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September 14, 1971 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1971-09-14

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Eighty-one years of editorial freedom
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

,420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

News Phone: 764-0552

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

The ins and outs f yut culture
By RICK PERLOFF
THINK SOMEBODY ought to clear the air. Certain things must be
pointed out. I mean, thigs have gone long enough.
;First off, nothing is cool or neat or sharp anymore. Those words
went out with the Beach Boys, or maybe Elvis Presley. I can't re-
member. I mean, if someone's saying cool, you know there's some
thing wrong with him. It's like your grandmother saying "that's the
bees knees." You just look at her and shrug.
N You have to get it into your mind that things are freaky. And
far fucking out. And things are often right on but not always.
Another thing. No one is normal in this world. Or don't tell anyone
they're normal. They'll shout at you for hours.' Listen. No one wants
to be normal. That means you're straight. And bland. Everyone wants
to be crazy. It's sort of neat to be crazy besides. I mean, normality
went out with the '50s. Don't you understand?
And there are no hoods or greasers anymore. Shit. Kids have got
:.. to see Sha Na Na to get a taste of history first hand. My little sister
$ ' doesn't even know what a hood is, I take that back. A hood by any
j j other name wil smell as foul. Hoods are junkies these days, and they
are into heroin. There's another word. Into. You must remember
.: <that.

0i

TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 1971

NIGHT EDITOR: MARK DILLEN

The, student

vote

TGWARD the end of the last decade,
more and more young people be-
came disillusioned with electoral poli-
tics. When the McCarthy campaign
failed, students decided almost en
masse that the two major parties pre-
sented no acceptable alternatives. In-
stead, they seemed remarkably similar
to two large business conglomerates
conspiring to produce the same low
quality goods at equally high prices.
Nor was the presidential campaign
any more attractive. Watching Hubert
Humphrey's empty smile wade oblivi-
ously through an immoral war and
domestic crisis as though the coun-
try had no serious difficulties im-
pressed no one except those with a
vested interest in the status quo.
And watching Richard Nixon's sim-
ple-minded television commercials that
played on xenophobic fears about com-
munists - while Nixon himself tanta-
lized crowds by waving 'V's and hailing
his secret plans to end the war-left no
better impression.
In the end, the conservatism inher-
ent in party organizations, whose ag-
ing feaders and systems of delegate
selection systematically squelched any
vigorous new outlook, was clear. And
when young people, frustrated with
electoral politics, turned to less peace-
ful means of effecting change, they
discovered that those in power were
immovable and protected by an im-
pregnable, institutional shield.
IN many, then, there evolved an
apathy arising not so much from
complacency as from a continuation of
the search for involvement and ful-
fillment that originally led them to
politics. Students, by and large, gave
up their grand visions of change on a
national scale and retired to the quiet
and isolated pursuit of these changes
in surroundings which they could more
directly control.
Everything was all right inside bed-
rooms with big stereos and lots of
dope, so people just quit looking at the
problems that had provoked them be-
fore. And so it remains, for the most
part, today.
Thus, a call for entry into the politi-
cal scene to influence conditions in the
city, state, and nation does not catch
so many eyes as it did just four years
ago.
AND yet it should, for some recent
developments that have given sup-
stance to the hope change may
actually be accomplished through po-
litical action. The most important
event is, of course, the passage of the
twenty-sixth amendment. In a single
stroke, this granted the 18-year-old
vote and enfranchised another 12 mil-
lion Americans. Since only about 70
million people voted in the last presi-
dential election, the infusion of so
many new votes cannot help but have
a significant effect upon the election
consciences of both present and fu-
ture officials.
It should still be pointed out that
even the addition of a large group of
predominately, liberal voters will not
solve the problem of the quality of
the candidates themselves, for it leaves

