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May 25, 1950 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1950-05-25

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(Continued from Page 4)
condoning of libel and slander,
has never sanctioned utterances
1 "tending to impugn the honesty,
virtue or reputation, or publishing
the natural or alleged defects of a
person, and thereby expose him
to public hate, contempt or ridi-
cule." (Supreme Court: Dorr v.
United States.)
"Birth of a Nation" is a slander.
It is a gross misinterpretation of
history, a filthy maligning of the
- Negro people, and a nasty carica-
ture of those who have espoused
liberty and civil rights. It incites
to hatred and the dissolution of
those very rights which the Stu-
dent Legislature seeks to exercise
in such an iresponsible and un-
thinking fashion.
* We strongly urge that the Stu-
dent Legislature think this matter
over more seriously, and with more
consideration of the deep harm
that will ensue from this film.
Perhaps they will see their in-
consistency and unthoughfulness,
and will refrain from perpetrating
a grave injustice.
-Shirley S. Schneider,
Sec., and The Executive
Board of the University
Michigan Council of the
Arts, Sciences, and Pro-
* * *
To the Editor:
LET - US distinguish between
Prof. Phillips and Birth of a
Nation. The former was invited to
debate the merits of Comunism
as against Capitalism. He was in-
vited to challenge us with ideas,
w with argument.
His right to do so springs from
a the most fundamental roots of
American democracy. Our princi-
ple of freedom of speech arises
from the fact that governments
"derive their just powers from
the consent of the governed"; that
g the government is an agency, a
tool, by which the people secure
their rights of life, liberty, and the
pursuit of happiness. It is only
through free discussion that the
people can better attain these ba-
sic ends. For any government to

deprive the people of this right
of free discussion is to impose
upon them a servitude; prevent
them from deciding how best to
effect these ends; and subvert
the supreme will of the people to
;he supreme will of what becomes
z mere ruling clique. It is for this
:eason that we have freedom of
speech guaranteed in our Con-
3titution, not as an end, in itself
out as means to an end: the secur-
ing of the rights of life, liberty,
and the pursuit of happiness to
all men, be they black, white, yel-
:ow, or red. This is so fundamen-
gal to our national heritage that it
Should not require spelling out.
It is no secret that millions of
Americans are denied access to
these inalienable rights. Negro
citizens of our country have long
been subject to economic exploit-
ation of the most brutal sort. They
came to America in chains, toiled
as slaves to produce much of the
wealth of America. On their eman-
cipation by the victorious armies
of Lincoln, their exploiters were
quick to employ terrorism, the
midnight riders, and the flaming
cross to keep their former slaves
from rising and asserting their
inalienable rights. Every ruse,
every lie, every slander, was de-
veloped to perfection by the slavers
of the South to retain their con-
trol of land, labor, and power.
"White supremacy" was the watch
word by which democracy, both
for Negroes and poor whites, was
throttled in the South, and, for
Negroes, in the North as well.
The film, Birth of a Nation, is
simply a medium for acccmplish-
ing this end. It is not a mere pre-
sentation of an idea; it is an act,
aiding to deprive millions of. our
felows of their inalienable -rights.
It perpetuates a vicious slander
and thus strengthens the bonds
of second-class citizenship on our
fellow Americans. It does not chal-
lenge us with an idea, as did Prof.
Phillips. It purports to recite his-
tory, does so falsely. Such recita-
tions perpetuate the myth of
"white supremacy" which, when
accepted as it has been by the
vast majority of white Americans,

causes them to do such things as
discriminate against Negroes in
hiring, in serving food, in renting;
apartments, in denying the vote
and equal protection of the laws.
These recitations result in deny-
ing to Negroes their "inalienable
But where does this leave us
with democracy, to the defense of
which the Student Legislature says
it is running? It leaves us at the
point where democracy means the
right to prevent the nation from
attaining democracy. Is this the
right the Student Legislature
wishes to defend? Not I!
-Robert Silk
Ad * a
To the Editor:
'N REGARD TO the showing of
the film "Birth of a Nation",
we should like to ask those who
oppose the showing of the film a
few questions.
1. For those who have seen the
'film: Is it your intent to deny
those who have not seen the film
an opportunity to see the film and
form their own opinions? If the
answer is YES, it would seem to
indicate that you are afraid of
the conclusions they might form.
If the answer is NO, how do you
justify your position?
II. For those who have not seen
the film: It is understood that
your position has been taken as
a result of impressions formed
by others who have seen the film.
Would you like an opportunity to
reinforce your present opinion of
the film? If your answer is YES
or NO, how do you justify your
It would seem that either of
the principal questions admits a
simple YES or NO answer. The
questions contain certain obvious
traps, whch serve to stimulate the
thought of those who oppose the
It would seem that the General
Library should prove to be anoth-
er suitable target.
Yours truly,
Charles C. Kilby, Jr.
John F. Kephart
John Wm. Jewett
Henry A. Dihm
To the Editor:
FEEL constrained to give a
crackpot interpretation of the
social significance of "Pinky" and
"Intruder in the Dust," inspired
thereto by some of the ink spilled
over "Birth of a Nation."
First, a word of warning about
myself: I am from the South. As
for my own position on the race
question, I suffer from the schizo-
phrenia common to many South-
erners, and others. Considering cir-
cumstances of birth and environ-
ment, I am commendably free of
prejudice on the intellectual level.
I remember seeing "Birth of a
Nation" as a mere child, in a state
of such linguistic and social il-
literacy that I inquired on leaving
the theatre, "Who was Anashun?"
The only scene I remember is
where the girl jumps off a cliff to
escape her Negro pursuer. The film
is unquestionably emotionally up-
setting, and good taste should pre-
vent a general revival of it, NOT
the censorship of any group. That
only arouses perverse curiosity to
see it. I bridle at the tactics of
IRA and other groups who set
themselves up to decide what is
appropriate intellectual fare for
the inflammable masses. By their
line of reasoning films such as
"Intruder in the Dust" and "Pin-
ky" should also be banned as de-

