Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on May 18, 1974 · Page 4
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May 18, 1974

Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 4

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Fayetteville, Arkansas
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Saturday, May 18, 1974
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Editorial-Opinion Page The Public Interest It The Firit Concern Oj Thit Netospoper 4 · Saturday, May 18, 1974 Sunlight And Fresh Air Circuit Judge Henry Britt of Hot . Springs this week signed an order directing (he Hot Springs School Board to follow strictly the state's Freedom of Information Act. The ruling is noteworthy, we think -in addition to the specific instance in question -- for its general application around - the state. School Boards tend to be shy about ·. publicity. More so, perhaps, than most elec- '. live bodies. But Ihe law in Arkansas is 1 quite specific and Judge Britt explains it quite well. In the Hot Springs case, the Board held unannounced sessions, in which it was able to avoid media coverage, dealing with disciplinary problems involving both students : and teachers. Hot Springs newspapers sued ; for the right to cover such proceedings. Judge Briit, in finding for the public's · right to know, explains that while state law allows closed juvenile court sessions, the law does not bar the press from access to names of students and parents in school matters. "I see no real objection to public sessions of school boards when they have to hear appeals of disciplinary matters," declares Judge Britt. "It occurs to me that if a parent and child appeal from a superintendent or principal to a board, it (the press) perhaps should expose the whole business to a little sunlight and fresh air." School business IS public business, and there is good reason to have the actions and decisions of school officials open to public view, particularly when they are brought into question from time to time by parent or student. Sunlight and fresh air go with the educational process, when you get right down to it, and school boards ought to be the first to realize that fact. From The Readers Viewpoint Chicken Little .To the Editor: Allan Gilbert in "Our Times" of May 12, 1974, says that the Washington County Historical Society is "too busy with otfier ma Hers to get itself involved in setting up plans for the (bicentennial) celebration." The Society has just enough lime left, his tone implies, to work-up a kind of B i c e n t e n n i a l Chicken o t Tomorrow Festival or a gala ritualistic destruction of all downtown Fayettcvillc lo symbolize tlie "new horizons of modern taste." I would like to know where Mr. Gilbert gels his information. It is true that the WCHS is an activist organi- lalion, currently campaigning to save Ihc Ridge House, maintaining its present historical properties, carrying on archeological digs, devoting hundreds of hours monthly to historical and genealogical research, etc., but with over six hundred concerned members, the society has never been "too busy with other matters 1 ' to ignore its obligations and certainly not now for the bicentennial year. Unlike Cam den and Fort Smith, we have not made our plans public, nor have we yet sought official designation as a "Bicentennial Community." It is, however, still two years away from the "bicentennial month," and permanent accomplishments w i t h i n o u r county will be the test of our responsibility rather than advance PR work, like labelling a city "Bicentennial Community. " But in order to dlspell Mr. Gilbert of the idea (in thn future) t h a t his editorial somehow set the fires within the society, I can point out now t h a t the WCHS already has considered applying for an "official designalon." that the .ground work has already been laid for joint participatinn between the cities of Fayctle- vtlle and Springdale and U r b a n Renewal to acquire some historical sites, that the WCHS has already begun work on an historical register for the county to include not only homes, but sites and in one case even an historic tree, and (if details can be worked out) that we are working on a junior historian program, which the state of Arkansas badly needs. Mr. Gilbert (and the WCHS for that matter) would like to have the old Post Office saved. In fact, it can be saved for approximately $235,400, the price Urban Renewal paid for it. Historic preservation in small towns is very much like being in a burning house alone, with a few minutes left to decide what will be saved. An antique chest worth thousands of dollars may be more valuable than grandpa's rocker, " b u t if you can't carry the chest, then it has to be destroyed. Fayetteville has a better than