Bernard Rapoport, President Join Us In Honoring SENATOR AND MRS. RALPH YARBOROUGH Net proceeds of this annual appreciation dinner sponsored by the Friends of Ralph Yarborough are used to help finance Senator Yarborough’s weekly radio report to the people of Texas. Finance Committee: Cooper K. Ragan, chairman Walter G. Hall Roy Hofhelnz George F. Kirkpatrick Marlin Sandlin Call or write for reservations: Friends of Ralph Yarborough, Suite 1313, 1114 Texas Ave. Bldg.. Houston, Texas CA 7-5168 MO 7-3730 JA 3-1685 JA 3-6851 Latane Temple, chairman Arrangements Committee Buffet Supper $12.50 Per Person Rice Hotel Crystal Ballroom 6:30 P. M. Monday, Dec. 17 Senator Yarborough Observations AMERICAN INCOME LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY OF INDIANA Underwriters of the Union labor Disability Plan Executive Offices: P. 0. Box 208 Waco, Texas * HUNTSVILLE I have just seen the face of fascism in this country. I write at once, for the face is intelligent and American, a face from an American courtroom, an American civic club lunch, an American town hall meeting. It is a worried and a sincere, a reasonable, a careful face. I do not mean just the face of an arch-conservative, nor only the face of the John Birch Society, for even members of that secretive and totalitarian organization are entitled to defense against the techniques of guilt by association they malignantly use against others. No, it is a face that has turned away from the freedom and fairness of American method. Its earnestness is the emotional proof of its acute reality. In this town its success with the board of regents of all six Texas teachers’ colleges in the Rupert Koeninger case is the evidence of the vitality of its menace. Two hours, in one of those level, across the desk discussions, we forced each other back to our basal positions. Then we saw who we were. What, he asked me, did I think of Koeninger’s firing? “I am against it,” I said. “When I go to a university, I want the maximum intellectual conflict, all views contending for belief. Personally, I wouldn’t hire a communist party member to teach, because he has made a commitment to be dishonest; but I want all honest men there to contendreactionaries, socialists, pacifists, Catholics, atheists. I belief in free and fair debate.” Though he is the ordinary sort of small-town professional man you might meet on the square in Huntsville and go to coffee with in the Raven or the Texan, he frowned and said: “You see, I believe in freedom, too. But I don’t trust people any more. We’ve had so much socialism these last 30 years! I don’t believe in the ability of people to be discerning enough to reach a wise conclusion. I guess that seems to put me in the position of saying ‘I’m right, everybody else is wrong'” “That’s right. It does exactly that,” I interjected. “And I guess it means,” he said, his brow furrowed in good faith, “I guess it means that I have come to such a point of desperation, I know my group is right” he clenched his fist”and I want us to dictate what will happen.” “You’re in a dangerous position,” I said. “I believe the American body politic has become neurotic because of the rising tides of socialism in the world. You think Kennedy’s medicare is socialism” “That’s right, I do . . .” “And I agree it has socialist components,” I said. “But the majority want it. You are in the position of opposing democracy ; of opposing majority rule.” “That’s right, I am,” he said. “We don’t have a democracya democracy will work only insofar as its citizens are wise. What strikes me is how everything you people are saying fits right in with the communist plan. I could go down to the docks and ask a hundred people who voted for Yarborough and Kennedy if they’re for communism, and every one of them would say ‘No.’ But what they’re doing is.” “Can’t you see the difference between a prophecy and a fact?” I asked. “You prophesy that. Look, I could go to a Birch meeting and ask if everybody there was for free debate and fair democratic procedures, and everyone would say” “That we must think of freedom in the long run,” he finished for me. “And I could tell you that this is just the same kind of subordination of means to ends that was used in Germany by Hitler. It would be a prophecy: it might be true. Don’t you see that all we have in common is the free method, open and fair debate?” “The trouble is,” said my staunch antagonist, “these last 30 years people have lost the ability to understand the issues. They’re so materialist that, in my opinion, is socialism they don’t understand what’s involved, and one morning we’re going to wake up and find the government controls everything, and all of us.” “But look: if it hadn’t been for the New Deal, think what a mess individualism would be in in the world,” I said. “Why, the breadlines still .. . This country, the greatest bulwark of individualsm, wouldn’t be.” “It’s my position we’ll never be able to repeal the New Deal,” he said. “And if we did,” I said, “this nation would be in a turmoil that wouldn’t quit.” “We’d be in a hell of a shape,” he said, and I wondered what he meantwhat this man would do in a crisis. “I don’t care if all the people are for welfarism, I don’t have to go along,” he said. “No ;. but your only legitimate recourse is civil disobedience.” He smiled a little to himself. He is a member of a civic club. He is high in his church. He is a member of the John Birch Society. He played a part in Koeninger’s firing, knowing that he was being unfair, for he spread hearsay against Koeninger while de
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