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September 20, 1969 - Image 4

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Facts vs.

she t thgan a'us
Seventy-eight years of editorial freedomi
Edited and managed by students of the University of Michigan


420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

News Phone'. 764-0552

Editorials printed in The Michigan Doily express the individual opinions of staff writer
or the editors. This must be noted in all reprints.




Regents' proposal:
Not far enoughl

THE DOUBLE-EDGED nature of the
Regents' proposal yesterday for a
student bookstore is obvious. Their at-
tempt to force upon Student Government
Council and the student body a specifical-
ly worded referendum for a bookstore
assessment and an administration-con-
trolled bookstore is unacceptable and
SGC should not cooperate with the Re-
gents under these terms.
At the same time, the Regents en-
dorsed the establishment of a University
subsidized bookstore and-whether they
intended to or not-took a major step
toward giving students a dominant voice
in determining when and how they will
be assessed for student activities. Both
their endorsement of the project and the
obnoxious strings they attached deserve
close attention.
The Regents attempted to dictate o
students not only the naure of the con-
trol of the bookstore, but also the exact
implementation and wording of a new
referendum. While admitting students
should decide when they are taxed for a
student project, the Regents attempted
to control the bookstore through Vice
President and Chief Financial Officer
Pierpont. The control properly belongs to
the cnsumers-the students and faculty
--who would agree to tax themselves.
rTHE REGENTS apparently doubt the
competence of SGC to operate a
large bookstore. But the obvious success
of the SGC Discount Store, as well as the
success of similar stores on a majority
of the campuses in the nation, implies
otherwise. SGC can and would operate
the bookstore both competently and in
the students' interest.
Moreover, financial responsibility can
be insured more satisfactorily than by
direct University control. As SGC Presi-
dent Marty McLaughlin pointed out at
the rally yesterday, students could con-
duct audits and receive financial advice.
Such methods are employed by the Uni-
versity to oversee its financial arrange-
THE CRUCIAL question is which interest
- administrative or consumer -- will
determine the policies of the bookstore.
The students want a discount bookstore,
with other concerns secondary.
Pierpont, or whoever in his office would
manage the bookstore, probably would
be more concerned with competition from
the local bookstores and their reaction
the draft
RICHARD NIXON deserves accolades for
his ingenious public relations maneu-
vers regarding the draft. By cancelling
draft calls for November and December,
Nixon is again playing the champion of
draft reform and the crusader for peace.
The President has grabbed banner
headlines every day in an effort to garner
support for his hollow peace efforts.
Nixon's gimmickry is probably an attempt
to deflate the planned anti-war mobiliza-
tion for October and November. By dra-
matizing his sincere efforts in behalf of
peace, he hopes to discredit anti-war
campaigns as needless shenanigans.
In the name of draft reform, t h e
President should not seek simply to pla-
cate those who are now protesting the
war and the draft. The draft will con-
tinue to exist and operate selectively, ar-
bitrarily, if somewhat more predictably.
Even a draft lottery, which would not
offer alternative means of service for ob-

jectors, is not an acceptable, ultimate
soltion to the draft problem.
INDEED, NIXON'S intimation that he
may install his lottery system by ex-
ecutive decree is another prime example
of chicanery. Apparently he had held off
thus far expecting Congress to rubber
stamp his proposal and render it a certain
In reality. Nixon has demonstrated
that the draft issue, much like our in-
volvement in the war itself, is solely a