untouched the massive party organiz-
ations that produce them. In assessing
the prospects in upcoming presidential
and congressional contests, then, the
newly enfranchised population should,
not be too optimistic about what the
major-party conventions are likely to
produce.
ON the local level, however, the re-
cent Michigan Supreme Court de-
cision allowing students to vote in the
community in which they attend
school gives grounds for considerably
more optimism. For it has almost com-
pletely removed the means used by col-
lege town governments to prevent
students from influencing their af-
fairs.
No longer, for example, will stu-
dents in Ann Arbor be unable to react
to a city government that has for years
tolerated police excesses towards stu-
dents and permitted landlords to rent
illegally substandard housing at ex-
tremely high rates.
Instead, these injustices can now be
dealt with because there are poten-
tially more than 30,000 student voters
in Ann Arbor - enough to almost
double the size of the electorate.
By consolidating their forces behind
candidates backing student interests,
therefore, student voters can no longer
be outdistanced at the polls by an older
and more complacent majority. Even
if they remain largely impotent na-
tionally, the sheer magnitude of the
student vote here is enough to make it
forceful locally.
But the presence of large numbers
of other students is not the only ad-
vantage students have in voting in
Ann Arbor. For by voting and work-
ing actively in a political party here,
students may improve the quality of
the candidates for whom they vote. If,
however, large number of students reg-
ister at home, it will only assure that
they are again faced with choosing be-
tween lesser evils.
Furthermore, there exists in the city
a viable third party which presents a
serious alternative to the non-choice
often offered by the Democratic and
Reoublican parties. The Human Rights
-Radical Independent Party is only
beginning to build a base here, but it
nonetheless offers a unique opportun-
ity for students to air their views
through the traditional political struc-
ture.
TO conclude, while we understand
the contempt many students feel
for the manner in which the major
party organizations have degraded the
electoral system, we believe that stu-
dents now have a realistic opportunity
to create a workable system of politi-
cal alternatives in this city.
But it can only be done if students
are willing to abandon the apathy to-
ward the political process exhibited
here in recent years.
Thus, we urge students to register
here, or to transfer their voter regis-
tration to Ann Arbor, and to actively
seek the election of their candidates in
upcoming elections.
-THE SENIOR EDITORS

of

ALSO. People are registering to vote. Now don't get any strange
ideas. They're not political or altruistic or better yet . . . concerned.
Those things went out with the '60s.

No, people register because it's
license. Or drinking beer in a bar.
hance your individuality. Everyone
this is America.

kind of like getting your driver's
And it's sort of all right to en-
wants to be self-sufficient. Hell,

Letters to The Daily

And as you know, people don't drink so much anymore. But
that's changing back. It's hard to know these days. People smoke
grass. 'Course if you don't, on guard. You won't be told to your face,
but then your mother always said people talked behind your back.
She's right. Even in the '70s. If you don't smoke smile, but you're a
sissy.
While we're at it, you'd better sleep with someone when you're
here. If you don't, you'll start feeling funny. It's not that we don't
understand. Like a friend of mine said the other day "if someone
doesn't want to fuck, it's okay with me. But shit, she's no friend of
mine."
Oh, another thing. Dress. Most of us dress in blue but if you wear
cords or choose to wear your hair short, well, that's your decision. We
respect individual rights. Don't worry, we won't bother you. But . . .
don't expect to move onto Greenwood or Cross Street, for godsake.
A FEW OTHER MATTERS. You may cook as you like, but we
don't like white rice. Brown rice is organic.
So are waterbeds. God, we love to be comfortable. Oh by the
way. We're banning mattresses.
Also. Some people still speak like they're in the '60s. That's un-
derstandable. It's hard to believe the '70s ever began. But they did.
And some people haven't caught up. They're still talking, about the
oppressed people of the world and honkie pigs. I'll tell you. No one
knows what they're talking about.
Anyway. Don't they know? Most of us learned a few years back.
Folks have always been oppressed. Folks have always been poor
and miserable and spat on. Only difference is today we had the time
to ask "why." Big deal.
We've signed a truce. The '60s are over. We said we'd forget our
hopes and now we're cynics. Cynicism is organic.
Anyway. We gave up our hopes and They said They'd include us in
the melting pot. You know. The melting pot. And that's all we wanted
anyway. We just wanted someone to love fis. Except as you know we
have this thing for jeans and worker shirts so you won't mind if the
pot's a little blue this time around.
Another thing before I quit. Some people still talk like, they
can live in fa capsule in the sky.
They're so idyllic. I mean, what do they expect from industrial
society? People take the raw materials and food and shelter but they
don't expect waste and stench. Or they want the ease and comfort of
modern Ann Arbor. But they refuse to pay the price . . . complacency,
apathy, boredom.
Okay. You see now? Things are different than when I was a
freshman. That was 1968. Then they were violent and intense - the
Chicago convention, remember? You may not. That was a world ago.
TODAY, nothing is intense. Just look at people's eyes. No one's
hunting change like a prey. Eyes wander these days, just like those
backpacks. People are searching today. Like the days of the Wild West.
I told you we're all Americans.

