The Charlotte News

Thursday, September 9, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that top atomic energy officials of both the U.S. and Canada met in Washington this date to seek ways of tightening their cooperation under relaxed rules on atomic secrecy as recently allowed by Congress. The talks were being held by the Atomic Energy Commission chairman, Lewis Strauss, and the president of Canada's Atomic Energy Agency, William Bennett. The atomic energy bill which had been passed by Congress the previous month had enlarged the President's authority to assist countries in building up atomic industries, provided they would cooperate with the U.S. on atomic energy matters, and had also given authority to the President to transfer to the country's North Atlantic allies previously secret information regarding the effect of atomic weapons and data on their size, weight and shape.

Britain, France, Australia, South Africa and Canada had agreed to form an international agency for the purpose of sharing atomic energy for peaceful purposes. Talks with Belgium and Portugal were advanced, but not at the point of conclusion. The President, on the prior Monday, had announced that those seven nations would formulate plans with the U.S. for such exchange of information to promote "atoms for peace", the program the President had put forward to all nations at the U.N., the prior December 8. The U.S.-Canadian talks, however, were not related, per se, to that program.

In Taipeh, Formosa, it was reported that Nationalist Chinese warships and planes had hit Communist China's coast again this date, including the base at Amoy, near the Nationalist outpost island of Quemoy, which had been fired upon by the Communist Chinese sporadically since the prior Friday. Meanwhile, Secretary of State Dulles pledged that Nationalist China "doesn't stand alone against the forces of aggression…" The Secretary had flown to Taipeh from the Southeast Asia security conference in Manila and had spent three hours and 15 minutes meeting with Nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek, exchanging views on questions affecting the U.S. and Nationalist China, achieving a satisfactory result, according to a high Nationalist official. Secretary Dulles said that the U.S. Seventh Fleet remained under orders to guard Formosa and that the U.S. would not be intimidated by Communist China's intensified military and propaganda activity against the Nationalists.

The six-Senator special committee considering the censure resolution against Senator McCarthy refused this date to allow the defense to present testimony regarding the use of secret Government information by other Senators, Senator McCarthy's attorney, Edward Bennett Williams, decrying the ruling of the chair as barring "the very heart and soul" of the defense on that issue. Mr. Williams contended that Vice-President Nixon, Senator Homer Ferguson of Michigan and others had taken stands under which Congress had a right to use information sought to be withheld by the White House. But the special committee chairman, Senator Arthur Watkins of Utah, ruled that the committee would not consider activities of any members of Congress other than Senator McCarthy, as it would necessitate calling those members, causing the hearings to be prolonged indefinitely. In a brief closed-door session, the full committee unanimously agreed with the ruling of the chair. Mr. Williams then declared that the defense could not go forward on the two censure counts regarding Senator McCarthy's alleged attempts to induce Government employees to provide his committee with classified information, stating that he was shocked by the ruling.

In New York, Ambassador to Italy Clare Boothe Luce said that reports that she would resign were "mostly Communist rumors inspired to create an air of uncertainty." As she boarded a plane for Rome the previous night, she said that there never had been any truth to the rumors.

Also in New York, Senator Irving Ives said this date that he would accept the Republican gubernatorial nomination should the state convention nominate him to succeed retiring Governor Thomas Dewey, who had announced the previous day that he would not run in the fall election for a fourth term. Senator Ives, who had four years remaining on his Senate term, had been endorsed by Governor Dewey and the Republican executive committee, and his nomination at the September 22 convention was considered a virtual certainty. Senator Ives said that he would not resign his seat to run for governor. A number of important Democrats had announced that they would support Averell Harriman, former mutual aid chief and one-time Ambassador to Russia, for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. The Democrats would meet on September 21-22, and a floor fight was anticipated, with some parts of the party strongly supporting Representative Franklin Roosevelt, Jr., for the nomination.

The Associated Press, continuing a piece from the previous day updating the Southern response to the issue of school desegregation, reports that in Mississippi, the Legislature had moved a step closer to abolition of its public school system, with the State House having approved the previous day, by a vote of 109 to 24, a constitutional amendment to allow the State to abolish the public schools. The Legislature was in special session called by Governor Hugh White to deal with the school segregation issue. The State Senate was expected to follow the House in authorizing the constitutional amendment. In Alabama, a group of legislators and lawyers had asked Governor Gordon Persons to call a special session of the Legislature to remove that State's constitutional provision requiring the State to support public schools. In Texas, a school superintendent the previous day had refused requests from black parents to enroll their children in a white school, the superintendent having called attention to a State Board of Education directive to continue segregation for the current school year. A conference of school officials from 11 Southern states had assembled in Atlanta, hearing a Tennessee lawyer, counsel to the Nashville Board of Education, prophesy a gradual end to segregation. In Arkansas, a rural school board heard a black leader declare the previous day that the remaining question regarding segregation was only how integration would be put into effect. The board's legal counsel had advised the members that it was not yet under any obligation to abolish segregation.

