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September 29, 1970 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1970-09-29

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Eighty 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.



On, campus,.unrest

AS UNIVERSITIES t h r o u g h o u t the
country open this fall, the awareness
that this nation faces one of the greatest
schisms in its history presses on all of us.
It is a reality with which we all must
On many university campuses, last
spring, this schism burst forth in the
form of student protest against the in-
yvsion of Cambodia and the killings at
Kent and Jackson State. And part of the
tremendous energy released by these pro-
tests resulted in outbreaks of violence,
both directed at and committed by stu-
Confronted with t h i s unprecedented
schism, which has alienated the best
educated and most privileged American
youth from the social institutions of the
nation, one of the necessary reactions for
a President of the United States had to
have been the establishment of a com-
mission on campus unrest..
THAT WAS last spring. Now we are
presented with a document which ser-
iously presents its solution for ending
campus unrest. We would be deceiving
ourselves to shrug the report off as just
another administrative whitewash or a
rhetorical exercise in denunciation.
In' precis, the feelings of the commis-
sion can justly be presented as follows:
There is an increasing amount of
violence and campus unrest in our
society. Diversity of opinion and in-
tolerance of opposing views has given
rise to a significant polarization in
the nation. Violence and polarization
and campus unrest must be ended.-
We propose our recommendations be-
cause we believe they will end campus
THE REPORT of the President's Com-
mission on Campus Unrest includes a
sincere plea for the. establishment of a
truly cooperative university community
where educational opportunities are not
restricted and academic institutions are
free from outside interference. It goes on
to advocate r e f o r m s in the university
-structures which will facilitate equal op-
portunities, free a c c e s s for minority
groups and various academic improve-
The mood of reconciliation is expressed
by the commission's belief that it is
"urgent that Americans of all convic-
tions draw back from the brink. We must
recognize even our bitter opponents as
fellow Americans with rights, upon which
we cannot morally or legally encroach
and- as fellow human beings whom we
must not club, stone, shoot or bomb.
"Violence must stop because it is wrong:
It destroys human effort. It undermines
the foundations of a just social order. No
progress is possible in a society where
lawlessness prevails.
"Violence must stop because the sounds
of violence drown out all words of reason.
When students and officials resort to
force and violence, no one can hear.
Moreover, the commission iflatly advo-
cates an end to the War infIndochina
the symbol of the nation's moral crisis-
along with changes in subsidiary univer-
sity related functions such as ROTC.
While we feel these objectives are good
in and of themselves, the closer we read
Published at 420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich. 48104.
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Average press run - 9000.
Second class postage paid at Ann Arbor, Michigan,
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Editorial Staff
Editorial Director Managing Editor
JIM NEUBACHER .. Editorial Page Editor
ROB BIER ............ .Associate Managing Editor
LAURIE HARRIS . . Arts Editor
JUDY KAHN .... Personnel Director
DANIEL ZWERDLING ...... Magazine Editor
ROBERT CONROW .... .. Books Editor
NIGHT EDITORS: Dave Chudwin, Erika Hoff, Steve
Koppman, Robert Kraftowitz, Lynn Weiner
Chaney, Steve Koppman, Pat Mahoney, Rick
COPY EDITORS: Tammy- Jacobs, Larry Lempert, Jim
McFerson, Hester Pulling, Carla Rapoport, Debbie
Thal. Harvard Valiance
Cleply, Mark Dillen, Sara Fitzgerald, Art Lerner,