average record of historic preservation for a town of its size, but there is no way the community can carry everything. The earliest settlers did not come to Fayelteville to make history. They came because of the area's attractive n a t u r a l surroundings a n d because they felt they could make a living here. Conditions have not changed. If the city can afford the old Post Office, it might take it over. If it can'L unfortunately it will have to go. In any case, the WCHS, even as the official agency for the bicentennial year, has no power to appropriate a $235,400 building for a temporary headquarters. Currently no plans have been made for any festival, though Mr. Gilbert's suggestions will not go unheeded. We could have a pageant, incorporating such events as the "Chicken of T o m o r r o w ' 1 celebration. Perhaps Mr..Gilbert would be ideal then to play Chicken LittTe for us. Sincerely yours, Dwain Manske. president, (Washington County Historical Society) How Strange To the Editor: Isn't it strange that some of those braying the loudest, whose sensitive feelings were so seriously injured by President Nixon's use of damns and calling a few liberal fellow travelers s.o.b.'s in a supposedly private discussion, yet have no comments and even defend and promote filthy movies and stage shows. The open displays of pornographic magazines and books on the news stands, and the filling of our library with books, whose chief merit appears to be the salty language used by the characters which in many cases would make an old time mule skinner blush with shame. How hypocritical can they get? Omer L. Verwers Fayctleville Thanks To the Editor: Thanks to the advertisement In the paper, (he response was overwhelming when our house burned, People gave us everything we needed to start all over again in less than a week after the fire. Thank you and God bless everyone who had a part in helping us when we needed it so desperatlly. The Billy Ward family Billy Sharon Clark Mark Diana Adina Fayelteville 10 Years After Nehru NEW DELHI (ERR) -- Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru died in New Delhi 10 years ago -- on May 27, 1961 "Okay, You Go Out And Speak For Me Next, Then The Maid - Where's King Timahoe?" JAWAHARLAL, N E H R U , who died just a decade ago, has not been treated kindly by revisionist historians. As A. M. Rosenthal of The New York Times recently observed, the revisionists view India's first prime minister "as a fine man, certainly, but as a poor administrator, a leader who spent too much time worrying about other nations' business, a man who disastrously misjudged China's attitude toward India and led his nation into war unprepared, and was trounced, and a man who bad started to slip years before he died." This appraisal seems unjust. Nehru, after all, served for 17 years as prime minister of the world's second-most-populous country. And despite wrenching problems of poverty, language, religious enmity and regionalism, he saw to it that India remained one of the few true democracies in Asia. Nehru devoted most of his energies to foreign affairs, and it was here that he posted his most impressive achievements -- and most shattering defeats. At the height of his influence, in the middle and late 1950s, he was widely acknowledged as spiritual leader of the nonaligned countries. Nehru's espousal of nonalignment initially was regarded with skepticism by both Washington and Moscow. By 1959, however, the Indian leader was able to say that "whether it is in the United Nations or...elsewhere, we are respected all over the world." THAT RESPECT DID not last. As time went on, Neville Maxwell of Oxford University noted, "Indians erected over the practical nub of nonalignment an elaborate, almost metaphysical, structure of theory." Indian policy came to be viewed by many foreign observers as excessively moralistic and holier-than-thou. Thus. India's defeat at the hands of China in the 1962 border war was doubly humiliating to Nehru and his countrymen. He failed to make good his r a t h e r dubious territorial claims and exposed India as militarily weak. More damaging, perhaps, was the fact that Nehru handled the dispute in a devious way that did not accord at all with his stated principles of international relations. TODAY, A DECADE after Nehru's death, India is at once a stronger and a weaker country. Industrial and agricultural production both have increased. And India's defeat of Pakistan in 1971, which led to the creation of Bangladesh as an independent country, did much to eradicate the disgrace of 1962. But India's main problem -coping with its burgeoning population -- looms larger tban ever. According to the Population Reference Bureau, India's population in mid-1973 was 600.4 million. It is expected to