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July 16, 1974 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1974-07-16

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The Statehouse Follies

By BILL HEENAN
LANSING - Describe
marathon, a legislative
stand, and a lwst-minu
race, the State Legisl
final, frantic 22 hours l
members exhausted and
trated.
The last to leave the
Chambers after the con

4 of its 1974 session was State
d as a Senator Daniel Cooper (D-Oak
last- Park). Slumped over his desk
te rat in the midst of a coffee cup and
ature's legal paraphernalia sea, he
efts its groaned,
I frus- "Everyone was so exhausted,
and I'm pretty out of it my-
Senate self."
clusion "It was so hectic toward the
end that you couldn't even dig
into the bills," he continued, ex-
pressing dismay at the lack of
discussion on the School Aid
Bill (HB 6100). According to
him. the law - making body
spewed out at least ten budget
appropriations in the f i n a l
hours. Cooper soon abandoned
the chamber.
Relatively refreshed after ery ye
their weekend ordeal - a ses- when t
sion which lasted from 10:00 by M;
a m. Friday to 8:00 a.m. Satur- floorc
day - two local legislators re- the "s
flected: - the oth
"It was the most pork-barrel- mainei
ling I've ever seen;" declared ically
Senator Gilbert Bursley (R-Ann to uni
!Y Arbor). "We've retrogressed ev-
THE REV. HOSEA WILLIAMS

Perry Bullard
ear from five years ago
the budget was completed
ay." According to him,
decisions were made by
ame, old people," while
her half of the Senate re-
d in the dark: "It's phys-
impossible for everyone
derstand every bill and
See FINAL, Page 10

THE
Michigan Daily
Edited and managed by Students at the
University of Michigan
Tuesday, July 16, 1974
News Phone: 764-0552
Pro and Congress
THERE IS AN OLD joke, often heard in high school
civics classes, that goes: Pro is the opposite. of con.
So what is the opposite of progress? The joke is not
particularly witty, but then neither has been the con-
duct of Congress in recent weeks.
It is difficult to think of one good thing that Con-
gress has done lately. Take as an example campaign
reform. It is needed, it is popular, and it is timely. It has
also gone nowhere in Congress. The 1974 election will
be run under the same rules as the 1972 one, which will
be of no small benefit to those congressmen up for elec-
tion this year.
A more important example is the impeachment
investigation. It is the constitutional duty of Congress
to spearhead an impeachment inquiry when the presi-
dent is caught in crime. And Congress has shown suitable
fire and enthusiasm, particularly after such blatant epi-
sodes as the Saturday Night Massacre and the release
of the transcripts.
But it has been a month now since the last Nixon
outrage, and congressional outrage has quieted accord-
ingly. No longer is duty to Constitution and Country
being considered. Now, senators and representatives are
considering how many votes support of impeachment will
garner them in their home districts.
THEN THERE IS the House Judiciary Committee. Their
conduct so far has been, to put it mildly, sorry.
It would have been wiser for the Committee to go
along with the suggestion of its Republican members and
make its hearings public. Failing that, some effort should
have been made to insure confidentiality.
But with congressmen involved, confidentiality was
impossible. Both the far left and the far right wings of
the Committee have been leaking like sieves, prompting
blasts from the White House's publicity flaks about the
"partisan lynch mob" on Capital Hill.
Throughout his career, Richard Nixon has been for-
tunate in his choice of opponents, and his luck appears
to be holding up. The House Judiciary Committee has
made such a botch of things that Nixon's crimes have
managed to sink out of view beneath Committee bungles.
With increasing success, Nixon and his defenders
have been able to exploit a line of reasoning that fol-
lows: Who would you rather have running the affairs
of America? Richard Nixon, the man of peace, or Peter
Rodino, who can't even control his own committee?
IT IS IMPERATIVE for the future of American democ-
racy that Congress put its house in order. If they
don't, the American people may decide that they don't
need the only organization in the country that can make
Richard Nixon look good.
-JOHN KAHLER

