The Charlotte News

Sunday, January 19, 1941



Site Ed. Note: Cash was forced to amend "Too Far" on February 8, regarding the insidious notion of laborers profiting from the need for emergency defense measures. See "A Correction". Turns out local plumbers were making no more than $82 per week and that with overtime, normally $1.25 per hour. (Cash pulled down about $50 per week, but he wasn't plumbing, though he often tapped pipelines, or so 'twould seem...)

Cash was completely correct, however, in "Tug of War" about the outcome of the Vichy leaders after the fall of France to the Allies in 1944. Marshal Petain, despite his heroic status from Verdun in World War I, was tried for treason and ordered executed in the summer of 1945. Charles de Gaulle, acting head of the post-war French government, commuted his sentence to life and he died in prison in 1951. Laval, who succeeded Petain as head of occupied France in 1942, was not so fortunate. He, too, was tried for treason, sentenced to death and was executed. Doriot, like the others, fled to Germany after D-Day, but Doriot beat the hangman by being killed in an air raid. Flandin, however, gave up his position as Foreign Minister at the end of January, 1941 and fled to North Africa in 1942 intending to join the Allies. He was arrested, however, by the Free French, tried for treason, acquitted, but found guilty of collaboration with the enemy and sentenced to five years, a sentence which was commuted based on his service to the Resistance.

And four days later, a letter to the editor would appear from a gentleman in praise of "A Remedy". It read:

Dear Sir:

I am glad to see that you have given your readers news from Knoxville, Tennessee, relating to Negro policemen there.

I was born there in 1857. As the city is about 150 years old, I cannot remember whether or not a Negro was a policeman there at the time. But I do recall a big, polite Negro named Mose Smith dressed in police garb there in the 1870's.

I remember that one of the wards, inhabited largely by Negroes, was called "The Bloody Death"--I take it, because of former murders there. But if any Negro ever killed another there when Mose was about, I do not recall such a tragedy.

--E. L. Moses.

Chapel Hill.

A Remedy?

Negroes, Beset by Murders, Are Due Full Protection

Whether or not Negro police officers are necessary to bring down this murder rate, whether or not they could bring it down, are questions for the Counsel, the City Manager and the Chief of Police to answer. Certainly the report from other Southern cities which employ Negro police officers is encouraging.

Not a single unfavorable report was received by The News. On the contrary, the Chief of Detectives in Galveston said that their service was "very satisfactory." The Chief of Police of Daytona, Fla. said that "the system has worked to good advantage in our city, and the Negro officers have produced very good results for our department."

As to the radical nature of such an innovation, the Chief of Police of Knoxville said, "We have had colored police officers ever since there has been a city."

Yet it would be obtuse to deny that, for a city which has never tried Negro officers, there are ticklish possibilities to be taken into consideration. They deserve to be dealt with realistically rather than to be glossed over in a super-sanguine spirit that all is for the best in this best of all possible worlds.

An indication that the matter is being approached in the right spirit comes from the holding of the conference last Friday between prominent Negro citizens and officials of the City and its Police Department. After all, it is the Negroes, for the present at least, whose lives are jeopardized by this wild tendency to murder. They are due full protection.

Too Far

But Labor Has Its Moral Obligations in This Case

The California State draft board informed the local board of San Diego that the strike in the Ryan aircraft works there would necessitate the reclassification of men put in the deferred class because their jobs were essential to defense. That brought Mr. Richard T. Frankensteen, CIO negotiator in the threatened strike, straight to Washington, roaring as he came.

And that in turn moved Brigadier General Hershey, acting director of the draft, to say hastily that no draft board had any authority to attempt to coerce labor and that no such attempt would be tolerated.

Which was discreet and wise. Wholly apart from legal questions, any attempt to coerce labor in defense industries would defeat its own purpose. The thing wanted from labor is voluntary and willing co-operation--because of the perception that its own basic interest is at stake--not sullen and lackadaisical submission.

On the other hand, it is clearly only fair to expect that, if a man is to claim exemption on the score of his skill, he use that skill to advance the national defense.

No fair-minded person thinks that labor ought to make sacrifices for the benefit of the manufacturers and nobody denies that there are instances when labor is probably entitled to better treatment. But labor has not one whit more right to take undue advantage of the national emergency to fatten its own pocketbook than a manufacturer--and there are some instances of that, undoubtedly, as witness the plumbers who are receiving $150 a week for their work in the building cantonments.

What is plainly needed in the case is a better system of arbitration--say, neutral boards with power to look into all the facts, all strikes being deferred in the meantime, and to make recommendations, and to publish findings and recommendations if either side balks, so that the public may judge the merits of the case. An informed public opinion is the most powerful weapon against hijacking on both sides of the fence.


"The Liquor"

Sheriff Is Due the County A Full Accounting for It

Another chapter in the celebrated story of "Where's the Liquor" may be writ when the County Commissioners meet tomorrow. It's a good story, and we have an idea that it is building up to a climax.

"The Liquor" came into Sheriff Mack Riley's keeping away back on Nov. 18, 1940. It was a large haul. By the record there were 307 pints of it taken from a woman.

About a month later Sheriff Riley told a News reporter that the liquor had been turned over to the County's authorized custodian, but the custodian, Douglas Bradshaw, flatly denies that this or any other liquor has been turned over to him by the Sheriff since July, 1939, when he was made custodian.

Besides, the Sheriff later reversed himself. That was last Thursday. "Sure, I got the liquor," he declared. "The law says I may turn it over to the Commissioners. It doesn't say I have to," although he added that he would.

There is every reason why he should, whether he has to or not. The liquor represents money for the school fund, which can use money. Possession of the liquor represents a responsibility upon the Sheriff continuously to safeguard it and to account for it. And why in Heaven's name should he have wanted to keep it for two months when a way was provided for him to dispose of it immediately?

The Sheriff is a constitutional, elected official, but he is not above the authority of the County Government. He should be required to produce the liquor--all 307 pints of it.


Tug Of War

Admiral Leahy Must Deal With Flandin Opposition

It is no secret that Admiral Leahy is in Vichy as American Ambassador to attempt to persuade old Marshal Petain out of defeatism and into active opposition to the Nazis--at the least to keep him out of active collaboration with them.

But Admiral Leahy obviously has his job cut out for him. For Pierre-Etienne Flandin, the Foreign Minister, is busily engaged in trying to frustrate his purpose.

When Laval fell and Flandin took his place, a lot of wish-thinkers thought they saw Petain beginning to stiffen his back against the Nazis. But that was because they did not know Flandin. The man, in fact, is probably the greatest admirer of the Nazis in France with the exception of Jacques Doriot, the ex-Communist

Flandin, like Laval and Doriot, knows well that he stands to be executed if the Republic is ever restored--for his betrayal of France in allowing the Rhineland to be re-militarized while he was Premier and for his criminal correspondence with the Nazis before and during the invasion last Summer.

And so he is very busy trying to head off Leahy. In addition to being Foreign Minister he is also in charge of the press and radio in France. And the newspapers and the radio have begun actively to try to build up a strong anti-British and pro-German sentiment, something that even Laval did not attempt. Even the taking of Canada after the defeat of Montcalm and even the defeat of Napoleon in Egypt are being pointed to as examples of "British tyranny."

Whether this campaign can succeed with the French people is highly doubtful. But it is probable that Flandin does not much care about that. All he wants is a little evidence of popular dislike of England in order to bolster Petain's own strong aversion to seeing the Republic restored--something which is virtually certain to happen if Britain wins the war.


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