The Charlotte News

Monday, September 13, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that before the six-Senator special committee considering the censure resolution against Senator McCarthy, Brig. General Ralph Zwicker testified this date that he had told the truth when appearing before Senator McCarthy's Investigations subcommittee on February 18, denying that he had misstated facts, as contended by Senator McCarthy in his testimony before the committee the previous week. One of the charges involved in the censure resolution against the Senator was that he had abused General Zwicker at the February 18 hearing by questioning him about an honorable discharge and promotion from captain to major of an Army Reserve dentist, whom Senator McCarthy called a "Fifth Amendment Communist" for having refused to testify before the subcommittee regarding past subversive activities. General Zwicker said that he had no recollection of muttering under his breath during the hearing that Senator McCarthy was an "S.O.B.", as a witness had testified the previous week he had heard the General utter. The General also said that he was not being "evasive, arrogant or irritating" during the hearing when the Senator had questioned him in executive session about the Army dentist, as Senator McCarthy had contended in his testimony the previous Friday. He also said that he was acting under explicit orders from higher ranking officials in the honorable discharge of the dentist, as well as in his declining to answer some of the questions posed by Senator McCarthy about the matter. He said further that he did not recall that he had ever discussed Senator McCarthy with Maj. General Kirke Lawton, the former commander of Fort Monmouth in New Jersey, the latter having testified the prior Saturday that he had the impression from conversations with General Zwicker that he was "antagonistic" toward Senator McCarthy. The General also said that the case of the dentist had first come to his attention in August, 1953 and that he had given his name to Senator McCarthy's subcommittee in January, 1954, about a month before the discharge from Camp Kilmer in New Jersey, which General Zwicker at the time commanded, the discharge papers having been signed on January 18, a month before Senator McCarthy had begun his hearings. It was believed that this would be the last day of the hearings on the censure resolution.

In Denver, the President, still on vacation, said this date to the press that the National Security Council, in an extraordinary meeting called by the President to discuss global strategy regarding the Communist threat abroad, had reaffirmed U.S. policy of defending "the vital interests of the U.S. wherever they may arise". He said that there were "no specific decisions" advanced for action, but that there had been a general review of the situation in the Far East, opportune in the wake of the return of Secretary of State Dulles from the Manila conference to establish SEATO. Following the session, Secretary Dulles indicated that the U.S. military might thwart any Chinese Communist assault against Nationalist Formosa, but did not commit one way or the other regarding defense of the Nationalist outpost island of Quemoy in the event of invasion by the Chinese Communists. He had hinted the previous day that the Council might set forth some specific policy regarding Quemoy in relation to the U.S. Seventh Fleet in the event of a Communist assault on the island. The President also stated the previous day, prior to the Council session, following a conference with FBI director J. Edgar Hoover and Attorney General Herbert Brownell, that the Administration's goal was utterly to destroy the Communist Party within the country.

The biggest primary election day of the year was set for the following day in nine states, picking nominees for five Senate seats, 92 House seats, and six governorships. Vice-President Nixon had called the Maine gubernatorial election between the incumbent Governor Burton Cross and his Democratic challenger, Congressman Edmund Muskie, to be "the first statewide test of the Eisenhower Administration's program"—an election which the incumbent would lose to the future Senator and 1968 vice-presidential contender against the Nixon-Agnew ticket, and eventually the victim of a Nixon dirty tricks operation during the 1972 Democratic presidential primary campaign, knocking him out of the race as the favored contender for the Democratic nomination to contest the grim REEPer. The damage done by Hurricane Edna in Maine the previous Saturday was expected to reduce voter turnout. The Maine Senate election, with incumbent Senator Margaret Chase Smith, was not expected to be a real contest. In addition, there were primaries in New Hampshire, Colorado, Massachusetts, New York, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Utah, Vermont and Washington, with most of the incumbents in the races having no competition or anticipated to be easy winners, such as Senators Styles Bridges of New Hampshire, Leverett Saltonstall of Massachusetts, and Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota. Interim Senator Robert Upton of New Hampshire was in a three-way fight for renomination to the remaining two years of the term of the late Senator Charles Tobey. Senator Edwin Johnson of Colorado, vice-chairman of the select committee reviewing the McCarthy censure resolution, was running unopposed for the Democratic nomination for governor, set to retire from his Senate seat.

