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November 19, 1970 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1970-11-19

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

why then this restlessness?
The auto workers: Homeward bound
by SNtart i Re

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..



Security for Huey:
Repression vs. repression

IHE SECURITY measures surrounding
Huey Newton's speech Tuesday night
in Hill Aud. have created debate over
what precautions should be taken to as-
sure the safety of a controversial campus
On one level, the precautions taken by
the Panthers are understandable. Such
procedures as risking all those who enter-
ed must be considered in the light of the
Panthers' political situation.
As revolutionaries, they cannot r e 1 y
upon enemy security agents for their pro-
tection. As black revolutionaries, their
safety is constantly in jeopardy and self-
defense is of the highest priority. With
so many Panthers killed, in jail or subject
to harrassment, frisking those who came
to hear Newton seems more than justi-
Clearly, those who objected to the long
wait in line to be searched were thinking
of themselves and their small inconven-
ience rather than the safety of the speak-
But some of the other security measures
seemed less necessary for Newton's pro-
It is difficult to argue that people were
a threat to Newton if they did not sit
completely still in their seats, as was sug-
gested' by the threats of the organizers
of the event. A security guard of 11 was
protecting the stage and other Panthers
and Black Student Union members were
standing in the aisles. Why then, t h e
THE FOLLOWING endorsements
for Student Government Coun-
cil candidates were made in Tues-
day's Daily:
EXCELLENT: Paul Teich, Jeanne
GOOD: Marnie Heyn, Andre H u n t,
Brian Spears;
ACCEPTABLE: Jeff Lewin, Jay Hack,
Al Ackerman;
NOT ENDORSED: Paul Travis, Hen-
ry Clay, Russ Garland, Jim Kent,
Mark Ruessman, Edward Steig,
Bahr Weiss.

warning that no one leave their seats
during the program (which some never-
theless chose to ignore)? Why the threat
against those who already submitted to
A S WELL AS being unnecessary, these
precautions were counter-productive
in that they alienated a segment of the
audience. When a spokesman threatened
the audience to keep in their seat "or
else we can't be responsible for your safe-
ty," it seemed like the audience was be-
ing subjected to a form of repression par-
allel to what Panthers currently suffer.
For those who saw historical analogies
in the way the event was run, the situa-
tion was frightening. When the audience
seemed to respond most enthusiastically
to threats of "taking their (political op-
ponents') heads off," it was like a strange
flashback to times when assassinations
have been condoned by masses of people
without question. But these repressive
tactics used in the past and present to
stifle freedom cannot be used by t h o s e
who propose to liberate.
Unfortunately, as long as the Panth-
ers are enemies of 'the state it is likely
that searches will be necessary in order,
to have large public gatherings to hear
Panthers. An example of the misguided
response to this necessary precaution is
the recent statement by President Robben
W. Fleming.
INSTEAD OF acknowledging the condi-
tions that led to the necessity of the
precautions, Fleming bemoans the fact
that such things should be necessary in
a University community. His statement
"we want to know in the future well in
advance of any such condition and to re-
view whether appearances which must
take place under such conditions are ap-
propriate on this campus," creates a grave
threat to freedom of assembly on campus.
When radical groups like the Black
Panthers are so often denied forums and
systematically persecuted by forces with-
in society, the case for their appearance
in the University community becomes
even stronger. As long as the Panthers are
oopressed, their right to a forum here
should be guarded zealously. On the other
side, while the Panthers must chiefly con-
cern themselves with their own self-de-
fense, they must not let defense lead to
their own sort of repression.

