TUESDAY, DECEMBER is, loss BLYTHEVTLI.E (AK1O COURIER NEW? PAGE THRE1 Divorce Law Controversy May Be Resolved in '54 By HERB ALTSCHULL WASHINGTON (AP) — There is a strong possibility that 1954 might clear the air about one of the nation's most perplexing social problems: Divorce. There are two reasons: 1. A House committee will take up a bill, passed by the Senate earlier this year, that would require each state to honor a divorce obtained in another state if certain requirements are met. 2. The Supreme Court will be asked to decide whether a person must be a domiciliary of the state in which he Recures a divorce. These two questions are at the very heart of the divorce problem, which has bewildered lawyers and judges ever since the United States came into being. Sen. McCarran (D-Nev), author if the bill now before the House, said today that many divorced Americans are confronted with becoming lawbreakers if they get married again. This, McCarran said, is because i divorce secured in one state may not be honored in another and the parties to the divorce may,be accused of bigamy if they remarry. Such a thing has happened. McCarran's bill says that, when four specific requirements are met a divorce granted legally in one state "must be given full faith and credit in every state as a dissolution of such marriage." These, he said, are the requirements : (1) The divorce decree must be final; (2) it must be valid in the state in which rendered; (3) it must meet the jurisdiclional requirements of the state granting the divorce, and (4) both parties to the divorce must appear personally or be represented by counsel at the court proceedings. The McCarran bill would "implement" the full faith and credit clause of the Constitution, which says: ) "Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records and judicial proceedings of every other state. And the Congress may by general laws ••••••••••••*•••*•*•««•• THEATRE Manila, Ark. (Wide Vision Screen) TUES., & WED. BATTLE ZONE With John Hodiak Stephen McNally Linda Christian prescribe the manner in which such acts> records and proceet ings shall be proved, and the e feet thereof." Constitution Says Nothing: The Constitution says nothln whatsoever about divorce. McCai ran and others long have main tained that a constitutional amend :nent would be required before th nation could have a uniform di vorce law, McCarran is opposed to a unl form divorce law. Every effort \ enact one over the years has me with failure. The Senator's home state of Ne p ada for a long time has been re garded as the nation's unofficia divorce center. Recent tabulation by the National Office of Vita Statistics show: In 1950; the national average fo divorces was 2.6 for each 1,00 persons. In Nevada, the averag was 55.7. Florida was second wit] an average of 6.5. Supreme Court Justice Hug' Black has said: "A divorced person's liberty . . :iinges on his ability to 'guess 1 a what may ultimately be the lega and factual conclusions resulting" from the consideration of two o the most uncertain word symbol in all the judicial lexicon, 'juris diction' and 'domicile.' " Here's what might very wel happen under the law as it stands Mrs. Jones goes lo Nevada and secures a divorce without telling her husband about it. She goes back home to New York and re marries, whereupon her first hus band decides to sue her for di vorce, claiming she was not legal ly divorcd under New York law Could Be Jailed If the New York courts agree with him, Mrs. Jones could be seni to jail for bigamy. McCarran's bill would seek to settle the question of jurisdiction which involves the issue of whether the state granting the divorce has the legal power to act in the case The appeal to the Supreme Cour next month should settle the ques tion of domicile. There are further considerations, of course, such as property settlements, alimony and child custody. But these questions do not figure directly in the two big questions now up for decision. A divorce decree does nothing but dissolve a marriage. All settlements come under separate court orders. Everyone knows, of course, that many Americans are morally il not legally guilty of perjury when they seek a divorce decree. Many a citizen is lying under oath, when after going to Nevada from another state to seek a divorce, he or she swears intention to reside in Nevada. But legally, under the six-weeks requirement, there is no perjury. Hearing- In January It is this question of domicile that is at issue in the appeal which will go to the Supreme Courl by Jan. 15. The Legislature of the Virgin Islands, a U. S. possession, early Ihis year passed a law which said that anyone who spends six weeks in the Islands may seek a divorce there. The law substitutes "resi. dence" for "domicile" and thus does not require a divorce seeker swear that he intends to make the Islands his permanent home. Thus the entire matter of domi- Phone 4621 Show Starts Weekdays 7:00 p.m. Sat. & Sun. 1:00 p.m. TUC ATDC I nCMI KC West Main St. In Blytheville ON OUR WIDE-VISION METALLIC SCREEN TUESDAY and WEDNESDAY DOUBLE FEATURE MAN _INTHE DARK EDMONO AUDRtT O'BRIEN -TOTTER —ALSO— PLUS 3-D CARTOON —Glasses JOc— Bring Your Own GREAT ICELAND BRITAIN V Legend Submarine Cable Radio Relay LONG DISTANCE CALLING—Plan for laying the first transatlantic telephone cable is indicated on above Newsmap. The $35 million project, which will span some 2000 miles, will be the longest underseas voice wire in the world when completed in 1956. Messages will move from New Vork to Portland, Me., by land lines, and from Portland to Nova Scotia by microwave relay It is expected to provide swifter, clearer telephone connections between cities in the U. S. and London, and through London to most points in continental Iviirope. The project