The Charlotte News
Thursday, April 21, 1955
Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in Bandung, Indonesia, at the Asian-African conference, Prime Minister John Kotelawa of Ceylon had denounced "communist colonialism", and Communist Chinese Premier Chou En-lai had immediately demanded time for a reply. The Prime Minister had demanded that the conference declare itself against all forms of colonialism, including Communist domination of satellite states in Central and Eastern Europe. When he had finished his statement, Chou had leaped to his feet and demanded that the statement be circulated to all delegates of the 29-nation conference so that Chou could reply to it at the next day's session. Prime Minister Saif El Islam El Hassan of Yemen had also attacked colonialism, questioning the right of Britain to maintain its colony of Aden, next door to Yemen. He had also raised the question of colonialism in Africa and criticized the U.S. and European countries for supporting the creation of Israel. The political committee of the conference had adopted an anti-Israeli resolution on Palestine and another on Dutch New Guinea, but had reached an impasse with respect to its debate on colonialism and peaceful coexistence with Communism.
The U.S. was reported this date to have sent to Formosa the previous day a hurry-up mission, consisting of Joint Chiefs chairman Admiral Arthur Radford and Assistant Secretary of State Walter Robertson, so that they could determine Nationalist Chinese sentiment for a cease-fire line to be drawn down the middle of the embattled Formosa Strait. The fact that Russia had stepped up deliveries of the latest types of jet planes to Communist China was attributed in Congressional circles as a factor influencing the suddenness of the mission, with the two men departing by plane just two hours after the Pentagon announcement of the mission.
The National Guard's new role in the nuclear era, "a minuteman's defense of the homeland", had been tested in a surprise mobilization the previous night, which had drawn praise from defense planners. Guard units in more than 2,000 communities from Florida to Alaska had participated in the mock alert, after it had been flashed at 6:00 from the Pentagon without prior notice of its time and date. Maj. General Edgar Erickson, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said that preliminary reports had provided conclusive proof that the Army and Air Guards could be assembled by the state governors in rapid and efficient manner for service in any state or national emergency. It might yet be days before all of the reports from the 5,600 guard units who had taken part in the exercise were received in Washington, but the Bureau had estimated early during the morning that 280,000 men had been at battle stations or assembly points within two hours of the zero hour, which had been known in advance by only a small number of officers. The turnout represented 80 percent of the citizen-soldiers who were on the "alarm" lists prepared by the state guard organizations. It was the first such nationwide mobilization test in peacetime history. Some 50,000 of the Guard's current strength of about 400,000 men were excluded from the alert because their units were undergoing reorganization. Units had been advised several weeks earlier that there would be a test, but the precise date and time had remained a closely held secret. Pentagon planners the previous evening had given 30 minutes warning that the alert would begin. Because of the telephone strike in parts of nine Southern states, couriers were used to spread the word of the alert. Most of the units had been mobilized by direct telephone calls, plus announcements made over commercial radio stations. A unit, manned partly by Eskimos, on Diomede Island in the Bering Straits between Alaska and Soviet Siberia, had been deliberately excluded from the alert, as it had to remain on constant watch at all times. Within minutes after the alert had been sounded, Air Guard fighter-interceptor planes were in the air ready to meet enemy aircraft which could reach the continent with lethal bombs. Army Guard units manned the anti-aircraft batteries which ringed many large U.S. cities. Elsewhere, Guard units had rushed to protect isolated stretches of the coastlines, where an enemy might attempt to land from submarines or be parachuted from the air. In other places, Guard units placed security cordons around vital points, including railroad and radio stations, air terminals and highway bridges, to provide protection against possible enemy sabotage.
Emery Wister of The News tells of the local National Guard unit's response to the "Operation Minuteman" exercise.
