European Stars and Stripes (Newspaper) - September 6, 1970, Darmstadt, HessePage 4 THE STARS AND STRIPES Sunday, September 6, 1970
Kids Playing on the Grass!
In Germany, That's a Battle
By FRANK CREPEAU
FRANKFURT (AP) — Threemop-haired children are chal-
lenging the sanctity Of Germangrass oy playing on it, and pa-
rents have been hauled intocourt for supporting such brazen
When they told their childrento go ahead and play on the
grass in front of their Frankfurtapartment, Mr. and Mrs. Kon-
rad Loew went against che-rished German tradition. It
holds that grass exists only todelight the eye and only "keep
off the grass" signs and way-ward dogs can mar its pristine
It wasn't only that SabineLoew, 12, and her brothers, Jo-
hannes, 9, and Martin, 6, werecaught green-footed on the
grass, but their parents refusedto order the children off.
Test CaseIn what is now called a test
case, the owners of the housingproject with 1,100 apartments
filed for an injunction to requirethe Loews to keep off the grass.
If the Loews win, children allover West Germany will toe
playing on grass.
Mrs. Loew, her blue eyesflashing, said: "Something is
very wrong in our society whenthey bring a lawsuit because
kids were on the grass. Nowwe're going to fight and maybe
people will have a little courageif they see somebody win a
The case, due to be decidedlater this month, was filed by
Neue Heimat, owned by theWest German Trade Union As-
sociation, which has some300,000 apartments in projects
throughout West Germany.
Neue Heimat argued the grassis not a playground, does not be-
long to renters and serves onlyan aesthetic function, to . . .
"bring joy to the beholder." Italso contends that children play-
ing on the grass between rowsof houses disturb other residents
and that the six Loew childrenhave been troublemakers since
the family moved in. Only thethree younger children are in-
volved in the suit,
Hostility ShownLoew, a 44-year-old economist
and business consultant, arguesthat Neue Heimat has shown a
certain hostility toward childrenall along and there is no reason
why children shouldn't play onthe grass since the project's
playground is poorly situatedand inadequate.
Sitting in his roomy, comfor-table apartment filled with
books, children, cats and twoguinea pigs, Loew insisted that
children have always played ongrass in the project but are con-
stantly shouted at by custodians,and some neighbors have filed
complaints about noise.
"But they brought the suitsimply because 1 won't forbid
my children to play there," hesaid. He said the situation is
symptomatic o* the way childrenare being denied their right to
play in West Germany — theirright to normal, healthy devel-
opment."Sure, children make noise,"
he said, "but when you considerthe noise we make with our
cars, trains, planes and con-struction, it's really not so
much."Mrs. Loew added: "It's the
old idea that any adult is anauthority figure and is always in
the right."It would have remained a
small affair between landlord
and tenant but a Frankfurtnewspaper printed the story and
was immediately flooded withletters to the editor.
A majority of the letter writ-ers sided with Loew, arguing
that crowded, traffic-cloggedcities offer few playgrounds and
that children are daily hounded,chased, shouted at and even
slapped around by adults forplaying on grass or simply mak-
ing too much noise.West German television broad-
cast a documentary titled "NoPlace for Children," showing
how partment builders providespace for automobiles but forget
about playgrounds, and con-tending that West Germany is
hostile to children.A magazine printed statistics
to show West Germany has thepoorest record in Europe for
providing playgrounds nearapartment!; and that Britain pro-
vides 40 times more playgroundspace than West Germany.
In the letters to the editors,the grass also had its defenders.
One man attacked the "egoisticattitude" of the Loew family
and said: "To allow children toplay on the grass on the grounds
that there are not enough play-grounds is silly If I look the
same position I should rob abank tomorrow because I'm
short of money."Others protested that today's
children have no respect forgrass, their elders or anything
else.Loew hopes the court will
order Neue Heimat to open upall its grass to children, but
says that if he loses the case hewill appeal.
"The wide public reaction hasshown this to be an important
issue for many people," he said."We won't give up."
^ —Pompidou Plans
To Visit Soviet
MOSCOW (AP) — French President Georges Pompidouwill visit the Soviet Union's top-secret space center at Baiko-
nur in Central Asia during his state visit next month, west-ern sources said Friday night
Pompidou's predecessor, Charles de Gaulle, is the onlywestern leader who has seen the vast space complex on the
Kazakhstan steppes. De Gaulle visited the cosmodrome in
1966While at Baikonur, Pompidou may witness the launching of
a Soviet rocket carrying French-made laser reflectors for alanding on the moon. But there was no way of checking this
possibility with Soviet officials.During his 1966 visit lo Baikonur, De Gaulle watched the
launching oC the Soviet Co£mos-122 satellite. Presumably theRussian! would accord Pompidou a similar opportunity, and
the laser launching would offer a good occasion for ikThe sources said Pompidou, who arrives in Moscow Oct. 6
$will go to Baikonur Oct 8. spend Ifee night, and then fly to
Novosibirsk and visit the Siberian scientific city of Akedem-
^JFrom there he will fly to Tashkent, capital of the .CentralAsian republic of Uzbekistan, and Samarkand, capital of the
14th-century Mongol conqueror, Tamerlane.
France Plans Campaign Against Tax Cheating
By CLYDE H, FARNSWORTHPARIS (NYT)'...— The govern-
ment has begun what promisesto be a long and tough struggle
to get Frenchmen to stop cheat-ing on their income taxes.
With proposals submitted tothe finance committee of the
National Assembly, FinanceMinister Valery Giscard
d'Estaing is hoping to simplifythe structure and reduce the
rates in an effort to inducepeople to pay all their takes.
