Tuesday, December T, 1976
THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Tuesday, 'December 7, 1976 THE MICHIGAN DAIL'~' Page Seven
Supreme Court rulIng lifts
some inmates off Death Row
ASKS AUTO MAKERS' COOPERATION:
Coleman rules against air
(Continued from Page 1) THE COURT'S DECISION had'
in an Illinois capital punishment an immediate effect on the ap-
case said that exclusion of such peal of another Georgia death
jurors deprives defendants of row prisoner, George Street,
their right to be judged by a convicted of the 1974 murder
cross-section of the community. of a Pierce County, Ga., taxi
But the, court never spelled driver. Street's death penalty,
out how many jurors would have appealed on the same grounds,
to be so excluded before the also was set aside.
jury could be labeled as biased Both men now face maximum
in favor of capital punishment. penalties of life in prison.
The j istices have been flood-
ed with appeals since, as at-
torneys scrambled to avert the
nation's first ' prison execution
in nine years. Attorneys and ma-
ny death row prisoners fear
that the first execution would
be followed quickly by many
NEARLY 600 PERSONS are
sitting on death rows in 30
IN AN UNSIGNED majority
opinion, the court said yester-
day that it takes only one im-
properly excluded prospective
juror t taint the sentence.
Whil attorneys active in the
battle against the death penal-
ty declined to estimate how ma-
ny condemned prisoners might
be affected directly by yester-
day's ruling, they said the deci-
sion could have wide-ranging
Most important, they said, is
that it "revitalized" the court's
1968 decision that jurors op-
posed to the death penalty in
general could not be excluded
from sitting in on capital pun-
CHIEF JUSTICE Warren Bur-
ger, Rehnquist and Justice Har-
ry Blackmun dissented from the
majority opinion, saying that
the majority had extended the
principles of the 1968 decision
The majority' set aside a de-
cision by the Georgia Supreme
Court which said "the apparent
erroneous exclusion of one juror
... does -not demand the conclu-
sion that the jury was biased
in favor of capital punishment."
Davis was convicted -of mur-
dering AnntStarnes, who was
found shot to death in 1974 aft-
er disappearing from her La
Grange, Ga., home.
White, a 30-year-old drifter I states.
from Waco, Tex., had decided In other mattersyesterday,
to accept his "inevitable fate" t otr
after exhausting his appeals in cout: k
stat couts.r Sent back to the Fifth U.S.
Circuit Court of Appeals an Aus-
WHITE'S COURT appointed in, Tex., school desegregation
attorney, however, continued case. A majority of the jus-
without White's consentiand ask- tices said the lower court or-;
ed the Supreme Court to post- dered a remedy that exceeded
pone the execution until it could the constitutional violation. The
consider a formal appeal. Circuit Court's remedy included
the forced busing of up to 25,000
The attorney, J. E. Abernathy, students.
told the justices he would ap- O Agreed to decide whether
peal the state's death penalty 36,000 sailors are entitled to
law, the indictment that charg- bonuses they thought they had
ed White with murder and the coming when they re-enlisted,
method of jury selection used even though the law funding
at White's trial. thosV bonuses was later repeal-
(Continued from Page 1)
installed in every American
auotmobile, 9,000 deaths and I
over 500,000 serious injuriesl
could be prevented annually. ,
Coleman proposed that at
least two automakers market
air bags or other passive de-
vices on at least 250,000 total
cars of various sizes in the'
model year that starts on Sept.
1, 1978, and that they marketa
an additional 250,000 cars withI
passive devices in the 1980 mod-
REACTION FROM Detroit,!
which had opposed mandatory:
air bags, was guarded. Generalr
Motors, which offered the de-
vices for three years but stop-i
ped, said it is willing to under-1
take discussion of Coleman's
Chrysler Corp. said protec-
tion from air bags is still "an
unknown quantity" and it re-1
mains convinced seat belts are
Although any passive restrain-'
ing device can be used for some
of the cars, Coleman said at
least half of the output in each
year must consist of air bags to
protect the driver and front seat
passenger and a portion of -the
remaining half must have an
air bag to protect the driver.
