Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 23, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD Thundoy, September 23, 1971 Carl Rotwiii Keep the UN alive! Canada has said that it will make a voluntary contribution to the UN to help it out of its financial problems if France and Russia do the same. Neither of these permanent mem- bers of the security council have been contributing lo UN expenses for many years. The original refusal to pay up came at the time of the crisis in the Congo France claimed that the UN peace keeping force caused more trouble than it cured, and that it was in fact, interfering in the affairs of a country whicli was not a nation in the tnie sense. Russia wanted the UN to hack the Congolese secession- ists. Dag Hammarskjold, then UN sec- retary general, took his case for sending in a peace keeping force to the general assembly for debate. The assembly decided that member stales should make such a force available and the troops were sent in. Since then France and Russia have balked at paying their share of expenses. The result after ten years is near- bankruptcy in the world's peace- keeping area. With the Peoples' Republic of China certain to be admitted, probably this year, Russia and France must do their share in keeping the UN alive. Without China it could never be a truly world body. With China, it will be. It is imperfect, as all member nations will admit. But in spite of imperfections it has accomplished wonders in many fields of h u m a n endeavor. It cannot be allowed to die because of human intransigency and self-interest. Attitudes to Attica The divided state of American thinking has shown up again in the aftermath of the violent tragedy at Attica state prison. It can be seen to a degree in the two articles ap- pearing on this page today. Any attempt to take a dispassion- ate view of what happened is frus- trated by the contradictory state- ments that have been made, In the end the observer is apt to find his prejudices confirmed. lie will feel that radical forces reached a limit and had to be repressed; or he will believe that reactionary powers were excessively oppressive. The truth as is so often the case is likely that fault can be distributed. Even those who are most in sym- pathy with taking a tough attitude towards prisoners must be uneasy about the excessive use of force that was employed to end the riol. They will be doubly discomfited now that it has finally been established that lying was indulged in to give an ap- parent justification for the slaughter. People such as U.S. Vice-President Spiro Agnew, who have a legitimate concern to promote respect for law and order, do not seem to have a sufficient recognition of how that re- spect is undermined by Ihe white- wash attempted for the gunmen at Attica and at Kent State Univer- sity. The expose of the corruption of the police force in New York City hasn't helped either. Another thing that seems to be in- sufficiently recognized by Mr. Agnew is the legitimacy of the complaints of the prisoners about inhuman treat- ment. The fact that the state agreed to 28 of the prisoners' demands for improvement is tacit admission that much was wrong. Columnist Tom Wicker has also pointed out that dis- regard for the prisoners was obvious in Governor Nelson Rockefeller's statement of sympathy to the fam- ilies of the dead hostages without any reference to those who mourned the dead prisoners. Wicker mentioned other things symptomatic of what breeds resentment. Perhaps, on the other hand, there is too much readiness to side with those who oppose authority. Situa- tions do tend to escalate in bitter- ness and obduratencss because out- siders jump in with added fuel for the fire. They can prevent useful compromise from taking place. Tragic as the situation is at Attica it could be a forerunner of some- thing worse, as columnist Carl Row- an has been warning in his articles. It is to be hoped that the division within American society does not harden further and that both sides can begin to see the concerns of the other which could lead to fruitful ad- justment. A Czech speaks out If the Soviet Union is backing down on its claim to sovereignty over the European communist world, will there be a chance for Czechoslovakia to find its independent way lo the communist nirvana? A recent report in the official Ital- ian communist magazine Giorni-Vie Nuove reports an interview with Josef Smrkovsky, one of the foremost leaders of the Prague Spring move- m e n t of liberalization in 1968. Smrkovsky says that only about 10 percent of the Czech people back the new Russian imposed regime, and that his people "will never resign them selves to the accomplished fact." Smrkovsky is under constant pol- ice surveillance but Italian commun- ists found some way of reaching him, and of receiving and publishing his report. The report confirms categ- orically what has been known for a long time; that is that all of these involved with the liberalization move- ment have lost their jobs and that many of them are still imprisoned. Many of these persons "are under constant pressure to force them lo say that black is no longer black but white and vice versa" he says. Anyone who has travelled to Czech- Slovakia in the last three years, any- one who has read emigre reports, knows that what Mr. Smrkovsky says is true. What is interesting is that the report was printed in a Euro- pean Communist paper in a non- communist country which has the greatest per capita number of com- munists of any European govern- ment. The Italian