is a joint venture of the American Telephone and Telegraph Co., the British Post Office and the Canadian Overseas Telecommunications Corp oration. cile is cast aside. Mrs. David Alton, wife of the aresident of the Horton Co., a Hartford, Conn., contracting firm, went to the Virgin Islands last spring, spent six weeks there and hen filed suit for divorce. Her hus- >and was represented by an at- ,orney. There are no children. U. S. Dist. Judge Herman E. vloore, presiding over the Virgin Islands court, agreed that the ground of incompatibility of temperament had been established, but refused Mrs. Alton a divorce on he ground she had not shown domicile. He held that was necessary in her case even though the aw had been amended to omit domicile as a requirement. In ef- ect he thus invalidated that part if the new divorce law. Decision Appealed Mrs. Alton's attorneys appealed o the U. S. 3rd Circuit Court in 'hiladelphia, asking that these be set aside. But the court agreed with Judge Woore in a 4-3 decision. It struck down the Virgin Islands' law as unconstitutional on two grounds: 1. A six-weeks' sojourn without roof of the intent with which one makes it tends to establish nothing "iut the fact of six weeks' physical iresence. 2. A law which permits a divorce :o be gained without proof of domi- ile is unconstitutional under the Fifth Amendment, which provides for due process of law hi all pro- \ and the Circuit Court, it may ceedings. Judge William Hastie, former governor of the Virgin Islands, said in a dissenting opinion that he saw no reason to overturn the law. He said the Constitution does not make it mandatory that a person establish domicile before he can go into court and ask for a divorce. Mrs. Alton contends that under the Constitution any state or territory has the right to make its own rules about divorce requirements. Significant Ruling Seen While the Supreme Court has ruled many times on divorce matters, there was no record available today that, would indicate the court has ever before been asked to test the constitutionality of the divorce laws of a state or terri. lory, where they have not been challenged by another state. Milton Freeman of Washington, an attorney for Mrs. Alton, said in answer to a question: "Whatever the court does, it is likely to be of sweeping significance. " it refuses to listen to our appeal, it will be upholding the lower courts and the Virgin Islands' law must be held unconstitutional. "If it hears argument and still rules it unconstitutional, the effect will be the same. "But if it overturns Judge Moore jtablish as the law of the land that a state has the right to declare that domicile is not a requirement in divorce cases." a fitting Gift for him] Dress Boats 'You'll Weal- Everywhere Sizei 6-12 Width* A-B-C-D $1695 you'll wear everywhere. 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The indies, long one of (he most vital forces in Hie industry, have been hard hit by the revolution in movie economics. Six Pictures In business only a year and a Wayne-Fellows is now pi'o- its fifth and six pictures. One is/'Ring of Fear," a, circus yarn with Clyde Beatty, Mickey Spillano and other characters. It is shootina 1 in Phoenix, Ariz. The other is the Ernest Gann best seller "The High and the Mighty." The air picture features one of the most distinguished casts 'n recent times: Wayne, Claire Trr.'vnr, Luniine Day, Jan Sterling, Robert Newton, Robert Stack. Phil Harris, David Brian. Sidney Blackmer, etc. Not bad for an indie, eh? I asked Wayne how his independent company managed to succeed while so many failed. "Because we have the best deal in town." he replied. "I went into Bean* ore fine, but YuFetide Demands more lavish fare. Order up your poultry Before the market's bore. spent a lot of years at Republic apprenticing for production. And I've profited by the mistakes that friends of mine—stars, directors and producers—hnve made with their own companies. Hidden Charges "Other companies have failed because they haven't been able to buck the bis companies. They make deals that look swell on paper. But when they finish up, they're taken for all kinds of hidden charges. You just can't make a go of it unless you can keep the companies from piling up the costs on you. "That's what's great about our deal with Warners. We agree to bring in a picture for a certain 'this thing with my eyes open. I'cost, and they put up the money. .They are limited to • certain figure on the charges for distribution, advertising and prints. "The deal has worked out well for both parties. Warners got ba.pk 33 1-3 per cent on its Investment on our first picture, 'Big Jim McClain, 1 which wasn't my Idea of a very good movie. They also mad* money on 'Plunder in the Sun.' 'Island in the Sky' has done well for a Wayne picture, but it would, have done better if they had sold it properly. "Our latest one i& 'Hondo' *nd it appears set to make i. fistful. I went down to Texas to sett that it got a good sendoff." A. L. Barber Is New Arkansas GOP Chairman LITTLE ROCK W— L. A. Barber of Little Rock became chairman of the Republican State Commlttea yesterday after his opponent, Verna Tindall of Stuttgart, stopped an uproar by conceding the election. The result of the vote to choosa a successor to Osro Cobb of Little Rock, who resigned to become U. S. District Attorney for Eastern Arkn nsas, was announced u 48 for Barber to 48 for Tindall. Earlier, Cobb said the national administration may act next year to replace many Democrats on the federal payroll with Republicans. DREIFUS Fiery solitaire matching wedding rins. 51.00 WEEKLY West Bend aulom.ilic "f < percolator ' ' 51.00 WEEKI.V ** \\- DHEIFUS Meet Dreifus ® Wear Diamonds 31K WEST MAIJV ST.
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