In White Sulfur Springs, W. Va., about 275 of the total of 430 students of the local high school went on strike this date in protest against integration of the school, the students parading through the streets of the town early in the morning, reportedly demanding that the 23 black students slated to enter the high school be assigned to an all-black school. A statewide order had issued the previous week for integration of the schools. The county's first trouble had occurred the previous week when the combined elementary and high school at Rupert had been picketed.

In Atlanta, union officials reported that some 40,000 employees of the Southern Bell Telephone Co. in nine Southern states had voted to strike "if necessary", stressing that negotiations would continue as they had for the previous eight weeks, seeking to reach new agreements by the expiration of the present contract at the end of September.

Harry Shuford of The News tells of a gallon jug and a mysterious footprint being the clues this date to the attempted arson of a house in Mecklenburg County, the police indicating that an unidentified man had apparently attempted to set fire to the house the previous night, before its owner was able to extinguish the fire before it did any damage. A strong smell of gasoline pervaded the area of the fire and the jug when officers arrived. Prints of cleated shoes led away from the scene. The owner said that he saw a man running from the scene.

In Salt Lake City, a jazz band would accompany the burial of a Colorado café operator, who had requested the music with a hip beat, and that his widow wear the clothing he liked to see her in, not mourning raiment. The deceased had been killed in an automobile accident in Colorado where he was the proprietor of a café at Rangely, and had been a chef in several Salt Lake City cafés. His widow said that he was an avid jazz fan and the funeral would feature jazz versions of "Don't Worry 'Bout Me" and "The Nearness of You".

In Atlantic City, as indicated Saturday, 19-year old Lee Meriwether of San Francisco, Miss California, won the Miss America title on Saturday night, saying in her first interview with the press after winning that she did not believe she would give Marilyn Monroe much competition, as the the new "flat" look by Christian Dior had come just in time to save her. She said she had no one special in mind for romance, just some "very good friends", one of whom, an Army private of San Jose, had exclaimed excitement after hearing that she had won the title, indicating that he was the only guy with whom she was going steady, albeit not engaged, though he was working on it. Ms. Meriwether's mother said that the private was just "a very nice friend, but there's certainly no engagement." Ms. Meriwether attended City College of San Francisco, her father having wanted her to attend Stanford to become an actress but for the fact that they did not have the money for the tuition. She would now receive $40,000 in public appearance fees, plus a new car, furs, jewelry and other prizes worth a total of $60,000. She would go on to have an active television acting career. Kimble—once Kimble is cleared, you can hitch up with him. You're going to have to explain, however, to the cops when you get back how you let Kimble escape after you became aware that the "bomb" he had was only a harmless ruse, and why, therefore, you should not be prosecuted for aiding the flight of a convicted fugitive. Don't worry though. If Gerard insists on your arrest, though doubtful as he has let probably a hundred or more aiders off the hook, Batman will come to the rescue.

On the editorial page, "The Battleground of Peace", a by-lined piece by News publisher Thomas L. Robinson, writing from Munich, indicates that to destroy a person, as Valdimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin, and now Premier Georgi Malenkov had demonstrated, one needed only to destroy the soul, the spirit and the will to be free, that threats, treachery, lies and brutality were the Communist weapons, as deadly as bombs and bullets.

Having written the prior Friday on the Voice of America and its work in bringing a true picture of the United States and the West to the people living behind the Iron Curtain, Mr. Robinson now turns attention to Radio Free Europe, whose European director and its public relations representative had shown him their operations and explained the objectives of the organization. The Crusade for Freedom financially supported the organization and many other activities of a nonprofit organization, the Free Europe Committee, which included the University in Exile and support of refugee self-help projects and publications, such as News from Behind the Iron Curtain.

Approximately 85 percent of the programs of Radio Free Europe originated in Europe, broadcast through 22 transmitters located in Lisbon, Portugal, a point 18 miles from Munich, and in Mannheim, West Germany.

