The North Texas Daily (Denton, Tex.), Vol. 57, No. 38, Ed. 1 Wednesday, November 7, 1973 Page: 4 of 6
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PAGE 4—THE NORTH TEXAS DAILY
Wednesday, November 7,1973
ganization Heads Shift Emphasis
To Middle Class Social Problems
Photo by Jay Reeg
A rainy day and a strategically planned positioning of this trash barrel proba-
bly made it more than difficult for passer bys to place their garbage in a
proper container. The barrel, which was by the sidewalk, was repositioned
during reconstruction of the Union Building.
By MARY GANZ
Associated Press Writer
CHICAGO (AP)—A school that trains
professional organizers to help others agi-
tate for social change is shifting its focus to
the middle class and its problems.
“During the 60’s we were all confused,”
said Edward Chambers, director of the In-
dustrial Areas Foundation (IAF). “We
thought that if we could organize the poor
and minority groups, we'd have a power
base from which we could make changes.
“Now we know that if you dumped all
the poor people, all the Blacks, Chicanos,
Indians and every other poor minority
group together, you wouldn’t have enough
power to make changes in Springfield,
much less in Washington.”
CHAMBERS TOOK over the IAF' after
the death last year of Saul Alinsky, author
of “The Professional Radical" and success-
ful organizer of citizens’ political groups
in a number of cities.
Alinsky had begun to shift the focus from
the poor to the middle class four years ago,
Chambers said. The school still trains or-
ganizers to work in Black and Latin areas
and with Indians, but most graduates of the
school turn their efforts toward groups like
the Citizens Action Program in Chicago.
The Citizens Action Program was
formed 3 Vi years ago when a group of citi-
zens organized to fight air pollution after a
three-day pollution alert. Since then the
program has waged a battle against the
county assessor over alleged tax breaks
for big businesses and has fought construc-
tion of a controversial crosstown express-
By STEVE CLANTON
That new sound radio listeners have been
hearing from Dallas at 98 on their FM dials
will be even stronger before the end of this
KZEW, formerly WFAA-FM, which
operates at 35,000 watts, plans to increase
its broadcast power to 100,000 watts.
"Hopefully, we’ll increase power some-
time this week," Gary Shaw, KZEW disc
jockey, said recently.
Jl ST SEVEN weeks ago KZEW, more
commonly referred to as “the Zew,” went
on the air and already the progressive rock
station has sold out ad spots lor two days
in the week, he said.
“Ad spots for Thursday and Friday,”
Shaw said, “are already sold out and
Wednesday is almost sold out too.”
Shaw said the American Research Bu-
reau (ARB) is currently doing a survey of
the number of listeners of each radio sta-
tion. This will be the first time that the Dal-
las and Fort Worth radio stations have
been combined in the same survey, he add-
“IT’LL TAKE about a month for the
survey to be completed," Shaw said, “so we
should know how we did about the first
week of December."
Although “the Zew” is a young station,
Shaw is optimistic as to how the station
will finish in the ratings.
“Being liberal," he said, "I think we’ll
finish about filth. But being realistic I’d
say we’ll finish about 10th or 11th."
Shaw , who has been a disc jockey for ten
years and a veteran of 14 different radio
stations, was hired out of Detroit by Ira
Lipson, KZEW program director.
"We try to play music which is familiar
to our listeners." Shaw said. "The people
who listen to us now will probably always
listen to us because we don’t plan to change
Equity Stalls Action
Market Delays Public Corporation
NEW YORK (AP) Public Equity
Corp., the company that hopes to make a
living suing other companies in the name of
consumer justice, will not be in action until
nearly a year from now. Plans are moving
Earlier this year, those plans almost came
to a halt as the company's backers became
involved in other projects. These included
some backstage roles with the Senate Wa-
And the arrival of some of the money
that had been pledged was delayed because
the donors lost it in a badly depressed stock
market. But it is all in now, some $80,000.
f()M MECHLING, the founder, says
that the "counter corporation" should be
in action by this time next year if the Secur-
ities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
is willing. It will be registered with the
SEC in February.