the report the more it becomes clear to
us that with its philosophy and orienta-
tion, the Commission on Campus Unrest
has taken it upon itself to become the
Commission to End Campus Unrest. We
do not believe that this is a wise or even
desirable goal.
In fairness to the commission, it should
be noted that it is perhaps aiming at a
broader, more idealistic goal-the crea-
tion of a society within the existing po-
litical and economic structures in which
great strides toward social justice and
human decency can be made in the ab-
sence of polarization and violent action.
We share their dream. In that dream
society, the frustrations which drive men
to violence might not exist. In that so-
ciety we would have leaders who dis-
played moralhleadership, and there could
be an economic'system without exploita-
tion, a cultural diversity without inhi-
But we don't live in that society.
Though an end to unrest and polariza-
tion may occur in a dream society, it is
wrong to assume that ending polariza-
tion and campus unrest in and of itself
will transform our society into tomor-
row's utopia.
RATHER, HISTORY has shown that in
the absence of dissent and unrest
power remains where it is, and tends to
concentrate, while injustices go unreme-
died. We believe that campus unrest and
continuing dissent - to the extent that
they are not morally corruptive-serve as
vital checks on the system of govern-
ment in any country; and are particularly
important in this country today.
However, as a tactic to effect social
change, dissent and unrest must be dif-
ferentiated from more violent forms of
protest. The commission labels violence
as a cancer to be removed from American
universities. But unrest. cannot be con-
demned categorically, as the commission
does. It must be examined within the po-
litical context in which it occurs.
THE VERY FACT that American univer-
sities erupted over the foreign policy
crisis last spring points to the reality that
no American campus exists outside or
apart from the rest of society.
And tragically, the society to which the
American university is welded, is fraught
with injustice often 'pressuring various
groups and institutions within its frame-
work into confrontation. Indeed, the vio-
lence on campus is a reflection of the
violence within our society, and a greater
violence which is the product of our for-
eign policy. None of these issues can be
We must condemn the commission for
its over-emphasis on ending campus un-
rest as the panacea for the crisis in our
society. Unrest is a sympton, not a cause,
of the problenms in the country, and
should not be expected to end until the
deeper ailments are corrected.
WHETHER UNREST in this country is
abated should not be an important
factor in the decision to demand an end
to the war. The war must end because
it is leading to the slaughter of Asian
peoples and the destruction of their lands.
It must end because it is an example of
gross abuse of American political and mil-
itary power. It must end because it is an
example of imperialism - actions of
manipulation of a small country by the
larger, with the end justification being
the "national interest" of the larger
Campus unrest must be seen as the

result of underlying inequities and injust-
ices in our society and should not be ex-
pected to end until these ills are solved.
It is students recognizing that there are
aspects of ur country which are deplor-
able, and need correction.
It is not yet clear how we can most
effectively gather enough leverage to re-
distribute power and correct the major
injustices in society.
But it is certain that we must continue
to make ourselves heard, to oppose the
absurd and the atrocious in our society,
and continue to do so as long as it is

Following are the texts of a
call "To the American People"
and the recommendations of the
President's Commission on Cam-
pus Unrest as presented in its
report to President Nixon Sat-
THE CRISIS on American cam-
puses has no parallel in the
history of the nation. This crisis
has roots in divisions of American
society as deep as any since the
Civil War. The divisions are re-
flected in violent acts and harsh
rhetoric, and in the emnity of
those Americans who see them-
selves as occupying o p p o s i n g
camps. Campus unrest reflects and
increases a more profound crisis
in the nation as a whole.
This crisis has two components:
A crisis of violence and a crisis
of understanding. We fear new
violence and growing emnity.
ON THE nation's campuses, and
in their neighboring com-
munties, the level of violence has
been steadily rising. Students have
been killed and injured; civil au-
thorities have been killed and in-
jured; bystanders have been killed
and injured; valuable public and
private property, and scholarly
products have been burned.
Too many Americans have be-
gun to justify violence as a means
of effecting change or safeguard-
ing, traditions. Too many have for-
gotten the values and sense of
shared humanity that unite us.
Campus violence reflects this na-
tional condition.
Much of the nation is so polar-
ized that on many campuses a
major domestic conflict or an un-
popular initiative in foreign policy
could trigger further violence, pro-
(est and, in its wake, counter-
violence and repression.
The Constitution protects the
freedom of all citizens to dissent
and to engage in nonviolent pro-
test. Dissent is a healthy sign of
freedom and a protction against
stagnation. But the right to dissent
is not the right to resort to vi-
Equally, to respond to peaceful
protest with repression and brutal
tactics is dangerusly unwise. It
makes extremists of moderates,
deepens the divisions in the na-
tion, and increases the chances
that future protest will be violent,
We believe it urgent that Aer-
icans of all convictions draw back
from the brink. We must recognize
even our 'bitter opponents as fl-
low Americans with rights upon
which we cannot morally or legal-
ly encroach and as fellow human
beings whom we must not club,
stone, shoot, or bomb.
cause it is wrong. It destroys hu-
man effort. It undermines the
foundations of a just social order.
No progress is possible in a society
where lawlessness prevails.
Violence must stop because the
sounds of violence drown out all
words of reason. When students
and officials resort to force and
violence. no one can hear. The
nation is denied a vital call to
conscience. It must stop because
no nation will long tolerate vio-
lence without repression. History
offers grim proof that repression
once started is almost impossible
to contain.
focused on three major ques-
tions: war, racial injustice, and
the university itself.

