Arizona Republic from Phoenix, Arizona on April 6, 1969 · Page 10
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Arizona Republic from Phoenix, Arizona · Page 10

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Sunday, April 6, 1969
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ARIZONA. REPUBLIC Sufldty, April I, on T^ mght jjf i n d H l Hunt For Eggs Too? Belief By Reg Manning Arizona Republic Staff Artist Of ft* ion/ h, Thin h II Corinthians 3.1? Published Every Morning by 1 PttdlNlX NEWSPAPERS, INC. s ; ' 1JO E. Van Bu«n, Phoeali, Arizona 85004 fttlNI C. 'ULLIAM, NMMMT to no man evtf /or evil. ProtMdfe in the tight of all men. Romans 12 :17 Ifie Of Resurrection The Christian world today celebrates the climax in the Passion of Christ. Few events require a greater act of faith, particularly in the United States. A nation dedicated to niaterialism and oriented toward science either ignores or denies the dogma that Jesus rose from the dead. ;;;..?. -: Aftd y*t even the most Skeptical at times feels that the*e must be something immortal about man. Few can believe, or want to believe, that the end of everything is the .tomb. Perhaps that's why the "God Is Dead" school Of theology had such a short vogue and is already being forgotten. "I am the resurrection and the life," Jesus told Martha* "he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live." The theme of life after death recurs frequently in English literature, both sacred and profane. MEarth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust, in sure and; certain hope of the resurrection," says the Book of Common Prayer. Shakespeare put it this way: ••pne^hort sleep past, we wake eternally, "And death shall be no more; death thou shalt die." "there have been the roistering blasphemers, like Heinrich Heine, who was told on his deathbed that God would forgive him. "Why of course he will forgive me; that's JiisTnisiness," retorted Heine. Seen or unseen, expressed or unexpressed, the theme of Easter Sunday, i.e. the continuity of life, is central to human thought. While Swinburne conceded "That no life lives for ever;/ That dead men rise up never;" he also came close to positive theology when he wrote, "That even the weariest river / Winds somewhere safe to sea." i God In The Army Easter Sunday is an appropriate time to salute Defense Secretary Melvin Laird for refusing to bow to the pressure groups which demanded the deletion of refer- encTes to'God from the army's troop guidance talks. If the American Civil Liberties Union and its soul- mates had their way, every reference to God — from the^-motto on our currency to the singing of "God Bless America"fby f school children — would be forbidden. Justices Arthur Goldberg and < John Harlan might well have had those groups in mind when, in 1963, they warned against the concept of "absolute neutrality" in matters of separation of church and state — a concept which could lead to results "which partake not simply of that noninterference and noninvolvement with the reflgiOW Wfcfrthe Constitution commands, but of a bro^diftg'^and'^ervasive devotion to the secular and passive of even active hostility to the religious." ThisV "active ^hostility" to the religious is nowhere more ipparerit than in the legal sparring over prayers in .pubiic-ichobls. For even though opponents contended they ..ijirere ^opposed to school children reciting prayers which could be considered sectarian, they soon shifted their opposition to even a 'general nonsectarian prayer to which no one except atheists could possibly object. Yedihose who argue for "absolute neutrality" claim that references to God, in school or in the armed service's, discriminate against atheists. They ignore the fact that, -$a the Supreme Court itself said in 1952, "We are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being." And they ignore the fact that atheists, in schools or in the armed services, are not asked to belieye and are not penalized for their disbelief. Roman Catholic Archbishop Thomas A. Donnellan of Atlanta, expressing the view of most clergymen of all faiths and of most Americans, said: "I don't know how you could lecture about character guidance and moral responsibility without responsibility to God." Every man's religious belief, or lack of belief, must be respected. But that must not be carried to the extreme, the ACLU crowd wishes to carry it — i.e., to excise from public life every reference to God or the Almighty or the Creator. Worthy Precedents The Phoenix Growth Committee is checking public opinion to see whether the voters will support a bond issue requiring a boost in property taxes. We hope it isn't, spending much money on the survey. For no one needs a computer, an army of opinion researchers, or even fr crystal ball to determine whether Phoenix voters want an increase in the property tax rate. They don't. TheYe was a time when the Phoenix property tax rate bobbed up and down like a yo-yo. It usually went down in an election year, to get votes for the city hall incumbents/and up in non-election years, to get money for the same people. This system came to an end soon after the Charter Government Committee