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February 02, 1971 - Image 4

Resource type:
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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1971-02-02

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

Stale shrugs of

AFSCME and U'

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 ol reprints.

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 1971

NIGHT EDITOR: LYNN WEINERI

Convicting T. R. Harrison...

N CONVICTING Thaddeus R. Harrison
of felonious assault last week, ano-
ther Washtenaw County Circuit C o u r t
jury has demonstrated the inability of
local juries to objectively weigh the testi-
mony of students or black people against
that of police officers.
Despite the shallow case built by the
prosecution based on contradictory testi-
mony from police officers, Harrison was
convicted of throwing a brick at a police-
mari during a demonstration outside the
Administration Bldg. in connection with
the Black Action Movement class strike
yast March.
BUT THE "proof" of Harrison's guilt
presented by the prosecution w a s
self-contradictory at best. Of the five
Ann Arbor policemen who testified at
the te trial, for example, one said he didn't
see the incident while the other four each
gave a different version of what happen-
ed.
Detective Paul Bunten, who charged
that he was hit on the hip by the brick,
described his assailant as having no hat,
and weighing about 165 pounds. In fact,
Harrison weighs only 130 pounds and was
shown by defense photographs to have
been wearing a distinctive hat during the
Incident.
'Another officer testified that Bunten
had his back turned when he was hit,
making it impossible for him to identify
who threw the brick.
In addition, the officers disagreed on
where people were standing and what
they were doing at the time of the alleg-
ed crime. Several officers testified that
they, could see the incident clearly even
though the 'defense demonstrated that
there were approximately 300 spectators
in their line of sight.
One officer testified that he saw the
incident from 35 feet away while sitting
in his patrol car on Thompson Street.
Measurements made by the defense
showed that the officer actually m u s t
have been over 150 feet away from the.
incident, however.
The prosecution claimed when Harrison
was tackled by the officer, he had another
brick in his hand ready to throw. How-
ever, neither a newsfilm submitted as evi-
dence by the prosecution, nor photo-
graphs submitted by the defense showed
. brick lying near the spot where he was
tackled.
Finally, the patrolmen's witnesses con-
tradicted each other in their description
of the way Harrison allegedly threw the
prick. One said he threw it from an
upright position like a shot putter, while
another said that Harrison threw it side-
arm from a crouching position.
The jury's acceptance of this testimony
is even more exasperating considering
that the jury apparently disregarded the
eviden'ce presented by both black and
white students in Harrison's defense. Dar-
ryl Conliffe$ a friend of the defendant
testified that he was with Harrison

throughout the incident, and n e v e r
saw him pick up a brick.
The prosecution attempted to refute
this by showing a photograph of Harrison
during the demonstration in w h i c h
Conliffe wasnot present, the implication
being that if Conliffe was not c 1 o s e
enough, to touch Harrison at all times
then he was not close enough to see if
his friend assaulted a policeman. Con-
trasted with'the jury's acceptance of
statements made by a patrolman several
hundred feet from the scene, this clearly
indicates the existence of a double stand-
ard.
Similarly, Harrison's testimony that he
did not pick up a brick during the scuf-
fle, statements by Daily Sports E d i t o r
Eric Siegel, and photographs by D a i1 y
photographer Sara Krulwich submitted as
exhibits by the defense were disregarded
by the, jury. The fragmented testimony of
the four policemen was simply taken to
be more reliable than the evidence pre-
sented by the black and white students.
CONSIDERING the way jurors are select-
ed for Washtenaw County Circuit
Court, however, the verdict of the jury is
somewhat more understandable. Under
the current system the names of the jur-
ors are selected from the list of the coun-
ty's registered voters, and they are chos-
en to serve a jury term of eight weeks.
This system discriminates against poor
people, notably blacks, because many of
these persons do not register to vote, and
even if they did, could not afford to take
two months off from work to serve on a
jury. As a result, juries are dominated by
retirees and the middle class. In Harri-
son's case, the result was that he was
convicted by an all-white jury.
Clearly, this makes the objectivity of
the jury a problem. A 60 year-old white
juror with a business in the campus area
tends to view the police as the saving
grace of the community, and likely has no
conception of police racism, his own rac-
ism, or the fact that the police sometimes
make mistakes, or even lie.
CLEARLY, therefore, if the alienation
fostered by such conditions that lead
to the very sorts of violence for which
Harrison wasp tried are to be eliminated,
the system of choosing jurors must also
be reformed.
Finding alternate means for choos-
ing jurors not based on discriminatory
voter registration rolls or shortening the
terms of jurors and increasing their pay
are token measures that could be invoked
immediately. But the problem involved
in getting fair trials in Washtenaw
County is obviously larger than just re-
forming the court system.
Rather, as this case makes clear, the
only true solution is the elimination of
white racism and other discrimination
on all levels.
-ALAN LENHOFF