The first issue is the unfilled
promise of full justice and dignity
for blacks and other minorities.
Blacks, like many others of dif-
ferent races and ethnic origins,
are demanding today that the
pledges of the Declaration of In-
dependence and the Emancipation
Proclamation be fulfilled now. Full
social justice and dignity-an end
to racism, in all its human, social
and cultural forms-is a central

demand of today's students, black,
brown and white.
A great majority of students and
a majority of their elders oppose
the ' Indochina war. Many believe
it entirely immoral. And if the
war is wrong, students insist, then
so are all policies and practices
that support it, from the draft to
military research, from R.O.T.C.
to recruiting for defense ihdustry.
This opposition has led to an ever-
widening wave of student protests.
A third target of student pro-
test is the shortcomings of the
American university. The goals,
values, administration and cur-
riculum have been sharply criti-
cized by many students. Students
complain that their studies are
irrelevant to the social problems
that concern them.
They want to shape their own
personal and common lives, but
find the university restrictive.
They seek a community of com-
panions and scholars but find an,
impersonal multiversity. And they
denounce the university's relation-
ship to the war and to discrimina-
tory racial practices.
BEHIND THE student protest
on these issues and the crises of
violence to which they have con-
tributed lies the more basic crisis
of understanding. -
Americans have never shared a
single culture, a single philosophy
or a single religion. But in most
periods in our history, we have
shared many common values,
common sympathies and a com-
mon dedication to a system of
government which protects our
We are now' in grave danger of
losing what is common among us
through growing intolerance of
opposing views on issues and of
diversity itself.
A "new" culture is emerging,
primarily among students. Mem-
bership is often manifested by dif-
ferences in dress and life style.
Most of its membefs have high
ideals and great fears. They stress
the need for humanity, equality
and the sacredness of life. They
fear that nuclear war will make
them the last generation in his-
They see their elders as entrap-
ped by materialism and competi-
tion and prisoners of outdated
social forms. They believe their
own country has lost its sense of
human purpose. They see the In-
dochina war as an onslaught by
a technological giant upon the
peasant people of a small, harm-
less and backward nation.
Americans have reacted to this
emerging culture with an intoler-
ance of their own. They reject
not only that which is impatient.
unrestrained, and intolerant in
the new culture of the young, but
even that which is good. Worse,

dreams of their elders and their
forefathers. In all Americans there
has always been latent respect for
the idealism of the young.
The whole object of a free gov-
ernment is to allow the nation to
redefine its purposes in the light
of new needs without sacrificing
the accummlated wisdom of its
living traditions. We cannot do
this without each other.
FAR MORE important than the
particular recommendations of
this commission are the underly-
ing themes that are common to
! Most student protestors are
neither violent nor extremist. But
a small minority of politically ex-
treme students and faculty mem-
bers and a small group of dedicat-
ed agitators are bent on destruc-
tion of the university through
violence in order to gain their own
political ends.
Perpetrators of violence must be




-Associated Press

"We urgently call for. reconciliation. Toler-
ance and understanding on all sides must re-
emerge from the fundamental decency of Amer-
icans, .from our shared aspirations as Americans,
from our traditional tolerance of diversity, and
from our common humanity."

ization within the university has
rendered its response ineffective.,
The university's own house must
be placed in order.
0 Too many students have act-
ed irresponsibly and even danger-
ously in pursuing their stated
goals and expressing their dissent.
Too many law enforcement offic-
ers have responded with unwar-
ranted harshness a n dforce in
seeking to control disorder.
* The nation has been slow to
resolve the issues of war and race,
which exacerbate divisions within
American society and which have
contributed to the escalation of
student protest and disorder.
0 All of us must act to prevent
violence, to create understanding
and to reduce the bitterness and_
hostility that divide b o t h the
campus and the country. We must
establish respect for the processes
of law and tolerance for the exer-
cise of dissent on our campus and
in the nation.
WE ADVANCE our recommen-
dations not as cure-alls but as ra-
tional and responsive steps that
should be taken. We summarize
here our major recommendations,
addressed to those who have the
power to carry them out.
We-urge state and local officials
to make plans for handling cam-
pus disorders in full cooperation
with one another and with the
universities. We urge the states to
establish guidelines setting forth
more precisely the circumstances
that justify ordering the guard to
intervene in a campus disorder.
We recommend that the Feder-
al Government review all its cur-
rent policies affecting student and
universities to assure that neither
the policies nor administration of
them threatens the independence
or quality of American higher ed-
ucation. At the same time 'Gov-
ernment should increase its inan-
cial support of higher education.
We urge public officials to re-
ject demands that entire univer-
sities be punished because of the
ideas or excesses of some mem-
bers and to honor their responsi-
bility to help preserve academic
WE RECOMMEND that the De-
partment of Defense establish al-
ternatives to R.O.T.C. so,that of-
ficer education is available to
students whose universities choose
to terminate on-campus R.O.T.C.
We recommend greatly increas-
ed financial aid for black colleges
and universities. All agencies cf
Government that support such in-
stitutions should massively in-

