Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on August 25, 1974 · Page 3
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August 25, 1974

Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 3

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Fayetteville, Arkansas
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Sunday, August 25, 1974
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Page 3
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But Little Has Changed Since 1965 Northwest Arkansas TIMES, Sun., Aug. 25, 1974 · PAVETTEVILLE. ARKANSAS 3A Watts Summer Festival Shows Hope, Pride LOS ANGELES (AP) - The saucy, straw-hatted girls drill team draws shouts of "Right On!" and "Tell it, sister" as " they strut down Central Avenue chanting a soulful marching · song. Behind the girls, black celebrities ride in. bright -convertibles, waving and smiling. Some give the clenched-fist black power salute. Every August since 1965, when Watts burned its way into notoriety, the streets have come alive for the 10-day Watts Summer Festival. It is a ma- lange of black fashion shows, Afro-American cultural exhibits, outdoor concerts, flea markets and a proud, swingy parade. The pride o£ the people is on display where nine years ago there were flames and death Watts is showing its energy, hope, joy and pride. But in these nine years little has changed in Watts, a five square-mile community that is the heart of predominantly black south-cestral .Los Ange les. ' On other days, most other days, the only parade on Cen tral Avenue is jobless b l a c k men wasting hot afternoons sit ting on upturned soft drinl crates or leaning a g a i n s parked cars. ' I Joblessness among inner city ilacks now stands at about 16 per cent, the same as it was in 1965. It is the highest unem- iloyment. rate in Los Angeles County, which has an over-all rate of 7 per cent. NO STATISTICS There are a few n e w businesses and new jobs in Watts. But statistics haven't been kept enough to offset the jobs and justnesses that vanished in the 'ires of the August 1965 riols. Welfare is still a way 9f life In city housing projects in the area more than 90 per cent of .he residents are on relief. Watts schools, among the oldest in the city, are rundown and lack the money for programs to improve reading anc math skills; Voters recently defeated a bond issue that would have provided more s c h o o l funds for all of Los Angeles. Recent tests of South Centra High School teenagers showec median reading and math scores in the high teens anc low 20s. The national norm is fitly. Watts is a community of one story frame homes. Most are old and groken, gone to see along with their brownweedec yards. Vet some houses are mended, painted and cared for with ob- 'ious pride. There are blocks hat seem to hang in the balance between renewal and-de:ay. .' In the business section, va- jant lots stand out among the juildings. Before August 1965, here were buildings on the empty lots, too. 34 DIED Rioting erupted across 48.5 square miles of south-central Los Angeles when crowds at empted to stop police from arresting a young black f o r al- eged drunken driving. In the next six days, 34 persons died and $40 million in property was damaged or destroyed. The riots took their name from the ghetto's heart, Watts, named for a man who operated a livery business there in the 1880s. During the worst days, 10.000 blacks were in the streets, loot ing, overturning and burning cars, beating whites and shoot ing at police and firemen. More than 600 buildings burned. The main business artery, 103r Street, became known as "Charcoal Alley." Watts has been free of violen racial conflict since the riots Blacks also got a spiritual lif with the election in 1973 Mayor Tom Bradley, a black. "He has raised the hopes of he people here," says the Rev. Cdgar Edwards, pastor of a Baptist church and a community leader. "1 think he's trying Bradley is seeking more fed- iral and stale aid for under- irivileged blacks. But he has een criticized for failing to organize a city wide minority recruitment program. His a i d e s say he is concerned that too much aggressive action f o r that he would turn Los Angeles Into "a black city." About 75,000 blacks live in :o do the best he can hem help themselves." s try] to h ielp Watts. With the riots, the Watts name became synonymous with the poverty, oppression, violence and despair felt by t h e appoxunately 290,000 blacks in the south-central area. " ' MONEY FALLS OFF For a while after the riots, officialdom poured emergency relief dollars into the b l a c k community. But as the Vietnam war gathered steam, q u i c k money fell off. Some improvements c a m e through, such as ' a modern health center hospital. Today, what's left of the pov erty programs is incorporate into the Greater Los Angeles Community Action A g e n c y GLACAA), which has a $32 million budget for fiscal 1973-74. n 1965-66, just one of the ;roups now in GLACAA had a mdget of $70 million. Landmarks to the money and ffort poured into the black ihelto are sprinkled throughout he community. There is a still- lew welfare building, a sparkling Bank of America branch, i small industrial park, and the lew medical center. Police - community relations, jingled out as a major cause of he riots, appear to be better ow^ Police programs like Neighborhood Watch, the Basic Car plan, and monthly block meetings get much of the cred- t. People are getting to know :he