ran its first successful city election campaign in 1949. The city property tax rate was stabilized at $1.75 per $100 of assessed valuation, and it hasr remained there under successive Charter Government mayors and councils for the past 14 years. Now. the Phoenix Growth Committee, appointed by the mayor and the council, is going to recommend a new bond issue to take care of the city's needs for the next •five or 10 years. The various city departments have projected their 10 - year capital fund needs at $280 million. That figure is certainly inflated. We think the Growth Committee would be wise, to limit planning to five years, instead of 10, and to pare down the requests mader This procedure will reduce the amount of bonding -authority needed, and will defer many final judgments until the city's ability to pay after 1975 is more clearly established. In 1967 and in 1961 the voters authorized large bond issues On the basis of recommendations by citizen coimritttees. But no one tried to peer more than five yearrinto the future, and a solemn pledge was made to keep the 41.75 property tax rate inviolate. Chances of palling an even bigger bond authorization this year will depend, we think* on following the earlier precedent!, BUCKLEY Vs. The Draft By WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY JR. The 1967 law says that a young man may be drafted unless "by reason of religious training and belief (he) is conscientiously opposed to participation in war in any form." Nothing doing, says Judge Charles Wyzan- ski — that is Unconstitutional. A violation of the First Amendment. What liberties are available to someone who believes in religion are equally avail* able to someone who does not believe in religion. How do %f you establish whether a particular individual really harbors what one might call a religious abhorrence to a particular war? My thoughts turn to Cassius Clay. He was asked why his draft board should credit the sincerity of his turning suddenly to the religion of the Black Muslims, declaring himself a minister of that faith, and claiming immunity from the draft laws as a conscientious objector. * * » "LOOK," HE SAID - the words and the figures are approximate and from memory — "after I was converted by Elijah Muhammad I went back to my wife and told her, 'Your skirts are too short, let them down.' She refused. So hired a'lawyer. I paid her $100,000 in settlement, I pay her $1,600 every month. I paid the lawyer $45,000. I ask you, is that sincere? Yes, I said, that's sincere. One must indeed suppose that Cassius Clay was — is — sincere. He had an opportunity to underwrite his sincerity most concretely. Even so, the draft board demurs, reasoning that the coincidence of his joining the Black Muslim ministry at the particular moment he did stretches credibility beyond the imagination of that particular board. And so the case goes to the courts! The plaintiff who appeared before Judge Wyzanski, a young man named John Sisson Jr., persuaded the judge that it was unconstitutional to deny him rights which are not denied to members of pacifist religious sects, and the judge went along. * * * . BUT IN DOING SO he did not affirm the sincerity of young Sisson — that would be up to the draft board to do, one supposes. ..» -. . What, then, would be the final arrangement? Suppose that the draft board looked Sisson in the face and said that the difference between his career and Voltaire's are sufficient to persuade the draft board that Sisson simply • doesn't want to enter the army and fight in Vietnam because there are other things he would prefer to do. What would Sisson then do? Why, exactly what Cassius Clay has done: appeal. And how many Sissons would there be? I do not know the figures for the number of deserters from the army, but the rumor has it that there are upwards of 50,000. Add to those the young Americans who have avoided the draft by leaving the country. Open up to the lot of them the alternative of pleading conscientious objection. Impose on the draft board the requirement of meeting draft quotas and using their best judgment to distinguish between those who are truly conscientious objectors and those who are not. AND THEN MEDITATE on the number of people who, like Cassius Clay, would appeal against the judgment of their boards. Sufficient, one would suppose, to very nearly paralyze the draft movement at this time. Judge Wyzanski seemed to be uneasily aware of the practical consequences that could ensue from the autonomizing of conscience. The ruling he gave, he said, might have been different if Sisson had been drafted to fight in "a defense of the homeland" in which the entire country was being mobilized. Again, he is suggesting that the courts rule on the practical nature of the problem. Presumably the Supreme Court would need to go to the Pentagon's briefing room to satisfy itself that a particular engagement was related to the defense of the homeland. Manners & Morals Sex In The Movies And Theater: • • t; '• . Is It Art, Or Is It Exhibitionism? By EDWIN MCDOWELL Two years ago I sat in a Broadway theater and watched actor Martin Balsam, in the play "You Know I Can't Hear You When The Water's