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6The Daily Tar HeelFriday, April 1 1, 1986
94th year of editorial freedom
e maoiiiess ok
Monuments as venerable as the U.S.
Constitution are not immune to occa
sional abuse. One of the most notable
offenders of such atrocities is the
National Rifle Association, whose
leadership has repeatedly so exploited
the intent of the Second Amendment
that congressional members continu
ously succumb to Washington's most .
The latest manipulation came this
week during debate over the Firearms
Owners' Protection Act, which proposed
virtual revocation of the 1968 Gun
Control Act. The focal points of the new
act are to greatly weaken federal
regulations on gun dealers and to allow
interstate sale and transportation of
The Senate has already passed that
package by an overwhelming margin.
Fortunately, the House's watered-down
version displayed some degree of
rationality. That amended version now
goes to the Senate for approval.
But this week's lobbying on both sides
of the issue was quite disturbing. On
Wednesday, the gun lobby had appar
ently overcome vigorous politicking by
every major national police organization
when the House voted not to continue
the ban on the interstate sale of firearms.
A weaker amendment, limited only to
handguns, passed Thursday with the
police organizations' approval.
What is so twisted about all this? The
foundation of the NR A's argument
against gun control is the Second
Good stsoWo P
A recent PBS documentary, aired
Wednesday by the UNC Center for
Public Broadcasting, paints a vivid, two-and-a-half-hour
portrait of the Palesti
nian Israeli dilemma, arguably the
most important and probably the most
protracted of struggles. It's too bad
many Jewish groups protested the
documentary, as its airing can only
contribute to the understanding of the
complex conflict between Israel's Jews
and Arabs, at least here in the States.
The guiding concept of the program,
titled "Flashpoint Israel and the
Palestinians," is similar to that of the
op-ed page of many American newspap
ers. Opposing viewpoints are offered
side-by-side, each given approximately
the same space. The reader, or in this
instance the viewer, can better decide
which side has the better case or
indeed, whether either side has a case
"Flashpoint" features two half-hour,
pro-Israel (i.e., Jewish) films and one
hour-long, pro-Palestinian (i.e., Arab)
film, each produced by a different
source. A point-counterpoint segment
between a member of the Knesset
(Israel's parliament) and a Columbia
University professor closes the program.
Of course, the same old charges pop
up: X is persecuting Y, Y employs
terrorism to achieve its ends, X belongs
Terrorism reared its ugly head again last
week, and the United States began
working out a hard-line response against
the country it suspects of supporting terrorists
A bomb in a Berlin disco that killed a y.S.
Army sergeant and a Turkish woman and
wounded 230 others was immediately suspected
to be the work of Libya's leader, Col. Moammar
Khadafy. The Reagan administration says it has
amassed considerable evidence that Khadafy is
in part responsible for many recent acts of
terrorism. Reagan warned in a news conference
that as soon as it knew who was responsible
for a terrorist act, the United States would
Khadafy, the "mad dog of the Middle East,"
denied that he was involved with any terrorist
acts. He reiterated warnings that any American
strike against Libya would be met by acts of
aggression on foreign soil.
The White House called on some of its allies
to expel Libyan diplomats from their countries.
Wednesday, the West German government
expelled two Libyans, apparently because of
Crisis in Israel
A rill developed in the coalition between the
RANOY i;ARMFR. AWcw.c ''
Sl UART TONKINSON. Asxnulc Editor
Grant Parsons, Uninnity Editor
Bryan Gati.s. ,v . Editor
KERSTIN COYLE. City Editor
Jill. CiLRBLR. State und Xalioiul Editor
SCOTT iW.iR. Sport x Editor
DLNlSi; SMITHLRMAN. lutnns Editor
ROBLRT Ktl-FL. Bushivss Editor
ELIZABITH El-LLN. Arts Editor
Dan Chariton. Photon, pin Editor
the NM A
Amendment, which features that bela
bored phrase, "the right to keep and bear
arms." However, the phrase does not
refer to the citizenry. Daniel Poliitt,
UNC professor of law and an expert on
civil liberties, said that statement applies
to the "well-regulated militia" estab
lished by the Constitution. That's the
Army, not the duck hunters.
This is not just Poliitt 's interpretation
of the constitution. "You can put your
finger on 20 decisions that say there's
no right to bear arms. It's indisputable,"
he said. Those decisions have been made
in the state, federal and U.S. Supreme
courts. Not one decision has favored the
anti-gun control lobby, Poliitt said.
