Committee on Campus Political Activity
Saturday, October 24, 1964
Minutes of Meeting
The meeting was called to order. The minutes were read and approved with the understanding that corrections could be made in the future. It was pointed out that a suggestion of Miss Goldberg's was incorrectly stated. The chairman explained his interpretations of the purpose of the committee as expressed in the agreement of October 2. He said that the committee should try to produce a set of recommendations to the administration on all aspects of political activity, behaviour, and expression on campus and their control.
Miss Aptheker gave the report of the subcommittee on agenda. The subcommittee recommended the following agenda:
- Recommendations to the administration regarding regulations during the negotiations.
- Procedures and focus for the public hearings.
- Weight of the committee's recommendations.
It was further urged that the meeting end at 10:00 am. She—a Miss Aptheker added that suggestions of format for public hearings be made by calling her at:
Mr. Stapleton moved that the agenda be adopted, but Mr. Savio suggested that a motion was unnecessary. The chair agreed and asked for discussion of the report. Mr. Cheit added that hearings should be focused around a specific topic and should look to the future.
After discussion it was decided that a motion was necessary, so Mr. Rysovsky seconded Mr. Stapleton's motion to adopt the agenda.
Mr. Searcy said that the October 2 agreement was clear in its intention to adopt the existing rules for the time being.
Mr. Stapleton replied that the regulations now in effect were not valid; that their validity was being questionned by this committee. The agreement failed to make a distinction between de jure and de facto regulations, there being a large discrepance between the two in this case. He added that there are things that need to be done now that are an essential part of the work of various political groups. The rules depend upon the interpretations of the administration, at present, and are not explicitly written.
Mr. Kadish repeated that item 1 of the agenda was out of our jurisdiction by the October 2 agreement.
Miss Goldberg replied that the agreement of October 2 had been voided by several administration violations of it.
Mr. Vermullen said that the committee's purpose was to formulate policies for political action on campus and that it should issue no partial report now.
Miss Aptheker said that it is not clear what the current status quo is regarding political action. She reminded the committee that it had been agreed that any one of the parties involved would present material it felt was relevant. After more discussion, Mr. Rysovsky called the question. The vote was by a show of hands and was carried 12 to 1 with MR. Kadish casting the dissenting vote. The committee proceeded to the first item of business. Mr. Kadish stated that the agreement of October 2 specified that the existing regulations would be in effect during negotiations.
Mr. Churnin made a statement before leaving the session which included the following
- the committee is not empowered to make such recommendations;
- it is poor procedure to issue a partial report at any time;
- the committee was not set up to hadle daily rules;
- there are existing channels, viz., the Dean of Students' office to handle these matters.
Mr. Savio asked what the existing regulations were.
Miss Aptheker said that political action on campus has been severely crippled. She cited the campaign against Proposition 14 and further suggested that the regulations be the same as the de facto regulations prior to September 21.
Mr. Stapleton explained that this meant the present rules on the campus proper with full political activity allowed at Bancroft and Telegraph. He stressed that this activity had been going on after September 21 when the ban was invoked; and that it was an integral part of the activity of organizations and was questionned only after regulations were broken at other areas on campus.
Mr. Savio a said that students have certain rights on the campus and that the only question was what rights are the students willing to refrain from exercising. He expressed the opinion that the students are giving up much more than the administration in this matter.
Mr. Kadish and Dean Towle stressed that administration channels exist to interpret present rules.
Mr. Powell said that only the Bancroft-Telegraph area was in dispute and that the rules that governed that area now should be enforced.
Miss Aptheker told the committee that the Academic Senate committee on Student Discipline has recommended that the administration reinstate the eight students pending the decisions of the committee. She added that all areas on campus were in dispute and that our aim was to open them all. She stressed the urgency of immediately allowing all activity at least at the Bancroft-Telegraph area citing as an example the prop. 14 campaign which had lost hundreds of precinct workers since the ban.
Mr. Stapleton moved that the committee recommend to Chancellor Strong that the de facto position of the Administration prior to September 21 be its position during negotiations. The motion was seconded by Mr. Savio.
Mr. Rysovsky said that, as he believed, the Administration would not have signed the October 2 agreement if it had read "prior to September 21" in part 5. He also objected to making Proposition 14 an important issue.
Mr. Sersei stated that the drop in the prop. 14 campaign might have been caused by the involvement of students in other things. He said that off-campus activity had continued. He added that at a Regent's meeting of September 25 policies had been liberalized by allowing distribution of political literature; the pre-September 21 situation was more stringent.
Mr. Cheit said he thought the committee would be weakened by these recommendations. The committee had been established as a channel for the study and recommendation of the rules.
