Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - July 12, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
Third Section The LetWnidge Herald Lethbridge, Alberta, Thursday, July 12, 1973 Pages 25-30 It's no paradise for most exiles' WASHINGTON (AP) "It's a littfe bit of an odd feeling that my freedom to travel ends 50 miles south of here, that I can go north to where it's colder but I'll never see Hawaii." Schoolteacher Dave Sum- merfield, 26, now lives and works in Carberry, Man, about 50 miles from the North Dakota border. But after three years, he says, he's well settled into the small rural community sur- rounded by flat wide stretches of wheat and potato country. "We're going to says bis wife, Nancy, who teaches art at the local high school and is expecting their first child in December. "We don't think there's going to be an amnesty, and if there were, we wouldn't go back." But for draft dodger Steve Grossman, 27, living in Toronto Canada has meant political ex- ile and an uncertain refuge. Grossman, who graduated from the University of Kansas in 1967, turned against the Viet- nam war while serving with the Peace Corps in Malaysia. When he returned, he refused in- duction and fled to Canada last fall. Can't get work "I expected a minimum of three years, possibly four or five, and I decided it wasn't worth he says. "So out I came and up to ing that the immigration laws had changed, making it impos- sibel to secure legal status or work." Since about 1970, high unem- ployment, growing Canadian nationalism as well as quiet dis- gruntlement over drug use and delinquency among some seg- ments of the American exile population combined to make Canada less than a happy haven for many draft dodgers and deserters. These changes were under- scored last November when Ca- nadian authorities tightened im- migration regulations, barring visitors within Canada from ap- plying for landed immigrant status. The Canadian Council of Churches estimated that to "unlanded" war resisters Most people want to go back, not because feelings have changed but because they can't cope' were caught in the brought on by the new rules. The immigration squeeze was temporarily eased under legis- lation giving American war ex ites and others remaining ille- gally in Canada a 60-day perioc in which to register with au thorities and apply for official immigrant status. Won't face penalty While the measure does no guarantee they will be granted immigrant status, Immigration Minister Robert Andras has said most will have their status "regularized" without penalty. Whatever the exact total, the Vietnam-era exodus to Canada is generally considered the big- gest surge of American exiles since some Loyalists fled the Colonies during the Revolu- tionary War. Some exiles in Canada, like Steve Grossman, aren't fully settled and would benefit sub- stantially from amnesty. To new Canadians like Dave Sum- merfield, amnesty is little more than an issue of moral right. But for many younger, emotion- ally unstable of them might make the difference between despair and a fresh run at life. Dr. Angus MacDonald, a To- ronto psychologist, has worked with about 20 exiles, most of them deserters. "Most of the people I've seen want to go back, not necessarily aecause their feelings about the States have changed but be- cause they can't cope he said. "They get here and have no money and can't work and lave no friends, or very few friends, so they get depressed pretty fast." Went underground For the majority of deserters and draft evaders, Canada was not the answer. Rather than eave the country, they became exiles in their own land. Several draft resisters and deserters, interviewed after they had "surfaced" or while they were still underground, said they were able to keep on the move with little difficulty or work at regular jobs without false identification. Joe Biggs, a 22-year-old draft evader now in British Colum- bia, said that during the 2% years he was underground in the U.S., "I was using my real name and everyone where I worked knew I was hot with the draft and all that." "Everyone that knew about it condoned it, I guess, or. just fett that it was something that they wouldn't want to get involved in." He and his wife came to Can- ada last January when the FBI caught up with him after he was ticketed while driving an old van with a faulty muffler. To others, fugitive living has no picnic. Was difficult "Underground life is really says 25-year-old Edward Sowder of Detroit, who saw a year's duty in Vietnam before deserting from the army. "It gets very hard not to talk with people. It's hard to live a ie. And the threat of apprehen- sion and prosecution is always hanging over your head." An FBI spokesman in Wash- ngton said: "We are actively nvestigating an those cases