Box 19, Folder 17, Document 21

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Box 19, Folder 17, Document 21

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-Associated P ress Wl.rephoto
Jvan Allen Jr. . . . Calls
f or accommodations action.
Atlanta Chief
Aslcs Ol{eh
For 'Rights'
Washington Post Co.
WASHINGTON, July 26 The mayor of Atlanta told Congress Friday it must enact 11
public accommodations law or
southern citirs like Atlanta
that have tried to ban di ·crimination may !'lip back into
segregated patterns.
broke the solid line oI outht>rn opposition to civil rights
legislation as he injected this
new note into the hearing of
the Senate Commerce Committee.
'·Failure to pass this bill."
aid Allen, "would amount, by
inference, to an endor~ement
of private busines5 settin~ up
an entirely new tatus of dis<'rimination throughout the nation .
"Cities like Atlanta might
sJlp backwards."
Hotels and restauran t that
have already taken this i . ue
upon them elves and opened
thf'ir doors might find it ron\'f'nient to go bac·k to the olrl
i.tatus . . . in m .
�of squa bbles an d demon trations th a t we have had in the
pas t"
"I F I RAD YOUR p r obl em .
a r m ed w ith the l0cal exper iPnce I have had, I w ould pass
a oublir accommodation s bill,"
said Alli:n.
He asked t hat sou t hern communi t ies be g iven time to make
the adjustment voluntarily before being hauled in to court.
In J'esnonse to qi.1estions.
lie suggested a two-year
g race period for cities . :mil
more for sma.JJ communities.
" But t he point I want to
em n ha size a ga in." he saici . "is
that now is thP tim e for le'!iS·
lative action. We cannot dodge
·t he iss ue."
"\ VE i.\IUST take a ction now
1o ass ure a greater future for
our citizens and our country
... the elimination of segregat ion. which is slaverv's steoehild. is a chall en'!e t o aU of
us to make ever~, American
free in fact as well a s in t heory."
T his stron i; statem ent in hehalf or equal ri ghts from a 52:vea r-old na ti ve of Georgia
deeply moved liberal members
of t he committee.
"l THINK." :-iAlD Actin!;
Chair ma n John 0 . Pa tore fDR.I. l. "that w hen Presid Pnt
Kenned v wrote his book 'Profil es in ·courage' he was t hinkinl! of you."
It al so lea t o a sh arp exr han qe between P a tore r111d
Sen. Strom Thurmond CD-S.C.l,
all-out oooonent of an y civil
r ights legislation.
Allen i r h e would favor the
]P-:ris]ation even if. it m eant
dosin g every r estaurant in
Georgia. P astore cut him off,
call in g it a "loaded" qu e!' tion
or th e h ave-you -5toppPd-bea tinJZ-yo ur-wife? type.
P a to re said he wouldn 't nPrmif qu estion s a ked to emba rrass witnesse~ a nd to "r atc h
tomorrow m ornin g's
headl ine ."
" I DON'T WAN'.I.' t he mayor
to go home and be kn own as
t he m an who wants to close
all the little restaurants in
Georgia," said Pastore.
T hurmond called P astore',
action "improper" a nd sa id he
resented t he "insinuation" 1:ha
he had asked an unfair q uestion. He said he was try in.
only to get the tru th to the
American people.
You1· tl'uth
is not my
tl'Uf-11," snapped Pastol'e.
plauded, T h u r m o n d called
them ·']eftwingers" and aid he
was " urprised" that Pastor
permitted the audience re

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