famatory to Southerners. . .
Which is it better (or more
politicaly expedient) to hate -
Negroes or Southerners? The same
old vicious circle; dog eat dog;
for God's sake let's hate SOME-
BODY. If this sort of film con-
tinues to be made the professional
crusaders will soon have the
strangest underdog of all to cham-
pion: The White Southerner. Ugh!
I admit this view of "Pinky" and
"Intruder" is somewhat far-
fetched, but no more so than some
of the views advanced on "Birth."
One irrationality will always
bring on another.
--H. K. Martin
To the Editor:
AM DEEPLY disturbed that the
University of Michigan intends
playing "Birth of a Nation." I
know personally that showing of
this film has pernicious conse-
quences. I must protest the show-
ing as opposed to true ideals and
interests of a good university.
-Sidney Meyers.
Producer-director of
"The Silent One"
To the Editor:
VIGOROUSLY protest showing
of Anti Negro movie "Birth of
a Nation" scheduled for Hill Au-
ditorium under auspices Michigan
Forum. Movie depreciates Ameri-
can Negroes, adds to racial stereo-
types and inimical to best inter-
est of race relations. Urge your
intervention to cancel exhibition
of this undemocratic film.
-Edward M. Turner
President, Detroit Branch
National Association for the
Advancement of Colored People
* * *
To the Editor:
W HEN THE speeches Commun-
ists make persuade public
opinion to reduce the freedom of
speech and the chance to exist of
corporation executives below their
own, I shall favor the banning of
their speeches.
When Malcolm Bingay's speech-
es persuade the public to reduce
the freedom of speech and the
chance to exist of union mem-
bers perpetually below his own, I
shall propose that they be banned.
Reasons for showing a film are
commercial, aesthetic or propa-
gandistic. The Speech Department,
intending to show "Birth of a Na-
tion" for aesthetic reasons, was
persuaded not to show it publicly.
Showings in which technical prob-
lems of film-making are pointed
out are of interest only to limited
groups. The SL has decided to
show the film for reasons neither
commercial nor propagandistic:
On the one hand it is fighting
against discrimination, but on the
other hand, it is fighting for free
speech. Here the SL intends to
give the propaganda of an oppo-
nent a hearing. But the SL is for-
getting the people against whom
the propaganda is directed. Pre-
judiced public opinion is pressing
Negroes into subordinate positions
in society. Had Negroes equal
rights, were there no discrimina-
tion, the film would never have
been conceived. By fighting for
the freedom of a non-existing
political pressure group to be
heard, the SL is fighting against
concretely existing Negroes and
their freedom to speak freely and
live fully as members of a demo-
cratic society. It is going all out to
insult people whom it has a duty
to &ip.
"Birth of a Nation" expresses a
public opinion that has reduced
the freedom of speech and the
chance to exist of Negro people
below that it desires for itself. I
urge the Student Legislature to re-
consider its decision and not show
the film!