So why is the NR A so powerful? With
a membership of about 3 million,
including President Reagan, this special
interest group is a most effective user
of scare tactics. It convinces owners that
Congress is going to take away a hunter's
right to own a rifle, or a collector's right
to display his cache.
All 11 N.C. Congressmen supported
Wednesday's measure to not lift the
interstate ban. The representatives'
reasoning offered no more than ridic
ulously weak attempts to hide the NR A's
influence on their voting. Rep. Stephen
L. Neal of Winston-Salem confessed he
talked to no one to find out anything
about opposition to the bill.
When the NRA snaps its fingers,
legislators jump. They've shown it this
week, and there is little to stop the NRA
from snapping again.
in territory claimed by Y because it is
X's homeland. The joke is that both sides
make the same claims an irony the
PBS special punctuates.
The documentary isn't worthless,
however. "Occupied Palestine," the
program's pro-Arab and most contro
versial segment,, forcefully depicts
Palestinian unrest in the Israeli-occupied
Gaza Strip, northwest of Israel on the
Mediterranean shore, and in the West
Bank, along the Jordan-Israel border.
One Arab father, after the slaying of his
daughter by Israeli troops, laments that,
if the bullet weren't in his daughter's
head, "it would be in someone else's."
The incident may be overblown after
all, even justified occupations are rarely
bloodless but it does offer a working
gauge of the area's strife.
In another scene, thousands of Pales
tinians fill a West Bank street, chanting,
"We shall fight!" undoubtedly a
horrific image to the Jerusalem admin
istration headed by Prime Minister
Many Jewish Americans apparently
didn't like it either, which gave some
PBS stations pause six of them, in
fact, refused to air the documentaryBut
159 others did; they realized the impor
tance of disseminating information that
takes account of both sides.
s5: veep's aboMtrface, Mayor; Clint, peace
TJgo!!i bod CousGl17
Labor and Likud parties threatened the stability
of the Israeli government. After Likud Finance
Minister Yitzhak Modai said that Labor Prime
Minister Shimon Peres knew nothing about
economics, Peres announced that he wanted to
dismiss Modai. At first, Modai agreed to resign
as finance minister, and Peres promised him
another place in the cabinet. But Likud party
leaders said they would not allow Modai to be
dismissed, forcing a confrontation with the Labor
A scheduled cabinet meeting Sunday is
expected to be the scene of the 19-months-old
Nicaragua gets the blame
Peace talks by Latin American ministers that
aimed at bringing peace to the region collapsed
after the Nicaraguan government rejected all
proposed agreements, including a plan to sign
a peace treaty by June 6.
According to the Nicaraguan government, the
new proposals differed substantially from those
agreed on at a meeting in January of the
CoimseFvaMves stffifle Mfoeiml.
TTow tnat tne shanties are gone, the "Wall"
INN has been torn down and student unrest
JL ;N has been quieted, 1 think that the events
of the past few weeks at UNC need to be analyzed
very thoughtfully by all members of our
University community. The events that have
happened really have more to do with a clash
of ideologies on this campus than with a handful
of students protesting for or against one cause
or another. This clash scares me, as it should
scare every other thinking individual in our
First, of all, we need to examine the events,
then we can examine their implications. The
Anti-Apartheid Support Group, a politically
liberal organization, built some shanties in order
to protest the University's involvement with
apartheid. Then a group of students from an
opposing political comer built a model of the
Berlin Wall, saying that they wanted to show
the University that other peoples are being
oppressed. This second group also wanted the
shanties removed. Monday morning, the chan
cellor granted their wish. The shanties were
We need to analyze the motives and beliefs
that would cause conservatives on this campus,
to behave in such a manner. Many aspects of
the wall symbolize the general attitude most
conservatives seem to have. This attitude, and
the fact that conservatives are receiving so much
attention and admiration, is what scares me.
The conservatives built the wall for one reason
to stifle the voice of an opposing group. There
is no way they can defend their actions as being
in the least bit altruistic. They did several things
to show that they really did not care aboutV
anyone except themselves and their own beliefs.