police patrolling their area. About half the school person nel in Walts is black, quite a bit more than in 1965. But new teachers "don't want to to work there and those there wan out," one school official said "Violence is a problem in schools," he added. "That a n c assaults on school personnel." One in three southside youth does not finish high school compared with the average o one in four is the rest of Lo Angeles County. If there is iiltle to celebrate Hard To Say Who's Winning Kenya Caught In Cops-Robbers Game NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -The Kenya capital has been caught up in a major cops-and- robbers game' though it js difficult to say just who is winning. Faced with a soaring crime rate, and with gangsters becoming increasingly violent and daring, the Kenya police force ig pulling no punches in its war on crime. The crime rate first began to rise in mid-1972, when armed gangs staged a series of raids on homes, hotels, restaurants, banks and bars. The government soon rammed through Parliament legislation providing for the mandatory death penalty for armed robbers who, d uring the commission of a crime, injure their victims. But the gangsters soon changed their tactics to accommodate the new legislation. Robberies became more subtle and were designed to defeat the provisions of the new "hanging bill." Victims were rarely harmed, and the robbers substituted threats of violence for real violence. As a result, no gangster has so far gone to the gallows for armed robbery. This year there has been an upsurge in violence. In the course of one week recently, three armed raids occurred within four days. But the gangsters did not come off lightly. EXAMPLE An Asian casliier waylaid' on a highway 30 miles from here by a gang attempting to snatch the $20,000 pay roll he was carrying opened fire and killed one of the gang in the gunbattle that followed. The rest fled, empty handed. A gang trying to snatch the watch of an Asian youth in a back street in the city came to grief when a plainclothes detective tailing them shot and killed two of the robbers. In fact, attacks on lone individuals are not really the style of most gangsters. For them it is far more profitable to rob a bank or grab a pay oil. As a result of a spate of armed robberies in recent months, banks have stepped up their security. Staff who handle money and come into contact with members of the public are now provided with bullet-proof cubicles. Counters now also have steel railings that ?nake it impossible for anyone to vault over them. Closed-circuit television cameras screen customers in some banks. Nearly all banks employ armed guards. In some cases the guards are reinforced by guard dogs, whose viciousness and ability to snap at all and sundry occasionally prompt a spirited debate. in the local press. Private security firms, assured of booming business, are mushrooming all over the country. RAIDS INCREASE Coupled with the increase in flrmed robbery is the soaring number of raids on privat homes, and auto thefts. Polic estimate conservatively tha there are at least a dozen aut thefts in the capital daily. On major Insurance firm ha warned that policies would longer cover theft unless policj holders could show that t cars were fitted with approve antiburglar devices. Police believe auto thieve follow a familiar pattern. Ths never hold on to a "hot" v hide for more than a few day The vehicle is invariably use to commit another crime, as getaway car. The better to see you with. iy a summer festival? "Because we c a n generate oiisands 01 dollars into the mmuiiity rather than out . .. id that has to have a positive ipacl," says Tommy Jac- uellc, who has run the festival nee 1968. "And we can create community spirit," Jacquette, 30, is a tall former ing leader with a full board nd an air of authority. T h e ot, he s a y s , "changed my hole life .. . turned me right around." Since then he has icon connected with a number ot community action groups. "After 1965 people said, 'There's massive unemployment and crime and poverty.' " Jacqueltc says. "Hell, they were all here before the riot. And if another incident were to hreak out .they'd say 'Unemployment is higher now than in 19G5 ... there are no opportunities' . .. just like they're just discovering that now." TERMITES ? CALL ADMIRAL PEST CONTROL Roaches, Ants, Spirfen, etc. COMMERCIAL * RESIDENTIAL,' · 442-7298 H. I. S. Trio from Tulsa will be at Mt. Sequoyah Assembly Grounds Fri. night Aug. 23 at 7:00 P.M., Sat. night 7:00 P.M. and Sun. Aft. 2:30, singing and preaching The Good News from the heart. EVERYONE IS INVITED Wherever You Go . . . Go BANDOLINO ...... . . ' . . ' . j _ Whether you prefer active or spectator sports, Ban- dolino has the style you'll love. -J (left) "Sleaker" Suede flat with crepe sole. Wine, Rusi or Blue. 20.00 (Right) "Sergio" Tan Leather oxford wilh thick crepe sole. 26.00 Safety pays and so does Mcllroy Bank. Just bring 300 pennies in to us and we'll give you three dollars along with this 6-foot bike banner. It's fun. And it's free. So come on in. Nowadays, a penny saved is a penny wasted. (left) "Atotri" Came!' Leather sandal with rust heel and platform. Free bike flags from Mcllroy Bank. ^^ ^f »itci,jtDCD cnrr* MEMBER FDIC (Right) "Amati" Tan Leather sandal with slacked heel. 27.00 Boston Store NORTHWEST ARKANSAS PLAZA SHOP MONDAY THROUGH SATURDAY 10:00 A.M. TILL 9'00 P.M.

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