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September 06, 1973 - Image 15

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1973-09-06

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w Thursday, September.6,-.197.3


Page Three

'Thursday, September 6, 1973 THE MICHIGAN DAILY





The political confrontations of
the late sixties forced a number
of exposed University faculty and
administration figures to choose
sides publicly. The time for
vague liberalism seemed to be
over when student demonstrators
invaded the classrooms or sur-
rounded the Administration Bldg.
chanting and making speeches.
Angry crowds on Regent's Pla-
za, however, proved not enough
to sway University President
Robben Fleming, still an old-
style liberal holed up on the Ad-

Fleming remarks. "I'm not at all
confident that I know why."
Fleming does not subscribe,
however, to the view that stu-
dents are now completely apa-
thetic. "I always say that the
problem with journalists and TV
reporters is that they see stu-
dents in terms of apathy or revo-
lution. Life just isn't that way,"
he says.
"Utter apathy is an aberration
and utter revolution is an aberra-
tion. Most people are in be-
Students, he says, are "momen-

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.. . the Fleming world is a secure one, still
bound by the values and perceptions of the
Kennedy years, though toughened a little by
the past decade's events."
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ministration Bldg's. second floor
behind an awe-inspiring array of
secretaries and glass doors.
"Both the radical right and the
radical left are really totalitar-
ian in nature," Fleming says this
summer, explaining the present
invisibility of student radicalism.
"People who use one tend to be
quite ruthless. The really radical
left is totally intolerant. I think
most students around campus
have a very different view."
Fleming weathered the storms
of the sixties, he claims, without
substantial change in his person-
al philosophy. An hour's talk with
him can produce a profound
sense of well-being; the Fleming
world is a secure one, still bound
by the values and perceptions of
the Kennedy years, though tough-
ened a little by the past decade's
How does the President see to-
day's campus? "There's obvious-
ly a very great change in the
mood of the student body,"

tarily, at least, turned off by the
methods of the generation that
preceded them."
The incidental deaths of unin-
volved people at Kent State Uni-
versity, Louisiana State Universi-
ty and at the University of Wis-
consin turned many students
away from radical tactics, Flem-
ing claims.
So Fleming does not foresee a
return of student political acti-
vism in the near future. "The
.pampus really isn't something
unique. It's part of the society."
"When tensions within a soci-
ety reach a certain level you will
get the kind of confrontation that
characterized that period of 1964
to 1970."
Fleming says his own approach
to confrontations between stu-
dents and administration has not
been altered by his experiences
with the Black Action Movement
(BAM) strike or the LSA Bldg.
sit-in which led to establishment
of the University Cellar as a non-
profit student-backed bookstore.

Trained in the field of labor
law and niediation, Fleming says
he was well-prepared for conflict
situations by professional experi-
ences prior to his appointment
here in 1969.
"I had done a lot of mediating,
negotiation, and arbitration in la-
bor situations. I knew that the
rhetoric is almost always higher
than the level of intention of the
To many observers, though,
Fleming's disciplinary stance
seems to have changed with the
tides of general campus mood.
During the 1970 BAM action,
Vice President Agnew blamed
Fleming for being too soft on stu-
dents employing mass pressure
tactics. Since the disappearance
of mass participation in such ac-
tions, however, Fleming's public
statements have displayed pa-
ternalistic toughness that should
satisfy even Agnew.
Notably in last year's State of
the University address, the Pres-
ident came down hard on a mi-
nority of the student body he said
was gumming up the works of
the University's academic pro-
Nevertheless, Fleming paints
himself as the essence of calm
rationality with regard to student
confrontations. "I think absurdity
is it's own answer," he explains,
crediting the general University
population with the good sense to
reject foolish rhetoric.
"Even in the most turbulent
times I always said I believed
you did not solve this kind of
problem by hitting people, jailing
them, or using tear gas on
them," he continues.
Fleming explains that he and
his staff always tried to provide
ways for demonstrators to back
down and avoid confrontations
with police.
Simultaneously, though, the
University indicated to students,
' Thereare things we can't tol-

LUaily Photo by I tRRY McCART HY
Pres. Robben FlemingD



A postponement of a court
hearing on Ann Arbor's disputed
non-returnable bottle ordinance
has insured that the ecology-
inspired legislation will not go
into effect until November at
the earliest, if at all.
Originally scheduled for June,
the trial date for a lawsuit filed
against the bottle ordinance was


HRP-Second Ward) introduced
the bottle ordinance at the re-
quest of the city's Ecology Cen-
The law was passed primarily
to decrease litter in Ann Arbor
and secondarily to conserve na-
tural resources needed in the
manufacture of t h r o w - a w a y
Former Mayor Robert Harris
expressed fear in December over

"The law was passed primarily to decrease
litter in Ann Arbor and secondarily to con-
serve natural resources needed in the manu-
facture of throw-away bottles."

