October 1969

National Moratorium significance assessed

   "With a second national moratorium supposedly scheduled on the Vietnam War for sometime in November, I felt that the journalism classes needed to accurately assess the extent and the news impact of the first moratorium," said Mr. Kenneth Beatty, journalism instructor, in regard to a survey conducted by the journalism classes on October 15.
   "I wanted the classes to have a basis for evaluating the moratorium and its significance," he said.
   "Our survey was designed to tell us how many students were wearing what kinds of arm bands. The classes interviewed a cross section of students to learn why they were or were not wearing bands."
   Results of the survey show that the arm bands were much like any personal symbol--each wearer had his own unique meaning for the band. The survey revealed that the number of band wearers was about what the class had expected it to be, Mr. Beatty said.
   Of the 1534 students observed in classes, 230 or about 15 percent, wore arm bands of some kind. Of these 136 were black, 87 were red, white and blue, and 7 were other colors or combinations.
   Students interviewed by the class included 123 persons who wore arm bands and 96 who did not. Of those who wore arm bands, 68 wore black, 45 wore red, white and blue, and 10 (sic) wore other combinations.
   Interviewees included 07 sophomores, 55 juniors, 42 seniors, and 23 freshmen.
   Of the students interviewed, comments on the Moratorium and the war were married.
    Wearers of black armbands, which constituted eight (sic) percent of all armband wearers, made comments as follows:
    "The war is in direct violation to American ideals. Ky and Thieu are as intolerant and as dishonest as any dictatorship."
   Some comments from these students are as follows:
   "I am an American and I believe in American ideals, but I want to get out of Vietnam."
   "There is nothing Un-American about protest."
   "The Vietnam war is a civil war and we cannot hope to win it," said a junior boy.
   "Immediate withdrawal of American troops."
   "I am mourning for the men and children on both sides who have died in the war."
   "I am mourning the Vietnam dead and I want something done about it. Some people have tried to rip my armband off and I've been called a Communist and a Viet Cong."
   "I object to the United State's role as policeman of the world."
   Six per cent of all armband wearers wore red, white, and blue armbands for a variety of reasons, such as:
   "I support the President and I think he is doing the best he knows how to end the war. Those who want to withdraw have no better suggestions either."
   "I hate the SDS and all other related organizations."
   "The people that are wearing black are for peace. I want peace also, but if we pull out now, the Communists would win and all our guys would have died in vain."
   "I have two reasons for wearing my red, white and blue armband. First, I'm for the government's policy on Vietnam. I also am not the kind of people who are wearing black armbands."
   "I pulled off seven black bands already, and put one guy down to the nurse."
   "It matches my outfit."
   "I think we should escalate."
   Red, white and blue on black was also worn, generally to express patriotism and protest the war.
   "I couldn't make up my mind whether to wear black or red, white and blue so I wore blue."
   "I wore red because I disagree with black. Someone tried to rip mine off."
   "I wore the red, white, and blue armband because I believe in the United States. I wore the black one because I'm against the war."
   Of the 44 percent of the student body observed, 70 percent wore no armbands at all. Some students wanted to wear them, but couldn't get them. Others did not want to wear them at all.
   "I'm not conservative enough to wear a red, white and blue armband or liberal enough to wear a black one."
   "I believe there are two sides to every story, but there are many sides to this story. There are too many meanings to the armbands, and most people wearing them are insincere. They do have the right to wear the, though."
   "I don't know why I didn't wear one."