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Reds, Their ‘Dupes,’ and the Modern Menace were going to debate the House un-American Activities Committee,” not refight World War II or discuss the evils of communism “as such.” Reeves “exemplified what is wrong with the .HUAC,” McClesky said. “Mr. Reeves asks ‘who denied us the fruits of our victory in World War II?’Harry Bridges, Harry Dexter White,” a n d American communists “clamoring for our boys to come home … I happen to know something about that clamor.” The American people wanted the troops to come home, he said. It was a popular demand from the people back home who were tired of war. “I personally think it was a mistake to demobilize,” he said, “but to say this was the workings of communism is utter nonsense.” The HUAC, McCleskey said, was authorized by the House “to investigate the extent, character, and objectives of un-American activities.” But what do “unAmerican activities” mean? We have broad principles of government on which people may agree, but the trouble lies in interpreting them specifically. “And when you give a committee like this one a blank check” on this interpretation, “you’re inviting it to abuse its powerand I thought one of the principles of American government,’ he said, is to discourage the abuse of power. Credits and Debits Drawing on a study of the HUAC by Robert Carr, president of Oberlin College, McCleskey discussed the “contributions” and the “debits” of the committee. It has contributed to an understanding of the character and purpose of international communism and has called attention to domestic communist activities, “but these have been done in such an irresponsible way as to lessen their impact. It has contributed in some small fashion to exposure of espionage, ‘although this certainly can be, and is, largely exaggerated,” he said. As debits, McCleskey charged the committee with ‘seeking to punish the guilty or the presumed guilty “not in the courts of law but in the courts of public opinion.” The committee “has encouraged witch-hunting” by “public persons as well as private.” Its methods and activities have been emulated by state committees and private organizations. The latter have been encouraged “to become the keepers of our conscience and the guardians of our morals.” The committee has damaged the civil service, McCleskey said, “by doing what it could to create the impression that the federal government was honeycombed, as Mr. Reeves said, with these termites.” It has “created the impression of congressional weakness and flabbiness” because Congress seems to have “no control over this spoiled, irresponsible child.” “The committee has “claimed for itself a great deal,” he said. Its role in finding communists “has been relatively small.” The Alger Hiss case was an exception, he said, when the HUAC performed “some careful work and investigation.” But it was the “federal grand jury, not the committee, that finally uncovered Hiss. ‘The job of implementing the law,” he said, should be “the grand juries’, the justice department’s, and the courts’.” McCleskey criticized the film for charging the student demonstrations were the work of Communist -agitators. “I want to ‘mow the complicity between the communists and the students has never been proven. They’ve had the chance to subpoena.” In his rebuttal Reeves said he would not give a “blanket endorsetnent” to the committee, but he was glad they have held their hearings against communism. “I’m glad someone in New York violated the law and told on Alger Hiss.” He said he has criticized the district attorney’s office and the police department in Houston on occasion, but he would not advocate their abolition. “We’ve got to combat communism and we need the HUAC.” If a congressman on the committee “gets out of line,” he is always responsible to his constituents who can vote to get rid of him, Reeves concluded. Quotations During the question period the group was generally courteous and restrained, although tempers crackled in a few instances. A majority of the questions were directed to McCleskey. A questioner asked Reeves if THE TEXAS OBSERVER Page 6 Dec. 23, 1960 he believed that whatever constructive results which might have emerged from the hearings had been. “overshadowed” by “clustering together” communists, “communist dupes,” and “liberals” in the film. “I don’t think they’ve made any blanket indictment of liberals as communist dupes,” Reeves replied. The right to disagree is one of the most important of American rights, he said, “and only through a complete exchange of ideas are we going to find the answers” to pressing national problems. “We may disagree as to who was wrong in San Francisco,” he added. Referring to the “anarchy” of the students, he said “there is no question but that they defied constitutional authority.” It was not, he said, “a peaceful demonstration,” and he believed it was inspired by the communists themselves. Responding later to a question asking about the “un-American” aspects of racial segregation, “religious discrimination,” opposition to public housing, and other measures, as well as defiance of “constitutional authority” in New Orleans, McCleskey said the committee has “in pursuit of the unAmerican left ignored the unAmerican right.” The film, McCleskey said, shows the potential of the committee’s tactics. The committee he thought, has the right to compel people to testify, “but there are ways and ways of handling them.” The committee “has shown itself so careless, so slipshod, so irresponsible” to deny itself the benefits of any constructive work. “It’s a case of crying wolf,” he said. Operating in Austin In the course of the questioning, Dr. R. 0. Jonas, a semi-retiredprofessor of psychology at the University of Houston, charged that McCleskey’s discussion of communist activity ‘after World War II was “nonsense.” He said he studied psychological warfare three years and worked with 8,000 returning veterans, who had been subjected to intense communist propaganda. “I get the feeling you think the defiance of authority” in San Francisco was not bad at all, Jonas told McCleckey, “yet here was an arm of government blocked by this raucous activity,” he said. “Who said the committee was blocked?” McCleskey responded. It went ahead with its business later. “It took 30 minutes to clear city hall.” Jonas said the hearings had nonetheless been disturbed. The mayor of San Francisco said he hoped next time such hearings were held there the government should send ifederal troops to maintain order. Jonas then said that Frank Wilkinson, one of the alleged communist political workers shown in the film, is “now operating in Austin” in advance of any HUAC hearings there. “He’s in Austin now,” Jonas said, to encourage similar student demonstrations. “I presume Frank Wilkinson is not a prisoner,” McCleskey countered. “We have no way of keeping him out of Austin. The acid test will be his success.” McCleskey said he had enough ‘faith in the loyalty and intelligence of American citizens and college students to be skeptical of Wilkinson’s ‘success if he is in Austin. Reeves was asked for his definition of the term “dupe of communism” used in the film. “It’s someone deceived by cornmunist propaganda and who becomes a party to their plans and is willing to be deceived,” Reeves said. This person may have good intentions, Reeves said, just as the leader of a flock of ducks who leads the flock to a decoy and a hunter’s ambush has good intentions. The questioner said that he, and others at the meeting, were in favor of the abolition of the house committee. The film implies that people favoring abolition are communist dupes. W h at did Reeves think? “Unwittingly, I think you are,” Reeves said. A student said that at the lastmeeting of the national executive committee of the Young Democrats “we voted overwhelmingly in favor of abolition of the House committee. So I take it this whole group has been duped” by the communists. “That’s my feeling,” Reeves said. Another student said later that every liberal magazine in the country has come out against the HUAC. Are these magazines communist dupes? “I’ve certainly disagreed with the liberals many times,” Reeves replied. All the communists who voted for William Z. Foster, all the socialists who voted for Norman Thomas, all the progressives who voted for Henry Wallace .. . are now to be found in the liberal ranks of the Democratic party” placing pressure on “the liberal ranks of the party to get anything they want done.” Are the liberal magazines communist dupes, then.? “To some extent, yes,” Reeves said. Lenin and Archimedes McCleskey was asked if he had read William Z. Foster’s state ment that actual communist party members in the United States are relatively small in numbers, and that much of the important work is carried on by non-party members. McCleskey said he was familiar with Foster’s statement. “I’d like to ask him to name some people in government today who are communists,” he said. “Alger Hiss is out,” the questioner said. “He was convicted and served a prison term for perjury,” McCleskey said. “He’s out today, though. He’s walking free.” “You can’t send him to prison for life for perjury,” McCleskey said. “Have you read what Lenin said?” a lady asked. “Do you know what Lenin said? He said ‘just give me three leaders and I can rule the world’.” “And Archimedes said, give me a powerful lever and I can lift the world, but I don’t believe it,” McCleskey said. He said there are too many “half-baked notions” about the communist threat and its history. You cannot get an accurate picture “by reading Reader’s Digest and the HUAC reports,” he said. Lenin and his men did not overthrow the Czarist regime, he said, but took advantage of the earlier revolution. With the possible exception of Czechoslovakia, all the iron curtain countries in eastern Europe had been taken by military means. Asked about Red China, he said it also had fallen before communist armies, and nationalist soldiers had gone over to the communists ‘by the thousands. Mr. K a Dupe? A student, addressing Reeves, said he was not very active politically, except for voting and occasionally speaking out in economic and political science classes. Therefore, he said, he could not be accused of any active assistance to communist causes. However, he is strongly for integration in this country, he said. It had been pointed out that night that the Communists, though not sincere about integration, are exerting great efforts on behalf of integration and spending millions of dollars which he, ‘as a poor student, could not afford. “Therefore,” he asked, “could not I consider Mr. Khrushchev my dupe?” \(“You’re his dupe,” a lady in the Jonas said that McCleskey’s picture of the House committee was so “distorted” he could not see how anyone could present it. McCleskey replied that he would be willing “to stack my scholarship against that of anybody in the room.” Charging that McCleskey had underestimated internal communist activities, Jonas said just three months ago in Houston a number of civic organization leaders found evidence of actual “communists” involved in racial conflicts in the city. “Name them!” McCleskey demanded. “I’m not spoofing you at all. I know what I’M talking about,” Jonas replied. Jonas told the Observer that he did not use the word “communist” in his accusations on racial agitation in Houston. “I insist I used the word ‘disturbers,’ he said. “I wanted to be careful not to use the word. I was referring to two specific situations in the community in which the color factor was used for other selfish purposes-4o disturband not for the promotion of integration or segregation.” He also said the news about Wilkinson in Austin appeared in the Houston Chronicle “gone or two weeks ago.” property; plaintiff alleges that said property is not susceptible of division in kind and the means suited to obtaining full value for same is the appointment of a receiver with power to enter into a private sale; Plaintiff prays that if it be found by the Court that said afore-described property is not susceptible of division in kind, a receiver be appointed to sell the same, with power to enter into a private sale and that proceeds from said sale of property be divided equally between plaintiff and defendant according to their respective interest herein as is set forth; plaintiff further prays for costs of suit, and for all suth other and further relief both general and special; All of which more fully appears from Plaintiff’s Original Petition on file in this office, and which reference is here made for all intents and purposes. If this citation is not served within 90 days after date of its issuance, it shall be returned unserved. WITNESS, 0. T. MARTIN, JR.. Clerk of the District Courts of Travis County, Texas. Issued and given under my hand and seal of said Court at office in the City of Austin, this the 30th day of November, 1960. 0. T. MARTIN. JR. Clerk of the District Courts, Travis County, Texas LEGA LS CITATION BY PUBLICATION THE STATE OF TEXAS TO Blanche Minnie Townsend Defendant, in the hereinafter styled and numbered cause: You are hereby commanded to appear before the 98th District Court of Travis County, Texas, to be held at the courthouse of said county in the City of Austin, Travis County, Texas, at or before 10 o’clock A. M. of the first Monday after the expiration of 42 days from the date of issuance hereof; that is to say, at or before, 10 o’clock A. M. of Monday the 16th of January, 1960, and answer the petition of plaintiff in Cause Number 120,156, in which Henry A. Townsend is Plaintiff and Blanche Minnie Townsend is defendant, filed in said Court on the 30th day of November, 1960, and the nature of which said suit is as follows: Being an action and prayer for judgment in favor of plaintiff and against defendant for partition of the following described property situated in Travis County, Texas,