Box 18, Folder 29, Document 100

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, gad Observer, Sunday, May 8, 1964

». Civil Rig

Leonard J. Kerpetman, a
fengtime courtroom champion
ef ofvil rights, may represent
oo trend in his opposition now
te any further extension of
civil rights to Negroes. His ac-
tioms could focus the jact that
the “trend’’ in civil rights
needs elearer, more widespread

Mr. Kerpelman is a Balti-
more lawyer who lives in a
recially integrated neighbor-
heed: is satisfied still to send
his children to an integrated
achool. He is a long-time mem-
er of the NAACP and has
eampaigned for able Negro
candidates for loca] office. He
fe disturbed now over the wil-
finmgness of some Baltimore Ne-
gro leaders to threaten a
“Watts rict’’ there as a lever
W &rmg about more racial ad-
veece, That, of course, goes
beyead demonstrations, which
civil rights leaders control, to
-violamt mob action in which
dewtroctiveness and even kiil-
ing js tuned lease for police
fe.centréel ‘

Tre “trend” in the civil
‘Mights movement fs often mis-
aumfecstood, primarily becsuse
#& has so often been misstated.


The defiant segregationists cali
all demonstrations “mobs,”
when, in fact, demonstrations,
led by such men as Martin}
Luther King, have never in-
chided rock and bottle throw-
ing and property destruction
which is what makes a dem-
onstration a “mob.” Yet some
of the Rev. Mr. King’s field
workers—even here in North
Caroline—have been observed
openly playing loose with the
truth in trying toe whip up mili-
tance and emotional ill will.
They have at times gone be-
yond the truth of the racial un-
fairness which exists, creating
passions which only racial ad-
vantage, not racia) fairness,
would be required to redress.

The “trend” in civil rights
can be what anybody can per-
suade a significant number of
people to believe. Mr. Kerpel-
man has done his share ef the

_persuading, and no doubt in-

tends to continue. But he dem-
onstrates that in his ey he
means to remain on sound
ground even if for a whife the
civil rights movemey there
doesn’t. He sets a god exam-

ple for everyone in any :
munity. = oe


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