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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 27, 1969)
THE DAILT NEBRASKAN
Constitution referendum . . .
. . . vital to rights
Approval of the proposed A S U N
Constitution is a necessary first step in
the securing of those rights which ought
now to belong to University students.
Although even landslide approbation
of the lengthy document will not guarantee
such rights, a sizable positive vote could
have considerable suassion in present and
future negotiations with administration and
Specifically, the Constitution, it ratified,
will point to a renewed conscious effort on
the part of the student body to obtain rights
The Constitution wiH be reviewed by
the Board of Regents, and that they will
have severe reservations about some
aspects of the provisions is certain.
Particularly questionable to the
Regents (and to many faculty and some
students) will be policies which were
originally stated in Government Bill 24 last
Though these constitutional provisions
can for an "equitable" voice in
many matters (rather than the comolete
control as demanded originally in the bill),
there will be some apprehension on the part
of administrators in accepting these
In fact, there are some clauses in the
proposed Constitution which are dangerous
to the students, as well as to the power
bases of the faculty and administration.
Among these are sections which would give
ASUN the purse-string control over manv
organizations and which would tend to
strangle freedom of expression on cam
pus. The Constitution, also, is contradictory
In itself at times, and disagree? rather
sharply with the Student in the Academic
Community's Council on Student Life.
But all of these problems, caused by
good intentions and poor wording, can be
corrected Immediately by amendments to
the newly-ratified document. These
amendments, if passed first by two-thirds
of the Senate, can appear in the general
election April 30. and the Constitution can
become a workable framework of govern
ment. There are several shortcomings in the
proposed Constitution. But it is an im
provement over the present one.
For that reason, and with "the idea of
urgently-needed amendments in mind, the
students of the University should approv
By Indicating desire for responsibilities
and rights, the students can in this way
take the important first step to securing
IB .iu atteERP5
4ftm uat whk '1
Review of Regents view of visitation
by Lawrence Wolfley
My main concern at Hyde Park last Thursday
was to protect the bargaining position of the Benton
Fairfield graduate students with the Regents by
distinguishing them from a small group of other
students who seemed bent on making the issue
their own. This has been accomplished.
But there still exists a wide-spread lack of
understanding about the Regents' denial of our
request, and the brief comments quoted- in Mon
day's paper Implied as much as they stated.
In the meantime, my own attitudes have
developed. What follows is an attempt to provide
background for further discussion, and to define
a provisional position on some of the larger, related
Issues. It goes without saying that while I speak
from first-hand knowlege, I speak not as an official
representative of Benton-Fairfield, but for myself.
First, the B-F students did not ask for wide-open
visitation, but for the right to periodically decide
for themselves the arrangement and hours suitable
From a purely administrative point of view,
the Regents are probably not the best body to
decide on questions of visitation. Nothing can be
done in a campus community which does not affect
others in some way, and matters such as visitation
should of course be decided in consultation with
some higher administrative body.
In this instance there was indeed general ad
ministrative approval of the graduates' request, and
recommendations in concurrence were handed on
to the Regents. Nevertheless the request was
denied. The Regents, obviously, are elected officials
who consider themselves answerable not to the
students but to the taxpaying Nebraska voters.
I would venture to say that the average
Nebraska voter's understanding of on-going needs of
the students here, especially the B-F students, and
the Regents' feeling for what the average Nebraska
voter expects from the university, are both uncer
tain. I grant that the students themselves may not
always know what is best for themselves, but only
they, I believe, in cooperation with those older
adults who are really in contact with them and
sympathetic to them as human beings, can make
intelligent experiments and determine workable
procedures. If the self-determining capacity of the
students is ever to be realized, they must first
be experienced with genuine responsibility.
The students in Benton-Fairfield are now in
a position to decide for themselves on visitation.
These are foreign students and generally older
graduate students whose maturity has been
demonstrated throughout the past school year.
I am a full-time member of the senior staff
in the English department. I do not feel out of
place in Benton, nor do I feel exceptional. I consider
the conduct of Benton's residents exemplary. I sign
ed into the graduate dormitory hoping to find at
Lincoln, in my initial living arrangements a well
as in my academic depurtment, the kind of unity
and ease of association which was definitely lacking
in my rather up-tight graduate community. I have
not been disappointed.
