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Who is really for "Law and Order"

Who WILL bring "law and order" to our society?
What is the ANSWER to the most disquieting domestic crisis of this century?


A rising contempt of and disregard for law and order lies at the heart of the growing violence in America today," says J. Edgar Hoover.


What has gone wrong with American, British and other Western societies?

Why is it unsafe for so many Americans to walk on their streets at night? Why is the Canadian and British crime rate also spiraling upward?


A Situation of CRISIS

Overall, the FBI reports crime in the United States rose 21% during the first six months of 1968 over the corresponding months in 1967. Armed robberies increased 34% during this period. Violent crimes of murder, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault increased 21% as a group.

From Vancouver, British Columbia, Police Chief Ralph Booth reported that major crime in Vancouver increased by eleven percent last year. He said the 1967 increase compared with an increase of only three percent in 1966.

Writing in the London Daily Express, Percy Hoskins stated earlier this year: "London in the late 1960's could become a mini-version of the Chicago of the 1930's if violence continues to increase at its present rate. Already, after only 43 days of 1968 the trend is alarmingly clear. Last year, crimes of brutality, particularly when associated with robbery, rose in London by almost ten percent. Within a few months this figure could be caught up and passed."

From New Zealand, the 1967 juvenile crime figures for Christchurch make very unpalatable reading. Last year's figures show an increase of almost 30 percent on the 1966 total!

So it goes around most of the English-speaking world — and particularly in America.

Many Americans are deeply concerned. They have "had enough" of this type of thing.

With America's crime rate rising sharply, exactly half of all women in the United States, an estimated 32 million, say they are afraid to walk alone at night in areas as close as one mile to where they presently live. In the case of men, one in five shares the same fear.

These fears are not confined to white citizens. An even greater percentage of Negroes say they are afraid to use the streets at night in some of the areas near their dwelling places.

The big picture is that our national crime rate has risen by the fantastic rate of 89% during the period between 1960 and 1967, while during the same years our population increased only ten percent! In other words crime has been growing at the rate of nearly nine times that of population in this "civilized" society.


The Presidential Campaign

There is no question but that "law and order" was the name of the game in the recent American presidential election. Each candidate claimed to have the answer to the problem. Seemingly for the first time in years, people are willing and eager to listen to someone talk about getting back to stability, honesty, decency and obedience to law.

One of the candidates for the presidency estimated that it would cost billions of dollars to bring law and order to this nation. The politicians are proposing elaborate programs of federal aid to upgrade our police forces around the nation. This aid would be used to hire and train more policemen. It would upgrade the quality of our police forces, increasing salaries, and requiring a high school or a college degree for the policemen and officers.

Some have proposed new laws, such as gun-control laws, laws to punish those who cross state lines to incite riots and other laws. But with widespread disobedience to existing laws, is the making of new laws the answer?

With spiraling crime waves in virtually every section of our nation, is the simple hiring and training of more policemen going to really stop crime or significantly reduce it?

A most significant backdrop to this year's presidential election was the nomination of Vice-President Humphrey for President by the Democratic Party in Chicago. The convention was perhaps the wildest and most violent and bitter convention scene in American history.

Against a background of street fighting raging downtown, delegates in the convention booed, shook fists, yelled, shoved and turned Chicago's Mayor Richard J. Daley into the personification of a villain.

Thousands of young hippies and yippies screamed, yelled, cursed and defied police orders over and over again. They threw bricks, bottles and nail-studded golf balls at the police lines protecting the convention site. Hundreds of times, the yippie screams of "pig" and filthy four-letter epithets were hurled at the police. Vice-President Humphrey told a CBS interviewer, Martin Agronsky, "I saw a policeman who had been stabbed in the face with a broken beer bottle . . . I saw filth and manure being thrown on rugs at the Conrad Hilton Hotel."

In spite of this unprecedented outburst of filth and lawlessness, many of the politicians decried the severe measures Mayor Daley and the Chicago police force finally had to take. Desperately, they tried to straddle both sides of the fence — pleading sympathy for the young beatniks and hippies who were defying the police and all the forces of law and order, yet at the same time claiming that they would somehow be able to solve the problem of law and order!

A nationally known news personality, commenting on the conventions and the campaign to follow, pointed out that in carrying on a campaign a politician needed to make many big claims and "a little honest lying may be necessary."

