The Charlotte News

Wednesday, August 18, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that unnamed U.S. diplomatic sources and officials of the South Korean National Assembly had indicated this date that the U.S. was considering withdrawing three of its six divisions from the Korean mainland by the end of 1954, but a Pentagon spokesman said that the Army had no knowledge of any planned early withdrawal of troops from Korea. The American diplomatic officials said that there had not been any firm decision on the matter. A Cabinet minister of South Korea had indicated that Korean officials had been conferring with top Pentagon and State Department officials in an effort to forestall any such withdrawal, as it would harm the morale of the South Koreans and be wrong strategically because of the buildup of Communist forces in North Korea. State Department officials declined immediate public comment and inquiries were directed to the Pentagon, which also declined to provide a direct response, saying, however, that they interpreted the report as meaning that the U.S. might be planning to move troops from South Korea to nearby Okinawa.

Senator Arthur Watkins of Utah, chairman of the six-Senator special committee reviewing the resolution of censure of Senator McCarthy, sponsored by Senator Ralph Flanders of Vermont, scheduled to hold hearings, previously set to begin on August 30, said that they might have to postpone the start of the hearings for a few days, to afford adequate time for preparation of just hired committee counsel, former Republican Congressman E. Wallace Chadwick. Senator Watkins said that he had been advised that Senator McCarthy's defense counsel, Edward Bennett Williams, had refused to accept as a fee any part of the $10,000 fund established by the committee from its own appropriations to provide Senator McCarthy counsel, stating that it would be improper for him to accept money from the committee.

In Cleveland, O., following indictment this date by the grand jury of Dr. Sam Sheppard for first-degree murder of his wife, Marilyn, on July 4, a judge revoked the doctor's previously awarded bail of $50,000, set the prior Monday, and returned him to jail pending trial. He had been free for approximately 30 hours after posting $2,500 as a five percent premium with a bondsman. Before his brief release, he had been in jail since July 30, following his arrest four days after conclusion of the coroner's inquest. The basis for revocation was that the grand jury indictment supplied the previously missing requirements, that the "proof is evident" or "the presumption is great" that the defendant was guilty, for denial of bail on a capital offense, a different judge on Monday having ruled that there was no such evidence before him, as the prosecutor had presented none. The finding of the grand jury substituted for a preliminary hearing finding of probable cause that a crime had been committed and that the defendant had probably committed it, probable cause, of course, being a far cry from a finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, the necessary standard applicable to criminal trials. Typically, any admissible evidence at the preliminary hearing tending to establish the prosecution's case, each element of the crime charged and the defendant's culpability for the charge, would be sufficient for a holding order of probable cause on that charge, while a grand jury proceeding is not strictly limited by the rules of evidence, with only the prosecution presenting whatever evidence it can marshal, whether hearsay or irrelevant or that otherwise inadmissible at trial, as there is no judge present to exclude evidence. The grand jury in the Sheppard case had heard 15 witnesses since Monday, and they had deliberated about 40 minutes before returning the indictment. During his 30 hours of freedom, Dr. Sheppard had been able to spend time with his seven-year old son who was living with Dr. Sheppard's brother during his father's incarceration.

In New York, four boys, ranging in age from 15 to 18, had been charged with prowling Brooklyn parks at night and torturing people they ran across, having admitted, according to the prosecutor, beating and kicking a man to death and horse-whipping teenage girls, torturing a vagrant and throwing him into the East River, where he drowned. The prosecutor said that they "got a kick out of seeing blood flow". Two of the boys were charged with murder, one with felonious assault and the fourth, because of his age, with juvenile delinquency. They had been arrested the previous day after a passerby had informed police that he had just seen the four boys beat a man in Lou Sobel Park. The boys then confessed, according to authorities, after all-day interrogation. The prosecutor said that their crimes began on August 6 when two of them attacked a 43-year old homeless alcoholic, beating him to insensibility, after which he died 12 hours later in the hospital. The previous Monday, they had allegedly raided Washington Park, where they beat two elderly men, though not fatally. Later the same night, they had attacked and horse-whipped two young girls, a whip having been found and seized by police at the home of one of the boys. They then attacked a man sleeping on a bench, with no shoes or socks, burning his feet with lighted cigarettes and then beating him to unconsciousness, dragging him into the East River, where he drowned. All except one of the boys were from the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, and the other, charged with assault, was from Manhattan, the latter having been quoted by the prosecutor as saying he had "an abstract hatred for bums", that he despised them and that the previous night had been a "supreme adventure" for him.

