help. It's not all their own job (the
black man's) - they need help, they
have to have help. But what I said,
they should make some effort to do
for self and offer to others to want to
help, without just constantly begging
and begging and laying on other men's
doorstep, and run him out of his neigh-
borhood and run him off his beaches
and run him out of his restaurants,
and you yourself won't clean up and
do for your own self. Clean up yourself.
We ask the people and the whites to
clean up our slums, and ghettos and
rats. Well if you won't clean up your
own rats and your own roaches you
can't appreciate it. And then to turn
around and ask the whites for equal-
ity; it's really silly for the slave to ask
the master for equality, that would be
embarrassing to the master and to the
eyes of the civilized world, the intelli-
gent world, to now recognize the slave
as his equal when he's not ready to be
nowhere near the master's equal.
So instead of asking the master to
clean up the slums and the ghettos,
what the Honorable Elijah Mohammed
teaches us is that we should make some
effort to clean it up and help ourselves
... because, clean up the people main-
ly. The slum is not in the ghetto, the
slum is in the people. You can take a
people and put them in a trillion dol-
lar housing project and if they're not
right internally and mentally, they will
take a trillion dollar project and in six
months time make it a slum. But you
can take the same people and put them
in a slum, and clean them up mentally
and internally, then they can make the
slum a paradise. So the problem, and
getting to the root of it is not in the
slum, it's in the people. People make
slums, slums don't make the people.
Daily: It appears then that you some-
what follow the line advocated by
Stokely Carmichael and the black pow-
er movement.
Ali: Stokely Carmichael is repeating'
what the Honorable Elijah Mohammed
hs been teaching for 36 years. We don't
follow Stokely Carmichael; he's a black
brother of mine who means right and
is doing a good job, but we follow Elijah
Mohammed. I don't know who he fol-
lows, but what he's saying is from the
teachings of Elijah Mohammed. He's
been teaching us for 36 years in Amer-
ica. All this black power and new talk
is nothing new to us.
Copyright, 1967, The Michigan Daily
Muhammad Ali is in Detroit this
week to fight two exhibition matches
in a six bout card at Cobo Hall to-
morrow at 8:30 p.m. This will be the
first time that the champ has fought
in Detroit and it gives all those who

ANews Media
In recent days letters have ap-
peared in this column criticizing
the American press for not pre-
senting fair coverage to the claims
and opinions of the Arab side in
the current Middle East crisis.
Strangely, this complaint is lodg-
ed also by a representative of Arab
students on campus, whose views
have been aired quite extensively
on these pages during the last
few weeks. However, there may
indeed by a kernel of truth in
his allegations, though he mis-
labels it. The Arab view gets
considerable coverage, but little
support or sympathy. Let me ex-
Our news media have presented
us with pictures of many Arab
leaders and are full of quotations
from their speeches and official
statements, as well as informal
interviews. Everyone knows that
there are hundreds of thousands
of Arab refugees in UN-support-
ed camps just outside Israel's
borders. It is common knowledge
that Arab leasders incessantly call
upon each other to unite and
liquidate Israel. There is general
awareness in this country that
some Arab states are ruled by
r-actionary monarchs, and the
rest by leftist dictators or mili-
tary cliques largely supported and
armed by the Soviet bloc. It is
known that these leaders say
they want social and economic
progress, but have made disap-
pointingly few advances. It is re-
ported that Egyptian forces num-
bering 40,000 have been engaged
:ith Yemenis in a controversial
armed conflict for five years. Much
more is known and extensively
covered here, in spite of the dif-
ficulty of finding out exactly what
is happening in countries whose
leaders hold only rare news con-
ferences and lack freedom of the
DESPITE this coverage, how-
ever, there is little by way of
warm acceptance and encourage-
ment on the part of the Ameri-
can press. This should surprise
no one, and we need not apologize
for it. We do not seek "final" so-
lutions. We do not idealize dic-
tatorship. We do not support holy
wars of extermination. We favor
democratic, representative govern-
ment. We agree that refugees
have natural and inalienable
rights, but disavow the solution

of their problems by means of
violence, or genocidal holy wars.
We admire those who make out-
standing progress in social and
economic development in the face
of great difficulty, but reject those
who ransom their national riches
for armaments which serve to
make possible international folly
endangering world peace and se-
Arab aims and methods are in-
congruent with curs Arab stu
dents who have been made wel-
come here to learn from us should
study our attitudes closely.
We have heard enough cries
from the Arabs and their sup-
porters about hearing their side.
It has been heard, judged and
rejected by a majority of our citi-
-B. D. Fine, Grad

. . i\... .
Israel Rally
The Daily apologizes for a let-
ter in yesterday's Letters column
which falsely described certain
participants at a recent pro-Israel
public meeting as having fascist
politics and pursuing deliberate-
ly disruptive behavior at the meet-
ing. We regret the insulting phys-
ical descriptions contained in the
letter, and the untrue allegation
that those referred to came as an
organizational activity of SDS,
rather than as individuals (not
all of whom in fact were members
of SDS). The Daily disavows the
legitimacy of the account in yes-
terday's letter of the proceedings
of the meeting.