that we have a process out- standing on" an arrest war- rant. Officials concede privately, wwever, that the FBI is often too preoccupied with major crimes to pay much attention to draft dodgers. "Not too many people are hat concerned about selective service violators the FBI spokesman said. For parents of exiles, the im- pact of separation from their sons has ranged from mild to ataL SCRATCH and DENT Top of the line PHILCO 30" ELECTRIC RANGE. Reg. 369.95 PHILCO 30" Deluxe ELECTRIC RANGE with continuous doan oven. Reg. 3449.95....... PHILCO 30" ELECTRIC RANGE. Standard ovtn with Reg. 329.95......... INGUS WRINGER WASHER. With pwmp. UMd 6 WMks. Rtg. 179.95 HITACHI DRYER. Slight scratch on Ed. tog. 209.95.................. 5000 BTU ELECTROHOME AIR CONDITIONER. Window mount. Demo model. Reg. 199.95..... TOSHIBA MICRO-WAVE ELEC- TRONIC OVEN. Demo nwdtl. Rtfl. 499.95................ ADMIRAL FRIG. FREEZER. 13 en. ft. 2 door auto, dtfrosf. 349.95.............. PWLCO 10.1 CU. FT. 269.95..... 249 239 225 Admiral 2 spwd 6 cydt Automatic WASHER and MATCHING DRYER. Harart Gold. M4.90 pair SANYO PORTABLE AUTOMATIC WASHER. Completely automatic wash and spin. 269.95. WAV FAIRFIELD APNIMKX ft TV MIES LTD. 1242 3rd AVI. SOUTO PHONE 32MM2 (Jmt Acmi fiwn Cbb) Canada, deserters, amnesty Thousands of Americans are fighting a dif- ferent war a struggle for reinstatement after years of dodging Vietnam involvement. it a three-part series in which the issue is looked at by some who fled to Canada and others who be- came exiles in their own land. By Barton of the Associated Press soldiers are draff-dodgers WASHINGTON (AP) More than United States sol- diers now at large are classified as deserters. Officials say the number in deserters and draft difficult to determine; they may total between and ATo- ronto publication for exiles say there may be up to war resisters spread across Canada. Whatever the numbers, the is- sue of amnesty is growing rather than receding. With the end of U.S. involvement in the Vietnam war, President Nixon has said there will be no am- nesty for those who refused to serve. "We are not criminals to be hunted and count- Visit son often Mrs. Craig Waugh of Well- sburg, W.Va., whose only child Craig Jr. has been a teacher in Toronto for the last five years, said she and her husband usu- ally drive to Canada to see their son about four times a year. Waugh's father, a pharmac- ist, said: "At the time, we did Continued en Pago 30 They return to U.S. expecting the worst means forgiveness.... we cannot provide forgiveness9 WASHINGTON (AP) Eric Nagler, a folk musician, re- turned to the United States after 4% years in Canada. He surrendered to authorities in New York City and went on trial which ended in a con- viction for draft evasion and a three-year prison term. The conviction was sub- sequently overturned by an ap- peals court which ruled that Nagler had been improperly de- nied conscientious objector status. Nonetheless, coming home meant a 10-month court fight and more than in legal fees. After more than four years in Canada and Australia, draft re- sister Wallace Tratz, 27, of Los Angeles also decided to come back, expecting the worst. However, his case never came to trial. He agreed to take an induction physical in return for dropping draft charges against him. He flunked the >hysical and went free. Tratz was able to take advan- tage of a long-standing justice department policy which some defence lawyers said amounted to "de facto" or "pragmatic" amnesty. Now, however, other draft violators will no longer have the option of submitting to in- duction processing. With the end of presidential draft in- duction authority July 1, the Pentagon decided that indicted selective service violators are not acceptable on either an in- duction or enlistment basis. Federal court statistics show that of selective service violators prosecuted throughout the country in fiscal 1972, about not con- victed, in most cases because they submitted to induction processing. In the face of the tmevenness in prosecutions, there has been no sizable influx of draft eva- ders returning to the U.S. from Canada or elsewhere. "They haven't been flooding back here but they've been coming down in a fairly steady said New York draft lawyer Donald Doernberg. For some draft evaders, com- ing back involves no risk of prosecution because then- selec- tive service files were routinely destroyed after they had turned 26. The cases of many additional draft exiles, lawyers say, are virtually free of court action be- cause of procedural errors, changed official regulations and court decisions that substan- tially broadened the rights of selective service registrants. For a few exiles, repatriation has been fully on the govern- ment's terms, not their own. Billy Stayton, 