In Birmingham, it was reported that the Seaboard Railroad this date had canceled service on its Birmingham to Atlanta line as picketing had begun at its yards. A Seaboard official stated that the pickets were not employees of the railroad, but that union members had declined to cross the picket lines. The Seaboard yards in Birmingham interchanged freight with the strike-bound Louisville & Nashville Railroad. Police had rushed to the L&N passenger station in Birmingham the previous day when violence had erupted briefly in the six-week old railway strike. A crowd of more than 100 had gathered when a passenger train was due, jeering the L&N workers at the station on duty, with a few eggs having been thrown. The train nevertheless arrived and departed without further incident. Earlier, two men had been attacked as they attempted to enter a nearby L&N office building, but had not been hurt seriously. In Atlanta, the non-operating unions of the railroad had rejected a proposal by six Southern governors to end the 39-day strike immediately, saying that the strike would have to continue until arbitration was completed. The L&N had told the chairman of the governors conference the previous day that if the strike was immediately terminated, the railroad was willing to submit issues to arbitration, though those issues would have to be "reasonably limited". Union officials, however, had rejected that proposal, but re-emphasized that they were willing to submit the dispute to binding arbitration, and that the arbitration would have to be completed and a new contract drawn before the strike would end.
Plans for a special appeal by the Southern governors to the Southern Bell Telephone Co. and the striking Communications Workers of America to resolve their differences continued to move forward this date.
In Greensboro, N.C., the defense rested its case this date in the trial of Junius Scales, accused of violating the Smith Act by the fact of his admitted membership in the Communist Party and for teaching and advocating the overthrow of the Government by force or violence. The first witness called this date was Professor Douglas Maggs of the Duke University Law School, called to contest the credibility of the Charlotte lawyer who had been attending Duke Law School while working as an undercover agent for the FBI, meeting with Mr. Scales between 1948 and 1953 and providing earlier testimony for the Government that Mr. Scales had repeatedly stated that the only way to effect a revolution would be through the overthrow of the Government. He had also testified that he had asked Mr. Maggs whether he would defend Mr. Scales if the latter were arrested under the Smith Act, and that Mr. Maggs had replied that he either would defend him or would help him get someone to defend him. Mr. Maggs testified that he recalled no such conversation, that he had discussed the general subject of a defendant's right to counsel with many students, and was not sure that he would recall all of those conversations, but were a student to mention a specific person, it would have been so out of the ordinary that he believed he would have recalled it. The last defense witness had been a High Point real estate man and Selective Service Board chairman, who was to be called to testify about the change in classification of a Government witness, the UNC junior, friend of Charles Kuralt as the latter had stated two days earlier in a front page story, who had testified the previous Monday that he was also an FBI informant regarding Mr. Scales. He had testified that he had first been classified 1B by the High Point draft board and that later the classification was changed to 4F, meaning that he would not be drafted for combat duty, stating that the board had given him no reason for the change. But the Government lawyers contended that the draft board records were confidential and should not be made public during the trial. The judge examined the records in camera and found nothing inconsistent with the UNC student's testimony and so disallowed the calling of the witness for the purpose of challenging his credibility on the point and so the defense withdrew the witness. The previous day, the defendant's mother had testified for the defense that her son had assured her that he felt that the only way to promote Communism was to educate the people and that if they wanted it, it would be fine, if not, that would also be fine. She said that her son had told her for the first time in 1939 that he was a Communist, saying that he wanted to be of help to his fellow man and considered the party to be the medium through which he would work most successfully. She said that he had also stated that it would be plain silly for a little minority group to try to overthrow the Government. She said that he had decided to leave UNC to work with the mill people and see if he could be of any help to them.
In Raleigh, a House Judiciary Committee this date unanimously endorsed a bill to change the method of investigating sudden death in the state, the bill providing for the appointment of a county medical examiner in counties covered by the act, where the population met a certain threshold. The medical examiner would investigate all deaths where criminal acts or negligence was involved, all suicides and all deaths occurring under mysterious circumstances. Where the medical examiner deemed it necessary, he could order autopsies. The bill also provided for creation within the State Board of Health of a committee on postmortem examinations headed by the state health officer, who would appoint the county medical examiners, with the state divided into districts and district pathologists who would make the necessary autopsies.
In Chicago, three young children and their two grandfathers had been killed in a fire which had spread swiftly through a frame house in suburban Blue Island this date. The mother of the children had rescued the two youngest, ages two and five months, bundling them into a baby carriage and escaping through the flames and smoke out a side door. Her husband was not at home at the time. The children killed ranged between the ages of five and eight.