to the store rather than to the services
this store can offer students.
This clash of interests can be solved by
giving SGC the power to appoint the
store's manager and either set the policy
itself or appoint a body to set that policy.
This does not relieve the Regents of
their final responsibility, for or power
over, the conduct of the bookstore. They
would have the right, if necessary, to
become involved in bookstore affairs if
the store begins failing.
IN ADDITION to reserving the control
of the bookstore to an agent unsym-
pathetic to its very nature, the Regents
also decided to call for a school-by-school
vote of the 16 units on the Ann Arbor
campus on whether they would be assess-
ed for its financing.
Certain aspects of the Regent's de-
cision, such as the proposed school'-by-
school vote, stand on solid ground. Their
decision is, in fact, more democratic than
SGC's own position because of its direct
appeal to the smallest available con-
However, certain practicalities out-
weigh the virtues of pure democracy in
this case. For example, if a certain school
chose not to assess its students for the
store, would those students then be bar-
red fom using the store, and if so how?
LSA offers so wide a variety of courses
that some texts would be available for
each school. Should students who did
not contribute to the store be allowed to
reap its economic advantages?
Such questions can best be avoided by
having every student contribute to the
store and have the store appeal to each
of its separate student constituencies by
stocking texts they would need. While
the Regent's plan may be preferable,
such an approach is not inequitable.
More importantly, the Regents should
not have tried to dictate to SGC how to
handle an internal matter - the conduct
of a referendum on a student affair -
especially in light of Regent Goebel's
tactic to try and reduce student support,
by depleting "discount" from the propos-
ed wording.
AS NOTED above, the Regents have
tacitly conceded to students their
right to decide on questions of assess-
ments for student activities, and students
should take advantage of that concession.
The Special Events Bldg. fiasco has
already been perpetrated on students, and
nothing can be done about that. But
the I.M. building proposal, as well as the
on-going assessments for the Michigan
League and Union and the University
Activities Center, are still very much
open to a hearing before students, and
SGC should take the initiative in press-
ing for a referendum on those issues.
THE QUESTION of appropriate action
for SGC remains. They should, first,
hold a referendum, an all-campus refer-
endum, on the proposed higher assess-
ment, preferably for five dollars. That
can be presented to the Regents as a
fait accompli. It would be unreasonable
for the Regents to consider such a re-
ferendum invalid.
Second, the referendum should include
a question as to the priorities of the
bookstore. Students should be asked to
vote on whether they want the bookstore
to be, first and foremost, a discount book-
store, or just a bookstore that offers
exemption to the state sales tax, which
it will do as a minimum.
Finally, the referendum should also
ask the students whether they want Pier-
pont, SGC or a student-faculty body to
direct the bookstore. It should be worded
specifically to define who would be ad-

visory and who would have actual con-
The Regents have conceded the legit-
imacy of student control over student
money. SGC should take that concession
and run with it for all its worth.
SGC, however, has made some tacit
admissions itself. It has gone to the Re-
gents --- as it had to -- to get funding.
It thus must acknowledge the Regents as
the ultimate authority at the University.
The auetiomn oewo an c,18,rnk th

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"I A doing something about housing ...!"
Cal for rev otoon in prison

John Sinclair poses a threat. Hle
oesathreat wh ether he is ins
jail or out of jail.
In October. 1966 the collective
intelligence of the Detroit Police
Department trapped Sinclair into
dispersing two marijuana joints
to a couple of undercover cops.
For the next 22 mon!hs Sinclair
and his lawyers fought a fruitless
battle against the police. the
courts and the establishment
media only to receive an inout ra te-
ous sentence of nin-to-ten years
in jail.
But Sinclair has shown the
police what he could do in jail.
Last Tuesday. Sinclair was
moved from the state prison at
Jackson up to the state maximum
security 1> rs)n at %!,rquette in
the upper pnisula.
It called1Perry Johmon. deputy
direct or of the State Bureau of
Prisons. to try to discover what
they were at raid of.
"John is deicated to resist

"The prisoners are so cramp-
ed together (in Jackson that
there is no way to keep them
a part."
Thrt doesn't sc em to be Sin-
clair's fault.
"We are not criticizing a man
for complaining. But even the'
Supra me Court has said you
can't yell 'fire' in a crowded
And that is exactly what Sin-
clair is doing. He's yelling "revo-
lution" and Jackson prison is def-
initely crowded. Ev.n Johnson
admi s it .
"This prison iJackson) is
Just unmanageable. At Mar-
quette the prisoner to staff
ratio is about 31. to 1; at Jack-
son it is almost 8 to 1. Jackson
is so hopelessly huge: it is seven
(i eight times as large as it
should lbe."'
Johnson is saying that condi-
Sons are so bad at Jackson that
Sinrlair's organizing ability could
''ite the prison to the point of
In the short. time that Sinclair