L AST THURSDAY, the fifty-
ninth day of the UAW strike
against General Motors, was typi-
cal in many respects for the strik-
erson thetpicket lie Oub e
gates to the Chevrolet assembly
plant a cold wind whipped dust
off the road into the huddling
groups of men. The rumble of
heavy trucks on the road and the
roar of airplanes approaching a
nearby airport combined to drown
out conversation every few min-
utes. Overhead dirty gray clouds
-characteristic of Michigan
Novembers - were constantly
swept on by the wind.
However, last Thursday was dif-
ferent in one respect. The day be-
fore the UAW and GM had reach-
ed a tentative settlement of the
two-month old strike which has
half paralyzed the nation's a u t o
industry and' the men on the
picket line had their car radios
tuned in to news programs trying
to hear reports on the proposed
terms of the contract.
For after weeks of fruitless bar-
gaining, it appears that the UAW
has negotiated a contract which
will be acceptable to the union's
rank and file. On a nationwide
level, the settlement has been
blasted by the Nixon administra-
tion andbbusinessmen as inflation-
ary, while locally some workers
and union men believe the UAW
leadership sold out on many key
demands - especially plant griev-
ances. However, most of this de-
bate has been shrugged aside by
the men on the picket lines. What
was uppermost in their minds was
the expectation that after t w o

months of striking they would soon
be returning to work,
THE AUTO STRIKE was fought
over the UAW's demands for more
pay, early retirement, and an un-
limited cost-of-living allowance -
all of which the workers support-
ed. And while these issues have
been more or less settled, the ne-
gotiation of local contracts in in-
dividual plants appears to have
been much less successful.
For instance, at the C h e v y
assembly plant, the workers h a d
hoped to have the ventilation i
the 1factory improved, and tele-
phones installed near the lines,
among other things. But in the
negotiation of worker grievances,
these demands were compromised,
and although the men finally ra-
tified the agreement, it obviously
didn't excite them. As one work-
er said: "They settled here, and I
voted for the contract . . . I don't
see much in it though."
However, perhaps more than
winning their contract demands
for improved plant conditions,
workers are anxious to return to
work because of the grim financ-
ial outlook they face. When the
strike began many workers had
saved some money in anticipation
of being out of work. But now
as these funds dwindle and winter
approaches, the prospect of living
on the $40 allowance strikers re-
ceive from the union becomes in-
creasingly depressing, making the
workers more willing to settle.
And though most of the men
will encounter financial difficul-
ties should the strike continue,
they talk very .little about their

own hard times, preferring to fall
back on pride rather than out-
side support - even from t h e i r
families. As one worker put it:
"My own money is gone but I
will never let my wife work. She
belongs at home." Another notes
ironically that since the s t r i k e
began his bills have really dropped
- because he has no money to
buy anything on installment. Per-
haps the mood of the men was
best summed up by a worker who
said he needed "some" m o n e y,


Letters to The Daily

Heil Hitler
To the Daily:
I ATTENDED LAST ni g ht' s
lecture by Huey P. Newton and was
amazed that your reporter could
find any sense of cohesion, rele-
vance, or knowledge in Mr. New-
ton's oration. Furthermore, it as-
tounds me how any responsible
journalist could fail to describe the
restrictive and degrading condi-
tions that were forced upon 1 a s t
night's audience.
I shall start at the beginning-
Arriving at Hill Auditorium at
7 p.m., I waited with the rest of
the :expectant mass of 4,000 to get
in and hear the words of one
of America's greatest leaders. Upon
a combination of pushing a n d
being pushed, I finally made it to
the door by 9 p.m., only to find
myself roughly frisked by what I
had considered a "brother," and
then was commanded to find a
seat in the balcony.
IT WAS ONLY after all this has-
sle and had gotten a seat that I
realized what I was experiencing.
It wasn't until then that it dawn-
ed on me that I was observing a
re-creation of the rise, the vigor,
pomp and perversity of N a z i
Nothing was missing, perhaps
varied a little, but it was a 11