This was said, of course, with a certain amount of wry humor. But was also said as a statement of factual procedures during nearly any election campaign in our Western democratic system. Perhaps that simple but honest statement gets at least part of the real source of the problem. For men in high office are willing to lie — to break a law — in order to ingratiate themselves with voters to whom they are claiming in the same breath that they will "enforce" true law and order.

What a paradox.

Yet it is true to human nature, and actually reflects our system of law, our politicians, our peoples and our problems.


Whose Law?

In order for laws to be honored and adhered to, the true respected SOURCE of law must be defined. There must be a standard — a source — an authority.

All too often, the Negro militants, the young rebels or dropouts feel they are simply rebelling against "the system" which the older generation has foisted upon them. They simply regard the laws of the land as part of a hodgepodge of ideas and principles which our fathers and grandfathers stumbled onto and which have not worked.

Today, myriad statutes ranging from local tax laws to hunting regulations are flouted commonly by "respectable" citizens. One can easily get a chuckle from his peers by recounting how he "got away" with breaking some law of the land.

This attitude, of course, is passed on to his children, and in turn to their children. It grows, spreads and multiplies. The young Negro militant, especially, thinks of the laws of the land as merely coming from "the man" — the white establishment; with its white ideas and ideals which he feels have kept the Negroes as an oppressed minority group.

But can respect for a law exist when every man is a law unto himself?

Look what is happening in America and all over the Western world today! Almost all society, it seems, has been permeated with the concept that everyone should have the right to "do his thing" — whether it be a child throwing a temper tantrum by screaming and kicking his mother, or a long-haired, incredibly filthy, foul-mouthed hippie who is staging a sit-in at a public building. Because of this feeling, criminals are often pampered, coddled and catered to at the expense of the general public's welfare and safety.

In this modern "enlightened" age of violence and filth, the society as a whole subscribes to the doctrine that there are no standards — no absolutes. This is explained in schools and universities, expounded from pulpits and extolled by the politicians. We know absolutely that there are no absolutes!

Therefore, such "modern" thinkers as anthropologist Margaret Meade think that even so basic a civil and religious institution as marriage is doomed to fall into disuse within the next few decades. They think that marriage is no longer functional and they are now trying to devise other means of perpetuating the human race and satisfying the requirements of adult human beings.


Man's Laws Change as His "Reason" Dictates

Even the idea of a heterosexual relationship being the "norm" is now subject to great and increasing challenges. Long the butt of lurid comments and off-color jokes, homosexuals are coming out into the open. They are beginning to boldly challenge the right of others to make them "second-class citizens." They are fighting "discrimination" on legal, economic and social fronts. Many laws throughout Western Europe and the U.S. are beginning to change in the homosexual's favor as human beings reason that there is no real standard by which we can judge such things.

When the British Parliament completed its legislation to legalize private homosexual acts by consenting males it aligned itself with most of Western Europe where such acts, if not strictly legal, are not prohibited.

France has taken a permissive attitude for more than a century. Portugal, the Netherlands, Denmark, Italy, Sweden, Belgium and Spain make homosexuality no crime unless minors or public morals are involved.

Among the homosexuals' biggest allies are growing numbers of Protestant clergymen. Churchmen in some of the bigger cities are trying for a better public understanding of and sympathy for homosexuals — aiding them in gaining "respect" by their fellows.


Why should it be shocking if everybody is free to reason out with his own mind what he would, or would not like to do? And if everybody's opinion is just as good as everybody else's? And if there is no real AUTHORITY?

There are absolutely no absolutes?

So if someone does not agree with the law — if it does not coincide with what he "feels" like doing at the moment — he feels he has the license to disobey. After all, goes the reasoning, who is to say he is wrong?

By rejecting the fact that there is a source for law and that there are absolutes, our society has rejected the very basis of law and order. If there are no absolute standards, then laws can constantly be changed and adapted to fit various types of human reason, circumstances or situations. In other words, "situation ethics."

In this way of thinking, stealing is wrong — unless you are hungry. Committing adultery with your best friend's wife is wrong — unless you happen to be "in love" with each other.

Are we willing to admit that there could be, should be and ought to be a final SOURCE for law besides the whims, passions, inventions and imaginations of the human mind?