spent at Jackson he succeeded in
convincing several inmates that
their crimessagainst society were
insignificant compared to the
crimes that society has committed
against them, as indeed they are.
A rebellion by inmates conduct-
ed in this political atmosphere
would hurt prison authorities in
more ways than the obvious one.
It would both point out the re-
forms needed in the prison system
and would form the precedent for
political rebellions at other pris-
Needless to say this is just what
the prison authorities are trying
to avoid.
And this raises the question of
vhere to put him at all. Certainly
Marquette will not pr~ovide Sin-
clair with the great number and
variety of possible activists which
he would probably find at Jack-
son. But Sinclair will be success-
ful at any prison. Prisoners are
perhaps our best social scientists.
They are the first group to feel
the repercussions of an increas-
ingly repressive society. For them
the brainwashing of our early ed-
ucation has completely worn off;
all that remains is a hard core
realism. It is this realism which
enables them to understand the
power politics of this society. They
not only understand it, but when
outside the prison walls, they live
it every day.
In this case the agents who
employ the power are the prison
authorities and it is against them
that any attack on society will
focus. Of course the attack should
not focus only on them and Sin-
clair knows this. He knows that
the real enemies are the people
who employ the prison officials--
the state bureaucrats and the
corporate bureaucrats.
However, Sinclair also knows
that one might fight the battle in
one's own arena, be it a prison, a
ghetto or even a university. Just
as the external battle against
racism, fascism and economic and
political repression will be fought
in Che Gueverra's "two, three,
many Vietnams,", so too, will the
internal battle be fought two,
three, many times over by Sin-
clair and other "prisoners."

1N OCTOBER, 1968, the trials of the students arrested for the ADC
sit-in were underway. Trespassing was the charge, and the jury's
job was to determine the facts-whether or not the defense had
proven "beyond reasonable doubt" the students charged had been
in the building in violation of the law.
Just the facts.
A momentary controversy arose whn it was reported by a juror
in a letter to the editor of The Ann Arbor News that his colleagues
on the jury had discussed the political ramifications of the case as well
as statutory law while trying to make their decision.
The judge, S. J. Elden, said he was "astounded." Throughout
he had instructed the jurors that their job was to determine guilt or
innocence on the basis of the facts and th law.
When it came time to instruct the jury at the following ADC
trial, Elden was explicit and intimidating as he warned the jurors
they must not enter the jury room without "casting away all other
considerations but the law."
"Passions and sympathies are not to enter your judgement--they
are not an element of justice," Elden continued.
AS CRUEL AND INUMAN as Elden's instructions may seem,
they are consistent with one of the fundamental concepts of our legal
system: citizens have the right to a trial by jury of their peers, the
right to have their case decided, not on political or philosophical
grounds, but on the facts
Once a case has been decided in the court of original jurisdiction.
the appeal system allows the parties to present more subtle argu-
ments which rest, for the most part. on philosophical and political
interpretations of th? law.
THIS SEPARATION OF the judicial and political aspects of our
system of justice has served to prevent chaos, and maintain, to some
extent, public confidence in the "fair trial." For decades, the Supreme
Court refused to rule on matters of constitutional law they considered
"political." The relatively recent "one-man, one-vote" decisions were
a major plunge into politics by the high court.
The intellectual complexities of the current SDS "lock-in" case
now before the Central Student Judiciary are an illuminating illustra-
tion of the problems which arise when politics and jurisprudence are
combined in the court of original jurisdiction.
The only appeal from a decision of the Central Student Judiciary
is to President Fleming, which, in the eyes of some, is worse than no
appeal at all.
CSJ members of lesser integrity and courage might have easily
avoided the political questions inherent in this trial. When legal rep-
resentative for the defense Ken Mogill asked the CSJ to hear the testi-
mony of University military researchers, and accept as evidence of the
military connections of the University documents relating war-oriented
research here, the CSJ could have ruled it irrelevant to the "facts."
M OGILL HAS PROPOSED his "defense of justification" theory. This
will consist of admitting the factual transgressions of SGC rules
with which the defendents are charged, then contending that the dis-
ruption was justifiable. His reasoning is based on the Nuremberg prin-
ciple that one must defy authority rather than participate in or tolerate
immoral acts.
At the same time. attorneys for the plaintiff have demanded the
court rule Mogill's planned line of defense "irrelevant." They are in-
sisting on the traditional separation of fact and philosophy in the
court of original jurisdiction, ignoring the fact that this is not the
first court in a long series.
I think it is admirable that CSJ chose to consider the entire ques-
tion. They have voluntarily decided to incorporate politics into a
sticky judicial decision.
But it is for exactly this reason that it is important that the Uni-
versity community, which has put faith in its infant Central Student
Judiciary's legal competence, be informed about the political splits
and philosophies current on the judiciary.
Obviously, politics will play a large part in the final outcome of
the trial. To begin a trial of defendants whose major line of defense
is political and philosophical, and then deny that politics will influence
the outcome is naive.
In addition, many of the facts of this case were "on the record"
before the actual trial proceedings began last Wednesday. The defen-
dants willingly admitted at the preliminary hearing that they were
involved in the "lock-in."
Our CSJ is aware of this. They, of course, cannot help but be. They
see the issues lining up. With blatant impropriety, some members
have indicated, by action and word, where their sympathies lie in this
trial, and were very upset when this was reported publicly last week.
But it is equally clear that the CSJ has not decided the fate of the
protesters a priori.
While many of the CSJ members know already how they feel about
the philosophical issues in the trial, no one. but no one on that body
has been able to resolve this essential question:
Does CSJ have the right to decide a case on the basis of philo-
sophical issues, or must It maintain its loyalty to the SGC rules of
conduct, and decide the case on the basis of the facts alone?
To resolve this larger question, the jurors will definitely be hearing
the case, listening to arguments, and wrestling with their consciences.
I would not like to be intheir place.
THE UNIVERSITY COMMUNITY has placed its faith in the stu-
dent jurors, untried as they may be when it comes to a case of this
stature. President Fleming indicated his regard for the motives and