--Jack A. LucasI

Publication in The Daiy Officia a
Bulletin is constructive notie to all
members of the University. Notice
for the Buletin should be sent in
typewritten form to the Office of the
Assistantto the President, Room 255
Administration Building, by 3:00 p.m.
on the dayapreceding publication
(11:00 a.m. Saturdays).
THURSDAY, MAY 25, 1950
VOL. LX, No. 163
Commencement Exercises will
be held at 5 p.m., June 17, in the
Stadium, w e a t h e r permitting.
otherwise in Yost Field House.
Tickets for Yost Field House (none
necessary for admittance to the
Stadium) will be available for dis-
tribution at the Cashier's Office,
Administration Buil d i n g, on
Thursday morning, June 1. Upon
p r e s e n t a t i o n of identifica-
tion card, each degree candidate
may obtain not more than two
tickets for Yost Field House. Chil-
dren will not be admitted unless
accompanied by adults.
Herbert G. Watkins, Secretary
Faculty, College of Engineering:
Meeting, Fri., May 26, 4:15 p.m.,
348 W. Engineering Building.
Commencement announcement
orders for all schools except Law,
Medicine and Dentistry will be
distributed on Wednesday and
Thursday afternoons only, May 24
and 25, from 1 to 5 p.m. at the
student activity windows in the
ldbby of the Administration
Women students have 1:30 a.m.
late permission on Fri., May 26.
Women students will have 12:30
a.m. late permission Mon., May 29
and 11 p.m. late permission, Tues.,
May 30.
Women's Judiciary Council
To All University Employees:
During the weeks of May 29
through June 9, special noontime
showings of the Michigan Memor-
ial Phoenix Project slide film will
be held in 4051 Administration
Building. This is to acquaint you
with the facts behind your Uni-
versity's atomic research center.
There will be no solicitation of
funds. You are urged to attend.
Summer Work: Opportunity for
men to sell de-humidifiers and
window cooling units in Detroit
area during summer months. Car
helpful. Salary plus commission.
Camp o'. the Hills, (girls),
Brooklyn, Michigan announces va-
cancies for Waterfront Director
(ARC Instructor) and for camp
Y.M.C.A. of Waukegan, Illinois,
announces vacancies for counse-
lors at their camp on Lake Beulah,
East Troy, Wisconsin.
For further information call at
Bureau of Appointments, 3528 Ad-
ministration Building.
Employment Interviews:
A representative of Liberty Mu-
tual Insurance Company (Detroit
office) will be at the Bureau of
Appointments on Thurs., May 25
to interview Industrial, Mechani-
cal and Electrical Engineers inter-
ested in safety engineering. They
have one opening in Detroit and
others in the Midwest.
A representative of the Sunbeam
Corporation will be at the Bureau
of Appointments on Mon., May 29
to interview June graduates inter-
ested in sales. They have two op-
enings in their Detroit branch and
openings in many of their East
and West coast branches. They are
interested in men from any sec-
tion of the country.
For further information and ap-
pointments call the Bureau of Ap-
pointments, Ext. 371.

Employment Interviews:
Baker Brothers, Inc., of Toledo,
Ohio, will be in the office Wed.,

;May 31, to interview men for sales
work, They are interested primar-
ily but notyexclusively in engineers,
to sell a power metal shear. At the
present time they want two men,
for the West Coast and the Texas
areas. The work will involve tra-
veling about with demonstrator
equipment, calling on industrial
A representative of Bowser, Inc.,
of Fort Wayne, Indiana will be at
the Bureau of Appointments on
Thurs., June 1, to interview June
1950 graduates in chemical engi-
neering, mechanical engineering,
and business administration for
their sales training program. Bow-
ser, Inc. manufacture liquid con-
trol specialities.
For further information and ap-
pointments call at the Bureau of
Appointments, 3528 Administra-
tion Building.
The Albion, Michigan plant of
The Corning Glass Works is inter-
ested in securing the services of a
June 1950 engineering graduate for
their drafting department. They
prefer a man who has had some
summer experience in drafting or
who has had some previous ex-
perience in machine work as An
operator or apprentice.
The Gaines Division of The Gen-
eral Foods Corporation of Kanka-
kee, Illinois, has a position avail-
able for a junior engineer to work
in their production department.
They prefer a mechanical or in-
dustrial engineer who has had
courses in time study, factory
management, business methods
and production methods.
The Copco Steel and Engineer-
ing Company of Detroit, Michigan
is interested in receiving applica-
tions from mechanical, mechani-
cal industrial, civil or architectur-
al engineers interested in training
for production supervision. They
are also interested in accounting
majors for their office staff.
For further information call the
Bureau of Appointments, Ext. 371.
Carman Adams, representatives
of the Edwin L. Wiegand Com-
pany, are interested in receiving
applications from mechanical and
electrical engineers interested in
sales. Men selected would be given
a cadet training program at the
Wiegand Company.
The Michigan Architect and En-
gineer, a technical journal in ar-
chitecture and engineering, desires
to employ a journalism graduate
or an English major with writing
ability for their space sales force.
Men with an interest in photo-
graphy will be given first prefer-
ence. Qualified candidates will be
offered an excellent salary.
The Associated Reciprocal Ex-
changes of New York City are in-
terested in receiving applications
from June graduates. They will ac-
cept applications from mechanical,
civil, chemical, and electrical en-
gineers as well as business admin-
istration and economic majors.
For further information call at
the Bureau of Appointments, 3528
Administration Building.
Academic Notices
Engineering Mechanics 2a lab-
oratory experiments missed dur-
ing the semester can be made up

for the following schools
If we do not have the school you wish, we
will gladly print as many as you like. Also
name cards in type to match.
Are Now Available at

at r
J {J


119 E. Liberty St.

/ 9irtner5 -. Sftationer
Phone 7900

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