there. The Panther body-guard
who fired up the crowd by repeat-
edly screaming, "Right On!,"
"Power to thePeople," was mere-
ly a resurrected S. S. Guard, and
his phrases were just euphemisms
for "Heil Hitler."
The clenched fists only a var-
iation of the open hand, the
phrase "the people," only a sub-
stitute for "Deutschland," and the
black-garbed pubescent boys with
their black barets, ready to strong
arm people back into their seats,
is Huey's answer to Hitler's youth.
In fact, it must be noted, that the
Panther's insistence, through the
threat of violence, that everyone
remain seated, far exceeded even
the Fueher's paranoia.
However, the climax to this ana-
logy occurred when I decided to
commit these thoughts to paper,
along with the words of Huey, who
by now, 9:30 p.m., had ambled on
to the stage. It was then, while
taking notes, that my pen and
paper were confiscated along with
those of the journalists next to me.
IT MUST BE said that there is
only one point, Land thank God
for that one point,) where this
analogy is inconsistent. Whereas
Hitler was a great orator and em-
ployed tight-well-written speech-
es to stir a crowd; the rhetorical
disability of Mr. Newton far ex-

ceeds that of even my most boring
and redundant professor.
Not only that, but his know-
ledge of Communist theory, social-
psychology, philosophy, history,
and all subjects touched upon in
last night's lecture, is, to say the
least, elementary, if not, down-
right incorrect. In less than three
hours, Mr. Newton emasculated
Marxian theory, debauched Soc-
rates by claiming to employ his
method, exhibited a competence of
physics worthy of a malpractice
suit, and even managed to mis-
quote a song by Rogers a n d
SUBSEQUENTLY, when first
walking out of Hill Auditorium last
night, I was cursing myself for
opting Hamlet and Seven Sam-
uri just to hear the babel of Mr.
Newton. However, were it n o t
for my experience last night, I
would still be a Panther sympa-
thizer, consider Huey P. Newton a
prophet, and thoroughly believe
yesterday's Daily article. However,
my experience has shown me that
even Nixon's vile, discriminatory,
repressive police-state is not
nearly as dangerous as the micro-
cosmic nation which the Panthers
had created in Hill Auditorium
last night.
-Mark Alan Farber '72
Nov. 18

"but if you have to make it you
pelling motivation for returning to
work is the growing sense of bore-
dom and uselessness workers feel
as the strike wears on. In Septem-.
ber, there was no problem in
building enthusiasm for the strike.
Work in the plant last summer
was reaching the point of insan-
ity. Anticipating the strike, GM
had its shifts working overtime
each day and six days a week.
So when the strike finally came,
the men, worn ragged from work,
were willing enough to leave their
As the strike got underway,
however, boredom was quick to
make its appearance. Daily rou-
tines which began by fixing things
around the house or doing s o m e
work on one's car gradually lapsed
into a growing restlessness over
not being able to work - e v e n
under oppressive factory condi-
By November, most men have
grown weary of sitting at h o m e
each day with nothing to occupy
their attention save the ever-pre-
sent television set. Trips away
from home amount to shopping
and the weekly requirement of
spending four hours on the picket
line. And by now even picket duty
has grown boring.
Picket lines are organized by
the union to prevent the company
from bringing in other workers or
unauthorized personnel into the
plant. In the beginning of the
strike the workers at Chevy as-
sembly were fairly militant, clash-
ing with Washtenaw County Sher-
iff's deputies on the f i r s t night
over the right of picketers to stop
and inspect cars. Then for the
first few weeks of the strike t h e
workers carefully checked 'the
identification of each car which
approached the gate, refusing to
let anyone but management em-
ployes past. By now however,
workers on the picket line pass
their time drinking coffee or sit-
ting in their cars, waving at the
management men who drive