25, from Mis- sissippi, came back to Fort Gordon, Ga., after being de- ported this spring from Sweden where he had been convicted on a drug charge. Absent without leave from the army for more than three years, Stayton was court-martialled, convicted of desertion and sentenced to two years at hard labor. With American troops out of Vietnam and inductions stopped, says assistant U.S. At- torney Chester Moore in San Francisco, "everything's sort of been defanged." "I don't think the American public really gives a damn." President Nixon has said: "Amnesty means forgiveness. We cannot provide forgiveness for them." Robert McAfee Brown, a Stanford University theologian says: "We have passed the time in our national history when any- thing can be gained by punish- ing people for taking a stand against the war. "It is time for all the PoWs to be released so that they and we can begin afresh. The books are not closed as long as a sizable fraction of our youth are being hunted and haunted by their gover ers Edward Sowder, a deserter who recently turned himself in "Only by winning universal, un- conditional amnesty for all cat- egories of war resisters can we begin the long process of chang- ing our country and learning from the decades of blood anc bitterness in Indochina." Presssure grows Meanwhile the deserters, the dodgers, the objectors wait. Peace and church groups have begun redirecting the anti-war movement out about the impact of exile and imprisonment on their families. But most politi- cians are reluctant to touch the issue. I would say generally the word amnesty is a scare word at this point to a majority of not a posrdve says Senator Mark Hat- field (Rep. an outspoken opponent of (he war. Some new groups have sprung up, such as Families of Resisters for Amnesty, a New York-based organization mar- keting PoW-style bracelets im- printed with the names of draft evaders and deserters. The newly-developed National Counsil for Universal Uncon- ditional Amnesty urges uncon- ditional amnesty for all draft registers, Vietnam deserters and soldiers with less than hon- orable discharges, as well as persons arrested in demonstra- tions, draft board raids and other anti-war activities. Most of the deserters at large are believed to be under- ground in the U.S. The Penta- jon says about are known be in other countries. Senator Etobert Taft (Rep.Ohio) and Representative Edward Koch ;Dem.N.Y.) have introduced nils to permit draft evaders to return if they agree to serve in hospitals, the Peace Corps or other agencies. However, the president's anti- amnesty position has the back- ng of many returned prisoners of war and the Veterans of For- eign Wars. One returned prisoner, navy it.-Cmdr. Joseph Plumb says: 'I feel that every American by] both has a tacit social contract with his government. Those fel- Amnesty is a scare word lows denied that contract. I don't believe it is in the best interest of the U.S. to welcome tnem with open arms after that breach." A few parents of exiles also say they oppose amnesty. I feel that the person who wM not abide by the laws or fight for their country should not be allowed to live in this country and benefit from what- ever it has to said the tether of a draft dodger now in Vancouver. Other parents say they firmly support their son's decision to resist. "It's awful that he's denied the right to come back to the says Dorothy Wylie of Bayside, N.Y., whose son Hugh Jr., is in Toronto. "I think it's awful for the U.S. as well as for nan." Jack Colhoun, an army deserter and co-editor of an ex- les' magazine in Canada, ex- xessed the attitude of many exiles in arguing that "amnesty really is what the war was about." If the war was wrong, then tow can war resisters be wrong cr leading the American people to understand that the war in was wrong? tt we were right, why should we be pun- ished with two or three years of alternate service in Church groups supporting am- nesty contend that whether the war resisters were right, am- nesty is needed to help promote reconciliation. Many amnesty proponents, however, recognize that the is- sue is a touchy, complex one that requires cautious handling. "Before you try to impress e political leadership, you lave to make sure you haveihe roops behind ssys Henry Ichwarrtzchild, director of the American Civil Liberties Union. "Politically and morally, it's an important issue still waiting o find its real place on the na- tional agenda." BUSTBl THE SEAL. When Minna Lind befriended a helpless baby seal on Vancouver Island, suddenly found herself with a lot of simple problems like teaching a seal to fish. Read what ifs like being foster mother to a new-born seol this Saturday In Your LETHBRIDGE HERALD WEEKEND MAGAZINE SMILETHE WEEKENDS ALMOST HERE LABATTS BLUE SMILES ALONG WITH YOU.