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December 02, 1978 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1978-12-02

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Page 4-Saturday, December 2, 1978-The Michigan Daily


420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Eighty-Nin e Years of Editorial Freedom

America'sexpanding third world youth

By Askia Muhammad

"It's real simple,"

a 28-year-

Vol. LXXXIX, NO. 71

( News Phone: 764-0552

Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan
Decling black enrollment

O N DECEMBER 415 when the
University submits its
enrollment figures to the Department
of Health, Education, and welfare, a
major disappointment will be officially
revealed. For the second year in a row
black enrollment at the University has
declined. While the number of
Hispanics and Asian Americans is
apparently on the rise, the University
has failed in its responsibility as well
as its commitment of 1970 to attract a
greater number of qualified black
After the Black Action Movement
(BAM) strike of 1970 the University
promised to increase the Black
enrollment at the University to 10 per
cent of the total enrollment. Since 1970
the black enrollment has never risen
above 7.2 per cent. Last year the figure
declined to 6.6 per cent and this year's
figure will be even lower. The
University has clearly failed to work to
fulfill its promise. Earlier this year the
University announced that it would
actively recruit well qualified studegs
who are not residents of this state-
That the University would undertake

this campaign before making an
equally overt attempt at recruiting
qualified blacks in an heinous
The University Regents should study
the University's inability to attract
qualified blacks. although the inferior
secondary education received by most
Americans is a significant factor in the
low black enrollment here, it does not
explain why the enrollment would
decline instead of increase.
University Vice-president for
Academic Affairs Harold Spapiro
points to improvements the University
has undertaken in the Office of Student.
Services, counseling offices, and the
Coalition for the Use of Learning
Skills. But if the improvements have
resulted in a drop in black enrollment
the University administration is doing
something wrong - seriously wrong.
Black students on campus must
move in a substantially active political
posture to - let the University
administration know their concens are
not being addressed and that their
hard-won demands of eight years ago
have barely been paid lip service.

old who has never had a job said
at a Washington, D.C. bus stop.
"If you're not dead, they get you
on a beef and you spend three or
four years in jail. Maybe, if
you're lucky, you go into the
army. But they gonna get you off
the streets one way or another."
Although no one on the corner
seemed to listen, he talked with
increasing frustration about the
lack of jobs and opportunities for
escaping the ghetto life.
Away from the street corners,
the reality of what it means to be
young, poor and non-white in this
country will be affecting an
increasing persentage of the
population in the 1980's and
1990's. The number of voiceless
and voteless brown and black
youths in the society is growing,
at the very time when the young
white population is declining and
older, mostly white, Americans
are increasing by the millions.
Since 1970, a recent Census
Bureau survey shows, the
number of people 55 years and
olderhas increased by 5.3 million
persons, while during that same
period the youthful population
(save for non-whites) was
growing smaller. The number of
Americans 13 and younger has
decreased since 1970 by6.4
million persons. In both
demographic shifts, the lion's
share of the changes (4.6 million
of the older gain and 6.3 million of
the youth decline) occurred
among whites. America's black
and Hispanic population
continued not only to grow but to
grow younger.
The significance of the changes
is already beginning to be felt in
urban centers throughout the
country. As the largely white,
niddle-class worker has fewer
white youth in his community in
need of services, he sees less and
less need for services to the
dependent, non-productive, youth
Schools have been especially
hard hit. The "taxpayer revolt"
and declining erollments have
been used to justify school
closings, teacher lay-offs, and
service cutbacks in cities from
coast to coast. The movement on '
Capitol Hill toward granting
tuition tax credits to parents of
children in virtually immune-
from-desegregation private and
parochial schools is evidence of
the Congress's - if not Middle
America's - attitude that the
increasingly older, more
suburban white population,
which sees itself footing all the
Non-whites now account for
three out of four children in the
public schools of eight major
cities. In 13 other cities, more
than half the public school
children are black, or from other
non-white minority groups.
In the years ahead, population
trends suggest the majority white
population's birthrate (and

corresponding numbers of youth)
is headed down; the black
birthrate is slowing but higher
than the white while the Hispanic
minority's birthrate is up. The
birth statistics, along with other
factors, indicate that Hispanics
will become the largest minority
group in the country by the year
2000. Many predict that in some
major Southwestern cities, and in
the state of California, Hispanics
will become an absolute majority
if present trends continue.
The nation's 25 million blacks
now constitute 12 per cent of the
population, or about twice the
current estinates of the Hispanic
Among Hispanics, almost half
are 17 and younger. And though
the figures are less than precise
because they must be gleaned
and compared from a number of
census sources, the bureau's
Hispanic demographersbsay that
the Spanish youth population
seems to be growing rather than
The entire Hispanic and black
populationstare significantly
younger than the white
population. In 1977, the Hispanic
median age was 20.0 yea:s; for
blacks, 24.1 years, and for whites
30.2 years.
"Public policy has to address
itself to this situation,'dsaid
Sarah Short Austin, executive
vice president of the National
Urban Coalition. "Communities
are obviously going to have to
plan now how they're going to
deal with this particular situation
because what you're talking
about is an increased-demand for
services at the same time the
people who can afford to pay are
saying they're tired of paying,
and are voting to cut back on the
services being provided."
Black alarm over the crisis
facing its youth reached the
chorus stage by summer, 1978.
"Black males an Endangered
Species? homicide largest cause