A

Stephenson
To The Daily:
I COULDN'T HELP but be dis-
gusted by the hypocrisy brought to
light by what I read in Saturday's
Letters to The Daily. Ann Arbor
City Councilman Stephenson is
said to be unhappy about all those
irresponsible students currently
being added to the local v o t e r
rolls as a consequence of recent
court decisions allowing citizens
to vote in the localities where they
actually reside. According to Mr.
Stephenson's insight, this "repre-
sentation without taxation" will,
of course, lead to bad government.
My God, the very thought of a
student councilman representing
35,000 residents of this fair city!
The thought of a student mayor
is beyond the pale.

The prospect of large numbers
of people making public decisions
with the money of others seems to
bother the councilman. However,
let me point out that this will not
be the first time in recent his-
tory that major public decisions
will be made with callous disre-
gard for the well-being of others.
The entire Vietnam War was con-
ceived, planned and executed
largely by those who would in no
way bear the brunt of its pursuit.
Oh sure, I know all about rampant
inflation and ugly headlines but
it was the 18 to 21-year-olds who
paid the bill with their lives. This
hapless group was totally disen-
franchised from all the decision
making processes concerning what
was going on.
The councilman believes t h a t
those who vote for better police
protection, city streets that do not

tear the front wheels off their
cars, day care centers for child-
ren of parents trying to get off
welfare and levies for maintaining
a decent school system should at
least pay taxes. Where was h i s
voice of protest andrighteous in-
dignation demanding that those
who wanted to stop "Communist
aggression" in Vietnam be requir-
ed to lay their lives (not their
money) on the line and lead an
infantry platoon into combat?
Why shouldn't every member of
the boards of directors of e v e r y
corporation getting fat from the
war be required to spend a year
of their lives (not their money) in
the Vietnam jungles.
Well, Councilman Stephenson,
now that YOUR ox is gored, how
does that grab YOU?
-George H. Brown, Jr.
Sept. 11

4

futures past
Secret research: Moving quickly nowhere
by dave hvhdwn

Editorial Staff
ROBERT KRAFTOWITZ
Editor

JIM BEATTIE
Executive Editor

DAVE CHUDWIN
Managing Editor

STEVE KOPPMAN , . . Editorial Page Editor
RICK PERLOFF Associate Editorial Page Editor
PAT MAHONEY .. Assistant Editorial Page Editor
LYNN WEINER Associate Managing Editor
LARRY LEMPERT . ..... Associate Managing Editor
ANITA CRONE .. .. ........As.. t Arts Edito;
JIM IRWIN ...... ...... ........ Associate Arts Editor
JANET FREY ......... . .... .. . ..Personnel Director
ROBERT CONROW Books Editor
JIM JUDKIS ... ....Photography Editor
NIGHT EDITORS: Rose Sue Berstein, Mark Dillen,
Sara Fitzgerald, Tammy Jacobs, Alan Lenhoff,
Jonathan Miller, Hester Pulling, Carla Rapoport,
Robert Schreiner, W. E. Schrock, Geri Sprung.
COPY EDITORS: Lindsay Chaney. Art Lerner, Debra
Thal
DAY EDITORS: P.E. Bauer, Linda Dreeben, Jim
Irwin, Hannah Morrison, Chris Parks, Gene