In Baltimore, movies of the opening day of classes attended by white and black students in the city's newly integrated schools would be distributed by the United States Information Agency to 90 countries, to counteract Communist propaganda. The integrated schools in Baltimore and Washington had opened without incident.

The joint monthly employment report of the Commerce and Labor Departments issued the previous day said that employment had increased from 62,148,000 to 62,276,000 and that unemployment had dropped from 3,346,000 to 3,245,000. Usually the number of unemployed dropped sharply during that same monthly period, but the figures had remained fairly stable in the current year, largely because unemployment had not increased as much as usual in July, and therefore the seasonal return to work in August was less than in most years.

In Algiers, it was reported that a tremendous earthquake had struck northern Algeria this date, with unofficial reports indicating that approximately 800 persons had died in and around Orleansville, about 100 miles west of Algiers, the center of a rich farming valley. The French national defense ministry in Paris said that it knew of at least 200 deaths. Eyewitnesses on the scene said that the town of 32,500 looked as if it had been through a heavy air bombardment. About 20 percent of the town, according to reports, had been demolished. Scientists indicated that it appeared to have been the worst earthquake to hit Algeria in 40 years.

In Miami, the chief storm forecaster reported that they were not out of the woods yet insofar as Hurricane Edna, in relation to the Atlantic Coast from the Melbourne-Titusville area of Florida northward to the North Carolina capes, indicating that those areas should be under caution, though not under official hurricane alert as of yet. During the morning, the storm was due east of Cape Canaveral, Fla., and on an erratic and wobbling course. The hurricane was big and still expanding. Small craft advisories had been posted from Florida to Cape Hatteras, N.C.

In Elizabeth City, N.C., a 22-year old butcher, late for a date with his draft board, shot and killed three fellow workers and wounded a young woman this date. The assailant had been rejected once previously for military service and was apparently suffering from a persecution complex, according to the local police chief. He opened fire at his place of employment, the Elizabeth City Freezer Locker plant, where he had worked for about two years, barricading himself in a rear room of the plant following the shooting, but eventually surrendered to officers who were prepared to launch tear gas into his place of refuge. He told the police chief that he believed he was going to die from chest cancer, that life was a problem, that everybody dominated him, that some were under a lucky star, that he was unlucky. The chief said that he doubted portions of the man's story. He had said that he had gone to the Selective Service office in Elizabeth City the previous morning, intending to go to Raleigh for pre-induction re-examination, but when he had gotten to the office, decided he was not going, instead returned to his home, picked up a .22-calibre rifle and went to the plant, where, he said, the other employees were laughing at him. A foreman at the plant said that Selective Service had called and told him that the man had not reported on time, and the foreman said that he had then called the man at home and advised him to report, but the man had replied that he was going to finish his breakfast and might not come to work. He arrived at work about an hour late and then began shooting. He would be charged with murder.

In Philadelphia, 22 passengers and three crew members escaped injury late the previous day when a twin-engine TWA plane nosed over while attempting a landing at International Airport. A ten-year old passenger said that it was "just like in the movies and on television", that the only thing he was mad about was that, after they deboarded the plane, he had lost a model airplane his father had bought for him in New York.

In Liberty, S.C., Alexander Smith, Inc., one of the nation's largest carpet manufacturing companies, had acquired a modern plant in the town from Julius Kayser and Co. It would be used to weave and finish velvet carpets, and the first carpets were expected to be produced late during the fall. Be sure to get in your orders promptly.

In Mexico City, an inmate serving seven years for counterfeiting had another eight years added to his sentence this date, after officials charged that he continued printing counterfeit bills on a portable press concealed in his cell and then sold the fake currency to prisoners as they completed their sentences.

In Denver, a man had climbed from his car, stumbled and fell, then awakened several hours later, bruised and shaken, with his car gone. Police then searched for the car, found it two blocks away, having coasted downhill over a curb, across a vacant lot and into the parking area of an express company, where it had crashed into a truck. Apparently, the car had run over its driver, causing his bruises.