Secondly, Harris speculated on
how much of a shift there would
be in sales volume from Ann Ar-
bor to the surrounding localities,
negatively affecting the city's
And finally, Harris feared that
local stores might be forced to
go out of business, to relocate
outside of the city, or to raise
Local merchants had the same
issues in mind when they ob-
tained a temporary restraining
order from Circuit Court. The
order prevented enforcement of
the bottle ordinance just after its
passage by a Democratic-
majority City Council.
Council member De Grieck
claimed that the subquent post-
ponementhof the trialdate was
a Republican attempt to kill the
"The GOP is not willing to
scuttle the bottle ordinance open-
ly, so they have done it through
the courts," he charged.
Both the city and attorneys
representing the merchants "mu-
tually agreed" to the delay, ac-
cording to City Attorney Edwin
Pear. He indicated the move will
allow "the issues to be clarified."
The city originally sought an
earlier trial date, but the court's
schedule necessitated the No-
vember hearing, Pear added.

pushed to Nov. 7. Several local
merchants have filed a class
action suit against the city claim-
ing the law would irreparably
damage their businesses.
The ordinance, passed in
March, requires retail merchants
within the city limits to collect
deposits on all beer and soft
drink containers they sell. and
redeem such containers present-
ed to them.
In October, 1972, City Council
members Jerry De Grieck (HRP-
First Ward) and Nancy Wechsler

what he believed to be three pos-
sible effects of the container law,
although he did vote in favor of it.
First, he said, "It is possible
that companies such as Canada
Dry and Faygo (which do not
manufacture products in return-
able containers) would disappear
from the market," hesulting in
the consumer's loss of variety.
'The ordinance, however, allows
merchants to sell beverages in
non-returnable containers as long
as they charge a deposit, refund-
able on return.

Pres. Robben Fleming

--Daily Photo
Former Mayor Harris

Minorities condemn

Bromberg performs
at Ark fund-raiser


enrollment levels

Long the city's center of folk
music activity, Ann Arbor's non-
profit Ark coffeehouse kicked off
a fund-raising campaign in June
with two benefit performances by
singer-guitarist David Bromberg.
Supported principally by the
local First Presbyterian Church,
the Ark has received $10,000 a
year for its past nine years of
Because of church cutbacks,
the Ark must now raise a total
of $13,000 to keep going through
next year-$3,300 needed to get
through this year alone.
A superb musician, Bromberg,
has already brought the Ark
$1,900. Well-known to Ann Arbor

Paul Siebel, Steve Goodman, and
Malvina Reynolds.
Frequenters of the Ark have
voiced extreme distress at the
thought of the Ark closing due
to lack of funds.
"The church is in an incred-
ible financial bind," says David
Siglin, who runs the Ark with
his wife Linda. "They're being
slaughtered financially. We can't
really expect them to not cut our
budget. As long as they continue
to let us use their building, I'll
be happy . . . The money-we can
The Ark is actually an extended
living room of a house at 1421
Hill St. Benches, seats, and floor
cushions bring audiences to-

Representatives of three major
minority groups on campus bit-
terly attacked last"May the find-
ings of a minority student sur-
vey which revealed that the
University's l97Opledge
to achieve 10 per cent black en-
rollment by this fall would not be
The criticism came May 17 dur-
ing a packed Regents public
comments session, held after
four deans had given presenta-
tions before the Board. Each dean
explained why his school had
a low percentage of minority en-
The speakers at the comments
session, representing black, Chi-
cano, and N a t i v e American
groups, labeled the survey
"vague," "opinionated," and
"undocumented," and attacked
both the amount of time spent
and the method employed in its
Richard Garland. the Univer-

the Black . Action Movement
strike of 1970, which closed the
campus down for a week.
"The spirit and concerns,"
Garland said, "of the Black Ac-
tion Movement are not dead, but
very much alive.
"We want to make it emphatic-
ally clear that the responsibility
for not reaching the 10 per cent
black enrollment rests on the
shoulders of the University Ex-
ecutive Officers and the Regents.
We want to further state that
we will not sit idly by and let
this situation.. go unattended."
Speaking for the Native Ameri-
can Student Association, Antony
Genia called the minority survey
"completely erroneous with re-
spect to its report on American
Indian enrollment."
He called for more recruiting of
Native American faculty and
staff. He attacked administrators
of minority programs for what
he considered a degree of insen-
sitivity to American Indian stu-
dents' needs

Arevalo condemned the survey
for not distinguishing between
native and foreign-born students
with Spanish surnames. He also
criticized its report on student
attrition, saying that "data on
this should have been kept up to
Arevalo called for the develop
ment of a Chicano Cultural Cen-
ter and other supportive services
to help cut down on the number
of Chicanos leaving the academic

. . . . .....


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