Roseville Avenue Armory
grave-diggers tonight. a 44 Black Recruitment Program on the Skids By JOHN MCLAUGHLIN Written for The Associated Press TRENTON It was really of 1967 and Newark was in the throes of one of the bloodiest racial racial riots in the nation's history. On Springfield Avenue, New Jersey National Guardsmen were posted in front of looted and burned-out burned-out burned-out storefronts. The There are hundreds of armed Guardsman at the Roseville Armory, Armory, all of them white. 1 Angrily, he turned to an aide and told him to go find a black soldier for the benefit of the delegation he was about to receive. receive. The black soldier was found. He arrived out of breath just as the black delegation walked in. strength. We are taking just about any Negro who wants in," Cantwell said. He conceded that . he was bending regulations on this point but added that he feels the need warrants it. But with all these efforts, the outlook for continued success looks dismal. The New Jersey program was them young, were in the street taunting the occupying troops. One of these, a girl about 17, peered into the cab of a military truck. The driver was black. "Hey, Soul Brother. What are you doing here- here- with Whitey?" she said. The driver smiled. But he was embarrassed. A day after Gov. Richard J. Hughes and other state and city officials were preparing for a meeting with black leaders. TL . ... 1 f iU- iU- residents of the ghetto, many of ll ""K to serve as pilot study and if The governor hadn't fooled anyone. anyone. But he learned something. In July of 1967 less than two of every 100 New Jerseyans in the National Guard were black, and that was why the driver was singled out for special attention by the girl why the governor couldn't find a black soldier in the Roseville Armory. Two-and-a-half Two-and-a-half Two-and-a-half Two-and-a-half Two-and-a-half Two-and-a-half Two-and-a-half years later the percentage of blacks in the New Jersey Army and Air National successful was to be implement ed in other states. But last year Congress denied a request for $6.5 million to duplicate the Jersey Jersey effort in other states. The memories of the racial riots of recent years are fading and with them a sense of urgency urgency about black membership in-the in-the in-the Guard. Cantwell is not optimistic. He : is well aware of the current anti-military anti-military anti-military feeling among today's today's youth and knows this is Pupils Humans in natonal average of 1.1 per cent New Jersey's percentage of blacks is 5.9 per cent. These figures were compiled by the National Guard Bureau in Washington at the end of last year as part of a national survey survey ordered by the U.S. Defense Department. The survey shows that across the nation there are actually fewer Negroes in the National Guard at the end of 1969 than learn the joy of helping others, there were at the end of 1968 they have grasped one of the despite a two-year two-year two-year program important concepts of a happy ajmed at increasing black en-life. en-life. en-life. If, through their years of listments. schooling, students develop con Guard is the highest of any just as prevaient ammg young state in the nation. Against a backs as vouns wnites. re- cern for the success of their fellows and get the habit of helping each other, schools will be playing their part in produc-rates, produc-rates, ing more human humans, sub- In place of the grade-level, grade-level, grade-level, proc- lock-step lock-step lock-step procedure in which stu- failing students are passed on from grade to grade with dim-Schools dim-Schools inishing chances of ever being successful, each child should nvi ivuig uu iua wwu ucvciuy- ucvciuy- . , -i,,j -i,,j -i -i I... ; i;i,i., t . Mnent in a situation where his ?atl?.n f"rG""d personnel here ,d,u ? sJlkely to mvolve a tour of achievements are measured as progress rather than against Unless there is a change in the environment, I'm afraid I see a skidding of strength in the years ahead. What . we really need is a new program built around lads who really want to soldier. And there are plenty of them. But they won't come in because they are afraid of what their friends will say," Cantwell said. The blacks recruited in the-drive the-drive the-drive of 1967 and 1968 signed up for six years. Those enlistments will expire in 1974, and the rate, of enlistment in the National. Guard is only 5 per cent. The fact of the matter is that, most members are in the Guard to discharge their military obli-. obli-. obli-. gation as painlessly as possible.. They spend an initial six. months in service and then it is . Unattractive Guard spokesmen say that they are unable to explain why Negroes don't find service in the Guard attractive. New Jersey's high percentage one weekend a month and two of blacks is the result of a spe- spe- weeks each summer. i cial recruitment program For most, this is preferable to kicked off in August, 1967. At interrupting' their careers to Hughes' urging, the Defense De- De- spend two years on active duty partment increased the authori- authori- especially when that active proc- to perfection. In such a school, every child would be honored for having satisfactory attitudes, not only toward his work, but also toward other students. sue- In such a situation it would satis- be possible to help students de-faction de-faction velop feelings, beliefs, values, of attitudes and understandings that are necessary if humans are to live together in the crowded conditions that prevail by five per cent. Vietnam. And an intensive effort was Black membership dropped made to recruit blacks. Mean- Mean- by .4 per cent between 1969 and 2 YEARS WITH while, whites on the. Guard wait- wait- ing list took their normal turns. A year later enrollment had jumped from 315 to 1,012 for a total of 6.3 per cent. The special recruitment drive lasted only one year and by the end of 1970, the regular attrition process will bring the Guard authorization authorization down to its 1967 level. level. Gen. James Cantwell, chief of staff for the New Jersey Department Department of Defense, says that the Guard here is continuing to do all it can to keep black enlistments enlistments high. "We want to hold this 1970 and the decline will proba bly continue. Draft Lottery Speaker's Topic Fred Marks, chairman of Middlesex County Chapter. . Clergy and Laymen Concerned about Vietnam, will explain and . answer questions on the draft lottery Thursday, at 8 p.m., in Raven Hall, the YWCA 51 Livingston Livingston Ave.