reach 807.6 million by 1980. Every year India gains 13 million more people -- roughly equivalent to the population of Australia. The soaring prices of imported oil, fertilizer, and industrial products have weakened the nation's capacity to meet the people's needs. Moreover, Gandhi's government has been attacked as corrupt. Her years in office has been "marked by alarming decadence in political life," the New Delhi correspondent of Far Eastern Economic Review charged. Through it all, though, India has remained a free country. With time, wisdom and luck, it may be able to meet its problems in a democratic fashion. Auto Industry In State Of Flux WASHINGTON (ERR) -- This year has not been a happy one for the American automobile industry. Sales have plummeted, production has been cut d r a s t i c a l l y , thousands o f workers have been laid off. and dealers have been plagued with huge inventories of cars they cannot sell. Declining profits have forced two of the Big Three auto manufacturers - Ford a n d Chrysler -- to announce cutbacks in capital spending. General Motors, the largest and hardest hit of the companies, feels pressured to increase its spending in a massive switch to smaller cars. Only fourth- ranked American Motors, with its production devoted mainly to small cars, has shown a profit. Detroit's woes are also Washington's woes. They are sending shivers through the economy and inviting comparisons with the 1958 recession, a downturn that was preceded by an auto slump. That the industry has such an impact on the economy is hardly surprising. More than 10 per cent of the gross national product is devoted to buying and maintaining cars and building roads for them. Auto manufacturing consumes 73 per cent of the rubber, 41 per cent of the malleable iron, 36 per cent of the glass, and 6 per cent of the steel used in the United States. One worker o u t of every six in this country is employed in an aptomobile- related business. CAUSING -- AND compounding -- the current pro- blem is a shift in demand from large to small cars spurred by gasoline shortages and high prices, inadequate supplies of raw materials, federal safety and pollution standards and agreements with the government not to raise prices beyond a certain level. Probably the major reason for the bleak picture has been an overproduction of big luxury cars and a dearth of compacts and subeompacts. The shift in consumer demand for gas-saving small models accelerated after the Arab countries imposed an oil embargo on the United States last October. Between 1970 and 1973. small car sales increased from 25 to 42 per cent of total auto sales. In the first two months of this year, they rose to 53 per cent. Nevertheless, automakers are not sure whether the small car Irend is a permanent cue. The lifting of the oil embargo in March made gasoline more available but did nothing lo keep prices at the pump from rising. But despite higher fuel costs, the availability of gasoline is believed responsible for a sizable upturn in bis car sales in April. Ward's Automotive R e p o r t s , t h e industry's statistical service, conclud'ccl that the medium-sized and large car resurgence was "a sure sign that the topsy-turvy auto market has regained some degree of normalcy." Manufacturers certainly hope so. The production cost of l a r g e cars is generally only a few hundred dollars more than for compact models while the selling price is often several thousand dollars more. Thus, Ihe demand of small cars, if it continues, will crimp industry profits even further. Those for the first quarter of this year were described by the 'Wall Street Journal as t h e "worst ever." .. FOR MANUFACTURERS, the overriding question is w h e t he r the small - car popularity will l a s t . Henry Ford II seems lo think it will while his counterpart at G e n e r a l Motors, board chairman Richard C. Gersten- bcrg. is less sure. Despite such doubts and differences of opinion, Detroit is planning to spend at least a billion dollars this year lo convert factories from standard-size to small-car production. Lawrtnco J. While of Princc- lo' 1 . University, a consultant lo Ihc Senate Anlilrust and Monopoly Sulrcomniiltec, summed up the problem f a c i n g Hie industry's decision makers: If consumer tastes change [n llic three years between the design and Ihe marketing of a new car, ttic company will sell fewer curs, and if it "were to guess wrong a second lime, it would find ilself in serious straits." There is no clear picture as yet whether Ihc scarcity of gasoline this past winter -made a lasting impression on the nation's car buyers or whether the type of automobile they favor has changed. Auto manufacturers are faced with these uncertainties as they plan the cars of Iho future. Their decisions