In Burlington, N.C., an 18-year old young woman waived preliminary hearing in Recorder's Court on a charge of murdering a 19-year old young woman from Kentucky on a Burlington street the previous Friday, and was bound over to Superior Court for trial during the October term of court. The murder victim's husband had received a slight shoulder wound in the fatal stabbing incident. The defendant's husband was sentenced to 12 months in jail after conviction for occupying a hotel room for immoral purposes, the hotel manager testifying that the husband and the murder victim had registered as man and wife in his hotel the previous week. The compleat reporter does not indicate whether it was a first-degree or second-degree murder charge against the woman, though given the circumstances, we would assume that it was likely second-degree.

In Vanceboro, N.C., an armed robber held up a branch of a Greenville bank and appeared to have escaped with between $3,000 and $4,000, the FBI indicating its belief that two men had been involved in the robbery, one of whom had carried a gun, had entered the bank and fled with the currency after forcing an assistant cashier to lie on the floor. The other suspected participant apparently had driven a getaway vehicle, though the compleat reporter is mum on that issue. It was the sixth bank robbery of the year in the state, and FBI officials had obtained convictions or reported confessions in all five of the previous robberies, apparently having resolved recently the more stubborn one in Maiden.

Following the Presbyterian Synod of North Carolina having authorized at its annual meeting the previous month the pastor of Charlotte's Myers Park Presbyterian Church and moderator of the group to appoint a committee to study abolition of segregation in Synod-supported schools, the pastor had this date appointed the seven members of the special committee. The action by the Synod had occurred after recommendation by the Presbyterian General Assembly that Synods and Presbyteries eliminate segregation in church-supported schools.

Ann Sawyer of The News reports that the Mecklenburg County grand jury had described the present Health Department facilities this date as "deplorable", recommending that the City and County erect a new building, and as a stopgap measure, that air-conditioning units be installed in the overcrowded and inadequate present facilities. Both the City and County health boards and the Mecklenburg County Medical Society had also recommended new facilities. The grand jury also recommended immediate construction of a new county home, which was being planned. There were also other recommendations for court facilities.

For those who have not yet learned to read, a series of pictures appears on the page, one being of a man chuckling, another of a woman screaming, after a third man said that his bird, also pictured, looked stupid, like maybe it had a bird-brain or something. Another picture shows the President seeking the advice of a valued adviser regarding flexible farm price supports.

On the editorial page, "The French, at Least, Are Candid" indicates that several years earlier, French officials, such as Robert Schuman, Georges Bidault, and Rene Pleven had helped to formulate plans for the European Defense Community six-nation unified army concept, to be an integral part of the Atlantic community, and had been more insistent than most of the other free world leaders in saying that the threat of Communism required such an organization as NATO, which was then formed, following which the EDC was proposed. NATO, however, had never amounted to much because members had not given it much attention, and EDC had been forestalled because Italy and France had not ratified it. Now, ironically, the French, who had originally proposed it, were about to bury EDC by making French approval of it contingent on drastic amendments to the original plan, for instance proposing that each nation retain veto power over the unified army's command decisions for eight years following the effective date of the treaty and also that the article of the treaty calling for the establishment of European political community be eliminated.

It indicates that there were several reasons for the amendments, that Premier Pierre Mendes-France wanted the issue decided one way or the other, that French foes of federal union had won important concessions from the Premier, who had always been less than receptive to EDC, and because many of the French did not want to have French troops serving with German troops, or have German troops on French soil. If those views prevailed, it would be unfortunate, but in one respect, it welcomes the French move, as they were being more candid than other Atlantic nations, including the U.S., regarding the question of Atlantic community.

Both Presidents Truman and Eisenhower, and Secretaries of State Acheson and Dulles, had made great speeches about the need for Atlantic unity, as had the British and continental leaders, but few had spoken of the necessity of political union. It indicates that 12 or 14 nations of NATO could not run a single EDC six-nation army, and none of the leaders had been bold enough to state that tariffs between the Atlantic countries were as senseless as tariffs between the states of the United States.

