Box 17, Folder 15, Document 15

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Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee:

My name is C. Maurice Weidemeyer, I am a lawyer of Annapolis, Maryland,
a member of the Maryland House of Delegates from Anne Arundel County.

I wish to state that I am unalterably opposed to the passage of Senate Bill
1732, and I am also opposed to passage of any public accommodations law whether
by County, Municipality, State or Federal Government. The so-called public ac-
commodations laws do not accommodate the public generally, They accommodate

only a small minority of the public. The vast majority of the public, in my opinion,

have their own desires and their own likes and dislikes and wish to choose their

associates, i.e., the persons with whom they socialize and the persons with whom
they wish to associate in the conducting of business.

In my opinion, it has always been an inherent, basic, and fundamental right
of all free men in a free society to associate themselves, socially and commercially
with persons of their own choosing.

It has often been said by proponents of measures like this that public ac-
commodations bills are bills to guarantee freedom. I think that the approach is
wrong. They should be called freedom depriving bills. The bills give an unwarranted
freedom to a small minority while denying to the vast majority of our citizens and
business men a very basic freedom, namely, that of associating and doing business
with persons of his own choosing. The argument that because a State or Government
authority has licensed a person to do business, that they should be able to regulate
every facet of his thinking and conduct is something foreign to the American system
of government and cannot help but lead to eventual socialism, dictatorship, and
complete control by the government of every act, thought and deed of every individual
citizen. The privileges and accommodations which the proponents of this measure
contend are denied to negro citizens are not denied to them at all, because they
have the same opportunity go into business and to conduct a hotel or restaurant
or other types of businesses, just as much as any other citizens who have pre-

viously done so.

I have said many times, and I say it to you sincerely, that if the NAACP, the
CORE and the other ultra liberal organizations, who are daily harassing and pestering
the American esenncii, would spend their money and effort on promoting the welfare of
the colored race by assisting them into getting into business where they could cater
to their own people, they would be accomplishing something. For years, the NAACP
and CORE and others have been collecting $1.00 and $2.00 dues from people all
over the United States and spending the money principally in agitation of the white
race which neither gained respect nor promoted the negro economically. I would
suggest to them that if they wanted to organize a hotel corporation or any other
business corporation, and if they could not sell stock at $25.00 or $100 a share,
that they sell more shares at $1.00 or $2.00 per share and spend their money to
better use than by giving it to the NAACP and CORE and other organizations.

The idea that people are helping themselves and promoting themselves by de-
manding that others furnish them and give them that which they could obtain for
themselves is a false idea of promotion of that individual. Rights and privileges of

association are obtained only through accomplishment and mutual respect.

Certainly, nothing is furthered or improved by an insistent demand that people

be taken in and accepted under circumstances where they have not as yet earned

that respect, and no law, whether of the Federal, State, County or Municipal govern-
ment, attempting to force association of people, can be successful under such

forced conditions. Certainly someone and some group in the process are bound to
wind up with receiving more contempt and ill feeling than with respect.

I disagree also with those persons who would attempt to portray the present
disturbances in this country as spontaneous outbreaks. I cannot be lead to believe
that the colored people of Cambridge would conduct themselves in the vicious manner
in which they have, if they had not been engineered, guided and inspired and
financed by outside influences and capital. It would seem to me that it would be the
wiser thing for this Committee to consider the travelling in inter-state commerce of
persons like Martin Luther King and others whose sole purpose in going from state
to state is to create dissension, confusion and unrest, and deliberately going in
areas where the colored people have been very well satisfied and whipping them up

into a fervid heat of passion and hate for the white race.


I say to this Committee, quite sincerely, that if the purpose of this Committee
is to promote the welfare of the colored race, that it is going about it in the wrong
way. Certainly, the attempt to promote the negro race of less than twenty million
people in the United States against the will and wishes of the majority of the remain-
ing 160 million cannot do anything more than swell in the breasts of the vast major-

ity of the American people a deep feeling of resentment and contempt and it is ob-

vious upon reflection that such a condition in this United States has not improved

race relations.

It has often and falsely, I think, been said that it is necessary that we pass
public accommodations laws in the United States so as to impress foreign nations,
and naturally the question arises to me: what nations are we trying to impress? Are
they the nations that we have been continually financing and do we have to ruin our
whole civilization and our mode of living in order to try to create an impression? I
believe that a careful look at and a survey of many of the nations whom we think we
have to impress, would only serve to convince us of the utter futility of such an
attempt. Those nations, many of them, have century old customs, prejudices and
feelings which would never be changed even though the United States did a somer-
sault and acrobated itself into ruination and oblivion.

There was a time when the Communist conspiracy talked in terms of worldwide
revolution. That attitude on the part of some Communist nations has now changed
to a policy of slowly degrading and demoralizing the United States as one of the
main capitalist nations and with further attempts to harass and ruin us economically.
I believe, with other great and prominent men, that the Communist conspiracy to
wreck the United States is certainly being overjoyed at the almost fanatical attempts
being made by many organizations to ruin this great country and that the Communists
are well up in many of these movements of agitation for public accommodations.

As a Democrat, I sincerely regret the actions and statements of the President
and his brother, the Attorney General, because I realize that if they continue and

persist in their course of conduct to promote the negro population without regard to

the wishes of the vast majority of white citizenry in this country, that neither have
they promoted themselves politically nor have they advanced the well being of the
United States as a whole.

It may well be that my remarks here today will go unheeded and that men in
high places cognizant of the voting power of certain groups, will continue in this
false move until confronted at the polls by an overwrought voting populace, who
will be so angry and disturbed that many of the present day office holders will be
defeated at the polls. In conclusion, let me say that I hope that the United States
Senate will not approve any public accommodations law and will not attempt to ham-
string the American businessmen and cram such a bill down the throats of the
American people. It would be the wiser and safer thing to do to have the people of

the U.S. express themselves at the polls in matters of this nature.
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