will nffecl not only I h c industry's profits but the entire U.S economy as well. Arkansas Editors Comment On Reading, No-Fault, Politics And Gun Control SOUTHWEST TIMES RECORD {Fort Smith) People who visit recreation areas in the national forests could save themselves trouble by acquainting themselves with the rules and observing them. Recreation areas in the Ozark National Forest are now open, but it does not mean visitors have unrestricted use of them. Some areas are for specific purposes, and there arc stringent rules on conduct and practices. Penalties for violation of the federal law on forest regulations are heavy, and the fact that a person does not know about a regulation is no excuse for breaking it. At each recreation area, there are signs detailing practices which are not acceptable and listings of specific b a n n e d actions. Reading those signs takes only a few minute;, hul it could save hours of trouble and a considerable fine if one observes the conditions for use laid down in the sign. A few minutes to acquaint oneself with the rules for an area is a good investment for every visitor. ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT A survey by a University of Arkansas professor has indicated that people in the state who have used a lawyer have been satisfied with the service they received. The study was conducted by telephone and was limited to 477 persons selected from communities on a weighted scale. This size and the telephone, and selection techniques are questioned by modern authorities on poll taking. But even if this poll is accurate on yers, it leaves unanswered the matter of the general reputation of the profession in Arkansas. For example, it would be interesting to know how the public feels about the stale Bar Association's tactics to kill no- fault auto insurance in the Arkansas legislature. Us lobbying killed the chance for real no- f a u l t insurance by getting passed a ridiculous bill that made no - fault coverage voluntary. No-fault allows each person's own company lo pay his own claims, regardless of who is at fault in a wrack. It reduces the cost of premiums by eliminating the cost of settling claims, primarily in legal fees for lawyers. But it musl be mandalory for everyone, or it is lo no one's advantage to have it. Ideally, the plan would have been instiluled by ( h e states. But thanks to the'tactics of lawyers worried by losing money from claims suits, it is clear most states won't pass effective laws. It is clear, however, that the only way consumers will get this relief is through a federal no-fault law. The Senate has just passed a good one 53-42 on Wednesday. If it becomes law. and car insurance premiums go down, it would be a good time to poll people in Arkansas about how they feel about the state bar then, in light of the fact that t h o s e savings were delayed for years by the bar's influence on the legislature. Which, incidentally, includes several lawyers. SEARCY DAItY CITIZEN' It is increasingly obvious that Senator Fulbright Is having a foiiTh fim/* nirkin* a fi?ht with Governor Bumpers because the governor is playing his strong suit ... presenting an image of confidence, displaying that infectious smile and saying nothing that would make anybody mad, Unless the senator can force the governor to take some sort of a stand on something, he is in trouble and surely must know it. Our position, clear from the beginning, is t h a t Ihe governor, for all his charm, simply picked the wrong time and candidale to oppose. Arkansas simply cannol afford lo lose Ihe senator's seniority in order to do a favor for a handsome and friendly governor. Seniority in a small state is the name of the g a m e With it. yon can get whatever you want out of Washington. Without it, you can't get anything. Even our agreement with Bumpers lhat Ihe seniorily system, in principle, is wrong doesn't change the fact that it is of vital importance to our small state. And. we have to add that our opposition to the seniority system does not include any reasonable alternative to it.... LOG CABIN DEMOCRAT A winning smile is a great thing for getting votes, but it won't cut much ice in the U.S. Senate. That's the gist of Sen. J. William Fulbright's campaign as the historic challenge from Gov. Dale Bumpers enters the final weeks. The struggle has national, even international implications, we're told and with all the notice the contest has gotten throughout the nation, we can thing like that to simple terms? hdiovc it. Well, maybe you don't. Not in three weeks .anyway, a n d that's all that's left. But Mr, Fulbright is trying, and Gov. Dale Bumpers i trying equally hard. It's a game of catch-up for the senator, a game of holding his osvn for Mr. Bumpers, if we read the signs right. Will