By SARA FITZGERALD
T he tiny, cramped room bedecked
with empty coke bottles and
servomation cups reeks of old
cigars and burned-up cigarettes.
Though cleaned every day, 2-K still
has vestiges of arguments left over
after four months of negotiations-
the University on once side of the
table and AFSCME on the other.
It's not the great scene I had
associated with other labor dis-
putes. Walter Reuther or Leonard
Woodcock never walk out of the
room into a flash of cameras or a
myriad of television microphones.
Not here.
Occasionally someone wanders
out, maybe Willie or Clarence from
the union to buy a coke or. make a
trip to the bathroom.
"HOW'S it going?" I ask casual-
ly. Sometimes I get a shrug,csome-
times a look of disgust, maybe they
tell a lot, maybe they keep their
mouths shut in the name of "bar-
gaining in good faith." In any case.
they always go back, back to a fewe
more hours of staring at each
other.
"We don't have enough money
to pay you."
"We don't have enough money
to live."
On it goes. Past two months, past
three, intothe fourth. More than
400 hours and still the 14 people
cannot come up with anything that
either side "can live with."
308 paragraphs to be reworked.
12 pay grades to allot wages for,
100-some job classifications, 2600
families to feed.
Day after day they talk. Each
sides tries to come up with sonc-
thing better. Each side looks out
for its own interests. Each side
tries to figure out what the other's
up to.
Mr. Thiry has been in labor re-
lations for 14 years. Mr. Lemmer,
right at his side, is a lawyer. Mr.
Scott can hardly wait for negotia-
tions to end so he can go on his trip
to the Bahamas. Every day they

tired of striking before they start.
The ones who never strike.
The faces--young, old, black.
white, puzzled, hardened. listen.
Listen as their leaders try to ex-
plain the whys, the ifs of fact-find-
ing. And they vote. 700-300. Back
to work again.
And now they wait. Wait to see
how much they will get from the
new contract. How much money,
How much health insurance. The
answer seems to rest with others,
beyond the workers' reach.
Now the campus returns to nor-
mal. The smells of veal p.rniesan
still emanate from the dorm kitch-
ens, the janitors push their brooms.
the hospital speeds back to full
operation.
The negotiators go back too. Back
to stuffy 2-K. Back to hours of
cigars and coke bottles. Back to
hours of waiting for the other side
to give in.
Chart after chart, witness after
witness, they present the "facts"
to the "fact-finder."
Funny how the facts for the two
sides don't always jibe.
"If a janitor at Eastern Michi-
gan makes $2.80 an hour, why can't
our janitors make that?"
"But a janitor at Eastern is ex-
pected to wash walls, strip wax,
mop floors .
"THE UNIVERSITY WOULD like
to increase your wages but we don't
have enough money available."
"No, just the money for a golf
course, a new IM building, an
Honors Convocation."
The fact-finder one day will turn
off his tape recorder and make his
recommendations.
The Regents will accept them.
The union will accept them.
The new contract will be pub-
lished and the stewards will start
filing grievances once more.
They will wait another two years
or another two-and-a-half and the
process will start all over.
MAYBE THEY will have learned
something.

ff.