The French had probably expressed the actual sentiments of many in France, Britain and the U.S., the anti-federalists advocating nationalism. The Congress would likely not ratify any treaty providing for international control of U.S. troops serving an international organization, that which the six nations of EDC were being asked to do.

It suggests that the Atlantic countries ought create a common defense force and political machinery to govern it and its economy, but that the goal was far off, further than just a few years earlier despite the threat which gave rise to it having increased in the interim. It hopes that the crisis caused by the French move would awaken the free world to the growth of the Communist threat and the need for achieving positive unity.

"Steve Mitchell Said Too Much" indicates that the "get Ike" campaign had at last begun, that until the previous week, Democratic criticism of the Administration had been directed to the whole of it or individuals other than the President. But the prior Monday, DNC chairman Stephen Mitchell had turned on the President, himself, implying that the President's friendship with golfer Bobby Jones had influenced the President's decision to award a contract to a syndicate in which Mr. Jones had an interest.

It suggests that it was a serious charge which Mr. Mitchell had not documented, and deserved censure for suggesting impropriety without evidence to back it up.

On the other hand, the President's action in the Atomic Energy Commission contract case was questionable and Mr. Mitchell or anyone else could raise concerns about it. The President had ordered the AEC, over the protest of a majority of its members, to do business with an Arkansas private utility combine without the usual competitive bidding. A New York utility group claimed that it would have done the job for about 150 million dollars less than the Arkansas utility but had been unable to reach the AEC officials to discuss the proposition, the AEC general manager replying that the New York group had refused to supply necessary data regarding its financial backing.

The piece indicates that it agreed with Mr. Mitchell that it was something in need of investigation, but finds it irresponsible to suggest that Mr. Jones had influenced the President's decision to do so, as there were insufficient facts on which to base that conclusion.

"A Charlottean's Answer to Dior" finds itself in agreement with Baxter Huntley, a Charlotte hosiery official, who reasoned that with the Dior-decreed fashion departure from emphasis of the female bust, there had to be emphasis elsewhere in feminine fashions, and as the hips would not be emphasized, stockings had to show off the legs.

It suggests that soon, therefore, it could be anticipated that men and women would be roaming the streets with downcast eyes, the men admiring female legs and the women looking at men's Bermuda walking shorts. It finds, however, that no matter what Mr. Huntley suggested, there would be some men who would not lower their gaze.

"A Choice: Brain Fever or Heat Stroke" indicates that with the hot temperatures causing people to become overly fatigued from activities such as golf and tennis, they had turned to the old parlor game of "terse verse", providing the example of a questioner asking for a definition of a chief of police, with the answer being "top cop", or the definition of a seed catalog, "kernel journal", summer weather records, "blistery history", lovesick Hebridean, "smitten Briton", etc.

It indicates, however, that after it got to alliteration in the questioning, learning that natatory naiads were "swimmin' women", or to three-word answers, the definition of Northern style dalliance being "Yankee hanky panky", it began to wonder whether the brain fever caused by such labor was not worse than plain old heat stroke.

Try offering up your own terse verse, or, as it is referenced by those with eclat, iamb pericambium or tintinnabulated pentameter, or, for the grotesquely ostentatious, the byzantine philistines, bombastically gymnastic onomastics or laconic macaronic tonics. We can start it off: the definition of tossed toupee; the definition of Humphrey's mistake; the definition of snake in the grass, in Alice's world; the definition of slippery Nixon...

A piece from the Rocky Mountain Telegram, titled "Mud Unslung Is Slippery", tells of the political campaign in Halifax County having been positively warm, as a candidate for solicitor of Recorder's Court had spent much of his time during the lead-up to the election complimenting his opponent, saying he was a man of integrity and sending out letters to voters congratulating him for "a clean campaign", encouraging people to vote for his opponent if they thought he was better qualified for the position, indicating that voting was the most important thing. The voters responded by saying that they had never seen such sportsmanship and considered the candidate who had been so magnanimous to have uncommon grace. But on election day, he lost.

Drew Pearson tells of five governors having discussed the 50 billion dollar highway program with the President at a White House luncheon recently, finding themselves won over by the President to his position despite their previous opposition, with one governor, a Republican, indicating that he was beginning to feel "almost New Dealish". For the benefit of the two Southern governors present, one from Louisiana and the other from Kentucky, the President told a story about his election campaign, in which his advisers had told him that if he went to the South on a tour, he would have only a corporal's guard turn out to hear him speak. He went anyway and as he had gathered momentum, he began to realize the large crowds he was attracting, that he never understood that a corporal's guard could be so large. Mr. Pearson notes that while the discussion was taking place on the large highway bill, the bill sponsored by Senator John Sherman Cooper of Kentucky, providing only 500 million dollars for school construction, faced a tough time in Congress, largely because the Administration had refused to support it.