It is sad that the Regents do not realize what
a meaningful experiment Benton-Fairfield has been,
and what an opportunity they offer for the
university. Bing Chen is to be commended for
the care with which he has planned and administer
ed the operation. The result is unique on this campus.
Foreign students from all over the world in
teract and learn with some of the best graduate
students we have, in a learning environment in
which all have taken a personal interest. I have
never seen anything so closely approaching a
functioning "community of scholars."
The Regents do not seem aware of the op
portunity presented by Benton-Fairfield. They are
not familiar with the people living there, anu . "y
do not know how those people differ from the
undergraduates living in the rest of Sclleck. .'o
the voters, certainly, students are all just students,
and older students differ only in being typically
more difficult to manage.
Is it too much to ask that the Regents decide
on theTiasis of the evidence, and not on the basis
of a policy made years ago that no group of studenls
at Nebraska is ever to be allowed any form of
co-ed visitation? If the Regents insist on being
the ultimate authority in this matter, is it too
much to ask that they inform themselves about
who lives in Benton-Fairfield, and perhaps even
take time to find out what those buildings look
like from the inside?
As a group the residents of Benton-Fairfield
want vlsltaton because such coming and going is
part of their normal activity as adults. But this
is not to say that complete agreement exists.
Especially among the older married men there
is hesitation to make an issue of something ob
viously indifferent to them personally. Some of
the girls would consider men in the halls, even
at restricted hours, simply an inconvenience. It
would be necessary to dress even to go to the
common rest room.
But adjustments might be made, say by leaving
the top floor of each building for those desiring
absolute privacy; or just by personally accepting
the idea on a democratic basis. In any case, the
real Issue is the B-F students' right to decide
on hours and areas, or even on having visitaton
at all, for themselves.
As everyone knows, opinion among the un
dergraduates is split. No one can pretend to speak
for them, and much less to exhort them to action,
until more data is in, and until they themselves
have become more familiar with the complexities
Ideally, though this is not an Ideal world, the
1) review their decision and grant autonomy
to B-F as soon as possible.
2) discard, as this implies, their policy that
under no conditions will students ever be allowed
3) undertake to generate a basis of student
confidence in them, to demonstrate their well
meaning by stating the reationale by which they
Intend to make future decisions. In this light, the
action at B-F could be seen as an experiment.
Most of all students object to being treated
like children and Ignored. This is very true of
graduate students. When the Nebraska student is
treated like a responsible adult, he will respond
like one. On this campus frustration among the
minority may never erupt into open disruption,
but the educational tone of the entire institution
will be lowered.
This, to me, is the ultimate Issue the quality
of life on this campus and its effect on the quality
of the educational experience.
It may well be that the really substantive issues
on this campus ought to be the quality of Instruction
and the condition of the library; but until the most
part of the students awake to their closest obliga
tions, matters more refined will remain ignored.
by Fred Starrett
The problems we face today, are, after all,
the same problems our parents faced in college,
only now, some of those parents have become
part of the problem. So today we faced the
frustrated problem solvers of yesterday. They.the
parent-administrators, are so unsuccessful at con
troling their own kids that they rush to a university
to control someone else's. This is commonly known
as in loco parentis.
With this "key factor" in mind we can approach
this week's problem. I feel that any issue capable
of wrenching the attention of Hyde Park so com
pletely way from world problems and back to the
"home front" is good enough for me."
THE DECISION by the Regents to deny the
graduate and foreign students visiting hours has
"touched off" one of the largest campus reactions
in my memory.
There were three reactions expressly evident
at Hyde Park Thursday. Well, two expressly and
one negatively stated.
The expressed reactions were (1) The old let's
get frustrated and bomb the North trick, or I
don't care what the facts are, we haven't had
a demonstration at Nebraska and it's time we
did; (2) we have reopened carrier pigeon com
munications with the Regents and they have agreed
to negotiate, in May.