they reject the individual mem-
bers of the student culture them-
Distinctive dress alone is enough
to draw insult and abuse. Increas-
ing numbers of citizens believe
that students who dissent or pro-
test, even those who protest peace-
fully deserve to be treated harshly.
onciliation. Tolerance and under-
standing on all sides must re-
emerge from the fundamental de-
cency of Americans, from our
shared aspirations as Americans,
from our traditional tolerance of
diversity, and from our common
humanity. We must regain our
compassion for one another and
our mutual respect.
There is a deep continuity be-
tween all Americans, young and,
old, a continuity that is being ob-
scured in our growing polarization.
Mvost dissenting youth are striving
toward the ultimate values and

identified, removed from the uni-
versity as swiftly as possible,,and
prosecuted vigorously by the ap-
propriate agencies of law enforce-
* Dissent and peaceful protest
are a valued part of this nation's
way of -governing itself. Violence
and disorder are the antithesis of
democratic processes and cannot
be toleratedpeither on t h e na-
tion's campuses or anywhere else.
The roots of student activism
lie in unresolved conflicts in our
national life, but the many defects
of the universities have also fuel-
ed campus unrest.
Universities h a v e not ade-
quately prepared themselves to re-
spond to disruption. They have
been without suitable plans, rules
or sanctions. Some administrators
and faculty members h a v e re-
sponded irresolutely. Frequently,
announced sanctions have not
been applied. Even more frequent-
ly, the lack of appropriate organ-

crease their grants to enable these
colleges to overcome past short-
We support the continuing ef-
forts of formerly all-white univer-
sities to' recruit black, Mexican-
American, Puerto Rican, and oth-
er minority students, and we urge
that adequate Government-spon-
sored student aid be made avail-
able to them. We recommend that
in the process of becoming more
representative of the society at
large universities make the ad-
justments necessary to permit
those from minority backgrounds
to take maximum advantage of
their university experience,
Bombing and arson pose an In-
creasing threat to lives and prop-
erty on campus. We urge prompt
enactment of strict controls over
the sale, transfer and possession
of explosive materials at both the
Federal and state levels.
W E HAVE DEEP sympathy for
peace officers, local and state
police, national guardsmen a n d
campus security officers - who
must deal with all typesof cam-
pus disorder, taunts and assaults
without reacting violently and
whose careful conduct has pre-
vented violence and saved lives.
Much depends on their judgment,
courage and professionalism.
We commend those thousands
of law enforcement officers who
have endured.
At the same time, we recognize
that there have been dangerous
and sometimes fatal instances of
unnecessary harshness and illegal
violence by law enforcement offi-
We therefore urge that peace
officers be trained and equipped
to deal w i th campus disorders
firmly, justly and humanely. They
must avoid both uncontrolled and
excessive response.,
Too frequently, local police
forces have b een undermanned,
improperly equipped, poorly train-
ed and unprepared f o r campus
disturbances. We therefore urge
police forces, especially those In
smaller communities, to imiprove
their capacity to respond to civil
WE RECOMMEND the develop-
ment of joint contingency plans
among law enforcement agencies.
They should specify which law en-
forcement official is to be in com-
mand when several forces are op-
erating together.
Sending civil authorities to a
college campus armed as if for
war - armed only to kill - has
brought tragedy in the past. If
this practice is not changed,
tragedy will come again. Shoulder
weapons (except for tear gas
launchers) are very rarely needed
on the college campus; they should
not be used except as emergency
equipment in the face of sniper
fire or armed resistance' justify-
ing them.
We urge that the National
Guard be issued special protection
equipment appropriate for use in
controlling civil disorders. We
urge that it have sufficient tacti-
cal capability and nonlethal wea-
ponry so that it will use deadly
force only as the absolute last re-





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