Running," agonize over the ques- . tioni Should he play a part requiring him to emerge from the ~ wings naked, 1 except .for ,. a jtoothi: brush, to" peat:; : the c.tiile! line to his wife? MCDOWELL He did not, mirabile dictu. Yet'if the play were deputing;today, Balsam not only would likely play the entire role in the nude, but — if he wanted to.be "with it" — he would run; through the theater inviting uninhibited members of the audience to join him in baring, among other things, their souls. TODAY, there seems to be almost no limit to how far the stage and cinema can 'or will go in depicting "realism." Thus: — In the Swedish movie "I Am Curious (Yellow)," recently imported into the U. S., the heroine and her 24th lover Spend half their time prancing in the nude, and much of the rest of the time engaged in sexual intercourse and assorted other passionate pastimes;. —In the off-Broadway "Dionysus in '69," nine nude men and women slither seductively across each other and romp through the audience; — Performers in the off- recently opened to large and Broadway play "Che! 1 ', which enthusiastic audiences, were arraigned on charges of "bon- sentual sodomy, public lewdness, and obscenity"; —A psychiatrist's girl friend bounces around the set of the play "Scuba Duba" in only the bottom half of a bikini; —Homosexuals shower on stage in "Fortune and Men's Eyes"; —Anthony Newley, in his new movie, "Heironymus Merkin," dances in the nude and performs an unnatural sex act on a naked girl underwater; —In the o f f -B r o a d w a y "Creese," two actors portraying homosexuals strip naked, kiss each other's bodies, -and go to bed on stage; . -rThe play, . "The Beard," ends with a simulated act of perversion; —And actress Sally Kirkland blithely announced recently . that she would perform fellatio, on actor Rip Torn in their new -underground'movie, "Coming Apart." v THERE ,are signs .that ,a reaction is beginning to set in. Nevertheless, each of the plays and movies mentioned above has been widely hailed by prominent critics for its "rel-. .evance," its "social significance," its willingness to "strike put in new directions" while rejecting "old forms." And the actors and actresses involved eternally explain that this is all art for art's sake (no-hum), that each disrobing is "essential" to the inner theme of the movie or play (sure), that exhibitionist impulses are the furthest things from their minds (no doubt). Small Wonder, then, that Charlotte Moorman decided she had to be topless while playing her cello in public, . . that six University; of Wisconsin coeds frolicked in the nude in the play "Peter Pan" ... that NYU professor of theater, Theodore Hoffman, said "It would help if students in acting classes were naked." Small wonder that Jim Morrison of the rock singing group, "The Doors," publicly exposed himself to an audience of predominantly 12- to 14 • year olds, then simulated an unnatural sex act with another group member ... or that an Oakland, Mich., University student, while reading some verses of Yeats aloud to his male and female classmates, stripped rjaked in order to "feel more free." 'Excuse Me, Please,. .' Surely, it is time for some stock taking. I, personally, am tired of hearing that those who object to wholesale public nudity "view the human, body as ugly instead of beautiful." I'm tired;of hearing that those who object to having the sex act acted out in movies Or plays "don't regard love as beautiful," or are helplessly hung-up. I'm tired of hearing exhibitionist actors and actresses cWim they disrobe solely because of dramatic intent. One wonders how drama ever (survived before our present Age of Liberation. Was everything that has ever before appeared on Broadway and in Hollywood socially irrelevent because actors kept their clothes on? And why is it primarily the amply endowed actresses, the ones with the centerfold - type bodies, who feel the urge to express themselves in the nude? Don't any underdeveloped Plain Janes ever feel the call of art for art's sake? Finally, I'm tired of hearing perversion, exhibitionism, and other adventures in the skin trade — the sort that heretofore were confined to male "smokers" — described as "socially significant." ONE would think that those who hail this "liberating trend" would at least be honest enough to admit that it arises out of natural voyeuristic and concupiscent impulses. That, at least, could be defended — if (as with the new movie ratings) the public-was forewarned. What can't be defended, in my view, is the sanctimonious posturing that ''.there ain't nobody here but us art lovers." Leave it to Marx — Groucho Marx — to put the issue in proper perspective. "I stayed home," he said, "stripped down in front of a mirror, and saved myself $7.50." One dislikes sounding iself righteous — like the people in Kansas who (in H. L. Menck- en's phrase) would continue to vote for prohibition as long u they could staffer to the polls and find the right spot on their ballot. And I well may join the throngs standing In line to see "I Am Curious (Yellow)." But if BO, I won't try to con anybody, least of aU myself, that I'm lined up in order to view a movie of