show up in their neat pin-striped
shirts and well-tailored suits to de-
fend the University.
If Mac weren't a union president,
he'd work as a wall washer. Willie
serves food at Markley. Kay helps
clean up Bursley. Dave moves
equipment. Clarence is a nurse's
aid. Wally is a" machinist. Walter
is a maintenance mechanic.
It's sometimes hard to know
what you're losing.
THEN THE mediator arrives.
Curly-haired bespectacled cigar-
smoking Mr. Terepin. Mr. Terepin
who thinks teaching is the best
profession for a girl. Mr. Terepin
who thinks asking for a child care

center is akin to "asking for every-
thing."
But Mr. Terepin knows his busi-
ness. He reduces the number of is-
sues from 60 to 6. He knows that
one of the problems is that "neither
side has done its homework."
But the pace picks up. "Strike!"
the members.hip says. "Strike until
we get fair wages." "Strike until
we get a contract ratified."
Negotiations continue. The con-
tract is extended. First two weeks,
then four days, then it can't be ex-
tended anymore.
The last day arrives. The mis-
chevious smiles that anticipated
the first strike date disappear as
final wage proposals are hurriedly

thrown across the table in a five-
minute attempt to accomplish four
months of work.
But the workers register to strike.
The picket signs appear. So does
the mud, and the dirty Johns. The
food disappears, as the dorms be-
come muffled shells of buildings.
AND THEN AS quickly as it
came it goes. A marathon session
in a judge's chamber and both
sides agree to the fact-finding
route. Eight hours in the court-
house seem to parallel the hours
of empty negotiating.
The workers flood to the union
ballroom. Not just the militant
ones this time. The ones who are

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4

LETTERS TO THE DAILY

A

specter of

Japanese m ilitarism

. W. with a double standard

THE CONVICTION of T. R. Harrison for
felonious assault, in light of the virtual
exoneration of a police officer for at-
tempted brutality when arresting him, is
a clear indication of a double standard
of criminal justice for police officers and
private citizens.
In the case of the police officer, an in-
vestigation called for by Mayor Robert
Harris and conducted by City Adminis-
trator Guy Larcom cited several reasons
why the officer should not be prosecuted
for swinging his club at Harrison after he
was already subdued.
As a result, the officer was not prose-
cuted, and received only a written repri-
mand on his record. Harrison, because of
his conviction, may be forced to spend up
to four years in prison. What makes the
difference between the punishments so
distressing is that w i t h o u t excep-
tion, each reason for only reprimanding
the policeman could just as well have
been applied in Harrison's case,
PERHAPS THE best illustration of the
double standard is Larcom's pitch for
exoneration of the officer because his

n9 defense for him, as it had for the police
otficer.
If the officer had been treated as Har-
rison was, consideration might have been
given to the possible consequences which
would have resulted had the officer fired
his gun at Harrison rather than swinging
his club. And the possibility that an of-
ficer might fire his gun under pressure is
hardly more remote than the possibility
that an officer would wade into a tense
situation without his riot gear.
Similarily, Larcom defended the officer
on the grounds that the tenseness of the
crowd situation contributed to his un-
easiness and subsequent loss of control in
swinging at Harrison. By contrast, the
fact that Harrison was in exactly the
same tense situation provided no defense
for him. Was the officer any more justi-
fied by the tension in swinging at Har-
rison than was Harrison in allegedly
throwing a brick at a police officer?
IDEALLY, THE court system provides a
check on the acts of other govern-
mental branches. Yet in the case of the
police officer, his case never reached the

To the Daily:
TWENTY YEARS ago, the no-
tion of a rearmed Japan was
inconceivable. Today, the spectre
of Japanese militarism has re-
surfaced to become a reality.
The current dispute over con-
trol of the islands of Tiao Yu Tai
is the curtain raiser of just such
a spectre. The scenario is not lim-
ited to the Taiwanese government
and the Sato government as ac-
tors of the stage. In involves two
other superpowers: the United
States and the People's Republic
of China.
Spurred domestically by a group
of recidivist Japanese militarists,
and prodded by the Nixon govern-
ment, Japan is again on the road
of rearmament, and conceivably
the acquisition of nuclear capabil-
ity in the forseeable future.
WHAT ARE SOME of the indi-
cations of this trend? The Pe-
king Review recently listed some
of the major developments:
1) Japanese military forces, eu-
phemistically cloaked under the
name, "Self Defense Forces," has
multiplied more than 30 times
within the last two decades, from
7,500 in 1950 to 280,000 in 1970.
2) Some Zaibatsus (Major Con-
glomerates) who used to oil the
Japanese War machine have now
staged a comeback. In American