In Oklahoma City, the Criminal Court of Appeals ruled this date that drinking of liquor by jurors during a trial recess did not afford grounds for a mistrial, unless they had become drunk. It held that any drinking after the case had been submitted to jurors would be grounds for a mistrial. Oklahoma was a dry state.
In Frankfurt, Germany, a U.S. Army colonel said that the military police might arrest any G.I.'s seen wearing sport shirts. The previous summer, he had declared war on American women who bared their midriffs in public. A decorated World War II veteran, the colonel said that G.I.'s could wear civilian clothes when not on duty but that some soldiers were dressing below the standards required by the Army during off-duty hours, that after 5:00 p.m., a tie and jacket were required, and that M.P.'s were instructed to take the names of personnel not complying with the instructions.
John Lester, a nationally known radio and television columnist, would be carried in the newspaper starting this date, his first column to address the situation with the recent Arthur Godfrey firings of six singers and three writers on his show. The column appeared in nearly 100 newspapers across the country and in many foreign countries as well. Mr. Lester had many years of experience in radio and some also in television, writing with authority on the subject. The column would appear daily, Monday through Friday. You don't need to read anything else in the newspaper to understand the run of the mine minds at work in the culture these days. Hi o Silver!
If you have noticed that everything in society began rapidly changing with the advent of relatively cheap television sets and the proliferation of television stations across the land in the early 1950's, you would be quite correct. It seeped rapidly into the subconscious minds of viewers, far more than most realized at the time, sometimes to their benefit, but mostly, we fear, to their detriment, given the average tastes in viewing choice, which has only become steadily degraded with time.
On the editorial page, "Sex Deviates: A Scientific Approach" comments on the statements by Superior Court Judge George Patton, as recounted by Ann Sawyer of the newspaper on the front page the previous day, during the trial of two men charged with an attempted "crime against nature", the judge having said that Charlotte was a "happy hunting ground" for sex perverts. He had complained that the General Assembly, by failing to change the system with the proposed new law to increase sentencing of sex deviates and funnel those who were deemed psychiatrically suitable into a program of mental rehabilitation at mental institutions, had placed judges in a terrible position where they were forced to send such defendants to prison when they should be receiving treatment.
It indicates that there was a dangerous gap between science and the law, which prevented the one from making use of the contributions which the other had to offer, a gap which encouraged misunderstanding between the two. It finds no easy solution to the gambit, that the General Assembly could not simply pass a law calling for treatment of sex offenders in mental institutions when there was no room for them and there were no doctors to treat them, as hearings before the Legislature had demonstrated when the law was being considered. Legal remedies required more thought and planning. It also has doubts as to whether politicians, police officers and judges were adequately equipped to prescribe a cure for such a serious social problem, as they possessed neither the necessary scientific data, professional training nor extended experience in the specialized field.
It posits that the state had to come up with a better system of coping with the problem of sex offenders, but that the new system ought be devised with the aid and advice of trained psychiatrists, psychologists and sociologists. Such professional advice was expensive, as would be the treatment facilities and techniques they would ultimately recommend, but that with the good of the community at stake, such a program would be worth the investment.
"Sound, Fury & the Report Card" tells of the terms "communistic", "realistic", "stupid", and "sensible", being just a few of the descriptions applied to the dispute over the new report cards used in the Charlotte schools. The issue was on its way to the City School Board for final resolution.
It finds the decision to submit it to the Board to be wise, as decisions at a lower level had not settled the issue in the minds of most parents and school patrons. There had been much criticism of the City school administration during the previous few weeks when the matter was being hashed out, indicating a lively interest on the part of the citizenry in public education in the community. It reminds the harsher critics of the administration, however, that fair, intelligent, and constructive criticism could stimulate wide interest in educational problems, arouse people to find a solution to those problems and improve the schools, but that unjust, derogatory criticism could do irreparable harm by undermining the morale of teachers and administrators at a time when they were struggling with problems of tremendous scope and complexity—presumably referring to the need for new facilities to meet the growing number of students entering the schools each year, the concomitant shortage of teachers, especially in the primary grades, and the prospect of desegregation of the schools.
"America's Reflexes: Necessarily Fast" finds reassuring the speed and efficiency with which the North Carolina National Guard had responded to the previous night's nationwide alert, which had brought into sharp focus the vital role which such citizen-soldiers played in America's defense establishment, representing the backbone of the nation's military might in the nuclear age.