The other group was not noticable except for
their ghost, who has haunted every student action
assembly at Nebraska since the year one. It is
the inbred Nebraska trait of apathy, exemplified
by their belief that since they graduate in four
years it Is not their problem.
THERE IS a fourth group that hasn't been
mentioned and in this group I have placed myself.
1 wanted to be an activist and speak at Hyde
Pork, but I was aware that the Daily Ncbraskan's
entire Friday edition was to be devoted to the
American Indian, so there was no chance of getting
my picture or even my name in the "rag." It
was then that I decided to Join the "pen is mightier
than the sleep-in" group.
You may remember us by our more popular
slogan "our group had 100 percent fewer
casualties than yours (except, of course, in
The need for a student demonstration is not
present in the visiting hour issue. It is present,
however, in the denial of a meeting with the
Regents until May. If a mutually convenient time,
early in April can not be agreed upon, then, I
fed a strike may be In order.
Now, it is important for the students concerned
and working with this issue to communicate and
form an action group. It Is also equally important
for the Dally Nebraskan to keep the interest alive
and the student body informed on the progress
of the peace talks.
It may be time for the students to get off
their ass, but it is not time to be one.
Some movies are works of art) others are
sociological documents, more important for what
they say about the audience than for any intrinsic
"Faces." I think, belongs in the latter category.
The reaction by those who like the film is
remarkably similar - powerful, intense, searing,"
honest, and so on and so on. "Faces' is indeed
powerful, but in peculiar way which I am not
sure I can adequately define.
IT IS the same sort of power some television
shows used to exert, but on a higher level.
I remember I used to watch "The Defenders"
and be quite moved by black and white portrayals
of American society. -
"Faces" seems to me to da the same sort
of thing there are really no heroes and villains
in the film, but there is good and bad behavior
honest, "open" behavior, when one s shell has
been broken away, is good; all other behavior
is bad, life destructive and probably leads to
iron deficiency anemia.
Cassavetes has been hailed for his daring, his
integrity, his uncompromising frankness. I would
be more impressed if he were not doing something
that is very easy - he is simply attacking the
emptiness of the lives of the upper middle class
trapped in a business-oriented culture. He does
this with all the subtlety and finesse of the old
MUCH IS not to say that the film fails. The
acting is uniformly good; the technique emphasizing
close-ups and interludes with a shaky hand-held
camera fits well with Cassavetes' apparent concep
tion of the film as a "real" relevation of human
Those who need to be reassured that middle
class life is not fulfilling (these people are not
self-actualized!) may be overwhelmed; it is a film
that should be seen, I suppose, for "t is successful
on its own terms, however limited they may be.
But we must demand more from a film if it is
to be labelled 'great."
"Joanna" is a film which has been willfully
misinterpreted. It is, I think, a satire directed
against the mod generation in London (or
anywhere), or at least the fashioable notions about
it picked up from films and the jnass media.
"TIME" labelled it "the most dazzling direc
torial debut of the year." It's hardly that, but
Michael Sarne has obviously seen a lot of movies
(and commercials), so his photography has a lot
of the dumb appeal of a well-photographed ad
on the tube.
The visual electicism is, rowever, appropriate,
for Joanna is a pretty eclectic girl she's electic
in one bed after another. And Sarne freezes on
an art instructor's lecture about the baroque as
a reaction against classicism, as well as some
twaddle that the fact that there must be rules,
even if only to be broken.
Amazing insight, right folks? The film is full
of other gems each day should be a work of
art, everyone should be committed to something,
it's better to be good than bad things Eddie
Guest would be proud of (remember, it takes a
heap of living to make a house a home).
FORTUNATELY, Sarne apparently does not
mean a word of it; any lingering doubts about
his Intentions are dispelled in the finale sequence,
when the cast breaks into an excrutiatlngly awful
song about Joanna (she's got a smile like
Cinemascope no fooling) after she has left on
the train to return home.
This is Intercut with shots of poor Joanna
which seems to me to suggest that the director
is not too sympathetic to her plight. But most
of the audience must, liike Joanna, think this Is
for real, they set worshipfully through the
philosophical sermonettes, and probably find It all
very meaningful and relevant. What was that about
teeing what we want to see?