No 'light' at all
To the editor:
It struck me as a rather ill
conceived notion that Allen Tay
lor (or anyone else) should find
companies in South Africa the
"shining light of democracy,"
("Board delays on divesting,"
April 7). These bastions of respon
sibility (Union Carbide, Bophal,
India) and defenders of democracy
(ITT, Chile 1973), otherwise
known as multinational corpora
tions, are in South Africa to make
a profit and, mind you, not a
If these corporations were truly
concerned with bringing about
change in the apartheid system,
they would have precipitated its
downfall long ago. For years these
conglomerates have made tidy
sums for themselves and their
investors by adhering to a policy
of increased investment. Instead of
active intervention to help end the
system of apartheid, these muti
nationals, in their search for profit,
have helped to perpetuate the
; Through their investment activ
ities, the "American companies"
have served only to strengthen
apartheid. The multinationals
have entered into a structural
economic relationship with the
barbaric South African govern
ment. Far from being "the shining
light of democracy," the multina
tional corporations have formed
a symbiotic alliance, making
themselves accomplices to this
Economics Latin American
Eat your greens
To the editor:
As a student of ecology whose
interests lie (not yet "lay") in
herbivory and grazing of marine
communities, I read with great
pleasure, "He only eats renewable
resources" (April 9). It's nice to see
the paper taking a scientific turn.
For more information concern
ing Chrysanthemum leucanthe
mum, the said flower species,
consider signing up for Dr. Mas
sey's Introduction to Plant Tax
onomy class (Biol 103) in the fall.
Contadora nations Mexico, Panama, Vene
zuela and Colombia. That agreement took a
harder line against U.S. aid to the Contras.
Congress responded to the collapse of the talks
by reconsidering the president's SlOO-million
contra aid plan. A second House vote is planned
on the package April 15. In a nationally
broadcast news conference, President Reagan
said that Nicaraguan intransigence showed more
than ever the need for strong U.S. support for
Bush clarifies oil policy
Vice President George Bush spent much of
last week trying to juggle the interests of Mideast
allies with the oil policy of the Reagan
administration. At first, Bush had said that oil
prices needed to stabilize; Reagan, however, has
said that the workings of the free market take
precedence over special interests.
In Saudi Arabia, Bush said that the interests
of the United States and Saudi Arabia do not
coincide when it comes to oil prices.
According to some Senate Republicans, this
added instance of Bush's quick ability to flip
flop and toe the White House line over his own
belief has helped tarnish his reputation as a
potential presidential candidate in 1988.
:: f 1 fl fi i pi r"i
There was really no point in building the wall
in the first place. UNC can do absolutely nothing
about communist oppression in East Germany.
The shanties were a protest of UNC's hypocritical
participation in apartheid. The University
preaches freedom and equality, then makes a
profit from slave labor. Therefore, the shanties
were a justified protest, demanding something
practical from the institution at which they were
The wall, on the other hand, was a slipshod
symbol of something the University cannot and
should not do anything about. Contrary to the
wishes of conservatives, the University does not
preach the glories of capitalism, or the need to
abolish communism. Therefore, the wall had no
real purpose except, of course, to stifle the
Also, the conservatives proved they did not
care about oppressed people by leaving their wall
unattended. On many occassions, the support
group repaired or defended the wall to protect
the conservatives' right to free speech. The
conservatives even painted "Isn't this all very
silly?" on their wall, blatantly admitting that they
were protesting for the sake of protesting, and
that they do not really care about the oppressed
people of East Germany or South Africa. It also
shows that they believe free speech is silly.
The most interesting aspect of the whole
protest is the fact that the shanties were a symbol
And for those of you terrestrial
herbivores, you might peruse Euell
Gibbon's "Stalking the Wild
Asparagus" before trekking into
the parks or woods. "Ciao."
giving our attention to , another
land and its politics?
I don't have a sheepskin because
the Veterans Administration has
more than once sabotaged my
education, and my senators and
congressmen, who seem to have
no real interest in the subject, are
of no help. I cannot know for sure,
but I believe those who say the
oppressed fight each other.
So, I ask all you "shanty
dwellers," where is your concern
for the black family farmers in
Orange County? And I say to the
other side for offering token
education to blacks in South
Africa, "Shame!" No wonder the
prisons here are overflowing and
we fear to walk the streets.
"We won't be fooled again,"
goes the song. At least I do not
want to fall into the traps of left
or right-wing politics, which
would be ignoring real issues.
In the Daily Tar Heel article
"UNC joins universities in pro
tests" (April 7), Herman Bennett
was quoted saying what seems to
me to be slogans in pure cliche:
"They're eating tea and crois
sants." Before you stop a student
walking by again, I ask you to
consider this, Bennett: Cycles do
not necessarily repeat themselves.
As protesters in the '60s, we
To the editor:
Waiting in a welfare office in
New York in the late '60s when
the U.S. Postal strike had delayed
my rent assistance, working as a
landscaper full time for my land
lord (who charged me more for
my rent than I made in wages),
I noticed a sign: "Please feed the
hungry and oppressed children in
After my second mugging and
enough Yankee winters, I went
back home to crash in the Arbore
tum. A sign near there had beck
oned me, a homesick soldier
turned homesick vagabond, in
search of an America no longer
there: "O Lost and by the wind
grieved, ghost come back again."
