Fifth Estate # 98, February 4-18, 1970

“Where grievances pile high and most of the elected spokesmen represent the establishment, violence may be the only effective response.”

—Justice William O. Douglas, U.S. Supreme Court

“Violence? We hate it. But is it violent to shoot a cop who breaks into your home bent on killing you? If so, the Panthers are violent.”

—Eldridge Cleaver Minister of Education Black Panther Party

Dear Reader:

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Love and Struggle

The LNS Staff

To the People:

Lay the blame for high priced rock concerts where it belongs—on the performers. They don’t want to perform for free and when they do it’s usually for publicity.

Of course the promoter wants to make a few bucks; he’s a pig. When you crash the gates you hurt him and if he is trying to help the community by bringing them their culture at a low price, he still has to pay the group, rent, etc.

We’re not hurting the real pigs, the groups themselves. They’re out for themselves, bilking the people by selling them the people’s culture. The groups are the big pig; the promoter is the little pig.

Brother Bobardil
London, Ont.

To the Editors and the People:

In the Jan. 7 issue there is a speech delivered by Black Panther David Hilliard called “If You Want Peace You Got To Fight For It” [FE #95, December 26, 1969-January 7, 1970]. In the speech Hilliard says that our country was built on war and that’s why it’s fucked up.

The last two statements of the speech read: “We ain’t here for no goddamned peace, because we know that we can’t have no peace because this country was built on war. And if you want peace you got to fight for it.”

He just complained that this was a nation built on war. True, and this is wrong. But do we want to build a new society on another war—another fucked up society?

This is a paradox. Peace cannot be made by war. Peace, true peace, will never be made by a violent change of power but by a change of our sick heads.

Peggy Brown

To the Editorial Staff:

Your reply to Lynda Pilzner’s letter and your editorial stance really depresses me [See Letters, FE #96, January 8-21, 1970]. The statement “in order to get rid of the gun, it is necessary to pick up the gun” certainly has been said many times—too many times.

Death again? Suffering and agony again? More atrocities until nobody knows or cares who is right? Is that the only way?

I can’t see the difference between the pigs killing my brother or you guys killing him. Non-violence is the only way. If the Fifth Estate really wants to serve the people you better get into peace, brother.

Dig that.

Bob Wilson

To the Editors:

Being a “Doc” with the Marines is the only thing that got me here. My views on the war have become even more anti-U.S. involvement since I got here.

We are hassled when not on patrol. By the way, Mr. Nixon says no offensive moves. I was only seeking out “the enemy” for thirty of the last 45 days.

War has its toll. Young men 17 or 18 being ruined for life. I’ve seen an ex-track star been hit by a booby trap. What can a track star do with one leg? What can I write to an 18 year old wife with a kid when my best friend was killed?

No, I’m not blaming the Viet Cong. I’ve seen their dying and dead. I’ve seen both sides feel injury. Why must man face man?

Could you shoot a person when you see them hesitate at shooting you? We the people of a great (?) country are only toys. There must be a change.

We have ruined the Vietnamese; burned their farmland, reduced their daughters to whores and their children to beggars. These are only questions we have to ask. I have an answer. Roger Priest has an answer. Who will heed us?

The Squid

[FE online archive note: see also the Fifth Estate’s Vietnam Resource Page on this site.]

Dear Fifth Estate:

Today I received my first copy of your paper under my name. Just in time to recognize and support the January 24 Free John Sinclair-Legalize Marijuana Day [FE #96, January 8-21, 1970]. Thus, this letter is our contribution to the cause. I’m afraid this is all we can do at the present time because we are being detained and entertained by the Marine Corps in their brig. Actually, it’s not a brig, but a “detention facility.”

You’re not supposed to be kept here more than 24 hours. It’s not suitable for living in. Today is my sixteenth day. The young Puerto Rican across the hall is on his twenty-eighth day. His name is Toni. He is being held in “confinement to prevent further offenses.” He was caught with three Js in his pocket.

Myself, I “read communist propaganda” like the Fifth Estate and I talk of legalizing marijuana. But that’s not enough to put me away, so they improvised.

First they called out the CID pigs to take my clothes off, turn the pockets inside out looking for any incriminating evidence such as a ten pack, a joint, a seed, anything. No luck.

Next they strip my rack down, rummage through my personal belongings for anything that has to do with dope. Still no luck. (Little did they know that I went through the Ann Arbor-Detroit pig raids.)

Well, after that little caper they had to release me. Only to pick me up seven hours later while I’m on my job.

I’m a sentry on guard duty. My job is to prevent “zappers” from getting through the lines and destroying their fascist planes. On Jan. 9th at 12:30 am someone threw a grenade at me. I don’t mind telling you it scared the shit out of me.

After regaining my senses I saw a man running away, fired three shots at him and waited. About five minutes later there were people running all over the place. Officers asking me what happened? After telling them, a sweep was made of the area which produced nothing.

About 1:15 am I was called back to the command bunker to make a statement. After doing this I was advised of my rights, asked to sign an article 31 and was thrown in the detention facility. Twelve days later I was taken to see a Lt. Col. He referred me to a special court-martial. That was four days ago.

Anyway, we realize the importance of legalizing marijuana, AND freeing political prisoners. Are you aware of the hundreds of people who are neatly put away because of this offense? Brother Greg Piscopink is currently serving a prison term in Ionia for this offense.

Brother Greg is a beautiful person, a member of the Stone family from the Green House in Ann Arbor, STP patriot and White Panther member. Also someone who should not have to spend ten years of his allotted time on earth in a cell.

Yes, we the people here support the January 24th operation, FULLY! Stop the war! Bring us home! Hell yes, free John Sinclair! Hell yes, free Greg Piscopink! Hell yes, free us all!

Ken Pakula

To the Editors:

I would like to make a few comments concerning the article by J.R. Kennedy entitled “Christmas at Northland” [FE #95, December 26, 1969-January 7, 1970]. For one, I have never before read a more biased account of a “happening.”

I am presently serving in the Armed Forces in Germany, but will be leaving for Viet Nam in February. I am from the Motor City and have shopped many times at Northland. I have never had any problems with either the Security guards hired by the businessmen of Northland, nor by the Southfield police which are seen quite frequently at Northland.

Reason being, I do not go out looking for trouble. These “kids” that were arrested (and they are all kids no matter what their age) deserve all they get, plus a little more.

They were just trouble looking for a place to happen. They wanted trouble, and they got it. And I sincerely hope the police departments of Detroit, Southfield and all surrounding communities continue to “suppress” these “anti-America” youth so as to try and make America the place our fore-fathers wanted it to be; a place of freedom and equality for all.

You will probably not print this, since it is contrary to your “policy,” but I just wanted to let you know that not everyone under 25 is in favor of revolution.

The “silent” minority,

Sp Marc Nadeau
814 Engr. Co. (FB) APO N.Y. 09165