ability of the CSJ when he said, in a letter last April, that he would
accept the decision of the judiciary on this case, and recognized the
legitimacy of the CSJ as the official repository for these cases.
But the expression of public faith in the motives of CSJ members
does not constitute a waiver of that public's right to scrutinize their
actions, criticize their improprieties, and demand they try extra hard
to carry out this important responsibility.

.; .


To the Editor:
IN THE COURSE of the Black
Man's anaemic struggle to find
himself, hie is cotist,,ntly throwr-
ing bottlenecks in his own path
without knowing he is doing so
and maybe without his fault. The
black fraternities a n d sororities
are a good example of this ten-
dency. To be the useful social in-
slit tioms that they are supposed
to be, they need to be drastically
Historically, traternities and
sororities have b e e n groups or-
ganized to promote cordiality
among their members.eIn the
coorse of time, they have ma-

fraternities and

their liberalism. In their more lu-
cid moments the sororities even
think about tutorial projects. But
by and large the atmosphere that
pervades the black sororities and
the fraternities especially is one
ot apathy or frivolity.
The fraternity puts a premium
on being "cool" and on keeping a
restless eye on the latest :en but-
ton jacket on the market. T h e
sorority girls are a little more dy-
namic. Their problem is that they
are conifused and irresolute and
need some direction from their
ma l counterparts. Sadly enough
that direction never coies be-
catse the fraternities are too busy
hipi "goil,

dents' Union on campus. In fact
the Greek names are a little un-
fortunate. Not that nomenclature
is that important. Omega Psi Phi
or Kappa Alpha Psi could be an
active body no matter what is was
called. But the point is that there
is such a sentimental attachment
to the Greek appellation that it is
conceivable some members will
leave their fraternities if it were
changed. Besides it is rather em-
barassing to himagine a, Greek
"dashiki." Th e re is no reason
w h y such sentimentality should
be encouraged.
IT IS about time the black fra-
ternities and sororities started be-

Housing snafu
To the Editor:
THE DAILY reports about fresh-
men living in dorms and Mr.
Landsman's pointed editorial are
bringing to light a point which
many students have been faced
with, that is the ineffectiveness
and inefficiency of University
Housing in doing anything in di-
rect confrontation with the stu-
My personal experiences are in
the Married Housing segment of
their bureaucracy, a segment
whose inability to cope with the
demands on it has been noted pre-
viously in The Daily. I was prom-

finaly setled for our present apart-
ment on ,the west side of town at
$55 per month moree than the
University Housing would have
I sympathize greatly with these
freshmen; they are experiencing
en fasse exactly what I did from
the same ignorant people. As
freshmen unfamiliar to the va-
garies of Ann Arbor and the peo-
ple who run the town, they are
much less able to respond as I
did, and are stuck,
Any efforts to organi7e and pro-
test. such as sleeping on Fleming's
lawn, studying in the foyer of the
housing office, and other things
nne hersfom the nmn,, mrne.-

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