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September 09, 1971 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1971-09-9

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Thursday, September 9, 1971


Page Three-

Govt. faces dissenters
in courtroom contest

Students get college town vote

Although it had its share of
riots and demonstrations, this
summer will be remembered
more for what happened in the
court rooms than in the streets
with attention focusing on three
major trials with strongly politi-
cal overtones.-
In the past few years the spec-
tacle of famous radicals on trial
under the glare of nation-wide
publicity has been a common one
on the American political scene.
Black Panthers Huey Newton
and Bobby Seale as well as radi-
cal leaders Abbie Hoffman, Jerry
Rubin, Rennie Davis, and Tom
Hayden have all confronted the
government in trials which have
attracted national attention.
What was unique about trials
this summer, however, was not
their political overtones or the
attendant publicity but rather the
end results. In three major trials,
various governmental units failed
to secure convictions against dis-
sident elements.
On May 13 a New York jury
found 13 Black Panthers innocent
of bombing and murder conspir-
acy charges, in the longest crimi-
nal litigation in New York State
After eight months of trial, the
jury took" three and one half
hours to find the 13 innocent of
156 separate counts of conspiring
to bomb police headquarters and
several other public facilities in-
cluding the botanical gardens.
This was followed 12 days later
by the dismissal of all charges in
a case involving the Black Pan-
ther's national chairman Bobby
Seale, along with Erika Hug-
gins, was charged with murder
and kidnap conspiracy in the
shooting death in May, 1969 of
Alex Rackley in New Haven.
After six days of deliberation
the jury -was unable to reach a
unanimous verdict and presiding
judge Harold Mulvey declared
the case a mistrial.
Two days later Mulvey ruled
that massive publicity made the
selection of an impartial jury im-
possible, and dismissed all
charges against both defendants.
Once again a governmental
unit, in this case the state of
Connecticut, had failed to secure
the conviction of a radical. More-
over, the judge's basis for dismis-
sal - inability to secure an im-
partial jury - acknowledged a
long held contention of defend-

(Continued from Page 1)
- requiring only proof of U.S.
citizenship, and six month resi-
dence in the city.
The disparity between stu-
dent and nonstudent residency
requirements led to considerable
student dissatisfaction in Ann
Arbor and other college com-
In 1968, a group of eight Uni-
versity students filed s u i t
against then city clerk J o h n
Bently. The suit charged that
special guidelines for determin-
ing a student's residency drawn
up by Bently were unconstitu-
It was on this suit that the
State Supreme Court made its
determination on student voting.
In a unanimous decision, the
court ruled that all special re-
quirements directed at students
violate both the Michigan and
United States constitutions.
"In the future," the ruling
Legislature C
(Continued from Page 1)
sequently, University officials
estimated they would need a
minimum increase of $10 mil-
To help meet this require-
ment, the University raised tui-
tion 16 per cent in April.
In addition, through cutbacks
in staff, faculty and materials,
University departments saved an
estimated $2.8 million which will
be reallocated to help pay for
the increased expenditures.
Of the $78.1 million, $72.5
million is marked for the Ann
Arbor campus, an increase of
$300,000 over the Senate version
of the bill.
Officially, the addition is sim-
ply "a restoration of an execu-
tive office misalculation" of en-
rollment figures, but a member
of the conference committee,
Rep. Marvin Stempien (D-Li-
vonia), told The Daily Tuesday
that the committee intended the
funds to "be used to pay the
city of Ann Arbor for police and
fire services."
Milliken had recommended
that those traditional payments
to the city, which had been run-

stated, "students must be treat-
ed the same as all other regis-
One student who registered
in Ann Arbor the week follow-
ing the ruling noted the process
was "very easy"- compared to
registration prior to the ruling.
The long special forms and
questions about personal finan-
ces, he added, are now gone.
Now that the barriers to re-
gistration have been lowered,
students may choose to vote in
their home towns or take ad-
vantage of the court's ruling
and vote in their college com-
Advocates of student regis-
tration in campus towns say
that since students pay local
taxes, and are under the auth-
ority of local government in
these cities, they should also
take part in that city's adminis-
Other students say that by
K's 'U' funds
ning at more than $1 million
annually, be discontinued.
The committee's intended use
for the funds, however, "in no
way obligates the University to
use it for any specific purpose,"
Stempien explained.
Tuesday night, before this
edition went to press, President
Robben Fleming said it was un-
clear whether the University
would use the money for police
and fire payments.
Fleming expressed c o n c e r n
over a state law which empow-
ers the governor to cut appro-
priations by as much as three

registering in what they feel to
be their more conservative home s
towns they are, in e f f e c t,
"throwing their vote away"In
campus towns, with large stu-
dent constituencies, they feel it
is more likely their views will _
be listened to and represented. .
Opponents of student regis- ;
tration fear that in some cases
students may become the domi-.................."
nant influence on local politics. ..
Students, they say, are basical-
ly transients who lack a long f
term interest in the commun-
ity. dents register at aterman
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Seale: Radical victory

cant, were to be overshadowed
a month later by a contest in
which the freedom of the press
to publish material without prior
constraint, despite its contents,
was upheld by the Supreme
On June 13 the New York Times
began a series of articles based
on a secret Pentagon study of
the Indochina war.
The study (see related story,
P. 2) was highly critical of U.S.
policy, and revealed several
heretofore unknown facets of
American involvment in Indo-
china - indicating deception of
the public by the government on
matters relating to the war.
Although the government was
able to secure an injunction
against the Times to halt fur-
ther publication, copies of the
study soon spread, first to the
Washington Post, and t h e n
around the country to such papers
as the Boston Globe, the St.
Louis Post-Dispatch, the Chicago
Sun-Times, and the Detroit Free
Through the process of appeals,
the case eventually reached the
C~rmc mitadnJ Tly 1

jected the government's conten-
tion that release of the study
was a threat to national security
and allowed the papers to resume
Justice Hugo Black, in voting
with the majority, wrote "The
guarding of military and diplo-
matic secrets at the expense of
an informed representative gov-
ernment provides no real security
for our republic".
While the defeat of the govern-
ment was most obvious in the
Times decision, each of the three
court cases represented the fail-
ure of governmental units to gain
convictions against elements
which could be considered their
political enemies. The implica-
tions of tl is for the American
political as well as judicial scene,
however, run much deeper than
the mere trials themselves.
The ability of a government to
accuse and hold political oppo-
nents for extended periods of
time with'out a conviction still,
evidences the government's con-
siderable power.
Using this power as a weapon,
defendants and their supporters
argue, the government is able to

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ants in such cases. Supreme court, ana on juiy L,
These cases, although signifi- in a 6 to 3 decision, the court re- See DISSIDENTS, Page 7
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