fhe records of the two men be seriously considered by a majority of voters on May 28? Maybe, but it is unlikely. They've both ticked off their records -- Mr. Fulbright pointing to his 30 years in the Senate. Mr, Bumpers his four years in the governor's office. Does ail that matter to voters? Perhaps it all serves only to color the image of the men a litlle one way or the other. When the voter is poising his pencil above the ballot on Ihe fire truck fender, or contemplating the levers in the voting machine booth, he'll decide -- if he hasn't before then -- on the basis of which one he "likes". Hopefully, it will go at least one step beyond that, to a consideration of the question we've posed here before: Which man can do the most for Arkansas in the next six years? bill was so mild it shouldn't ·be characterized as gun control. It simply prohibited carrying loaded rifles or shotguns in a vehicle, and it was killed by the slate Senate in 1965. Faubus is criticizing Pryor for being so bold on the subject, saying t h a t he would never support any legislation that would disarm people. We, on the other hand, think Pryor has been loo limid on gun control. We base Ibis posilion on Ihe statement by his campaign manager t h a t Pryor had voted against every gun control bill that came up in the U.S. House of Representatives while Pryor was serving his t h r e e terms [here. We believe there is a serious need for legislation keeping criminals and unstable persons from buying guns and stopping the sale of $9 Salur- day-night specials to anyone. Both Pryor and Faubus obviously are more concerned about getting the votes of the people who love guns than they are about preventing murders by people who shouldn't have guns. to substantiate Mr. Faubus' charge. There are those who seek lo gain control of the course of government through financial contributions t o particular candidates. There often are those who s e e k to persuade potential candidates to stay out of races. This reportedly has happened in Desha County this year -- although it can't b« proved directly. Kingmaking will go one, but if a group gathers to try to keep potential candidates out of races, il ought to bo deemed a conspiracy. No one person or group of persons should have the right lo determine who runs or does not run for political qfficc. From Our Files; How Time Flies] ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT We join Orval Faubus in crilicizing David Pryor for Pryor's sland on gun conlrol. Fauhus says that Pryor, his opponent in (he governor's race, introduced the only gun control law ever introduced in the Arkansas legislature. In fact, Arkansas police chiefs got a gun control bill introduced in t h e T973 1pirl«latur». And Prrirr's DUMAN CLARION As long as there as been politics there have been king- makers. The apparent fact lhat a group of kingmakers got together with David Pryor and Orval Faubus prior to the announcement for the gubernatorial race is no.i specUcuIar. If the group, as Orval Faubus has charged, tried to keep as many as 28 other potential gubernatorial candidates to stay out of the race, then a king- making meeting is tenons business. There Is no way. of coarse. 10 YEARS AGO Residents of Winslow will vote tomorrow on whether or not to become a city of second- class status. Members of fhe Fayetteville City Council met Thursday with persons contesting proposed 50 YEARS AGO A total of 251 votes had been cast in the school election at 2:30 o'clock this afternoon. Provision is made on the ballot for voting for or against the 12 mill lax. A reception and dance for doctors and t h e i r wives attending the Arkansas Medical Society convention here next 100 YEARS AGO The dispatches this morning brings no change for the better at the capital. Another desperate engagement was prevented the other day by intervenlion of federal Iroops. Cane Hill Female Seminary: Cane Hill, Washinglon County, Arkansas: Miss Clara F. Allen, principal: Miss Susan E. Corey, conslruction of the Washington County Sale Barn. Gov. Orval F,. Faubus will attend an open house to which the people of Fayotteville are invilcd, from 4 lo 7 p.m. Mon- 'day. week, is planner! by the entertainment committee. T. C. Carlson, cxecutiv* secretary to University president John C. Futrall. will speak this afternoon before the National Association of Colleges and University Business Officers at Madison, Wise. assistant principal; Examinations at the close of the current session, June 15 and 18; Fall term begins Sept. 7. 1874. Music, vocal and instrumental is laught. Board can he obtained from good families from V to $2.50 a week. The best place to cool off in the city, is at the Soda Fountain at Adams and Bro.'s drug store.

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