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September 02, 1970 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 1970-09-02

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Vol. LXXXI, No. 1 Ann Arbor, Michigan-Wednesday, September 2, 1970 Student A

ctivities Section-Twelve Pages

STUDENT

AC TIVITIES

SDS a
By MARTIN HIRSCHMAN
Editor
With a surge of militancy and rev
tionary fervor, Ann Arbor Students f
Democratic Society (SDS) has smashec
way to new prominence on campus.
And with an increasing number of y
people becoming alienated from traditi
political goals and means, the size and
pact of SDS is likely to continue to gro
Starting the 1969 academic year i
only five members, SDS was involved in
militant campaigns against manifestat
of the military-industrial complex on c
pus, expanding to well over 100 active in
bers by the spring,
After an abortive campaign as par
an anti-ROTC coalition in the fall, SDS
tiafed a "Winter Offensive" aimed prim:
at job recruiters from large corporations
the military. The tactics involved a pa
quilt of yippie-style theatrical actions
cluding guerilla' theatre, trashing (poli
vandalism) a la the Weathermen, buil
takeovers, leafletting, speeches, and eve:
old-style peaceful sit-in.
While SDS activities were eventuall3
ershadowed by the massive campus-
strike for increased black admissions, it
appeared that the militant white g
would hold center stage on the campus l
tical scene last winter.
But by mid-February, SDS's confid
and energy were sapped by the legal
disciplinary actions facing a score o:
members following the actions. And v
the black admissions strike began a m
later, many members temporarily dro
their work in SDS to help out with nu:
ous strike activities.
The winter offensive included, in a
tion to the actions against the job
cruiters, trashing of the ROTC building
the Ann Arbor bank (resulting in over
800 in damages), and other guerilla ac
during January and February.
SDS sprayed an Allied Chemical C
cruiter with pesticides and dumped a
bird and several fish on his desk, sp
black enamel paint on a Naval recri
and locked a General Electric Co. recr
in his office, leading Presdent Ro
Fleming, on the advice of faculty obset
to call in the police.
The diversity of tactics reflects the s
trum of political philosophies among n
bers of SDS. There is no. SDS "line", b
members do tend to share certain basic
tudes toward U.S. society. Thus, while
tactics have varied, almost all SDS ac
have been directed against institu
which SDS considers racist, male chau
ist and imperialist.
Diversity in SDS is promoted by its
centralized organizational structure.
SDS members belong to collectives - s
Givingth
ny DAVE CHUDWIN
After sponsoring the largest teach-in of
its kind in the nation's history last
March, the Environmental Action for
Survival group (ENACT) is continuing to
educate people about the environmental
crisis and possible solutions to it.
Since the University teach-in (see
story, page 2), the student-community
group has engaged in a number of pro-
grams, including an Ecology Center, a
"resources recycling" project, a lobbying
effort to pass environmental legislation,
and support for changes in University in-

vestment policies.
ENACT's continuing vigor has con-
founded those who say environmental
concern is a fad. "For an organization
that was supposed to die out, we're going
strong," says Fred Kingwill, an ENACT
steering committee member.
The group was originally organized last
October for the specific purpose of plan-
ning an environmental teach-in at the
University. The idea spread to hundreds
of other campuses, and the ENACT effort
of March 10-14 served as a prototype for
similiar events across the country on
Earth Day, April 22.
Dozens of well-known politicians, busi-
nessmen, scientists and entertainers ex-
hautive.1u ihvrd everv asneet f tf he