Communists are influential, numerous and very in- dependent. It is quite plain that the Italians are doing what they can and of course that is very little to help the Czechs. Mr. Smrkovsky has risked almost certain reprisal from the oppressor, but like a lot of Russian intellectuals, he is willing to take the risk in Ihe cause of freedom. Informal education Hy Louis Burke rPHE educational system to end all edu- cational systems is not far away from us. Schools have gone from non-graded to open area and are now about to enter the era of the informal school. Informal edu- cation is where the doors really come off the hinges and the walls really come down. Tire phenomenon is not completely new. It existed in Britain for nearly fifty years, but it has spread to North America as a kind of underground movement amongst educators in the United States Schools using the informal approach are located in New York, Philadelphia, Tucson and as near to Alberta as Portland, Oregon. These .schools opcrate from 'free choice' periods to 'free form' programs and arc actually 'schools without walls.' To those who believe, such schools ought to be noisy, creative, and difficult lo man- age. They are constantly vibrating entities behind which there is a strong philosophy and a well defined role for the teacher who works in an apparent chiios. In such a school, no one method is the key and Ihe emphasis is on the use of a variety. It may have up lo fifty sludcnLs loosely allachi'd to one classrcoir: where they come .ind go without the aid of bells. A profusion of equipment is scatlercd in different focal paints within the room with children in groups, or pairs, or alone skip- ping joyfully from piece lo piece and learn- ing at a fantastic rate. Teachers and their assistants are expected to be exceedingly busy and very happy in their work. Individualizatibn is the key expression. The teacher will develop his own indivi- dual style of teaching and the student will develop his own individual style of learn- ing. The curriculum will be fully indivi- dualized. All tliis, of course, is rooted in John Dewey, the American educationalist-philo- sopher. But today's mainspring is the Swiss psychologist epistemologist, Jean Piagct who preaches that children are the main agents of their own human develop- ment. Translated in classroom practice, this means that they must be allowed to unfold in Iheir own way, at their pace, in their own time. If is by no means a superficial doctrine, but i.s it the answer to problematic educational systems? However, informal education is on the way. It requires lols of money and whole, sale remodelling of implement. School boards arc always quick to jump on a bandwagon, but rarely do they provide for Ihe whole package in terms of finances. Some worthwhile innovations have failed in Ihe past because of this attitude towards total preparation. Perhaps informal education i.s the Ins I segment in the circle or cycle, and if edu- cators wait a year or two, formal education will come back into fashion. Then, Ihe walls will not have in come liown ,il all. Who knows, V Without prison reform, expect more Atticas After of gruesome lesli- mony about Hie Mv Lai mas- sacre, it took a strong stomach lo wade through the testimony a National Guardsman gave about brutality inside Attica prison after I he inmate rebel- lion was crushed. But let us hope that millions of Americans noted the revela- tions of James P. Watson, a 24- year old law sUidenl. Watson told of seeing merci- less beatings, pokings and proddings of. prisoners who he said s h o w e d no resistance whatever. Special ohjpcts of these brutal pununelings were inmates who had cried of "black power" as though the state troopers and prison guards felt some holy mandate to try to beat the entire black revolution to death with their clubs and rifle butts. ft was this kind of brutality and racism, constant and de- humanizing, that caused the prison uprising at Attica in the first place, and no amount of bogeyman talk about "outside revolutionaries" can hide that truth. This society is hopeless- ly doomed to a nightmare of violent revolt, outside the pris- ons as well as inside, unless it shows a sense of justice and compassion and develops pris- on arrangements where in- mates are regarded as people. But we have had no prison reform, and are not likely to see much, because even the politicians who claim to be most enlighlcncd don't much give a damn Gov. Nelson Rockefeller was warned many limes that bru- tality at Attica was going lo produce a riot. But nothing changed. The terrible truth is that prison reform is not desired by much of this society. You need only to have eavesdropped on telephone calls to me this last week to know that millions of Americans are molivated most- ly by vengeance and vin- dictiveness; they say convicts are meant to be punished, and the more miserable they are made, the better. Add the faclors of race (05 per cent of Attica inmates are black or Puerto Hican, all of their guards white) and politi- cal militancy (Ihe leaders of up- risings are automatically branded as and you increase the public ''Depends on how you look at feeling that beating inmates is not "brutality" and killing them is not a crime. Even when someone comes along like Russell G. Oswald, New York's commissioner of correction, who admits to abuses and indignities in the prisons, and promises changes, it turns out to lie mostly lip service. He never gets the funds Lo make reforms, be- cause money is always tight. Nowhere on anybody's priority list will