Garden City Telegram from Garden City, Kansas on September 15, 1976 · Page 16
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Garden City Telegram from Garden City, Kansas · Page 16

Garden City, Kansas
Issue Date:
Wednesday, September 15, 1976
Page 16
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Promise of Recruit Training Reform Heard Before By JOSEPH NOCERA Telegram's Washington Bureau WASHINGTON—Apparently the Marines weren't kidding when they said they were looking for a few good men, because when they got their paws on Lynn McClure, who was mentally retarded and had a criminal record, they bashed his brains in. They^did it with pugil sticks — padded, 14-pound drumsticks—beating this 20-year- old recruit senseless long after he could no longer defend himself, long after he lay writhing in the dust of his San Diego boot camp. His fellow recruits, egged on by their drill instructor, used his head as a drum for a few crazed moments last December, and McClure never again woke up. Three months later he was dead, and who can deny that the Marines had killed him? The Marines don't deny this: It was a "regrettable incident," they say. But last week we learned that the Corps had closed the book on this latest chapter of recruit abuse with a few slaps on the wrist and a promise to be better next time. The drill instructor and supervising officer off McClure's platoon were acquitted last summer on charges of manslaughter and aggravated assault and maltreatment. Their defense was that they were obeying orders and following standard Marine practices. More recently, four other officers at the San Diego training base were given "letters of repimand," which The New York Times called "one of the lightest punishments possible." The four are appealing. But the Marines do say that since the "system" is to blame for past abuse, the system is being reformed. A Marine spokesman told us 84 officers have been added at the two major training camps, for better supervision. He said the motivation platoon—a punishment platoon for "problem recruits" like McClure—had been abandoned for good. The training schedule for recruits and their drill 'instructors had been reduced to lessen the stress on both recruits and instructors. /'With these kinds of .measures, abuses will stop," the spokesman said. But will they? Twenty years ago, after the notorious Paris Island incident in which ^several recruits drowned in a 'training exercise, the Marines promised reform. Now the Corps says that those measures "weren't far reaching enough." Apparently not. And as other abuses have become known in the past few years—a kid dying when the Marines didn't believe he was really ill and made him take part in exercise, another kid losing part of his hand when his drill instructor shot it off— their reaction has been to cover them up, to treat them like unavoidable aberrations, not as problems that need solving. It took a murder to bring about these changes, and one has to wonder what will happen once the public forgets about the butchery of Lynn McClure. And even aside from the question of abuses, there remains the problem of recruiting. The Marines admit that McClure should never have been admitted into the Corps—his parents say they fudged his tests and failed to check his criminal record to ^piii-iiiPpipiiiiiiiiyiiililpy SAFEWAY SAVER Shank Portion HAMS J9L u.980 LW »ittlecllve 7 full Devi Thru 9-22-76 In— Garden City SUPER SAVER 12-oz SLICED BACON*-.- 2.*3 17 J 8 . 59 TUBKEY WINGS SMOKED SAUSAGE •••-"' -~' .M" SLICED BOLOGNA SAUSAGE «=" 2 - S 2 77 ,M W SMORGAS PAK PORK STEAK . «" » »M 19 CORN DOGS Or Super Hindquerteri Sivir Sterling Super Brand Saver Eckrlch Super (l-lb.pkg.M"l Sever unn lor Blues FILM PROCESSING! IUAUTY PROCESSING! ™ K JH NOW AVAILABLE AT SAFEWAY! SHOP & COMPARE!] SNAP ST&P S.ilew.iy Feature... •Golden fHarvest 1 Coffee Clip. Each . No Purehne Htqulrtel FEDERAL GIASSES lAssorted' Sizes Glade Solid h':v Each BABTLEH PEABS BED POTATOES BELL PEPPEBS APPLES ss~ -x. 3-. s 1°° MUSHROOMS 20 a. $ 1» KRAUT CABBAGE 5~ S 1°° APPLE PEABS 3- s 1°° GARDEN MUMS SEEDLESS WHITE GRAPES Extra Sweet Lb. Freih Urge Irovrn ISO Ik. leek 'Z.M) DeltelMii Sweet Revor for PIMlIm •III. Hie SALAD SIZE PAPER TOWELS Towels HI-DBI Brand Large Roll Piedmont Brand 32-oz. Jar CLING PEACHES SLICED PEW SUPER SAVER Del Monte '29-oz.l Can FLOUR Del Monte Cut or French Style Page 17 Garden City Telegram Wednesday, Sept. 15, 1976 get him in— but they have not . • abolished their quota system. " "The two commanding officers will be in charge of insuring the quality of recruits," said the spokesman. "Unqualified recruits will be pinpointed quickly and dismissed from the Corps." (In the pre- McClure days, the unqualified were put in the motivation platoons where, according to one writer, they were made to do things like bark like dogs in chorus, crawl across the drill fields and walk backwards in front of the mess v hall while others were standing in line to eat.) But the recruiters are still being asked to come up with 192,000 recruits this year. "That's 4,000 less than last year, so there shouldn't be any problem," says the spokesman. But it's still a quota, and there will still be pressure to get men in, to fill the ranks, to come up with enough volunteers to keep the volunteer army going. No problem, says the Marines, the kids are still knocking down the recruiter's door. "The adverse publicity we've received hasn't hurt us," said the spokesman. "The guy or gal wanting to join still likes the idea of being a Marine. "His parents — they've read the papers and all — they're pretty skeptical. But the kids still see the Marines as a challenge. A patriotic challenge." Sod House Society Puts Out Inquiry Did you ever live in a sod house, a dugout, or an adobe building; or were you born in one? Did you ever tea£h school, attend school or church services in such a building, or help build one? Or are you a child or perhaps a grandchild of a former pioneer sod house dweller or builder? If you can answer "yes" to any of these questions, the Sod House Society of America, with headquarters at Colby, Kansas, would like to hear from you. The society is making a survey and census of people who have had any kind of personal experience with sod structures, including descendants of such persons. Sod houses, dugouts, part sod, and adobe buildings were once common in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. • All former sod dwellers and descendants of a family that can claim a part of the sod house heritage during the pioneer settlement era of North America, or in more recent times, will be listed by the society in a permanent historical record of sod, dugout, and adobe dwellers and their families. Sod buildings in some form were used in well over half the North American continent. To make this survey a success, information is needed from people in all parts of North America. If you have any information concerning present or former sod dwellers, a report of this will be most welcome. Please tell where the buildings were located, and give family names, as well as your own. Reports should be sent to: Sod House Survey, Colby, Kansas, 67701. Pope Has Talk With Bishop BARI, Italy (AP) — Pope Paul VI spoke to dissident French Bishop Marcel Lefebvre with "fatherly intensity" at their meeting, according to a Vatican spokesman. The Vatican said Sunday the Pope asked the bishop to reflect on the "damaging situation" he has created by his defiance. The bishop said after the one-hour meeting Saturday, "Now it is necessary to think over what we have said in the meeting." The bishop was suspended from his priestly functions last July after he defied a papal ban against ordaining priests at his traditionalist Roman Catholic seminary in Econe, Switzerland. He celebrated a public mass in Latin at Lille, France, Aug. 29. The bishop has opposed changes instituted by the 196265 Vatican II ecumenical conference and by the Pope. *».-

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