The President had urged a pay increase the previous year for Federal judges and members of Congress, and a commission had been appointed, a recommendation made, and then pigeonholed and forgotten, while Federal judges and members of Congress still struggled on salaries for which few similarly qualified professional persons would work. Members of Congress had to maintain two homes, one in Washington and one in the district or state represented at great expense. They had longer hours than most people, often working half the weekend and into the evening hours, the long hours being the rule rather than the exception, the Senate having rarely adjourned during the present summer prior to 8:00 p.m., not including filibusters. As members of Congress were reluctant in an election year to vote themselves a pay increase, Mr. Pearson suggests that they return after the midterm elections when the Senate would have to return to vote on the McCarthy censure resolution, and then take up the long overdue question of salary increases.

The President had been advised during the weekend to appoint a vice-chairman of the Federal Reserve Board or face criticism in Congress. Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota had made a speech accusing the President of deliberately violating the law in not appointing two additional board members, at which point the President made the appointments to the two vacancies, but had still not appointed a vice-chairman. During the weekend, the White House was informed that Senator Humphrey would make another such speech if the appointment were not soon made. The Fed affected the credit structure of the nation and the amount of interest paid on consumer loans and every other type of loan. It thus affected the rate of inflation. During the Truman Administration, the battle between Treasury Secretary John W. Snyder and Fed chairman Marriner Eccles had made headlines, resulting in President Truman having demoted Mr. Eccles, allowing the Treasury Department to dominate the Fed. Now, Treasury still dominated the Fed, but without headlines, as it was a friendly dominance because the new Fed chairman, William Martin, had once been Undersecretary of Treasury and was a friend of the present Secretary, George Humphrey. Nevertheless, many bankers indicated that such was not the function of the Federal Reserve, that it should remain independent of the Treasury Department so as to maintain the nation's credit separate from political influence. Thus, when the Fed had only five members instead of the usual complement of seven and had no vice-chairman, it was less independent and more easily dominated by Treasury. It was why the Fed had gotten along for months without two members, as the President's Treasury advisers did not want them appointed.

Marquis Childs, in Tunis, discusses the French situation in North Africa, in Tunisia and Morocco, and the tension in each of those countries regarding the transition from colonialism to an effective partnership, with peace and good will on both sides. The situation remained more complicated in Morocco, where there was continuing violence and the fear that it could inflame French opposition to independence anywhere, including Tunisia which had made a promising start toward independence.

In Tunisia, with which he primarily deals, the violence had suddenly been stopped, as if somebody turned off a water faucet. The French were trying to determine why that had occurred, with the uneasiness that it might be restarted, as there were facts to indicate a discipline within the Neo-Destour independence movement throughout the ranks, down through the bandits operating in desert country and infiltrating to the towns. More than 30,000 French troops were deployed throughout the country, and two more divisions were being transferred to Tunis, which would bring the total to above 50,000. That provided assurance to the French colonists that their rights and interests would be protected during the transitional phase from colonialism.

The new Tunisian premier and three ministers of state without portfolio in the newly formed Government would negotiate in Paris a basic agreement between the French and Tunisians to accord the promise of French Premier Pierre Mendes-France, after he had surprised the world by flying to the terror-ridden colony. The negotiations would not be easy as it involved complicated rights between the French and Tunisians, the latter eager to take over administrative functions as quickly as possible while the former believed the transition had to be effected in gradual phases as the Arabs demonstrated their ability to govern.

There were also human rights at stake, as the Tunisian functionaries had long been limited to minor and restricted positions, while nearly 25,000 French functionaries, many of them Corsicans, represented the most vocal opposition to the grant of internal autonomy, their opposition believed to be responsible for the counter-terrorism against Arabs, being more formidable in their opposition than the French planters who were operating plantations sometimes built up by the hard work of three generations in the same family. The planters believed that they could continue in their positions because of their importance to the economy of the country. But the salaried functionaries in administrative positions were fearful that in the negotiations in Paris, the Tunisians would be promised jobs which presently were being handled by the French.

