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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Oct. 25, 1974)
j editorial jpiMrt
Union space threatened
aPW W 5 J
Students might noi feCOgmze uie ijeuiasRa
Union in a few years. The building probably will be
easy to confuse with Lincoln's other shopping
"still more space in the Union will be snatched
away from students and used by commercial
businesses, if Union Director Al Bennett has his
way. Gateway Bank opened in the Union this fall,
using space formerly allofed for a study lounge
and men's restroom. ' lt '. " '1.41
The two additional businesses that might locate
in the Union would take away space now used for
the women's lounge and the Union Program
Office. The remodeling also would require
combining the Women's Resource Center and
adjoining study lounge and moving the Union
south desk and magazine rack, according to plans
drawn up by the Physical Plant. The remodeling
would cost about $160,440.
By allowing retail businesses to locate In the
southwest corner, the Union would not have to
depend as much on student fee3, acording to
Bennett. , ,
That might be true, but students also no longer
could depend on the Union to consider their needs
before those of merchants.
Allowing commercial profit-making businesses
to have space originally intended for University
use is contrary to the Union's purpose.
In the future, providing space for even more
businesses could be rationalized as a convenience
for students and faculty, just as the Gateway Bank
was. Where will It all end? The message "Buy
Me!" hits students too often already. Why must it
also come to campus?
Plans for remodeling still are tentative, but, If
approved, the work could begin in July.
Bennett first must get the approval of the Union
Board, an advisory group to the union director.
Ken Bader, vice chancellor for student affairs and
the Central Planning Committee also must
approve the plans.
Students who object to businesses encroaching
on space that now is theirs should protest to Mike
McGahan, Union Board president, or to Bader.
Letters to McGahan should be sent to the Union.
Those to Bader can be mailed to the
' a k iv:
Signed: . m pU I $
i 1 jA V W ft
Please give me t
(Include address and self-addressed stamped satchel)
Mail coupon toe
Nelson Roe kef tiler
New York, N.Y. 10024
In regard to the letter from "Another Abel
Fable" (Dally Nebraskan Oct. 17), which
Suestioned the ingenuity and calibre of the
ornhusker Marching Band: It seems there is
a certain maturity lacking in .an individual
who is so intent on being cute in his
criticisms that he overlooks the purpose of a
critique the betterment of that which he is
attacking. In addition, it is no more than
courteous to sign one's name to such
"Abel Fable's" letter was so contrived it
was insulting to the reader. It offered no
suggestions as to how to improve the band.
It was so full of neat phrases it was
incoherent. All it accomplished was to slam
a fine organization.
Patricia Ann Jacobberger
Insurance company part of 'stop ERA 1 effort
"The well-financed, well-organized, and
unconscionable Stop ERA effort could
certainly prove to be another 'Watergate,' or
an extension thereof."
Ann K. Justice
The Lincoln chapter of the National
Organization for Women (NOW) recently has
published a report which examines in detail
the evidence uncovered after the February
1973 rescission of the ratification of the
Equal Rights Amendment (ERA).
"The Insurance Connection with 'Stop
ERA' Forces", edited by Ann K. Justice,
bpgins with a general survey of the sexism
practiced by the Insurance industry, then
proceeds to the local level, dropping names
of interesting political figures along the way.
' Why are insurance companies across the
country so concerned about the Equal Rights
Amendment? The U.S. Senate anti-trust and
monopoly subcommittee hearings In May
and June of 1972 revealed the inequitable
practices used by the majority of insurance
companies In their dealings with women.
Sales manuals referred to women as
"marglnalemployes working merely for
convenience" and "delicately balanced
machines eagerly awaiting a breakdown".
Discrimination in insurance policies
included offering women who qualify for
disability insurance policies WmIcm were
inferior to those available to men, yet
charging the women higher premiums. The
policies also exclude payment for disabilities
relating to pregnancy, childbirth, mis
carriage, or other disabilities resulting from
"organs peculiar to females". (Men,
however, can collect benefits for prostate
The subcommittee's report said: "The
entire insurance Industry relies on 'myths'
about women including the old myth that
women lose more sick days than men. Most
detailed statistical studies indicate, in fact,
that men lose more sick days than women."
But the NOW report points out that
insurance companies make their profits by
"excluding from coverage those persons
women, older persons, the handicapped, or
other 'clunkers' who are likely to need
page 4 ,
If the ERA were ratified and so forced a
revision in laws applying to insurance
companies, lower profits might result. It is
this old devil money which provoked the
insurance companies concern over the ERA.
So what has all this got to do with Lincoln,
Ne.? Richard Proud of Omaha, the leader of
the movement to "withdraw ' Nebraska's
support of the ERA, is, and was during the
legislative session, an employee of Mutual of
Omaha, "the world's largest health and
accident insurer". The $1.6 billion company
owns stocks and bonds in school districts
and universities and state boards of
education, to mention a few.
Upon examining Proud's records, NOW
discovered that during the 1973 legislative
session, he introduced no bills of his own,
but initiated the Legislative Resolution to
repeal the ERA.
In the 1974 session, he introduced no bills
and had the most absentefis of any
iegisiator, because he was traveling around
the country speaking against the ERA. He
has said that these trips were paid for by
"women taking up nickels and dimes and
dollars." in answer to those who suggested
Mutual of Omaha picked up the tab, he said
"those are the lies of all the libbers who
believe in abortion. ..that's all the
pro-abortion people know is lies, lies, lies."
(Proud always had a difficult time keeping
the abortion issue separated from the ERA.)
The most Interesting thing about the
report is the question it asks: "Did Nebraska
legislators really 'cave in' to pressure from an
orchestrated letter-writing campaign from
only 6 of Nebraska's towns? Or from the
lobbying of Proud and company? Or was
there a bigger payoff, and by whom?"
No concrete answer is found to the
question, but some interesting evidence is
The amendment had 40 organizations of
Nebraska supporting It, while only six
opposed it. These six Included The John
Birch Society, Young Americans for
Freedom, Daughters of the American
Revolution, and the Nebraska School
Improvement Organization (remember that
Correspondence to legislators and
letters-to-editors in newspapers ran two to
one in favor of the ERA. A Nebraska opinion
poll found that of those Interviewed, 47
supported the ERA, while 29 opposed It
and 24 were undecided.
NOW went on to investigate the mail files
of the legislators. They found the letters
opposing the ERA came primarily from a few
rural communities In northeast Nebraska
"where 'closed-door' anti-ERA meetings had
been conducted by the Nebraska School
Every third letter against the ERA repeated
the phrase "It forces the wishes of the noisy
few upon the silent but contented masses' .
NOW discovered that this was the same
phrase used by a woman whose husband
heads the Lincoln chapter of the John Birch
This whole business has a curious, link
with ths gubernatorial elections this
November. Anne Batchelder, Republican
lieutenant governor candidate, Is heiress to
the Continental Assurance Co., a casualty
insurance company based in Chicago. She
has been a vehement opposer of the ERA.
She Is a director of the Freedoms Foundation
of Valley Forge, Pa., which in 1972 gave an
award to the John Birch Society for its "God,
Family, and Country" rally.
Her husband, Clifton Batchelder, is an old
buddy of S.H. "Zeke" Brauer, executive
secretary of the Nebraska School
Improvement Association. Certain threads
which run throughout the story begin to
It came as quite a shock to me, In reading
all the above, that the corruption we
abhorred in the Nixon administration may
exist in our own little Unicameral. And Ilka
Watergate, we never will know just what
really happened to the EPA
friday, October 25, 1974
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