enduring locial significance. Today's Quote Columnist KMtttb Crawford, writing recfftjtyr I* Newsweek: What was once regarded as enemy propaganda is now seriously touted a$ ultimate truth by presumably sophisticated statesmen, A Senate leader can spout the nonsense that the current Con> munist offensive in Vietnam is merely justified retaliation for the depredations of our B-52s in South Vietnam. His comment not only goes uncflntradicted, but is wi repeated; World Problems Some Reds Cling To Belief In God By MICHAEL PADEV Foreign Editor, The Arizona Republic «• WASHINGTON - On this Easter Sanday, one is perWaps entitled t6 ask>-^ even in a column dealing with foreign-* policy problems — what is the state of God in the world today? We have heard educated Americans proclaim that "God is dead." We have been informed by newspaper columnists and maga* zine writers thai the generation gap is also a religious gap, and that the young todty reject God and religion as resolutely as they do all other old fashioned ideas. 1 do not claim-to be an expert fin relt' gious problems. But I do claim to know™ something about developments in that part of the world where religion hasyri been officially abolished and where GtKho has been proclaimed dead by govern™ ment decree: The world behind the, Communist curtain. * * * • -5 COMMUNISTS have ruled Russia for^j some 52 years, and East Europe foi^i about 25 years. In Russia two genera-,,,^ tions have grown up in an atmosphere^ which glorifies anti-religious sentiments^ and which proudly makes mockery of, God. In East Europe this has been true" of one generation. Furthermore, in both 3 ' Russia and East Europe, tremendous 37 government pressure is exercisecf 3 ' against all people, young and old, who- show any interest toward religion. And yet I find that the idea of God? and of religion is stronger today in Communist Europe than it ever was in the^ past. Whatever else the Communists^ have been able to accomplish in theh*^ efforts to create the so-called "new^ man," they have utterly failed to** obliterate the religious feelings of the»^ people. . • • HI; A few weeks ago in London, I met byj* chance a small group of young East,!' European students. They were boys and/; girls in their late 'teens and early 20s They were all born under Communist • rule and they had all graduated from or Communist schools. >qe MOREOVER, they were all members of Communist youth organizations ;'oth- ? ^ erwise they would not have been al-" ?r lowed to travel to Western Europe asP !if tourists. >s'j Politically these youngsters were stilly, very much under Communist influences,-, and they talked about America and thje 2 ij West in more or less accepted Marxist^ phrases, taken straight out of the latest^ Communist propaganda textbook. When/, we came to talking about religion, * ever, their attitude changed. :" One young couple, who had been ried a few months back, openly a_. ted that they had been married ... church, although they were not supposed to do so. Others said religion was a private matter which they did not like discussing in public — it was obvious they did not want to say anything against religion. Still others claimed they believed in God in a "philosophical way." '- * ' 2l •oo* One boy said he had nothing againstiv religion if that meant "devotion to arn moral code of .behavior." A girl saidii people without faith in "something goqdii.' and perhaps supernatural" usually be* haved like animals. Not one single,, youngster professed to reject or deny"' God and to make fun of religion. '*'' * * * ' : H3S I FIND that the same is true of otherf East European visitors to the West. An<n I am not writing here about refugees of. escapees. ' "f| s In most cases these visitors represent^ the Communist ruling class and therii "new" Communist society. And in mosiv cases they are good Communists when oi political or economic and international problems are discussed. But the moment the religious issue comes to the 6 " 1 -fore, one sees clearly they do not be^ lieve in any of the tenets of Communist** atheism. . : A Senator's Notebook ^ Not'How Fasti' « But 'How Sound'* • - Ml By EVERETT McKINLEY DIRKSEN, There it a considerable clamor allfe over the country for action by the Nixon.* administration. It is both like and unliteoa the early days of Franklin D. flooseim velt's presidency, when not only actions but quantity as well followed clamor. ^ Therein we cm find a moral. * * « WITH THE administration of President Richard Nixon, high store is placed not on how fast the programs can be speeded to action, but how .soundly conceived and organized those programs^ will be. In earlier administrations, anno anti-poverty program was shaped which,!* proved to be both a costly and unsau>y n factory undertaking. # • • * • HERE AGAIN, the demonstration was 00 made of not "how fast," but "how 1 * sound" was more profitable to the inter-"'* ests of substantial economies and more; than that, in the larger interests of serv--, w ice to the people for whom the program., was designed. i« The Nixon administration emphasiW* what is durable, rather than what is dramatic.

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