HE SAID the air bags wouldt
be sold, if the demonstration
goes as planned, at less than
5100 for both driver and front '
seat passenger protection and
for less than $50 for driver only '
protection. Those figures are
what the government esti-
mates the devices would cost if ,
all cars were equipped with air
Coleman said he would meet
with automakers the week of
Dec. 20 in hopes of working out
the demonstration program. He
said he had a card up his sleeve
if manufactures refused to
participate but did not tip his
hand, saying only he would re-
commend further action to Con-
gress by Jan. 5.
Clarence Ditlow of the Center
for Auto Safety said, "Coleman
bl'ndered because the auto
industry never does anything
voluntarily for the consumer
excent to raise prices." He
predicted if the industry does
not go along Colen~ian will
make air bans mandatory be-
fore President Ford leaves of-
P A+S S IV E RESTRAINT'
devices protect the automobile
occupant in a crash without the
occupant taking any action such
as buckling up a seat belt. Air
bags are the best known of these
devices but Volkswagen has
been marketing a' passive seat
belt that automatically wraps I
around the driver when he clos-
es the car door.
Air bags are inflatable cush-
ions hidden inside the car dash
or steering wheel. They auto-
matically inflate to cushion the
occupants when sensors at the
front of the car signal a colli-
sion is occurring. Inflation takes
less than one twenty-fifth of a
second and deflation starts as}
soon as the inflation process is
Government research in-'lion. If the safety equipment. is
dicates that air bags are prob-. sold at the price he called for,
ably about as effective as lap 'only $38 million of the total
and shoulder belts in protecting would be recovered.
passengers in an accident. How- Coleman said he expected
ever, only about 30 per cent of
the driving public fastens seat
belts. Air bags would protect
100 per cent of the drivers if
they were installed in all cars.
THE BIGGEST stumbling'
block in Coleman's proposed
demonstration is the cost. The
secretary estimated the cost of
equipping half a million cars
with air bags would be $86 mil-
awitomakers' to absorb the re-
maining $48 million in cost, add-
ing that he felt this request was
reasonable since the domestic
automakers had corporate pro-
fits of nearly $4 billion in the
last 12 months.
However, he did not rule out
the possibility that partial finan-
cing of this $48 million could
come from other sources al-
though he said using public
funds to help an industry meet
what he felt was its social obli-
gation had a very low priority.
The court had to weigh Aber-
nathy's request against a let-
ter it received from White in
which the condemned man said,
"I am mentally prepared ... Any
delay now will only inflict men-
tal hardship on me."
WHITE WAS convicted of mur-
dering a 73-year-old grocery
store proprietor during a rob-,
bery near McKinney, Tex., in
which two teenage customers al-
so were gunned down.
The SupremeCourt last July
2 ruled that states may execute
convicted murderers, and specif-
ically upheld the capital punish-,
ment laws in Texas, Florida
ed . Congress.
" Agreed to hear two appeals
stemming from reapportionment
cases under the Voting Rights
Act of 1965. The appeals were
filed by officials in Texas and
AY: /2 price on beer
7 P.M.-11 P.M.
IESDAY: 12 price on
beer & liquor
7 P.M.-10 P.M.
Y: 15c Hot Dogs
EW GIANT 7 FT. T.V.
)r viewing your favorite
l evised sporting events
LUNCH-DISCUSSION, TUES., DEC. 7-12 Noon
APARTHEID IN RETROSPECT"
MOTOMBO MPAYA of Zaire,
Assoc. Professor of Mennonite Biblical Seminary
DR. JAMES STEWART
Visiting Professor at Notre Dame University
who hase lived in South Africa
ECUMENICAL CAMPUS CENTER
LUNCH (75c) is prepared and served
by Church Women United
-FREE FEATURE FILM-
415 WDNESDAY ANGELL AUD. "A"
"ANTONIO DAS MORTES"
Set in Northeast Brazil it places a tradi-
tional Millenarianist story in a post-
1964 context of landowners and peas-
ants and a "hired gun."
Office of Ethics & Religion
3204 UNION 764-7442
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DiCN IT I ni
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