Tax fraud, he said, must be"eliminated as a social phe-
nomenon, kept to the proportionsof an isolated, abnormal, repres-
sed phenomenon disapproved ofby public opinion."
The program for fiscal re-form, which is subject still to
considerable adjustment beforeit is put into effect, steers clear
* * * * *
Miss Great Britain Quits
WIG AN, England (AP) — Miss Great Britain, 23-year-old Kath-leen Winstanley has packed up her crown in a wooden box and
retired from the beauty business.
"I am through with the beauty game," she announced. 'Tm beatIt's more than any girl can take."
The former restaurant worker was elected Britain's most beauti-ful girl Aug. 27. She has been Miss United Kingdom and a runner
up in the Miss World contest, and has been winner of beautycontests tor the past three years.
But she said the schedule of receptions and public appearancesthat went with the latest $4,800 title were too much. She collapsed
in Belfast Thursday during a tour.
Miss Winstanley said she had been getting up at 6:30 in themornings and getting to bed at 2:30 a.m.
• Bonn Offers Deal to Halt Pot
BONN (AP) -- West Germany has offered 10,000 tons of fertili-zer for Turkish marijuana growers who stop planting the drag.
The offer was made by Development Aid Minister Erhard Epplerto visiting Turkish Agriculture Minister Ilhami Ertem,
Ertcm told Eppler the Turkish government has succeeded inreducing to 19,900 hectares from 40,9M the area on which mari-
juana is grown. Eppler said tike fertilizer should be used to givemarijuana growers an incentive to grow other plants.
• Great Scott! It's Too Much!
ADELAIDE, Australia (UPI) — Lady Dorothy Scott has beenembarrassed almost to tears since the advent of a massive tele-
vision and billboard advertising campaign ballyhooing Lady Scotttoilet paper.
She said she had decided to close her four hairdressing salonsand move to Britain,
"I don't want to leave; this is my home," said Lady Scott, "butit would be too embarrassing to stay. Wherever I go, people make
mention of it. I always run into smart people who have a dig atme."
The TV commercial for the toilet paper, manufactured by Bowa-ter-Scott, shows a children's choir singing a jingle. The "product
itself has flowers on it."The other night I went out and did not even realize I was
wearing a floral dress until somebody said, "I see you even wearflowers on your clothes."
"This sort of thing is never forgotten.1*
of stiffer penalties for tax eva-sion. It is unheard of for a tax
evader to be jailed. Late pay-ments are subject lo a 10 per
cent fine. The fines are pooledas the bonuses of tax inspectors.
Public exposure is the onlyweapon contemplated. Individual
tax payments would be posted,along with the name of the tax-
payer, in local town halls, aproposal that has been made be-
fore in France but has alwaysbeen defeated.
Reduction of the difference oftreatment between the salaried
and the self-employed is one ofthe objectives of the reform.
Those on a salary have littleopportunity to cheat. Although
taxes are not withheld inFrance, employers are required
to inform the tax authorities ofthe pay of individual employes.
There are no such controlsover the self-employed -— profes-
sional men, such as doctors andlawyers, and the small shop-
keepers, already upset by thegrowth of supermarkets in
France. Any attempts to extendfiscal controls over the latter
group are bound to meet withvocal, if not violent, opposition.
Militant shopkeeper groups
were thought to be behind aseries of attacks against local
tax bureaus earlier this year.Pierre Poujade, president of
the Union for Defense of Com-merce and Artisanry, has al-
ready served notice that, if Gi*.card d'Estaing "resuscitates th<
fiscal Gestapo," he will reconvmend the boycotting of all con-
trols.Behind the new drive of ?h<
government is the fact that Ic^than 20 per cent of the revenue
of the state comes from indivi-dual and corporate income tax.
compared with 50 per cent ormore in most other Indus!riJ
6 in Philippines
MANILA (UP!) — A landslidecaused by rain crushed a family
of six to death Friday andbrought to 49 the death toll from
five days of heavy rain in thePhilippines.
Another 7.7 Inches of rain ft1!!in the Manila area in the 24
hours ending at 8 a.m. Friday,bringing to 32 inches the to',.;!
Britain Grants Asylum
To Russian Ballerina
LONDON (NYT) — NataliaMakarova, a leading Russian
ballerina with the LeningradKirov Ballet now visiting Lon-
don, was granted asylum by Bri-tain Friday night.
An unconformed report saidthe 30-year-old dancer had slip-
ped away from the 100-mcmbertroupe earlier Friday on the pre-
text of doing some last-minuteshopping before the Kirov's six-
week London visit ended Satur-day.
Miss Makarova had been sche-duled to appear Friday night in
one of the troupe's farewell per-formances at the Royal Festival
Hall. Her part was danced byone of the Kirov's younger
soloists, Natalia Bolshakdva.The British Home Office said
in a brief statement that MissMakarova had applied to remain
in Britain and that her requesthad been granted.
A Foreign Office spokes nuinsaid the Soviets had formally
asked to talk to Miss Makarcn a.
"You may take it that the re-
quest has been passed alon^ toMiss Makarova/' the spokesman
said.According to another report
from a source close to Bnti>hauthorities, Miss Makarova at-
tended rehearsals Friday mum-ing before going off on her
"shopping" trip.Instead, the source said, Un-
called British police headquar-ters at Scotland Yard and, in
halting English, explained thatshe wanted to stay in Britain.
It appears that she was thenimmediately taken to the Home
Office, friends of hers were non-fled and they accompanied her
to an unidentified place in t:;ocountryside near London, ac-
cording to the source.