On the editorial page, "A New Awakening in Mecklenburg" finds that a new tool was now available for directing the orderly growth of Mecklenburg County into the future, via the newly merged City-County planning board. It commends Charlotte Mayor Philip Van Every, the City Council and the County Commission for establishing it the previous day, surmounting various obstacles, especially the division of funding for the board between the City and County, resolved on the basis of 60 percent to be borne by the City and 40 percent by the County. It posits that the next step would be to prepare and adopt plans for the future, bearing in mind projected growth of the community.

"A Worthwhile Service Gets Under Way" gives praise to the first issue of the Southern School News, the official publication of the Southern Education Reporting Service, an objective, fact-finding agency established by Southern newspaper editors and educators with the aim of "providing accurate, unbiased information to school administrators, public officials and interested lay citizens on developments in education arising from" the May 17 decision in Brown v. Board of Education, holding public school segregation unconstitutional. News editor on leave Pete McKnight was the organization's executive director and the newspaper's editor.

It indicates that the first issue was a detailed documentary of the public school situation in the District of Columbia and each of the 17 states where segregation had been required by law, with top newsmen in each of the 17 states plus the District serving as correspondents. It included the full text of the Brown decision, plus exchange of correspondence explaining the purpose of SERS, and a report by Mr. McKnight, in which he set forth the future for the monthly publication, indicating that it would not only carry the chronological story, state by state, but would also look closely at key communities, providing excerpts from significant public addresses, legislative proposals and court decisions, report on editorial and other opinion from responsible sources, digest important books, magazine articles and other writings on the subject, and analyze statistical information compiled by state departments of education and their agencies.

It indicates that the Service would likely do much to help Southerners solve "'the South's problem'".

"One Plus One Plus One Equals One" indicates that a previous Polish legislature, which had accomplished nothing because the constitution in force at the time had required complete unanimity, had been labeled the least effective government ever by historians. But, it suggests, another form of government was a close second, that of the triumvirate.

The previous week, the short-lived triumvirate in Guatemala had fallen, two members having resigned, leaving Col. Carlos Castillo Armas in full control. Lasting only a bit longer had been the triumvirate in Russia of Georgi Malenkov, L. P. Beria, and V. M. Molotov, formed in the wake of the death of Joseph Stalin on March 8, 1953, Mr. Beria having been executed summarily by his rivals by the end of 1953, and, by history, it was only a matter of time until one man would emerge as the kingpin at the Kremlin. Stalin had been part of a triumvirate formed in 1923 as a common front against Leon Trotsky, and Stalin had then eased the other two members out of power, and eventually had them executed as part of the purge trials of 1936.

In 1799, the French Government had been turned over to Abbe Sieyes, Roger Ducos and Napoleon, whereupon the latter had the power of the other two reduced to expression of opinions.

Cleopatra helped break up the triumvirate formed between Mark Antony, Octavian Caesar and Lepidus, the latter having been persuaded to retire to private life with a nominal title. Mark Antony then chased Cleopatra to Egypt, where he committed suicide in the mistaken belief that she had done likewise, leaving Octavian to take sole power as Augustus—and the nonfictional basis, undoubtedly, for Romeo and Juliet. Octavian's Uncle Julius had, only a few years earlier, eliminated two partners, Crassus and Pompey, Julius then going to Gaul while the other two squabbled, Crassus then having been killed and Pompey having ruled Rome for awhile, fleeing after the return of Caesar, crossing the Rubicon.

It suggests that perhaps at some point the phrase "three's a crowd" had been coined out of the demise of the triumvirates.

A piece from the Baltimore Evening Sun, titled "The Faulknerian Sentence", indicates that a recent issue of the New York Times Book Review section had told of a journalist who had bought William Faulkner's new novel, A Fable, to read on a fishing trip, indicating that he had become "bogged down in one of Faulkner's sentences—this one ran two full pages—and lost heart."

While admitting that a two-page sentence was long, it questions whether it was too long and finds that it was not if carefully and well constructed, suggesting that maybe one of the failings of the times was the horror imbued in impatient readers confronted with a long sentence, having been raised on business English and Ernest Hemingway. It questions whether they could read Sir Thomas Browne without irritation, or tolerate Taylor, Gibbon, deQuincey or Ruskin. The latter had, in Modern Painters, describing the Falls of Schaffhausen, presented a sentence of nearly 300 words. In Stones of Venice, describing the approach to the city, a sentence appeared of 201 words, followed by one with 253 words, the paragraph ending with a third sentence of 108 words.