What Thieu
d.0
didnt say
IIERE is what he did say:
"I will consider all regular ballots
as expressing confidence and all irregu-
lar ballots as expressing non-confidence."
He, South Vietnamese President Ngu-
yen Van Thieu, explained that a regular
ballot represented a vote cast for him in
next month's election, while an irregu-
lar ballot signified a ballot which had
been mutilated or invalidated - an ex-
pression of nonconfidence in the present
government.
But here is what he did not say. And
here is what he probably meant:
"We are holding a free and open elec-
ti vi ",x, mn + rr Tr-;_ +~ . ,- - ^

INERTIA. Physics and sociology
may be quite different sub-
jects, but this is one phenomenon
they have in common. Things
don't move unless they are
pushed. And if they are not
pushed hard enough, they still
don't move.
While only the tiniest forces are
needed to set molecules in motion,
getting social institutions to re-
spond requires an enormous push.
But sometimes even this is inade-
quate to produce change.
Last March in twotumultuous
sessions, Senate Assembly, the
faculty representative body, con-
sidered the question of secret mili-
tary research done at the Univer-
sity.
Faculty members voted to have
a committee investigate Uiniver-
sity policies and procedures re-
garding classified research. By
only the narrowest of margins did
they defeat moves to cut off most
secret projects immediately and
to hold up on new contracts dur-
ing the investigation.
Considering Assembly's dissat-
isfaction with oresent policies and
projects in this area, and the pres-
sure from a wide range of facul-
ty and student groups, one might
think that Assembly's Classified
Research Committee would have
taken a more hard-nosed ap-
proach toward proposals for sec-
ret research after the meetings.
The 12-member committee, set
up in 1968, is supposed to review
all nroposas for classified con-
tracts before they are sent to the
sponsor, usually the Defense De-
partment.

IF IT'S one thing the Classified
Research Committee has, it's au-
dacity.
To approve sending out a pro-
posal like this demonstrates an in-
sensitivity on the part of the com-
cittee to the wishes of much of
Senate Assembly and most stu-
dents expressed in the Assembly
meetings and a student referen-
dum on military research last
March.
This project is not the only one,
however. Some of the others ap-
proved since then include:
-"Technical vulnerability to
electronic countermeasures of the
Optical Battlefield Identification
Friend or Foe System;
-"Vehicle remote sensing de-
vices;
-"Countermeasures technique
feasibility evaluation;" and
-"Cold - weather vehicle sig-
nature studies."
Each of these is designed to
either help locate enemy soldiers
or vehicles for attack or to allow
offensive weapons to carry out
their tasks.
* * *
WHAT THEN does all this come
to?
It clearly shows that the present
Classified Research Committee is
a victim of inertia. It is continu-
ing down its traditional, path of
almost automatic approval of vir-
tually all research proposals.
What's needed are new policies
on classified and military research.
The University community should
begin to think what it wants those
policies to be and begin to organ-

purpose of which is to destroy or
incapacitate human beings."
However, in terms of improving
war-making capabilities and de-
stroying human life, some of the
projects passed by the committee
in the last several months are as
bad, if not worse, than ever be-
fore.

THE OBJECTIVE of the project
is "to improve the overall capabill-
ity of U. S. Army Combat Sur-
veillance Radars to operate effec-
tively in an ECM environment,"
according to a summary work
statement dated April 6, 1971 av-
ailable publicly in the SACUA of-
fice.

combat, and they are specifically
aimed at detecting vehicles and
personnel for attack.
Electronic counter countermea-
sures are almost always used of-
fensively ,because otherwise there
is little chance of an enemy jam-
ming or confusing a plane's or
missile's radar unless our aircraft

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