The Voice was run and paid for by the Government, an integral part of the U.S. Information Agency, whereas Radio Free Europe was operated as an independent American enterprise by a committee of private citizens, who raised about ten million dollars per year for the Crusade for Freedom. In its essence, it consisted of people talking to people, with Poles talking to Poles behind the Iron Curtain and Czechs talking to Czechs, likewise situated.

Although news was the heart of the programming, it also included entertainment, forbidden songs and music, political "cabaret", which he notes was a European art form of its own incorporating political jokes and songs, broadcast for 18 hours daily through midnight, principally to Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary, and, to a lesser extent, to Bulgaria and Rumania. Mr. Robinson finds Munich to be absorbing as an international center, wherein, unlike any other city of Europe, there were many exiled refugees from Communist lands, zealously dedicated to the need for telling their fellow countrymen via radio the truth about the West, as well as what was actually going on in their own countries. There were churchmen, writers, composers, actors and entertainers who were highly respected within the satellite countries and so could talk with authority and hope regarding the life of West Germany and other parts of the free world.

He finds that Radio Free Europe exposed and ridiculed the Kremlin's henchmen, identifying by name police informers and exposing barbaric crimes perpetrated by the Russians on decent citizens.

As with the Voice of America, the Soviets sought to jam Radio Free Europe broadcasts, but the mail and reports of refugees told of receipt of the programming by an avid following. Its chief goal was to maintain the spiritual courage and moral stamina of the listeners so that they would maintain their will to seek freedom.

Mr. Robinson had come away from his experience with the conviction that the radio programs of both the Voice and Radio Free Europe constituted a powerful weapon in the fight for peace and might prevent a third world war.

"There Is No 'Short Cut' to Art" indicates that a new set of phonograph records was presently on sale in Charlotte stores, under the title "The Listeners Digest", subtitled, "The Exciting New Short Cut to Great Music". It consisted of standard classical selections in abridged form, for instance, the first movement of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, cut approximately in half from its normal six minutes—the same duration, incidentally, of "Like a Rolling Stone", also cut in half by some stations in its original air play.

It finds that it did not work, that even in an age of distilled wisdom, capsulized culture and digested classics, it was carrying things too far. The Fifth Symphony, for example, had always been hailed as a supreme example of musical compression within the framework of art, that by subtracting a single note, the whole delicate mechanism collapsed.

It concludes that man could not enrich or extend cultural horizons by distorting art, that fine art could not be distilled or compressed to "little shot-glasses of inspiration", that art was not meant to be enjoyed while reading a book, watching tv and having dinner, that it demanded full attention and full treatment.

"The Big Ones Always Get Away" indicates that a few years earlier, the N.C. State Extension Service had established its first saltwater fishing Institute in Morehead City, an experiment which was so successful that in 1954, the Service sponsored a fresh water course in practical piscatology at Fontana Dam lake. It finds that recognition of fishing as an art had come none too soon. One could not teach how to catch a fish, as there was too much of the occult involved in it, leaving the instructor to impart only something of the knowledge of how to bait a hook, tie a fly and swim to shore when the boat capsized. But the mystic science of going about catching the fish could not be taught in a classroom, even one occurring outdoors.

As Washington Irving had once observed, "There is certainly something in angling that tends to produce a gentleness of spirit and a pure serenity of mind." The piece finds that fishing taught one the art of taking disappointments in life, while never losing the little fish caught on the hook. One also learned of temptation, as the trout always bit best on the Sabbath. Isaak Walton had found a kind of nobility in fishing, believing that one left a better person after trying to land the catch. He had written in The Compleat Angler: "You will find angling to be like the virtue of humility, which has a calmness of spirit and a world of other blessings attending upon it." He had conceded that fishing was like mathematics in that it could not be fully learned. He had also said: "We may say of angling as Dr. Boteler said of strawberries: 'Doubtless God could have made a better berry but doubtless God never did'; and so, if I might be the judge, God never did make a more calm, quiet, innocent recreation than angling."