I felt safe there at night, because
nobody went there. People still
talked of the murder that occurred
ten years before.
When the evils of our Industrial
Heartland seem to be coming
home to us, is the only solution
The Week in Quotes
"It's a hit movie at the moment."
Actor-politician Clint Eastwood Wednes
day following his massive victory in the mayoral
race for the town of Carmel, California.
Eastwood campaigned on a platform calling for
a better treatment of the business community
without injuring Carmel's unique character.
Defeated incumbent Charlotte Townsend critic
ized the race as being "totally out of focus and
"The outlook for new Coke is becoming
-- Securities analyst Emanuel Goldman about
the decision by the McDonald's and Hardee's
restaurant chains to switch from New Coke to
the Classic brand. Coke Classic is outselling the
New Coke in retail stores by 5 to I. Coca-Cola,
however, responded to the decisions by saying
that it remained committed to New Coke.
"We need to continue the dialogue, we need
to make progress on the issue's before us."
Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in a
private letter to President Reagan about the need
to develop talks that would substantively lead
to arms reductions. After departing Soviet
ambassador Anatoly Dobynin delivered the letter
to Reagan, the two men agreed to lay the
groundwork for a summit meeting in the United
of the oppressed and the wall was a symbol of
the oppressor. Through the shanties, the
University community was able to get a better
idea of exactly how oppressed blacks in South
Africa actually live. The wall gave us nothing
except a blockade to the shanties. This is
representative of the fact that liberals are
concerned with people and protecting the rights
of the masses, while conservatives seem to be
concerned solely with protecting themselves and
their own ideas. ,
The conservatives used a very interesting
approach to satisfy their own intolerance for
other people's ideas. They did not care about
oppressed people in South Africa or in East
Germany, they just wanted the support group
to leave. I feel that conservatives as well as liberals
have rights to free speech, but the conservatives
on this campus have twisted that right into their
own means of constraining others.
The events of the past few weeks show that
we. have at least two major ideologies on this
campus. A struggle between conservatives and
liberals has been building over the past several
years, and this struggle is bound to become more
intense. Liberals are accustomed to thinking of
the University as a place where they can express
their free thinking without fear and with hope.
However, conservatives are now threatening this
place as a haven for freedom and logical thinking.
I do not wish for the conservatives to leave. I
just want them to be honest, and to say what
they mean, so that it will be possible for both
ideas to be presented and so that open and free
debate will be possible.
Eddie Swain is a senior education major from
obviously were not part of the
solution then and I suggest we
might just add to another coun
try's problems. No matter , how
much some claim theirs to be the
new Woodstock or the new '60s,
those myths and slogans ring as
hollow as so many betrayed
Our parents should have gone
to class, if they could have. Not
all flower children were drugged
hippies or politico yippies. Nor
should historic accounts merely
say that Franklin Street was once
invaded by "beatnik" craftsper
sons. The best of those times seem
lost in the record, some of us just
extras misplaced in our parts in
less than a generation.
So we are silent this can also
be a symptom of oppression, for
some of us do not even have the
end titles (postscripts) on that long
dark wall in Washington. Aren't
we weary of reruns?
In my mind's eye, I never
stopped standing in vigil (but not
in protest) on Franklin Street.
Thus I saw a great deal; perhaps
I learned a little more geography
than most students . . .
Puzzle inventor and
States later this year. Gorbachev set no
conditions on the meeting except the need to
produce positive results.
"People come in and say they were supposed
to go to Greece or Italy, and now they don't
know why they want to spend so much time
traveling abroad when things are so good at
Hotel owner Nick Monte, speaking about
the trend of American travellers to stay on home
ground rather than venturing abroad. Because
of lower gas prices, vacationers have decided that
it is worthwhile to travel around the country by
car. Rising fears of terrorism in Mediterranean
countries has also led many Americans to prefer
safer vacations in the United States. In addition,
the dollar is not so strong as it was in past
summers, making it less of a bargain to travel
"If we can help them with good shopping,
why not good sex? . . v. I say, no."
Jim Jacobson. editor of the Birmingham.
Ala., News, expressing his opposition to a speech
by Dr. Ruth Westheimer on creating "a sexually
literate society." Dr. Ruth made her comments
before a meeting of the American Society of
Compiled hy Smart Tonkinum. a senior
English major from St. Louis, w ho is associate
editor of The Daily Tar Heel.