through the gate, and reminiscing
about times, cars, and childhoods
strikers analyze the merits of
Fords or Chevrolets, Winchesters
or Remingtons,. West Virginia or
Kentucky, and wives or women.
Younger workers try to draw at-
tention to themselves by telling
stories about their automotive or
erotic exploits while older men
stand more quietly, drawing on
the conversation as they do on
their pipes: reflectively absorbing
the contents.
Nearby, a white Christmas tree
- put up in jest by workers a few
weeks ago when prospects for the
strike were less hopeful - could
finally be laughed at as a joke.
Now workers talked happily of a
white Christmas - with t he~m
So what has been the meaning
of the strike? Certainly e v e r y
worker suffered hardship. B u t
just as certainly the misery, frus-
tration, and contempt strikers of
previous years suffered was par-
ticularly absent throughout this
GM strike.
some people, especially students,
hoped it would serve as a spring-
board for educating the public on
the exploitive nature of G a n e r a 1
Motors. Others hoped the strike
would raise the consciousness of
the auto workers of the need for
political change. The UAW on the
other hand, fought the strike
strictly as an economic battle ig-
noring the political implications
others were anxious to draw,
Whatever the value to these
positions, now as the settlement
approaches, the debate over the
meaning ;of the strike will ease
as workers prepare to return to the
factories. And it appears that with
a better position in regard to in-
flation than they had before, and
prospects for retiring at an early
age, few workers feel oppressed by
their lives.
White American workers may
certainly be privileged in om-
parison with the rest of the world.
They don't demand much f r o m
society, or the present outside of
material satisfaction. Rather, they
look ahead to the timewhen they
can retire and return to the coun-
try to enjoy life. If working on an
assembly line is the price to be
pair for arpleasant retirement,
then they are willing to pay it.
Under the new contract, most of
them will be qualified for pen-
sions by the time they're in their
early fifties. In the meantime,
there will always be newer cars to
talk about, longer hunting trips
to make and Johnny Cash has his
own TV show. Working in an auto
factory may not be the best of all
possible worlds, but for the Amer-
ican worker it seems acceptable
But last Thursday, the strike
was still on and the men were
manning positions on the picket
-rather than the assembly-line.
When picket duty is over, some of
the men ,will return home. Others
will get together with some friends
to drink. And as one worker says:
"My wife wants the strike to end
quick because I come home drunk
every time I picket."



Garry: Snatching Panthers from the belly of the mo


THE MAN IS 62 years old, and frustrated.
Stockley Carmichael won't speak to him. A judge
in California wants to put him in jail. A judge in
New Haven won't let him talk about his work in
public. The San Francisco police force wants their
hands on him - preferably in a dark alley some-
Bobby Seale calls him the "Lenin" of the court-
room, and would rather defend himself than get an-
other lawyer.
And that, for Charles Garry, makes it all worth-{
Garry is the chief legal counsel for the National
Black Panther Party, and at first meeting him, one

would- think it strange that the chief legal counsel
for the Panthers, should be a 62 year old white man
of Armenian stock, who worked his way up through
the burdens of Middle Americanism to become, not
the most flamboyant radical lawyer in the country,
just the most dedicated and effective.
A lot of the Black Panthers thought it pretty
strange too, when friends of theirs recommended
they retain Garry to defend Huey Newton in Cali-
fornia in 1967. In his book, Seize the Time, Bobby
Seale tells of his apprehension of hiring a white law-
yer to defend Huey. But that apiprehension wore off
when Seale learned that Charles Garry wasn't in-
terested in big legal fees, when he learned of Charles
Garry's long experience as a radical lawyer. He
learned that Charles Garry is not a lawyer w h o
works for the Movement, but part of the Movement
who happens to. be a lawyer.
The Panthers hired Garry and soon after he got
Eldridge Cleaver out of Vacaville and kept Huey
Newton out of the gas chamber in California.
NOW THE FAITH that Bobby Seale put in
Charles Garry becomes even more personally rele-
vent as Charles Garry comes to New Haven to try to
keep Bobby Seale and Ericka Huggins out of the
electric chair in the Alex Rackley murder case.
Last Sunday night, Garry sat in an old green
terrycloth bathrobe on a small couch in a small and
spare guest suite at the Yale University Law School
dormitory. He drank scotch on the rocks out of a
paper cup and talked about the other obvious ques-
tion: Assuming the Panthers choose you for their
chief legal counsel, why do you choose to work for
"Because I'm a revolutionary," he says matter of
And therein lies the reason Charles Garry is
frustrated. Being a lawyer is almost the epitome of
working through the system.
"You're damn right it's frustrating," he says. "I