It concludes that fishing was one of the few applications left in the hustle and bustle of the 20th Century which could be combined with the art of solitary contemplation, giving it a unique appeal, and urging that if there were more thoughtful fishermen, the world would be a better place.

That is so much poppycock, as any avocation can afford the same type of zen, and to assume that it is exclusively the province of fishing is to suffer from myopia, constrained to one's own favored avocation, without realization that the same experiences attend other such activities pursued for other than monetary gain, and often with far more permanent results than offered by simply boning, cleaning and eating a fish. Besides, some morons go out on the lake with the boat full of beer, hardly conducive to peaceful contemplation, more at being drunken brats. Other applications, which combine skill and concentration with the object of the pursuit, sewing, carpentry, auto mechanics, for instance, do not allow room for such drunken revelry.

Dr. Rupert B. Vance, UNC Kenan Professor of sociology, in an article in the Journal of Public Law of Emory University Law School, discusses the issue of school desegregation under the law in terms of practicality, that which would be enforceable under the laws. He indicates that evasion had been present throughout the issue, lest otherwise the 1896 "separate but equal" doctrine of Plessy v. Ferguson would have been implemented with equal facilities between black and white schools in earlier times.

Presently, in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education, Georgia's and South Carolina's legislatures were seeking ways to abolish the public schools as a means of circumventing the ruling, which Dr. Vance regards as another means of evasion which the courts inevitably would not allow insofar as the use of public funds for private schools which were segregated. At the same time, there was no practical way for states and school districts to be forced to support public schools if their present levels of enrollment were to decline in favor of private schools or to prevent them from selling or renting school property in districts where pupils were no longer attending.

The pattern of attendance of private schools was already fixed among certain classes and in certain areas of the country, as in the immigrant areas of the Northeast, where attendance at a private school by the rising middle classes was viewed as a means of holding or achieving higher social status for their children. Such attendance of private schools for achievement of higher status had once been a part of the tradition of the South, as it was still in New England. The present devotion to universal education in public schools in the South had come since the turn of the century as an adjustment to the poverty of many of its peoples, representing a triumph of the democratic movement in the South. A switch to private schools as an individual choice was dependent more on economic circumstances of the aspiring middle classes than on anything else, and could leave an almost abandoned public school system to blacks and the lower economic classes.

A second alternative, consisting of flight of teachers from the public schools, was equally sanctioned in law, already constituting a national problem, given the low income, prestige and heavy responsibility of teaching. Proportionally, the flight of teachers to the private schools might exceed that of the pupils, as there was increasing demand for teachers among the developing private schools, with higher student attendance.

Unless the new public schools employed existing black teachers for integrated classes, the loss of teachers would be even greater. The fact that such employment could only be accomplished through legislation underscored the difficulty of the change. A Supreme Court decision could invalidate statutes and state constitutional provisions as being unconstitutional but could not guarantee the passage of supporting legislation by either Congress or the states to aid in implementing the decision.

Members of local school boards could not resign when they were sued, enjoined by courts, or jailed for noncompliance with the law. They could only refuse to serve on school boards as citizens.

Permitting whites and blacks to attend segregated schools outside their districts would represent another type of evasion, begging questions as to the legal actions which could be undertaken and by whom, as the persons who had been permitted to cross jurisdictional lines were in receipt of special privileges and they would not therefore sue, as would not those left behind as they would be asking to violate regulations. Thus, in the absence of legislation by the states or the Congress, the Supreme Court would be acting as a "glorified board of education for the State of South Carolina", as counsel for the school board in the South Carolina case, Briggs v. Elliott, subsumed under Brown, former 1924 Democratic presidential nominee John W. Davis, had argued.

Dr. Vance concludes that the recourse to private schools represented the behavior of an aspiring middle class to avoid their neighbors who lived "across the tracks". Teachers who were leaving the public schools were simply exercising their right of choice of occupations, and school boards which refused to hire black teachers were exercising their right to choice of hiring employees.