nd

s tudent

militancy

groups of from seven to 12 people who often
live together while working together on po-
litical activities. Some of the collectives are
"into" tactics such as trashing, while in
others, there is more emphasis on activities
such as guerilla treatre.
SDS members claim the collective struc-
ture is good because, they say, it allows less
outspoken members to have an impact on
the organization, while allowing all mem-
bers to develop "humanistic, revolutionary
life styles."
Despite this diversity among its mem-
bers, SDS continues to be seen as a rather
monolithic organization by the large ma-
jority of liberals and moderates on campus.
"Our rhetoric is right," one SDS member
says, "but for many of those who do not
agree with or understand the radical analy-
sis of society;there has been little opportun-
ity for non-rhetorical discussions with SDS
members."
To counter SDS's rather impersonal im-
age, SDS members have put in a good deal
of time talking to freshmen when they come
for orientation.
"When I came to the University," ex-
plains one present SDS member, "The first
person I talked to was Bill Ayers (now a
Weatherman leader on the run from a fed-
eral conspiracy indictment). I was so turned
off I didn't come back to SDS for six
months."
And so this year, SDS, along with Wo-
men's Liberation and Gay Liberation Front,
produced a guerilla theatre skit during the
orientation programs depictinga variety of
confrontations between student activists
and University administrators.
The new students have appeared surpris-
ingly receptive to the production, but the.
depth of the impact of this will only be seen
after a period of time.
SDS's Winter Offensive has left a num-
ber of important marks on the campus. For
one thing, a handful of radical professors
and teaching fellows were prodded by the
SDS actions to band together under the ban-
ner of Radical College-a group which could
lend the campus left some prestigious
though pacific support. Meanwhile, howev-
er, the bulk of the faculty seems to have
veered toward a "law and order" position in
response to the onslaught of disruptions.
The big remaining question mark is the
student body. Most students tended to shy
away from SDS's guerrila actions, but they
turned out in large numbers for both the
'Chicago 7' demonstration and,. even more
so for the black admissions strike. A
growing number of students appear to hold
anti-racist and anti-imperialist beliefs, but
are apparertly difficult to organize. Perhaps
the major test.of SDS's long-term viability
will be its ability to mobilize and enlist
large numbers of these students in the fall.

Marching: The usual means of student protest

Trashing: Political vandalism

'U'

ecological conscience

"We see the teach-in as a first phase-
an effort toward environmental aware-
ness," ENACT steering committee mem-
ber Bill Manning said before the teach-
in: "The second phase will be putting
what we've learned into action."
And now, with most members of the
community realizing that an environ-
mental crisis does exist, ENACT has
switched gears from an organizing com-
mittee for a one-shot affair to a per-
manent group acting to save the environ-
ment.
In May, ENACT opened an Ecology
Center "to provide information to the
community and' serve as a clearinghouse
for community organizations," Kingwill
says.
Located at 417 Detroit St., the center
has offices for ENACT, the Zero Popul

tion Group (ZPG) and the Sierra Club.
A full-time director at the center coor-
dinates a wide range of services including
an environmental library, a speaker's
bureau and a consulting service for
schools and other organizations.
During the summer the Ecology Center
aided several churches in clean-up drives
and "Environmental Sundays" and also
began planning for an environmental film
festival.
Organized as a non-profit educational
corporation, the center has taken over
.much of ENACT's work in making peo-
ple aware of the problem and possible
solutions to it, but has by no means re-
placed ENACT.
"ENACT has become our political arm,"
Kingwill explains. "We can do anything
we please as far as politics and lobbying

while the Ecology Center can't for legal
i'easons."
In the political area, ENACT plans to
take an active part in the November elec-
tions. The group will look closely at can-
didates' voting record and make endorse-
ments of environmentally-minded in-
dividuals.
A number of candidates have used
ENACT as a sounding board for plat-
form proposals on the ecology issue as
well as for information on the extent
and nature of the crisis.
ENACT has also been quite active in
lobbying for legislative action on anti-
pollution bills. An intensive effort was
made in support of state House Bill 3055
which allows private citizens to sue cor-
porations and government agencies for
degrading the environment.
During the teach-in, hearings on en-
vironmental legislation were held on cam-
pus by the U.S. House Subcommittee on
Conservation and Natural Resources and
the state House Committee on Conserva-
tion.
Besides working on laws to prevent
future pollution, ENACT is trying to help
clean up some of the mess that already
exists. A recycling of natural resources
program is the group's main effort in this

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