of death for black males aged 15
to 35 . ..700,000 black males in
prison," read Justine Rector's
flyers for the foundation for the
Preservation of Black Males in
Louis Martin, newly appointed
Special Assistant on Black issues
to President Jimmy Carter,
wrote similarly in his syndicated
column in black newspapers: "It
has been said that the most
endangered species in our time is
the young black male. This may
seem to be a gross exaggeration
of the plight of our young men,
but there is enough truth in the
statement to be disturing."
The National Urban League's
research division, describes the
problem as "the crisis among
black youth." Paradoxically, the
greater the concentration of non-
white youth in the inner cities, the
dimmer the prospects of ever
finding jobs: there has yet to be
seen any strength in their
numbers. More and more of the
ever larger pool of young blacks
are becoming part of the "hidden
unemployed," according to an
Urban League study.
"The failure to find work is
driving more and more young
blacks out of the active labor
force into the ranks of the
discouraged workers," writes
Esther Piovia, associate editor of
the Urban League Review and
Dr. Bernard. Anderson,
associate professor of industry at
the Wharton school, University of
Pennsylvania. "In 1976, for
example, while an average of
345,000 black teenagers were
officially counted as unemployed.
another 368,000 wanted jobs but'
were no longer looking."
Though data on Hispanic
youth joblessness or hopelessness
is scarce, one Spanish-surnamed
expert analyzes the employment
picture in much the same way as
his black counter-parts. "The
way to make new jobs is, first of
all to create new jobs," said Leo

Estrada of the school of
Architecture and Urban Planning
at UCLA. "White workers must
also give up jobs through
retirement, attrition and
disability. This then permits
minorities to move up into them.
without these possibilities, I think
the conflicts are going to get
worse," Estrada said.
Non-white teenagers, and
particularly lack youth ,have
already become the largest
losers in the menial, fast-food
industry jobs. (Claiming that
more and more Minflation-
motivated housewives, teachers,
and even retired persons are
now seeking part-time work. the
industry is faced with a buyer's
market for low-level workers.
Older, more "stable" persons are
now being hired at the expense of
the nation's critically
underemployed and unemployed
black teenagers.
One other index 6f black youth
crisis has taken a framatic
unprecedented upswing: the
suicide rate for young black men.
Robert Davis of Chicago's
"University of Poverty" points
out in a report that two-thirds of
all suicides during any given year
are committed byawhite males,
but among young men between
the ages of 20-34, the black rate is
actually higher than the white
rate - a disturbing trend in light
of the traditionally low number of
black suicides. Further, these
young blacks (male and female)
account for 47 per cent of all
black suicides, while making up
only 24.2 per cent of the black
population. Once again, the
figures arrange themselves
conveniently around the paradox
of being young and non-white.
Sarah Austin of the National
Urban Coalitipn believes
politicians can no longer ignore
the plight of minority youth.
"That's what we mean when we
talk about targeting," she said.
"we're saying that funds should
not be spread out across the
board to everybody, because if
we're talking about a limited
supply of money, you've got to
really talk about targeting
resources to where there's the
greatest need."
Back at the bus stop in
Washington, D.C., the young man
continued his soliloquy. "I know
people older than me who've
lived here all their lives and don't
know where the White House is,
never been to the Capitol, and
that's just eight blocks away.
Hell, I'm gonne get out of here
though, if it's just to Baltimore.
There's got to be something
better than this."
(Askia Muhammad is a
contributing editor of the
Pacific News Service.
Formerly editor of
Muhammad Speaks, he,
writes regularly for the
Chicago Defender, the
Nation, and other

...- ,







Letters to the Daily


( 'rt " A itf i uK " 't1 '

" 4AvE some

K'ooL-alp ...


Nixonian renaissance

EARLIER THIS week the French
public provided frightening proof
of the old adage that "time heals all
wounds." After former President
Richard Nixon appeared on French
television, there were reports that the
French believe he was hounded out of
office by the press.
Mr. Nixon fueled such beliefs by
saying that he never lied, "it only
seemed that way," and that he
"screwed up" Watergate and that he'
paid the price by having to resign. He
paid nothing.
When Gerald Ford pardoned Mr.
Nixon he made a mockery of the tenet
that "all men are equal before the
law." And as a result, future
generations may misinterpret the
iVtergate affair, and make a martyr
of Nixon by blaming the press. Mr.
ixon was guilty of high crimes and
tnisdemeanors, and would have been
Impeached had he not resigned, and
vonvicted had Ford not granted him a
pardon. It is ironic that the press is
peing made the scapegoat for Mr.
ixon's crimes. Without the press, his
hue- of nt nrr mwnnri navir ha hann