It indicates that no matter how many hydrogen bombs the nation gathered in secret stockpiles and no matter how many guided missiles it had stored in its arsenals, the difference between triumph and tragedy in any future conflict would rest largely in the hands of young men, such as those in the National Guard who had responded the previous night in Charlotte. It finds that the value of a trained, ready reserve force had been proven repeatedly in the past, and would continue to be of utmost importance, despite the present push-button age of defense. Thus, that important reservoir of manpower could never be neglected.
It posits that the current era was not one of "peace" but rather armed truce, though one which would likely last a long time, while requiring continued national preparedness at a high level. Even a country as prosperous as the United States, however, could not afford the luxury of a military force of wartime proportions on continuous active duty, as public sentiment would not tolerate it. Thus, there had to be a relatively modest standing force and a large reservoir of citizen-reserves, which had been the system envisioned by George Washington in the early days of the republic.
It suggests that in the "age of peril", as the President had called the present time, survival would depend on how quickly a nation could girdle itself for combat, and the U.S. could measure its preparedness in the number of trained men who could be instantly mobilized to protect liberty in the same spirit of their ancestors at Lexington and Concord.
"For Old Faithful, Rest in Peace" indicates that the proposed 1955 legislation for the statewide liquor referendum had been killed by the House Local Government Committee the previous day, and without any arm-waving oratory to mar the dignity of the scene.
Earlier, Governor Luther Hodges had done his duty by recommending the statewide referendum, as all previous Governors had done. He had also, in his biennial message to the Legislature, recommended a 1.5 percent increase in state taxes on the sale of liquor.
There was absent during this session the usual number of people who came to Raleigh to air their fears and doubts and forecast doom regarding the issue, and when the matter finally had come to a vote in committee, there were only a few nay votes against killing the proposed referendum. It suggests that it showed a softening of the traditional militancy of the dry bloc in the state, and it hopes that more North Carolinians were realizing that liquor referenda were properly conducted at the county level, not at the state level.
Otherwise, you could wind up like dry Oklahoma, with its courts having to assess whether drinking or drunk jurors rendered a mistrial in a criminal case. In North Carolina, that condition presumptively would be limited to the dry counties.
A piece from the Louisville
Courier-Journal, titled "Female Form: Divine or Dior?"
indicates that fashion designer Christian Dior of France, as usual,
would determine what women would look like in the coming season. He
had stated that the stress would be on "active, mobile line
Other fashion designers had said
such things as "the silhouette
The piece wonders what was the matter with Mr. Dior and his pals, that surely they would not let nature's own design for the female form get the better of chic modern planning.
We have to note at this point that, while we suppose it is, in part, signal of the times in society, enough is enough on the editorial page regarding female fashion. Place it in the newspaper where it belongs, in the fashion news section. It gets old, and hard to adjust gears in the process, reading about clothing alongside the weightier matters of the day. Not gear.
Drew Pearson indicates that there had been some peculiar political influence-peddling ongoing within the Interstate Commerce Commission, which had been fairly free of political influence in the past. It involved the failure to investigate the takeover of the New York Central Railroad by a group of Texas friends of President Eisenhower, which those friends did not want investigated, while on the other hand, the ICC determination to investigate the takeover of the Boston & Maine Railroad, which other friends of the President did want investigated. In both instances, White House chief of staff Sherman Adams had been the power behind the scenes. In the case of the New York Central, Mr. Adams did not want an ICC probe, but wanted Robert Young and Texas oil millionaires, Clint Murchison and Sid Richardson, to take over the railroad. And there had been no probe. In the case of the Boston & Maine, Mr. Adams did want an ICC probe, as his friend, Senator Leverett Saltonstall of Massachusetts, and friends from New Hampshire and Boston wanted Pat McGinnis, the operator of the New Haven Railroad, to take over. And, there was an ICC probe. In both cases, the inside man who did the job for the White House had been Owen Clark, a politically ambitious new ICC commissioner from Washington State. Mr. Clark denied that he received any instructions from the White House in the matters, but admitted that he went to the White House frequently to confer with Mr. Adams and his alter ego, Charles Willis, another expert on getting commissions to go along with Administration positions. Mr. Clark also handled jobs for Republicans in Washington State, an unusual duty for a Government commissioner, supposed to be absorbed in regulating railroads and trucking lines for the public good. Regardless of the latter's denials, Senator Warren Magnuson, chairman of the Senate Interstate Commerce Committee, planned to get to the bottom of the matters and see who was telling the truth.