Miss Goldberg replied that the effectiveness of the Administration's decisions was being questionned by the existence of the committee; therefore existing channels were not adequate. The legal principle that there should be suspension of the enforcement of rules under question was applicable here. That the power of the committee far from being diminished by making such a recommendation would in fact be increased. The question was called.
Voting was by consensus. The students voted for the motion; the faculty and administration voted against it. The motion was defeated.
Mr. Stapleton stated in behalf of the FSM that the problem cannot be solved in this committee and that the FSM will not be bound by this decision.
Mr. Rysovsky moved that the meeting be extended an extra half-hour in order to discuss the second item on the agenda.
Mr. Cheit introduced the topic of procedure for public hearings with the following suggestions:
- that we frame specific questions for each hearing to make the hearing more fruitful;
- that we look to the future rather than the past.
He added that the agenda subcommittee is still continuing its work on the first of these. One of his suggested questions was: Should there be distinctions between kinds of political activity and restrictions from one location to another.
Mr. Rysovsky pointed out that Dean Fretter would be leaving for Chile and that a replacement should be made.
Mr. Savio asked about the questionning of witnesses; what method ought we to use. suggested we move to procedural questions and
He recommended that the counsels have the right to question the witnesses. He said that although the lawyers were to have been silent, according to the committee letter to Chancellor Strong, the committee had already altered the procedures presented in that letter by agreeing to alternate discussions with hearings. He added that the lawyers were more experienced in questioning than most of the committee members.
Vermullen asked whether all questions should be asked by the counsel or should the counsel be supplementary.
Savio the counsel should be supplementary.
Sersei, that we should avoid making the hearings more judicial; it is inhibiting to appear before lawyers.
Aptheker, that Mr. Kadish was an attorney and therefore gave the one group an advantage which the students did not have. Questions of legality will be raised; on these matters it will be in keeping with the essence of the committee's function to have legal counsel speak.
Cheit, That we should present people experienced in law as we focus on questions of law. Suppose we invite two experts (lawyers) then would it be proper to have lawyers question lawyers? Presumably this would occur if we allowed the counsel to interrogate witnesses.
Savio, It might be that other than lawers will speak on legal questions.
Goldberg, that we have the lawers ask questions when legal matters arise.
Vermullen, That the committee invite legal counsel to comment and that the framing of questions to witnesses in such cases be restricted to questions of law.
Kadish, that we have the counsels brief us in sessions when questions of law arise.
Gordon, that as a subcommittee of the University of California the counsels do not represent groups, viz the students are not represented by their counsel.
Bernstein, that the counsels were appointed as counsels of the committee; that it would be helpful to have some limit to the number of people asking questions of witnesses. He suggested that it be limited to the counsels and that it be supplemented by the committee asking questions.
Williams, that the counsels were not representing the committee.
Rosovsky, that he (Rosovsky) was not represented by any counsel. There seems to be agreement that it would be too disorganized to have everyone asking questions and that someone should take the major burden; under the circumstances, the lawyers should do so.
Stapleton, that many questions of law will arise; that since Mr. Kadish has a great deal of legal experience, on questions of law a group may ask ought to be able to ask the counsel to comment.
Kadish, that we do not know the extent to which we will need legal aid; that we should leave the format as it is and if the need should arise we should raise the question then.
Stapleton, that we should leave the format to allow for lawyers to ask questions when the need arises.
Cheit, this is a negotiating committee and we should not get sticky on procedural points. We ought to allow the counsels to submit briefs, or a memorandum.
Rosovsky, Proposed that if witnesses appear and a lawyer is needed, then if there is consensus and the lawyers agree as well that counsel is needed we let the lawyers ask questions.
Kadish, what use is there to having lawyers question lawyers.
Rosovsky, Why is it inappropriate for Mr. Bernstein to ask questions?
Gordon, It's the same problem as having a lawyer come to a classroom to speak.
Savio, under Mr. Rosovsky's proposal Mr. Gordon would be able to make it impossible for the lawyers to ask a question.
Kadish is his (Kadish's) presence that important; would the same proposal be made if he were not present?
Cheit, If the lawyers agree there's a legal point and there is a question of law in which legal questioning would be profitable then they will be allowed to ask questions.
Williams, If the two counsels indicate a point of law is in question then the chairman shall feel free to call upon them.
Kadish, moved that the motion be tabled and placed first on the agenda of the next meeting.
Savio, proposed that an ammendment to Mr. Kadish's motion be made that the agenda committee decide when to place the motion on the agenda.
Kadish, accepted the ammendment.
The motion was passed, 5 to 4 with 3 abstensions.
The meeting was adjourned until the following Wednesday in 340 Haviland Hall.
Title: Oct. 24, 1964
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