now back in the armaments man-
ufacturing business. Together with
the U.S. military industrial com-
plex, it supplies a share in the
military supplies (M-14 rifles,
tanks, defoliants) for U.S. troops
in Vietnam;
3) 60 per cent of the present
Sato cabinet members are veteran
fascist top brass of the 1 a s t
World War. Eisaku Sato, himself
a militarist, now have the support
of like minded militarists such as
Nobusuki Kishi and Okinori Kaya,;
4) On the economic front, Jap-
anese monopoly capital today is
deeply involved in expansion and
economic aggression abroad. Their
range of operation now extends
from Northeast Asia to S o u t h-
east Asia and other developing re-
gions. Japan's capital export has
increased more than threefold in
the past decade and reached $1.26
billion in 1969. Japanese commod-
ity exports to Southeast A s i a
alone reached $4.46 billion in 1969.
Her economic exploitation of de-
veloping nations of Asia arrests
any opportunity for these small
nations to achieve a viable econ-
omy and to attain full industrial
development.
Japanese aims appear to be con-
sistent with Nixonian obsession for
the containment of Maoist China.
Rearming Japan, in Nixon's view,
is a grandiose application of the

Okinawa to the Japanese. The Services" would affect the Health
package deal involves the turnover Service, student counselling pro-
of the Ryuku islands and the in- grams, etc. Actually, this account
corporation of the Tiao Yu Tai serves many purposes according to
islands to the Japanese. A rearm- University budgeting procedures,
ed Japan, with effective control including many non-student ac-
over these strategically located counts which in our view need to
islands, would therefore be able be examined. We do not believe
to institute a ring of checking cuts in this administrative cate-
Maoist China, which Nixon would gory need affect student services.
find as an ultimate realization of Moreover, your presentation of the
a consolidated first line of Amer- task force position on the Resi-
ican "defense" against M a o i s t dential College was completely out
China, and an effective institution of context and in no way repre-
of a balance of power in the re- sentative of the Coalition's posi-
gion to allow for further Amer- tion.
ican presence and exploitation of While we frankly challenge the
small nations in the area. statement attributed to Vice-Pres-
-Eduardo Pagasaident Smith that an across-the-
Jan.r P board cut is justified by the pres-
sure of time which allegedly pre-
cluded selective cuts in the Gen-
Error eral Fund, we will present o u r
To the Daily: alternative proposals only after
they have received full review and
WE WOULD like to clarify the approval according to Coalition
incorrect impression conveyed by procedures.
your story of January 30 con- -Alexander Eckstein
cerning the Faculty Reform Coal- -Allen Whiting
ition's consideration of an alter- Co-chairmen
native to the 3 per cent across- Faculty Reform Coalition
the-board budget cut ordered by Fa t f oi
the University on all departments Feb. 1
and schools. Our inquiry is still in
progress. Our recommendations Abortion
will be presented to the Coalition's
membership at a general meeting To the Daily:
on Tuesday, February 16, after FIRST OF ALL, I want to im-
final consideration at the next ex- plore all Daily readers to disre-

month rent and will finance their
lobbying efforts for abortion re-
form this year. The Council is the
central co-ordinating body for in-
formation and action on abortion
legislation, and it deserves o u r
deepest support.
The bill we're centering our foc-
us on is Bursley's Senate Bill No.
3. It is a basically sound bill that
allows abortion up to 16 weeks of
pregnancy, that stipulates a resi-
dency requirement (90 days) and
that requires that women who are
single and under 18 years of age
obtain their parents' or guardians'
written consent.
It is imperative that this bill get
through this year; next year is an
election year and legislators will
not want to risk their chances for
re-election by supporting abortion.
Your help is desperately needed if
abortion reform is to become a
reality this year; such reform
would eliminate unnecessary suf-
fering for women, who must be
given freedom over their own bo-
dies, and would greatly cut down
the number of unwanted births :n
the U.S.
If you want to carry a bucket in
the bucket drive, call Patsi Hale
(764-9635) or Patti Aronsson (754-
1762) right away. And please con-
tribute to the drive. Thank you.
-Nancy Herzoerg
Co-Chairman, Ann Arbor ZIPG

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