The Daily Nebraskan is solely a stu-
dent-operated newspaper independent
of editorial control by student govern- i
ment, administration and faculty. The I
opinion expressed on this page is that
of the Nebraskan's editorial page staff. I
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The decision between more talking or more fighting
by Flora Lewis
Saigon To put It over-simply, the situation
here now is that the generals' meat is the
diplomats' poison, and vice versa. The basic ques
tions that President Nixon must soon decide emerge
clearly enough from the mlasmlc gunsmoke over
The military situation has improved substan
tially in favor of the allies. That has brought both
leading American brass and top South Vietnamese
officials to revive hopes of winning the war. By
winning the ' war, they mean forcing withdrawal
of North Vietnamese troops and reducing the Viet
Cong's offensive capacity to isolated acts of ter
rorism, without giving the Communists any political
foothold in the South.
THEREFORE, these people oppose any speed
up of the Paris talks, any concessions that would
limit their ability to press the military momentum
they have gained. They don't raise military objec
tions to the withdrawal of some American troops.
Withdrawal of up to 50,000 men would not substan
tially affect their operations. They would Just have
to work on a leaner basts. American and Viet
namese leaders agree to this assessment.
Their main objective now is to win from Presi
dent Nixon which means essentially from American
fublic opinion, the two to three years of continued
ull-scale American involvement which thy con
sider necessary to pursue that kind of victory.
They understand that to stretch the fuse on the
time-bomb of American Impatience, some visible
gesture of American diengagement Is required. A
limited troop withdrawal would provide that
But they fear that Hanoi might misread this
script and take it as a real sign of American
willingness to quit the war. That, it is felt by
all Involved here, is Hanoi's one remaining hope
that the Communists can still win if they hold
out long enough. So Saigon opposes withdrawal.
L THAT sense, it is true that neither side
has definitely abandoned the expectation of vic
tory. The only real chance for a compromise settle
ment, which has to be the aim of negotiation,
is when both sides accept that a continued military
offensive will not fulfill their war alms in any
forseeable future. At the same time, both sides
must feel that a compomlse would bring them
a partial advantage.
Thus. American diplomats do not expect the
Communists to quit fighting without the assurance
of at least limited political gains, and probably
belief in the chance of larger gains later. Nor
will the Saigon government grant political con
cessions without feeling it has the upper hand in
the long range political struggle.
Saigon's current mood is one of relative op
timism about military prospects and deep
pessimism about the government's ability to hold
the country together politically. So the demand
from here to Washington is for more time, more
chance to seek military gains on which future
political control can be based.
YET, IT IS clear to aU that there Is a very
real If unfixed deadline on the amount of time
which the American public will grant President
Nixon. Other American foreign interests, such as
relations with Russia and with allies and vital
friends such as Japan, are also at staxe.
Therefore, from the diplomats' viewpoint, a
compromise now is likely to be more favorable
than a protracted military campaign with its
undeniable risk of provoking a total anJ abrupt
American revolution against the war effort. The
more optimistic the generals become the more
pessimistic are the diplomats for the good reason
that battlefield success may diminish Nixon's urge
Therefore, from the diplomats' viewpoint, a
compormlse now Is likely to be more favorable
than a protracted military campaign with its
undeniable risk of provoking a total and abrupt
American revolution against the war effort. The
more optimistic the generals become the more
MV,'? 016 dlPlorata Ir the good reason
that battlefield success may dlminlsr Nixon's urge
HaHa! ln the absence of presidential
decision, American policy Is to talk and fight. But
m.IStnl,llly.Workuinf 11,6 bl "tion Nixon
Knr" ,s, whether he wants to play for
SSi k1 wiF ,ome estures or nurry the
war s end by seeking compromise.
a-W untU,.lts ,9aders '"I they knew
American intentions. If Nixon wants to negotiate.
r?L0n y wy t0, t clear is to stop the
amed offensive in the South and tell his com
manders to concentrate on holding what they have.
The choice still has to be made between talking,
which means concessions, or fighting, which means
many more years of war.
C m, NtwMay, Inc.
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