It questions whether the times had reached the point where the essence of good writing was to contrive such statements as: "He said, 'No'," or "The day was very hot". It wonders whether the eyes and minds were so feeble that they were at once fatigued and worried by any sentence which ran more than a couple of lines of print. "Admit that, and we must close some of the greatest of our books forever."

It does not point out that Mr. Faulkner's longest sentence consisted of 1,288 words, four pages, in Absalom, Absalom!

Drew Pearson indicates that while Maj. General Harry Vaughan, the former military aide to former President Truman, had been chided by newsmen and others for pulling political wires which had been none of his business, he had a rival within the Eisenhower Administration, the President's military aide, General Wilton Persons, who had recently pulled wires to obtain a promotion for his cousin to the rank of rear admiral, over 355 other Navy captains who were ahead of him in seniority, accomplished through exertion of pressure on Secretary of the Navy Charles Thomas. Promotion to rear admiral was one of the highest honors in the Navy, with only 27 men having been promoted to the rank during 1954, and for a lower classman who had graduated from Annapolis in the class of 1929 to be jumped over higher-ranking captains from the class of 1927, thanks to his relation with General Persons, had made the Navy quite mad. Initially, the Navy had sought to cover the matter up, stating that Captain Persons had been promoted by the Secretary under a provision which allowed such promotion of those with "special qualifications". But having made that statement, the Navy then had to retract it by virtually admitting that Captain Persons had no such special qualifications, then indicating that the Secretary was providing an incentive to younger officers to work harder.

General Matthew Ridgway, Army chief of staff, was urging the Joint Chiefs to abandon France and concentrate on West Germany and Spain in building European defense against Russia, advising that military aid to France be cut drastically and that the Army begin moving its billion-dollar supply lines to German and Belgian ports.

The British Labor delegation touring Communist China had been shocked to see how sick Premier Mao Tse-Tung appeared. He talked only briefly with the visitors, and as a result of his appearance, former Prime Minister Clement Attlee had informed the British Foreign Office that Foreign Minister Chou En-lai appeared to be the actual boss of the country.

Madame Pandit of India was reported to be so incensed over the pro-Russian policy of her brother, Prime Minister Nehru, that she would leave India and live in England or the U.S. She had been Ambassador to the U.S., later heading India's delegation to the U.N., but had been replaced by the pro-Russia Krishna Menon.

Senator McCarthy's best friend in the State Department, Scott McLeod, was looking for a new job. Secretary of State Dulles had fired him previously, only then having changed his mind, but was now talking about firing him permanently. Undersecretary of State Herbert Hoover, Jr., might save him, however, as he was a good friend of Mr. McLeod.

One of the strangest friendships to develop in Congress during the previous session was between elder statesman Senator Walter George of Georgia, a conservative Democrat, and the younger liberal independent, Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon. Senator George was the oldest member of the Senate in terms of service, and was one of its most loved and respected. While having voted conservatively on many issues in the past, he had criticized the new tax bill for its loopholes favoring big business, and had voted against the Eisenhower-backed atomic energy bill because of what he considered to be its giveaways to private industry. On both of those subjects, Senators Morse and George had agreed, and Senator George had complimented Senator Morse for his stand. He had also said that the public did not realize that within a few years, 12 atomic reactors could supply all of the power for the country, and that control of that power was the real question at issue in the atomic energy debate.

Stewart Alsop, in Cleveland, having the previous day examined the campaign of Representative George Bender for the Senate seat previously occupied by deceased Senator Robert Taft, now looks at the campaign of incumbent interim Democratic Senator Thomas Burke. Mr. Burke was a former Mayor of Cleveland and had been appointed to the Senate by Governor Frank Lausche. He was likable, with a quiet wit, and a reserved, almost chilly manner, in sharp contrast to the flamboyance of Mr. Bender. He had been described as the most popular Mayor of Cleveland ever, and that was one of his most important assets, as Cuyahoga County surrounding Cleveland was the key to Ohio elections. To win, Senator Burke would need a majority of at least 100,000 in that county, and perhaps 150,000.

Mr. Bender had been the Republican boss of Cuyahoga County for many years, and so spoke with authority in saying that Senator Burke did not have a chance of taking the needed majority in the county. Mr. Burke would also need heavy majorities in all of Ohio's industrial areas, as rural Ohio was solidly Republican, necessitating therefore a large labor turnout.