share the beliefs of his clients, and Garry says this
is true in his case. For starters, he calls himself, "at
least a socialist."
"I don't like to be stuck in a narrow category
with a label. Let me put it this way: I firmly believe,
without equivocation, that the means of production
must be take over by the people. And that has to be
done, in this country, in the American way."
What the hell is that?
"I don't know for sure." he says.
Well Mister Garry, some historians would say
that the American way is through violent revolu-
"I think it's been proven that the established
powers won't give up their powers without violence."
he says.
SO, WHEN your clients are not clients or rather

don't know really what to call it. They are part of
the oppressed, part of the colony here that the
Mother Country is vamping on, and fucking over,
and shitting on and screwing.
"The Panthers are more than political prisoners,
they are prisoners of war.
"Black people in this country," Garry says, "have
completely lost confidence in the system. The Pan-
thers are not members of the system who broke the
laws, but rather soldiers in a battle of total. resis-
tence to the system.
When one understands the Panthers, in this way,
one can understand Charles Garry, when he says'
that the prosecution of Bobby Seale and Ericka Hug-
gins is not a political prosecution but an act of war
by the states.
Garry is banned by a court order from discus-
sing specific details of the Seale case on the record.

Ma mm m mm N MM ~ mm m mm m mm WN #EN #:IN##NE:si: i ss%:%i i~i i:i::: i: vi: v ::48:3:::
Garry professes to have no real faith in the law, in the courts, in the
process. He doesn't view himself as an advocate or an officer of the court,
but rather as a combatant locked in struggle with the system, on the sys-
tem's home territory. He fights to keep people out of the clutches of the

and a good mechanic. Just wait until t h e y get
(George) Sams (the chief state witness) on the
Leonard Weinglass, co-counsel for the defense in
the Chicago 7 conspiracy trial, speaks highly of Gar-
ry's ability as a lawyer. "They told me that there's
air conditioning in this courtroom," Weinglass said,
referring to the scene of Seale's current New Haven
murder trial. "Well they're going to need it when
Garry gets Sams on cross examination."
Garry's record also backs up his claim. In, his 32
years of law practice, Garry has had a large number
of radical clients. His record of keeping, clients off
death row and out of jail was one of the reasons the
Panthers chose him. In the Oakland shoot out case
he got three out of five trials to end in hung juries,
and never put a single witness on the stand.
And Garry does it for peanuts. As part of a four-
man law firm, he has a one-fourth responsibility in
the firm's overhead expenses of $22,000 a month. His
only request to the Panthers has been that they pay
that share of the expenses. He lives on his share of
the profits from the cases of his other three part-
*My partners share my aspirations, they under-
stand," he says. That's a significant plus for Garry
because the Panthers are $100,000 to $150,000 be-
hind in expenses and foresee only going more in
debt. The attorney for Erika Huggins, Catherine
Roraback, is also said to be completely broke.
But Roraback, like Garry, works becausq she be-
lieves in what she is doing. Prior to New Haven,
Garry spent five months in San Francisco winning
the acquittal of six chicanos accused of murdering
a policeman.
He is now missing a trial in Oakland and there
is a bench warrant out for his failure to appear. The
Huey Newton retrial is scheduled to begin in Janu-
ary when the Bobby Seale trial will almost certainly
be in progress.


colleagues and you all believe that power must be in
the hands of the people, and the establishment won't
give up power without violence . . . well, you have
a lot of political trials on your hands.
The phrase "political trials" however, bothers
"I don't think the Bobby Seale trial is a political
trial," he says. So he explains what he means.
"I divide criminal law up into four categories. In
the first you have crimes of Property. Jean Val Jean
types of crime, where a man steals to eat, or sup-

But he did say, that the case poses a particular prob-
lem for him. Usually, Garry would appeal to the jury
for an acquittal of his defendant, not because they
were victims of an act of war by the state, but "in
the American way, showing Panthers as general vic-
tims of established racism members of the system
entitled to all the rights of that system. He would
try to convince the jury that the prosecuter is in-
fringing those rights, that the prosecuter is out to
"get" Bobby Seale.
But the Alex Rackley murder case, in which


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