Farewell, To Arms

"I've Still Got Myw eciz' Pri'xite,
Faster-Than-Truth Air 1Force"
f- 't-m
v O
" I

Bill Mauldin, Pulitzer Prize-
winning editorial cartoonist for
The Sun-Times, has been cov-
ering the outbreak of hostilities
in the Middle East. Now he is
heading home. In this report,
written Thursday, he tells of ac-
tion viewed on Wednesday.
VIENNA - Wednesday night I
caught an El Al Israel Airlines
flight here from Tel Aviv. This Is-
raeli national airline isvthe only
one operating at the moment.
I asked an 'El Al agent if the
company wasn't worried some
humiliated Egyptian pilot might
seek glory and redemption by
shooting down the big jetliner.
"They haven't got much stuff
left," the agent said.
Every Israeli prediction I have
heard so far concerning Arabs has
turned out accurate, so this was
good enough for me and I took
my seat on the plane.
"Shalom," the'stewardess said to
me. That is the standard Israeli
greeting. It means peace. She con-
"Do you know what they're say-
ing in Arab countries? They're
saying we had American help."
She was so furious she stamped
on the galley floor.
"Shalom yourself," I said. "I
hate to have to tell you this, but
you did have American help."
"That's lie," she said, with fire
in her eye. "Your country de-
clared itself neutral and this time
I hope your President doesn't try
to get us to stop beating them
until they admit who beat them.
"Why do you try to tell me we
had American help?"
"Because I was there and I have
been on your side all along," I
said. "Now be a good girl and hand
me a pillow and offer me a drink."
MY FLIGHT out ended a long
day spent mostly in the Gaza talk-
ing with kibbutz dwellers who had
been under attack, and visiting Is-
raeli mortar positions :that were
firing back at diehards continuing
their sniper activity out of Gaza
city itself.
Everywhere I went Wednesday
I found war correspondents o'f all
nationalities careening about in
cars. The countryside was sudden-
ly swarming with the press. This
is always a sure sign of victory in
modern warfare. Easily the biggest
hazaird of a jourvnaistin Israel

and holding back, the tiny coun rr
took the gravest possible risk and
guaranteed itself the loss of many
young lives when fighting started.
Israelis I have talked with-
especially in places like the kib-
butzes, where head, heart and
hands of strong youth are assets
beyond imagination-are generally
agreed that restraint was indeed
a political necessity, despite its
military hazards.
However, this time they are
quietly but grimly and somewhat
bitterly determined that this must
not be allowed to happen to yet
another generation in the future.
I, for one, believe they mean it.
As of Wednesday night, Israeli
,officials had not yet released casu-
alty lists, but it is generally as-
sumed that casualties will be
shockingly high. On Tuesday in
Jerusalem, I learned the civilian
count in that city alone after one,
night's shelling was over 500-
some of them wounded for the
second time when a hospital was
shelled twice
I have yet' to hear anyone get
loudly emotional about human
losses, but in Israel they do value
people highly, partly because they
are short-handed anyway, and
there is a deep anger that this
stupid bloodbath had to take
wandered alone into a cow barn
and found one of those offbeat
bits of pathos you often stumble
onto in wars. The barn had been
clobbered by Arab artillery and
more than half the bovine popula-
tion of the kibbutz had earned
Purple Hearts the hard way.
(No humans were killed in this
particular place.)
The dead and hopelessly wound-
ed animals had been carted off
for butchering. The surviyors, in-
cluding about a hundred calves,
with their hides ripped and punc-
tured in various ways by shell
fragments, stood and lay about,
staring back at me with that sad,
patient, benign expression peculiar
to cattle.
One calf had lost an eye in the
attack and was too weak from
shock or bleeding to even raise its
head from the floor but managed
to look sweetly upward with the
remaining eyes.
Somehow that calf got to me.
I think that was when I decided



oviets Gain in Middle East

The Soviet Union is winning an
undeserved victory in the Middle
East crisis.
She is winning this victory on
a silver platter, handed to her by
this administration and by every-
one in this country who persists
in feeling that "building bridges"
to Communism outweighs every
and all Communist terror, aggres-
sion, subversion and outright com-
At the outset of the Middle East
crisis, if only for a moment, there
was almost a united revulsion in
this country at the obvious fact
that the Soviets-through sup-
port of such Arab socialist leaders
as Gamal Abdel Nasser - had
been the guiding hand in the
opening of hostilities in the area.
It was almost universally con-

flames of war for its own politi-
cal advantage.
(As discussed in an earlier col-
umn, the obvious long-range in-
terests of the Soviets in setting
the Middle East aflame, aside from
the obvious advantages of a diver-
sion from Vietnam, are in gain-
ing control of the land bridge to
North Africa and of the shipping
lanes of the Suez-Red Sea sys-
Instead of pressing the case
against Soviet aggression, or their
support of it, the path of Ameri-
can diplomacy quickly turned to
enlisting Soviet support for a
cease-fire which, in turn, meant
a turnabout soft-pedalling of the
Soviet role in starting the war in
the first place.
Actually, there is ample reason
to believe that the Soviets would

less they feel the military cause
to be.
SADLY, but in a way under-
standably, there are many who
rush to help them in this. The
most sincere of these people, ob-
viously, are doing it on the basis
of preferring peace in the Middle
East at any price. I happento
feel that they are shortsighted-
just as shortsighted as was Neville
Chamberlain when he tried to
buy ,peace at any price at. Mun-
ich. He bought war.
We will just buy delayed trou-
ble, also, unless peace in the Mid-
dle East is protected against a
repetition of this Communist-
backed conflict.
To reward the Soviets with the
image of peacemaker in this cur-
rent situation or to say that their
cooperation is "the one bright



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