Atlanta's libertarian rogue

By DAVID STOLL
Special to The Daily
ATLANTA, Ga. - The Rev. Hosea Williams,
leader of the street marches in this city which
have led to the arrests of more than fifty persons
in recent weeks, is planning more.
"We've built the greatest movement in Atlanta
since Sherman burned it down," he proclaimed
a few weeks ago before a meeting at his Peo-
ple's Church of Love, "but if we're not willing
to slave and sweat then we b e tIt e r call it
quits."
The marches have been called to protest slay-
ings of young black men by a police decoy squad,
similar to the now disbanded STRESS unit in
Detroit. Marchers are also demanding the ouster
of Atlanta Police Chief John Inman, who has gone
to court to prevent the new black mayor of the
city. Maynard Jackson, from firing him.
Williams told funny stories to his congregation,
exhorting his young followers not, to abandon him
just because he's old and believes in Jesus Christ
instead of Marx and Lenin, and made prepara-
tions for the next march which was to take
place July 13.
"YOU KNOW, you all say yeah and that means
work," he warned as the gathering of some fifty
young black people voted overwhelmingly to
renew street action. The marches, the largest of
which has drawn 2,000, were discontiaued after a
melee with police June 26 in which a number of
people were hurt and fifteen, including Williams,
arrested.
Three days before that incident Williams and
thirty-five others were arrested after police inter-
vened in a protest against the death of 17 year-old
Brandon Gibson, shot to death while struggling
with two policemen.
"Is there going to be *a parade permit this
time?" asked a young man.
"If there is I don't know about it," replied
Williams. His marches have lacked permits as a
rule. This march was to begin where the last
was forcibly ended, on the edge of the downtown
business district just up the street from the
Ebeneezer Baptist Church where Mrs. Martin
Luther King, Sr. was slain a few weeks ago.
At forty-eight, Williams sports bushy mutton
chon sideburns and is an accomplished agitator.
A former lieutenant of Martin Luther King, Jr.,
he is now president of the- Atlanta chapter of
the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He
puts himself in the thick of every labor clash
and protest against police brutality in the city.
He has also developed a strong personal follow-
ing in the black community, as well as a dismal
reputation among most whites and many black
leaders, who regard him as a loudmouth and a
spoiler.
IN LAST fall's municipal election, Williams
bucked the city's black vote-brokers by running
against a white businessman they were support-
ing in exchange for backing for Jackson's mayor-
al campaign. Williams drew off most of the vote
in the race for city council president, threaten-
ing the fragile alliance between Jackson and the
city's commercial interests. Williams himself
lost in a subsequent run-off.
Now he is being condemned for the marches
by both black and white political figures, who
fear he will disrupt the stil tentative relationship
between Mayor Jackson and the commercial in-
terests.
Williams cares little for such considerations.
"I'm looking for the day when we can fill up

that jail with so many niggers there isn't any
more room," he said Tuesday night. "The Cham-
ber of Commerce will have to spend millions of
dollars to wrong the right we done."
"MAYNARD DOESN'T understand," he said
of the mayor whom he still supports. "because
he's never known a poor day in his life. What's
an administrative heading to him is death for
black men and boys. He says its gonna take
thirty more days (to get rid of. Inman), but
we gotta keep pressure on him."
There is so much upset over William's actions,
in fact, that sources in the mayor's office have
spread the word that he is in the pay of re-
actionary Lester Maddox to tear the city apart.
Williams denies the charge, although he has stuck
up occasionally for Maddox, calling him "the
only manwho knows the poor whites like I know
the poor blacks."
Much of the Altanta political 'tad business
establishment is also distressed at the Williams'
theory that Marcus Chenault, the assassin of
Mrs. Martin Luther King, Sr., was in the pay
of the FBI. le cites as evidence Chenault's list
of targets, which reportedly included the Rev.
Ralph Abernathy, Aretha.Franklin, and Williams
himself.
"IF THEY blow my brains out now," he said
Tuesday night, "it'll be the best thing that ever
happened to me. Because if they let me keep on
like this, I may get rogueish, I may get dis-
honest, I may sell you out. But if I get killed
now I'll go straight to heaven and be remembered
in your hearts forever, just like Martin Luther
King."
Mrs. Idelia Gibson, mother of the young man
whose death precipitated the end-of-June march-
es, also spoke at the meeting. She is a large
woman in her late thirties, apparently unused to
talking at meetings.
"Maybe God did this to Brandon for all of
us," she said, "so the polices don't get other
boys. I don't know. But Brandon had a child
by a girl, and she's got another one coming. I
can't take care of her, and the Welfare', givin'
her trouble already. I came to Hosea for help,
I came of my own accord. I want a lawyer so's
we can sue the polices and the city of Atlanta
for what they done to Brandon, so we can get
some help."
"THAT'S WISDOM, Mrs. Gibson," said Hosea,
'that's wisdom."

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