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After Meeting with Harvard Admin on ‘Swatting’ Attack, Black Student Leaders Say Demands Remain Unanswered
Over 40 black Business School students occupied the school's central administration building for an hour yesterday afternoon to express their sympathy with blacks at the College.
The black students-all first-year MBA candidates-occupied Morgan Hall, the Business School's equivalent to University Hall, from 5:10 p.m. until 6:15 p.m., when they left peacefully. There are 67 black first-year MBA candidates in a class of 750.
At the time the blacks entered, the secretaries had already left for the day, but ten to twelve administration officials were still in their offices.
"We wanted to show support of some type for the black students who had taken over University Hall," one black student said. "At the time, it was not known whether the black students had left University Hall," he added.
Split on Tactics
The occupation followed a meeting of first-year MBA candidates in the HBS Afro-American Union of Students. They decided to enter Morgan Hall, but were split over how militant they should be.
In the building, the occupation turned out to be non-obstructive. But while the blacks were there, at least two factions continued to debate tactics.
One faction called for a "meaningful takeover" - throwing administration members out of Morgan Hall, chaining the doors, and staying there for the night. Another group felt their purpose at this time could be better served by leaving the building.
After 15 minutes in the building, the blacks approached George Lombard, senior associate dean of the Business School and asked him three questions:
whether University Hall was still being occupied:
if the students had left, whether they had been removed forcibly;
All Helpers to Enter Apprentice Program
A tentative agreement to eliminate the helper category and promote all present helpers to apprentices with a pay raise of 10 cents was reached last Friday between Harvard and the representatives of the five unions in the Maintenance and Engineering Department, according to a union spokesman.
S. Frank Raftery, national president of the Brotherhood of Painters, Decorators, and Paper Hangers of America, said the agreement must now be ratified by the membership of the five unions.
Under the agreement, an apprenticeship and training program will be set up with automatic promotions every six months leading to the journeyman position. The apprentices will be paid $3.05 per hour, retroactive to December 8, 1969. Helpers are presently paid $2.95.
A joint committee, including three members each from Harvard and from the union, will be formed to oversee the program.
Raftery called the present helper category "an inequitable arrangement keeping people in a kind of subservient position without any hope of moving forward."
Raftery said that the new agreement includes the present helpers for the first time as part of a collective bargaining agreement.
Raftery was at Harvard yesterday to speak at the graduation exercises of the Trade Union Program at the Business School. He had heard earlier about the painters' helpers issue and refused to appear at the graduation unless a regular apprenticeship program was established. Raftery was advised of the present agreement at 5 p.m. last Friday afternoon.
Raftery said that the carpenters' union has already ratified the agreement. The Harvard members of the painters' union will meet Monday night to vote on the agreement. "We're sure that we'll carry the vote," Raftery said.
Support of OBU Voted by Whites; Action Uncertain
About 100 white radicals with varying political affiliations voted last night to support the five OBU (Organization for Black Unity) demands.
However, the members of WSA (Worker-Student Alliance), NAC (November Action Committee), and YSA (Young Socialist Alliance) came to no formal decision at the meeting in Mem Church about the kind of action they should adopt in supporting the demands.
Members of NAC called for complete support of OBU and asked the meeting to give OBU a "blank check" promise to take whatever action the black group advises them to take.
WSA students argued however, that the idea of blanket support would alienate some painters helpers and a majority of liberal students. They recommended that the meeting support only two of the demands-promote the painters' helpers and hire 20 per cent black and third world construction workers-as the central issues.
They also said that they disagreed with some of OBU's tactics, specifically the agreement to negotiate with the University through the implementation committee.
However, about two-thirds of the meeting voted to support all five demands. The meeting dissolved before the questions of blank check support and the establishment of a coalition committee to organize white action were voted on.
what was being done about punishments.
Lombard said last night that "some of our minority students were concerned about what was happening across the river. It took half and hour, maybe a little more to get what I thought were fair answers to their questions."
During that half hour, the blacks debated among themselves and discussed Harvard's policy toward blacks with those administration members who had not secluded themselves in the offices.
Lombard returned to the blacks about 6 p.m. with answers to their questions, after talking to Archibald Cox, Samuel Williston Professor of Law. He spoke to them for five minutes and then went back to his office.
The blacks left Morgan Hall at 6:15 p.m. "From my point of view, it was a very relaxed very friendly discussion," Lombard said.
Lombard's opinion does not seem to have a consensus, however. One black student said, "I don't think anyone went in their to get himself patted on the head and get a dent made in his Afro."
Not All Cadets Care About Saving AROTC
Many of the 146 members of Army ROTC reacted unenthusiastically yesterday when they learned officially that the student leaders in their program are trying to save AROTC.
Nevertheless, a group of about a dozen AROTC student leaders will proceed in their plans to send letters to under-graduates and first-year graduate students to enlist their support for the continuation of the program, due to end next June.
The letters will emphasize the advantages of joining the Army for two years as a commissioned officer rather than as a draftee.
Students receiving the letters will be asked to register their support possibly by returning signed statements saying, "I would like Harvard students to have an opportunity to participate in ROTC while attending Harvard University."
The leaders hope to complete the mailing before Christmas vacation.
One of them-Stephen Pearlman, a third-year Law School student-said last night he was not surprised by the apathy of much of the cadet corps. "I expect that the predominant attitude in ROTC will be fuck you, Jack, I'm all right!" he said.
Harvard YAF issued a statement lastnight in favor of maintaining ROTC here until Congress abolishes conscription.
"Last year the tactics of a belligerent minority led the faculty to vote, under duress, to eliminate ROTC at Harvard. That vote should be reconsidered." the VAF statement said. "Individuals should have the opportunity and the right to choose whether or not participation in ROTC is moral and advantageous." S,Z.G.
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