Mr. Pearson indicates that an ICC investigation might have tied up the 800,000 shares in the New York Central Railroad stock and prevented them from being voted in the proxy fight for control of the railroad. In the New Haven Railroad battle to capture the Boston & Maine, powerful Republican interests, including that of Mr. Adams, had been on the other side, desiring an investigation, and wanting it before the April 13 stockholders' meeting of the Boston & Maine, to prevent Pat McGinnis and the New Haven from taking over. Thus, the ICC had voted to start an investigation on April 4 in that matter.
Mr. Pearson concludes that it paid to have Sherman Adams on one's side when it came to a supposedly judicial proceeding before a quasi-judicial agency.
Walter Lippmann looks at the sudden willingness of the Soviets to enter into a treaty of independence with Austria to remove all occupying troops from that country, which necessarily, by treaties with each of Hungary and Rumania, would include the removal of all Russian troops from the latter two countries also. Those latter treaties, which were signed by the U.S. and other Western allies, allowed Russian troops in the two countries to the extent necessary to secure a corridor into Austria for the sake of occupation of the latter. Thus, leaving Austria would mean also leaving Hungary and Rumania, and thus abandoning a part of the postwar Soviet satellite system.
Mr. Lippmann wonders why that appeasement on the part of Russia was occurring now, whereas a year earlier at a foreign ministers conference in Vienna, they would not agree to an Austrian treaty without a simultaneous agreement to reunite Germany. He posits that there were two recent events which could explain the sudden change of heart, the one being the recent ratification of the West German rearmament treaties, making West Germany a part of NATO, and the other being the threat of war in the Formosa Strait.
Regarding the issue of West German rearmament, the West Germans had made it known that they were in no hurry to rearm and would take several years to do so, with an intention to do it only with agreements in place eventually with the Soviets, especially after the aging West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer would retire. But he discards that as the primary motivation for the timing, as there was no assurance that West Germany would reach an accommodation with the Soviets after they had been admitted to NATO.
He opts instead for the motivation having developed from the situation in the Far East, whereby the U.S. had become embroiled in the potential attack by Communist China on Quemoy and Matsu, with general war thus in the offing. He theorizes that Soviet thinking could be that with Europe to its back, secure against war there for the present, the attention of the Soviets had turned to the Far East, to ensure that the Western European allies would not join the U.S. in any such war with Communist China over the Formosa Strait, enabling Russia to come to the aid of China without fear of reprisal from Western Europe. The Kremlin was faced with a choice, in the event of such a war, abandoning China and then being isolated or coming to the aid of China. While a deadly choice, Russia would likely opt for the latter rather than risk losing its Communist partner in China through the use of tactical nuclear weapons potentially to be used in such a general war by the U.S.—as Mr. Lippmann posits that "some very silly and reckless men in Washington" believed the Soviets would stand by while China was destroyed with such tactical nuclear weapons.
Russia, he believes, was making the move with respect to Austria to avoid the potential for war both in Europe and the Far East, that if general war could be limited to Asia, the risks, while still great for everyone, were not mortal for the Russians, as U.S. power could not be decisive in the Far East without the help of the Western European allies. In that event, the risk of joining China in such a war would not be so great for the Soviets.
He indicates that even if his guess was wrong, a policy of Soviet appeasement in Europe, with withdrawal of Soviet forces from Austria, Hungary and Rumania, made it safer for the Soviets to intervene if war should erupt in the Far East.
Of course, in late 1956
Crane Brinton, in The Shaping of the Modern Mind, finds that while there was no new Civil War in the offing in the United States, he does believe that there were "signs that over the last few generations our disputes may be getting sharper, our feelings toward those who differ with us more bitter, our voices in debate shriller and more frantic." He finds that, in particular, the tension between intellectuals and the intellectual classes on the one hand, and the rest of society, those whose principal concern was with things, had become especially acute. He finds that the term "egghead" had a nastiness about it which seemed to have derived from the Nazi "Eierkopf", a connotation which neither "longhair" nor the earlier "highbrow" had.