Had Mr. Nixon been tried, the truth
would be known. But now he is
traveling around the world blaming
himself for mistakes in judgment
instead of crimes, and all at the
taxpayer's expense--he receives a
government pension.
Critics will claim that this is simply
an unnecessary rehashing of an old
vendetta against Mr. Nixon. Many of
these critics are the same persons who
said it was paranoia on the part of the
press to believe that history would
portray Mr. Nixon as a martyr.
While it is true that we are restating
old arguments, it is necessary to do so
when Mr. Nixon tells the world that he
has never lied, and that he has paid for
his mistakes. We, the American
people, are paying for his crimes as
well as his crusading. Mr. Nixon was
simply a criminal who used his office
for his own means, and it is our duty
not to allow his self-serving efforts to
blur that truth. Each time he
proclaims his innocence we must
reaffirm his guilt. Mr. Ford let him off
without paying for his crimes, but the

David arrests
To the Daily:
It has been recently reported
by the New York Times (Nov. 27)
and Washington Post that
Israeli military authorities have
initiated a "crackdown" on
public opposition by the
Palestinians tosthe Camp David
accords. Israeli authorities have
said that they will not grant
permits for any meetings which
criticize the autonomy plan.
In the Israeli occupied West
Bank, within the past few days
eight students and seven
residents were arrested for
voicing their opposition to
Israel's plans for "civil
Felicia Langer (defense
attorney for Sami Ismail) was
requested by Bir Zeit University
authorities to represent the
students arrested in Ramallah,
Jerusalem and Bir Zeit. The
following are brief accounts of
their experiences under
interrogation within the past few
days, according to Langer and
Lea Tsemel :
"RIZZO SHUQAIR (student)
- Attorney Langer reported that
when she spoke with him he had
difficulty hearing her as a result
of being beaten around the ears.
He had a wound on his left cheek
which he said was inflicted with a

floor the interrogator forced him
to lick it off the floor. His hair was
pulled and his head shaken
violently causing him dizziness
and severe headaches. He was
also kicked all over his body.
" RIBHI ARURI (student) -
Attorney Langer reports that he
had been forced to lay down on
the floor and then was beaten all
over his body with a stick
including the soles of his feet.
(student) - After delays and
attempts to see him Attorney
Langer was finally allowed to see
aim and was able to secure his
release for medical reasons.
- HATEM QADRE (student) -
fate unknown.
unionist) - Attorney Langer,
who knew him previously, was'
"astonished" at his condition
upon visiting him. He could not
talk and had pain in his throat
and larynx which was a result of
being strangled. He could not
stand up because he had been
beaten on his legs and genitals.
On his left wrist she saw 5 brown
wounds which he said were a
result of being hung by his hands
in handcuffs.
On November 28 attorney
Ibrahim Nasser attempted to see
Adelle Samara (student), Omar
Samasa (student) and Sameeh
Samara who were arrested on
November 25, but was not

their homes were raided at 2:30
a.m., and their homes were
searched for anti-Camp David
literature. They were taken away
blindfolded and arrested.
The Israeli military authorities
have cancelled a number of
lectures at Bir Zeit University
recently that were expected to be
critical of the autonomy plan.
The lectures were part of a
special school programrcalled
"Palestine Week" that
emphasized Palestinian
nationalism, folk art and
customes. The Israeli military
authorities have also forbidden
the publication of the names of
those arrested in the local Arab
Press (New York Times: Nov. 27,
1978, page A4).
We urge you to write to the
Israeli Embassy demanding the
immediate release of those
-Palestine Human Rights
To the Daily:
The Daily, it seems, is no
different from a cricket, U.S.
Steel or myself-it looks out for
itself. Throughout the Farber
controversy, the Daily
specifically and the press in
general have been auite

the right of confidentiality for
sources is the premise that the
right of confidentiality for;
sources is necessary to preserve
that freedom. The first
amendment is unquestionably a
precious piece of legislation.
Your recent editorial ("The
Supreme Court on Farber," Nov.
30) however, hints that it is the
most precious writ of law. I
explicitly disagree with your
implicit assumptiosh
Equally dear is tI right to a
fair and speedy trial and the
philosophy that it is better to set
the guilty free than to convict the
innocent. Never in your editorial
did you deal with the grizzly
possibility which this time did not
occur. What if a person's
innocence could only be
substantiated through access to a
reporter's notebook? Is free
speech so compelling an issue
that the Daily is prepared to see
an innocent man spend 20 years
in prison? If Myron Faber
chooses to go to jail rather than
provide his noted, that is his
unfortunate predicament. Itis
quite debatable though, if his
speech is more important than
the years of another person's life.
Newspapers are special,
agreed. However, I do not know if
they should be exempt from
subpoenas-as Richard Nixon
said he was. I do not know the

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