Drew Pearson indicates that despite Congress having passed a law unifying the armed forces in 1947, an amazing secret document had just come to light showing that the Navy was undercutting the Air Force in foreign countries. Admiral Robert Carney, presently chief of Naval Operations, had provided essentially an ultimatum to the Italian minister of defense that Italy would have to change its air force law and set up a naval air detachment separate from its air force, that unless it did so, it would receive no naval planes from the U.S. Navy and no helicopters from the U.S. Army. The Admiral's aide had taken verbatim notes of the conference, later typed into a transcript and filed away, classified as "top secret", even though not actually containing any military secrets. He quotes Admiral Carney from the transcript of the conference to confirm his points. Mr. Pearson relates also that the Navy was ignoring a mandate of Congress to combine joint operations with the Air Force.

Stewart Alsop, in Newark, N.J., tells of Republican Representative Clifford Case, running for the Senate, being most unusual for a number of reasons, especially because he was one of the few politicians who had bothered to think seriously about American politics rather than automatically producing the pre-digested party line. He thought for himself, a habit which had gotten him into trouble, having become the whipping boy of the "Neanderthal wing of the Republican Party", with the most conspicuous of the right-wing splinter groups being the "Committee for a Stronger New Jersey Republican Party", seeking to force Mr. Case out of the race and replace him with a "real Republican" candidate. As it was too late to do that, the actual effort was to defeat him and thereby achieve veto power in New Jersey Republican politics.

New Jersey Republicans had been deluged with literature urging that Mr. Case was a radical, distorting his voting record, most of which had been exposed as false by the headquarters of Mr. Case. Meanwhile, however, the regular Republican organization in the state had been thrown into an uproar and much damage had been done.

Mr. Case described himself as deeply conservative, genuine conservatism, as he defined it, permitting and even encouraging change, but on a gradual basis, conserving intact the essential political and economic structure of the society. It was, in fact, Senator McCarthy and his supporters who were radicals, not conservatives, favoring sudden, violent change. Mr. Case believed that the Democrats could not be the party of gradual and necessary change, as when they controlled Congress, the dominant wing of the party was actually only a minority of the body and represented only a minority of the country. He believed that this dominant wing pressed so hard for extremes that it aroused "an understandable and proper reaction" both in the Republican Party and in the conservative wing of the Democratic Party, resulting in all effective action being blocked. He contended that it was the reason why steady, orderly progress had not been achieved under the Democrats, giving an unparalleled opportunity to the Republicans under President Eisenhower to give the country what it wanted and needed, "flexible and imaginative but responsible and genuinely conservative government."

Mr. Case was something of an intellectual, interested in ideas, but was also practical, and, thus far, highly successful as a politician. He understood that, with the Democratic gubernatorial administration in New Jersey uncovering skeletons in the Republican closet, it was not an ideal year for Republican candidates in that state.

He would go on to win the election and would serve in the Senate for four terms, before being defeated in the Republican primary of 1978 by a man who would then lose to the Democratic candidate, Bill Bradley. Senator Case would follow a career path in the Senate much as that laid out by Mr. Alsop in this piece regarding his House experience, considered a liberal Republican.

A letter writer from Morganton responds to a previous letter of Bob Cherry, Jr., congratulating Charlotte for having "such a brilliant anti-Communist in its midst", that he was certain no Communist would dare show his face within the city limits or even venture as far away as Morganton. He was certain that he would not know one if he saw him and probably would not believe him or her, if they identified themselves as Communists. He thinks it a shame that FDR did not have the gift of the letter writer to advise him at the Yalta Conference in early 1945 and that President Truman did not have his benefit during the U.N. Charter conference in San Francisco in the spring of that year, as the letter writer certainly would have informed of the type of person Alger Hiss was and thereby changed the history of the world. He finds it deplorable that President Truman and former Secretary of State Acheson had not called on that letter writer to tell them how to run the country and form foreign policy. He comments that a few weeks earlier, the FBI had arrested some Communists in Denver, and he had been looking for some time for word in the newspapers that Senator McCarthy had provided the information leading to the arrests, concluding that it must have been such a routine matter that the Senator and Mr. Cherry had simply not bothered to make a statement.

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