He supposes that most Westerners subscribed at base to the Socratic "knowledge is virtue" and suggests that if it was really understood how people came to hold their particular beliefs, it would be easier to tolerate them, as had to be the case to remain citizens of a democracy. He suggests that there were grave semantic differences in both "knowledge" and "virtue", and he did not believe one could go from the aphorism of Socrates to George Sand's "to understand all is to forgive all." "But something well short of this romantic idea will do for the moment … the kind of understanding of our multanimous society without which our multanimity may indeed end in deadly quarrels and afterward in a newly organized and almost certainly undemocratic society."
A letter writer from Lincolnton comments on the letter written by Harriet Doar published in the newspaper on April 16, in which she had "put into words what many North Carolinians have been thinking, but have not been saying very often." Ms. Doar had found it ridiculous that State Assistant Attorney General I. Beverly Lake had argued before the Supreme Court, regarding the Brown v. Board of Education implementing decision, that desegregating the schools of North Carolina too quickly could bring about the end of public schools in the state, Ms. Doar finding that attitude counseling delay generally to be unacceptable and underestimating of the good will of the citizens of the state and their ability to adjust to changed circumstances. This writer completely agrees with her stance and finds it surprising that so many people appeared to be opposed to the extension of basic rights in the society to every member of the community, questions whether or not people were afraid of freedom and free association of people. He indicates that nothing was to be gained by continued segregation and other forms of discrimination against minority groups. He also posits that the recognition of segregation as a sin against God and one's fellow man, was essential to forgiveness and redemption. He says that leaders in the communities could do little without the assistance of men and women of good will who wanted to see the evils of second-class citizenship ended.
Look, look, look, look, look, to have a subjugated class of people keeps all the trashies feeling so much betta about themselves than they would othawise, and so results in a happy-happy land of sun and fun at the sandy beaches in the summatime. You just don't undastand, do you?
A letter writer indicates that the recent news of the success of the Salk vaccine had been the most encouraging thing which The News or any other newspaper had been able to print in the previous 50 years. For the last several years, people had contributed to the March of Dimes in the hope that such a vaccine would eventually be produced to combat polio. While he had a child in the first two grades entitled to receive the free vaccine, he wanted to pay for the vaccine which his child was about to receive, and proposes that, while he would not send his child to school on the day of the vaccine with payment in hand, as the teacher would not know what to do with it, the newspaper might clear it with the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, which was paying for the vaccines.
The editors respond that they would suggest that contributions be sent to the United Community Services' Health & Rehabilitation Committee or to the American Business Club, both of which were collecting donations for the vaccines for the needy children who were not in the first and second grades, covered by the Foundation's free vaccine program. It explains that because there were about 5,000 children in the county between the ages of one and 14 whose parents would not be able to pay for the Salk vaccine, the UCS committee had accepted responsibility to see that those children would receive the shots, and the money for it had to come from somewhere. The polio Foundation had campaigned earlier for money and would provide the two shots of the Salk vaccine to first and second graders for free, with parental permission, already having the money on hand to pay for those shots. Money from contributions could not be accepted through the schools unless the School Board accepted the program, and the next meeting would not be until May 6, while the shots would be administered to the first and second graders on April 25. They add that the cost of one shot of the vaccine was approximately two dollars, not including needles, syringes, personnel and the necessary record-keeping.
Polio was all a Gov'ment hoax perpetrated by that man Roosevelt, who could really walk but played on the sympathies of the public to get votes all those times so as to cause Communistic Socialism to spread across America like wildfia, him and his wife bringing on the desegregation along the way. All you really needed to do was to avoid the stagnant wawtas and swim only in the salt aiya and sunny wawmth of the seasho' in the summatime. Then, when they would go to those sugacubes for the little children on which to ride the vaccine into theya unwitting little tummies, like a magic cawpit ride with a junkyawd dawg aboawd, they got all the young people indoctroculated to the idea of the LSD lata on, becoming trippy hippies, with the girls looking like boys and the boys looking like girls, soon acting theya pawts also. It was all the fault of that man Roosevelt who Communized America.
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