you find outlays to make life more palatable for inmates who are regarded as the "dregs of so- the hapless, often illit- erate, generally hopeless peo- ple who, as one pcnologist put it. ''jump from one mud pud- dle of life to another." Most Americans still look [or some cheap, simple solution. A noted prison chaplain thinks the panacea is to establish a separate maximum security in- stitution for locking up all "hard core, militant, Marxist revolutionaries." Aside from the odiousness of selling aside a class of politi- cal prisoners, this suggestion rests on the faulty assumption that only "Marxist revolution- aries" are of a mood to tear down the prisons. Even the meekest blacks and Puerto Hicans at Attica arc incensed over the indignities heaped upon them. In the wake of the Attica massacre, more are rad- icalized now than ever, and it is naive to assume that they will again become vegetables, do- cilely enduring abuses, once they are separated from Ihs "militants." Rockefeller now says there will be some reforms at Attica. But no one says what reforms, or how soon. We'll believe in those re- forms when we see the Gov- ernor and other officials move seriously to investigate the charges made by National Guardsman Walson. The in- mates will believe a belter lot is in store for them when Ihey see Ihe stale punish any guards and troopers who are guilty of brutality. (Field Enterprises, Inc.) Spiro T. Agnew U.S. vice-president speaks out on Attica tragedy When even a liberal with the doughty credenlials of David Susskind is impelled to react against what he called "rancid literal it is obvious that the polemics of the doctrine of so- cietal guilt have gone too far. Yet, that is exactly what has occurred in the aftermath of the riot and ensuing bloodshed at Attica state prison. What happened at Attica could not have been foreseen, unless one is willing to accept the radiclib ideological premise of original sin which holds every outbreak of violence in our so- ciety to be further evidence of the intrinsic evil of the System. However, what has happened since Ihe litany of recrimin- ation against "the the naive equating of antisocial with social goals, the call for examination of "root causes" of this could have been foreheavd m the rhetorical ex- cesses which followed previous Letters to the editor confrontations between so- ciety's authority and antisocial force. Very well, then, let us exam- ine some of the "root causes" of Attica though not in the sense of attributing indiscrim- inate blame to American insti- tutions. Tins is not to say that all is perfect within our sys- tem, or that penological theory and practice in the United States is beyond criticism. We all know lhal improvement is needed. But perspective con- stitutes the first requisite of wisdom. Little credit is due otherwise responsible public spokesmen whose desire to pla- cate a far Left constituency has caused them lo overlook the fact that, for all its shortcom- ings, the tlreory of American criminology and our penal sys- tem remain among the most humane and advanced in the world. Thus, to assert that the question raised at Attica was "Why men would rather die than live another day in Ameri- ca" is the purest political fatuity. To position the "demands" of convicted felons in a place of equal dignity with legitimate aspirations of law-abiding Am- erican citizens or to compare the loss of life by those who violate the society's law with a loss of life of those whose job it is to uphold it represents not simply an assault on human sensibility, but an insult to rea- son. Worst of all, it gives status and seeming respectability to the extremists in our society whose purpose it is to exacer- bate rather than ameliorate the problems of race relations the very problems to which the spokesmen, in this instance, al- lude. In my opinion, then, it is the approbation given extremists by some responsible leaders of both races that has nurtured the roots of violence such as oc- curred at Attica and, not long before, at San Quenlin. To be sure, when law-abiding Trustees alone are policy makers Last week in a report of the stand taken by the ATA versus Ihe trustees we see another power struggle on Ihe horizon, wlu'ch should te given full at- tention by the public. According lo ATA president W. L. Hughes, the teacher has Pleasure in not hunting Ihe hunting .sea.son ap- proaches, my heart goes out to the thousands of birds that will drop bleeding and crumpled to the ground and to the many who will crawl away into the bushes lo di" of their wounds unless I hey are lucky enough to bo put nut of their misery by some stray fox or something. Many years ago I was just as eager to go hunt.ing as the next person; but that lime no longer exists for me, I haven't even shot a jnckrabbit for -some lime. I am net condoning Ihe hunters as I understand per. fcclly how they feel; but I can assure you Ilial the pleasure derived from nol hunting Ihe birds awl animals far exceeds Ihe pleasure of hunting them. In pioneer days, I can recall v.hen game meant food for Ihe lable; bill Ihi.s condition no longer exisl.s. Ask any sanila- linn employee connected with Ihe disposal of garbage and Ihey vill lell you what happens I.) a vast number of giiine birds .shot for I lie pleasure of lulling soinetlu'ng. A fev months ago a pair of beautiful black eagles made their home on a ranch in Ibis area. The family who owns the ranch got a great deal of plea- sure iu watching Ihem from day lo day. They did not tell anyone about the eagles be- cause they knew what would