Letters To The Editors


Fifth Estate # 18, November 15-30, 1966


To the Editor:

The article in your last issue—”Playboy’s Tinseled Seductress”—I liked [FE #17, November 1-15, 1966]. The pointing out Playboy’s magnificent superficiality was, I thought, sound and much needed. But the conclusion!—ugh!—that the marriage institution suffers thereby—that “somehow the glow has gone out of marriage.” How sad!

I’m just wondering if the article’s author is a marriage counselor. No, I doubt even a marriage counselor would in this Sunday School fashion shed tears over marriage-on-the-rocks.

No, I think the author is just another radical whose radicalism stops dead in its tracks before the awesome marriage institution, who cannot or will not see certain relationships, like the oppressive leviathan state and monogomistic family.

Academic social scientists generally act like this tiny, triangular, molecular phenomenon called family is here to stay—like the air we breathe—despite its (at most) 10,000 years existence as against Man’s million-year career—and despite that this existence is rapidly—a la the industrialized and automated substructure of today—becoming an anachronism.

Social scientists—and the author—have yet to realize that the family—emerging with and basis for Man’s Agricultural Revolution—has done its historical job.

Love and marriage may go together like a horse and carriage, but the carriage is now a car.

Sam Cohen

To the Editor:

The parental ‘concern’ (certainly not preaching) shown in what was hopefully the last “letters to his children” was most touching [FE #17, November 1-15, 1966].

Especially noted criticisms may be illustrated by paraphrasing the author’s most original cliches. “Speaking with A. Huxley does not make one a writer or philosopher,” or “Reading about drugs does not make one an expert.” And the author’s inexperience is more than apparent.

“Baby” you may not call your gap ‘generational,’ but in the house of the living or happy or growing or studying one does speak of hemp, and often.

The much needed Fifth Estate has thus far surpassed itself with each issue. Let’s hope it doesn’t mutate into a Hefner-like “Advertisement for himself” by the publisher’s father.

A. Dunn

To the Editor:

It is rather nice of you to support the Fort Hood Three on the grounds of “freedom of dissent.” (See FE various issues.) Do you know what you are doing?

When a person enters the service, he surrenders part of his citizenship. In the military for a mission to be completed, there must be discipline. Without it, the unit fails to function and chaos results. In combat (and that’s really what the service is all about) there must be some kind of control. There simply is no room for “individuals” in the service. This is why discipline exists in the service and it is enforced.

However, if your somewhat subjective reporter has something against the military establishment that is another thing. For as long as there is a standing Army this lack of freedom of decision will continue to exist. It’s inherent in the system.

John Weatherton

To the Editor:

This being an International Day of Protest, it is an apt occasion for comment upon the last Fifth Estate’s article on The Fort Hood Three [FE #17, November 1-15, 1966].

What has happened to them is not an American tragedy. To claim that it is, is to obscure the issues surrounding their case. There are two grounds by which one might hold that it is a tragedy. Upon both of them, however, it is not.

Firstly, one might claim that the American way of life is good, but that it contains a flaw. That flaw is what finally caused the entire apparatus of the American State to crush these three men. The American way of life is not good; it lacks fatal flaws; it is shot through with flaws, thus they are not fatal ones. The American way of life is itself tragic, not the particular incident.

Secondly, one might claim that it is a tragedy because three good men are slowly being crushed by the system. When one reads Mr. Sama’s letter published in the same issue of The Fifth Estate, one knows this is also false.

Dave Samas, James Johnson, and Dennis Mora are three individuals who have crushed the system! They have told the system to take its value of sellout and shove it. They have replaced that value with honor.

Nelson and Susan Pole
Columbus, Ohio