In 1950, the CIO and the AFL, for all practical purposes, had taken over the campaign against Senator Taft, who won, nevertheless, in the industrial areas. In the current year, labor would avoid the same mistake by supporting too openly Senator Burke through a labor political action committee. The labor leaders in the state, however, were for Senator Burke and were working hard to register union voters as well as providing financial support for the Senator. That gave the Senator a major advantage. He also had the promised support of Governor Lausche, though the latter was not in the habit of campaigning for any candidate other than himself. The Governor had enormous vote-getting capability in Ohio, having won by a huge majority in 1950 and again in 1952. Skeptics were doubting that the Governor would wholeheartedly support Senator Burke, but the Governor had agreed to record a brief endorsement of the Senator for occasional radio broadcasting.

With that commitment by the Governor, the Democrats in Ohio were more united than at any time in recent years, whereas the candidacy of Mr. Bender had split the Republican Party in two after being nominated in one of the toughest primary fights in recent history against opponent, William Saxbe—, future Attorney General under President Nixon in the wake of the October, 1973 "Saturday night massacre"—, who had called Mr. Bender, among other things, "a political huckster", "a hack", "a political clown", "a candidate of demonstrated mediocrity", and "a doomed candidate who would not win". Thus it was surprising that the odds were still in favor of Mr. Bender winning the race.

Robert C. Ruark favors giving France the Quartermaster Corps and letting Christian Dior run it, as a means of inducing it to ratify EDC. It was determined that the French were good cooks and so he believes that they should be allowed to cook for democracy, that they were good dressmakers, and so with M. Dior at the head of the Corps which would clothe and feed an armed force, would drive the enemy mad.

He lists some of the things which the French could not do well by the record and its lack of statesmen, so suggests using France positively rather than in the role of placing combat troops in a united European army.

A letter writer from Ansonville compliments the newspaper on its August 31 editorial, "Negro Teachers: A New Job Problem", indicating that while the editorial had based its comments on the situation in Mecklenburg County, the surplus of black teachers in a similar proportion found within the county existed throughout the state and throughout the majority of the Southern states, regardless of the high rate of employment of black teachers. The statement concluding the piece, that more economic opportunities had to be found for blacks, he indicates, was not a new problem, but had to be examined in a new and progressive light or the South would pay for it in economic woe and social, moral and cultural ruin. He suggests that there had to be a sound student guidance counseling program, which was weak in the black schools of the South, though with great improvements having been made in the prior decade. He suggests placing a trained individual in student counseling, testing and guidance, in all schools of the South, as there was little time left for teachers to conduct guidance after completing their regular daily teaching assignments. As integration progressed, there would likely be many black teachers who would have to pursue other fields of endeavor, which should be undertaken in the spirit of goodwill, with the understanding that the children of the South would be growing up in an atmosphere of complete democracy, enabling black children to have the educational background to pursue any endeavor of their choice.

A letter writer from Morehead City Beach indicates that as a town woman whose family had lived on the farm for generations, she could speak her mind, as the time had come for town women to assert themselves. People heard on the radio and from members of Congress all about "our people" and they were tired of it. They heard hillbilly tunes for country people who were above listening to it. They were tired of hearing about "farm, farm extension, farm extension, home demonstration, home demonstration, home demonstration." They paid high taxes for a big staff of men and women at UNC to use those offices for "pure propaganda". They were filled up with farm news from editors and directors of radio stations and wanted something else. They were "filled up on cheap music", were just as well or better educated than the specialists and farm leaders who continued on the front page to help "us country rubes". She suggests they could get more help from a visit to any interior decorator shop or any big store in Charlotte, Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Raleigh, Durham, Fayetteville, Wilmington, High Point, Richmond, Spartanburg, Charleston and other towns than a home agent would give them in years. "Wake up!"

A letter writer from Monroe finds it alarming to see how many "so-called" Christians did not understand the basic principles of Christianity, love and humility. He says that Hitler ought serve as an everlasting example for his crusade based on racial superiority, ending with his demise. "Pride goeth before destruction." He indicates that God had made no inferior races, that all he had made, he had pronounced good, that there were undeveloped people of all races, but none who were inferior. God, he says, recognized only two classes of people, the good and the evil, and that one person was better than another only when he lived a more righteous life than the other, that nothing else in God's sight, including skin color, made him better.

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