happen if they did. However someone spotted them one day (he was a stranger lo the area) and you guessed it. The crumplicd bodies of the eagles were found beneath their fav- orite perching place. They were fortunate to (lie so easily as their offspring in the aerie died of slow starvation. LEO W. SPENCER. Card.slon. So They Say lie-search i.s to leaching what sin is lo confession: Without the one, you have nothing lo say in the ether. li. Allen, professor of economics nl the Univer- sity of California, Los An- geles. the same right as the public and government in deciding on educational policies and stan- dards. I strongly object, for the rea- son Mr. R. Clark staled, name- ly, that trustees are ELECTED and should have sole powers as policy makers, as representa- tives of the people. On Oclober 13 the public is given the opportunity to decide what kind of people are going lo make decisions regarding the educating of our children, and it is of uttermost impor- tance lo elect people like Mr. Clark who stand their ground when called upon lo cto so. We as parents should make sure (hat no person, be it a present or former teacher or any other person for that mat- ter, having the same stand as Mr. Hughes is elected lo the board of trustees. We should be clear Hint teachers are "hired" to do a joh and arc paid for their ser- vice, appointed by trustees eleclcd by the parenls. Tlic teachers, if lliey choose differently and arc not willing In abide by this ruling, have (he alternative lo look for ;i place were Ihey will have that power as wanted by Ihem. 1IKINTKMA. Lclbbridgo. citizens of bolh Ihe white and black races are daily subjected to the editorial elevation of con- victed felons into "revolution- ary the effect of such near apotheosis is to blur lines of rational, democratic discus- sion, not simply of penological but of all the broad social prob- lems which concern our so- ciety. As for the effect of such exultation of criminality on lawbreakers bolh within and outside prison walls, who can doubt that violence is encour- aged when the violent-prone are provided a civilized ration- ale for their psychopathic pro- civities? "Let's nol try to compromise the said the Black Panlher leader sent to Attica to help "negotiate" a settle- ment. The roots of such reck- less intransigence, which con- tribuled to the need to use force to break the strike, do not lie in "social injustice" or "rev- olutionary" fervor. Rather, what we heard Ihcre was the voice of criminal arrogance fed by Hie long time accommoda- tion of moderate spokesmen, while and black alike, lo the extremism of word and deed practiced by black power mili- tants. Again, when a Panther lead- er vows to "chop off the head" of a United States Senator, and another threatens to "slit every throat thai threatens our free- the seeds of violence are sown and flourish. The situa- tion is not helped by the words of a heretofore responsible Negro leader who said that, al- Ihough he "may not agree all down the line" with the Pan- thers, he is "on the same side" because "they complain of things the average Negro knows are or by the Atlanta- based black leader who, though committed to the doctrine of non-violence, lost no time in gratuitously endorsing the Pan- thers when they recently an- nounced an intention to move their headquarters lo that com- munity. What happened at Attica proves once again that when the responsible voices of so- ciety remain mute, the forces of violence and crime grow ar- rogant. One need only recall the era of Hitler's Storm Troopers lo realize what can happen to the most civilized of societies when such a cloak of respecta- bility is provided thugs and criminals. In taking the necessary steps to end the confrontation at Atti- ca, Governor Rockefeller acted courageously. Those who would have had him act otherwise have yel to learn Ihe paramount lesson of our century; that acq- uiescence lo the demands of the criminal clement of any society only begets greater violence. (New York Times) Looking backward Tlirongli tlic Herald Mrs. Margaret Win- Iringham, Liberal, has been elected to the House of Com- mons in Britain. She will be the second woman in British his- tory to take a seat in Uie House, the first being Lady Astor. ram Most Rev. C. L. Wer- rcll of Halifax, Archbishop o! Nova Scotia since 1915 was to- day elected primalc of all Can- ada by Ihe house of bishops of the general synod of the Church of England of Canada. Trades and Labor Congress of Canada rejected resolutions submitted calling for equal conscription of wealth and manpower and substiluled the rcsolulion by reaffirming its 1910 policy. 1951 Southern Alberta's al- ready battered grain crops took another beating today when up (o eight incites of heavy, wet snow fell over farmlands. With the installation of new traffic lights at Ihe in- tersection of ,1 Ave. S. and May- or Magralh Drive, drivel's will be permitted lo make right hand turns on a red light. The Letlibridge Herald 50-1 7lh St. S., LcIhbriclBc, Alberta LETHBKIDGti HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Publishers Published by Hon. A. BUCHANAN Second Class Mall Rerjlstrallon No. 001? Member of The Canadian Press nno mo Canadian Daily Newspiippr Publishers' Association nnd Ihe Audit Bureau nf Circulations CLEO W. MOWERS, Editor nnd Puhllrhor THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Mnnnnrr JOE BALLA WILLIAM HAY Mnnniilnt] Fclitor Fclilnr ROY F." MILES DOUGLAS K. WAL IfFR AdVflrllsino Mnnnprr Gtlltorlnl Ertitur "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"