Premier Mendes-France had created a separate Ministry of Tunisian and Moroccan Affairs within his Cabinet, administered by the able Christian Fouchet, removing the problem from the Foreign Office, which had a narrow, traditional approach to policy. The independence leaders in Tunisia had, for the time being, reposited confidence in the new Premier, believing him to be sincere.

Mr. Childs concludes that if an accord could be reached which satisfied or partially satisfied most of the competing interests, there would be a chance for Tunisia to achieve full independence, with the cooperation of both the French and the U.S., the latter being necessary for the experiment to work, supplying not only words of encouragement but tangible aid as well.

Robert C. Ruark tells of listening to diet talk again and learning that both males and females were planning to show up at the office in September lean, bronzed and otherwise clichéd. He assumes it would be accomplished by a diet exclusively of lettuce and fresh air, without martinis, and with much exercise obtained through conversation. He proceeds to provide his recipe for a good diet, which includes three helpings per meal and consuming not more than two quarts of beer, two bottles of wine and eight martinis, which he assures would enable the partaker to wind up the summer in great shape.

Mr. Ruark, as we have noted previously, would die in 1965 at age 49 from cirrhosis of the liver, having drunk himself to death. Thus, we do not recommend his diet, except for those who want to commit slow suicide. You might as well get in a fast car and cruise down a curvy road on a cliffside highway and take an opportune moment to go sailing through the railing. We do not, incidentally, recommend that either.

The Carolina Israelite, assuredly by editor and publisher Harry Golden, tells of wanting a book which could be found only in the Library of Congress or perhaps at the Widener Library at Harvard, and so called the Charlotte Public Library and asked for one of two people in charge, told them what was desired and where it probably could be found, and the book was delivered within about 10 days for a two-week loan, with renewal available on a few days of notice. Thus, the borrower was not limited to the facilities available locally, could obtain any book written in the English language for the asking, and at no cost to the borrower.

A letter writer from Maiden, N.C., objects to the "dirty dig" at former President Hoover contained in the brief editorial of August 11, but after having reread the piece, finds it understandable, as "your dirty rotten New Deal and your disgraceful Fair Deal were only too glad to call on him for help when they got so deep in slime and mud of their own making that there was no chance of redemption for them." He believes that the only reason the Truman Administration had called on President Hoover to chair the executive branch reorganization commission was so that they might degrade his name further, as they had "that greatest of all and magnificent General of the Army Douglas MacArthur who is the greatest military genius of all times." He assures that the names of President Hoover and General MacArthur would live on in the memory of the American people long after the "whelps" who had been "yapping at their heels" were forgotten.

Is that also why President Eisenhower appointed former President Hoover to chair a new reorganization commission?

A letter writer from Stokesdale relates of having seen a high school all-star basketball game the previous week in the new Greensboro gymnasium and found it a "honey", that Roy Searcy of Tri-City had been the best all-around player on the floor, while Bobby Joe Harris had scored the most points and was the most accurate shooter, with Jerry Bosquet being exceptionally good from the free-throw line, while Darius Brawshaw "topped the show" and Ed Berryhill played consistently, with Franklin Black being the fastest player and a "cracker jack" ball handler. He asserts that young Mr. Searcy—who would go on to be a reserve on the 1956-58 UNC teams, including the undefeated national championship team of 1957—had been the difference in the game.

Well, we're sorry we missed that one, but we had other things to do. And there is nothing more boring than watching basketball, for some reason, out of season, in the late spring, summer or early fall. It is strictly a winter and early breath of spring sport. Otherwise, forget it, whether for play or observation. That is why we have never cared for the summer Olympics basketball competition, not worth a hoot, less so after they opened it up to the pros, making it a silly exercise in self-fulfilling prophecy. There are no bragging rights in American professionals beating professionals of other countries, as there once was, rightfully so, with amateurs beating professionals of other countries on a routine basis. But one has trouble telling the block-headed super-patriots that sort of thing, and they typically are the ones who glory in the modern Olympics, which are about as competitive and sportive in the true original spirit of the Olympics, to glorify amateurism in athletics, as a bunch of dogs fighting over a bone. But that is, inevitably, what commercial television and its greed merchants do to virtually everything they touch. Sorry, but the truth is the truth.

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