Assuming a six-to eight-month period
of consideration by the SEC, the company
hopes by late summer or early fall to begin
selling $2.4 million of shares at $5 a share,
or $50 for the minimum purchase of 10
As profits are made on class action and
civil damage suits and the like, they will
be plowed back into the company, with only
minimal dividends paid to shareholders.
ASKED IF shareholders can be happy
with minimal dividends, Mechling said he
thinks they can be, and he bases his view
on the nature of the people expected to in-
vest: altruistic, idealistic, eager for change,
perhaps angry at industrial abuses.
The underwriting will be handled by the
company instead of by an investment bank-
er, with solicitations made to many of the
people who earlier aided George Mc-
Govern's 1972 presidential campaign,
Common Cause and other groups.
A great deal of emotion exists on the
issues in which Public Equity plans to be
involved. Millions of Americans are angry
over faulty products and pollution, to name
only two concerns, but have felt powerless
If Public Equity is successful, Mechling
expects a lot of similar companies to be
developed on a regional basis. There is so
much to do, so many corporations to sue.
he said, that
regional copies will be re-
Oak Lawn and Wycliff, Dallas —
Sher-Den Mall — Park Mall, Plano
Irving Mall —
— Denton Center
On Sale Now
2(1 PER CENT DISCOUNT
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save 20 per cent! Also
Register for a FRET!
Elsewhere, IAF graduates helped
organize a coalition of community groups
in Milwaukee to protest a high property
tax. In Minneapolis, organizers helped to
bring together an alliance of 80 senior citi-
zens’ groups that has signed an agreement
with a drugstore chain to give a 10 per cent
discount on many prescription drugs.
IAF organizers also have been at work in
Charlotte, N.C.; Buffalo, N.Y.; Philadel-
phia, and Santa Clara County, Calif.
“Now we’re working in the real world,"
Chambers said in an interview at the down-
town Chicago office.
"IN THE real world, 75 to 90 per cent of
the people are blue collar or middle class.
These people don’t have any say-so over
their own lives. These people are poor.
Poverty really has very little to do with how
much money you have in your pocket.”
The organizer's job, according to Cham-
bers, is to feel out the potential leaders and
followers on a given issue. The next step is
to bring them together at a critical time,
such as during the pollution alert in Chica-
From that point on. Chambers said, the
organizer takes a back seat, remaining
available mostly to give advice.
ALINSKY FOUNDED the IAF in 1941
as a base for his own organizing activities.
The school for organizers was opened in
The IAF graduates about 25 full-time
trainees a year and trains some 500 more in
leadership conferences and seminars.
Some of the full-time students are as-
signed by sponsoring organizations, others
pay their own way and some receive schol-
arships from the school itself. The course,
which for the most part centers on field
work, normally lasts from 15 months to two
years. Tuition varies and Chambers said it
has been as high as $15,000, to keep out
ASKED ABOUT middle-class organiz-
ing, Chambers ticked off possible issues:
“Taxes, Food prices, Insurance, Pollu-
tion, Drugs- the kind their children take
and the kind they take, like alcohol. Senior
citizen problems that whole area is ex-
Also, “schools - here you have a guy
who’s making $ 11,000 a year, and he has to
sweat to send his kid to college, hut if he
were a Black or a Chicano the kid would
get a scholarship. Watergate the collapse
of the electoral system. And boredom one
of the things we try to do is build a lot of
fun into things.”
Chambers said the danger that the
middle-class power he helps build will be
turned against poor people?
“Sure I worry about that. But I worry
about it just as much when I organize a
Black power group. It’s a constant irony of
this business that once you help a ‘have-
not’ acquire power, he becomes a ‘have’
and uses his power to push out other ‘have-
nots,” he said.
STILL, CHAMBERS said, adding to the
power of the middle classes does not mean
a corresponding subtraction in the power of
the poor. “The oppressor is not the guy
who lives in the next neighborhood and
won’t let you move next door because
you're Black,” he said.
“The answer isn't to get all the Blacks,
whites and Chicanos fighting together in
one big group,” he said. “That’s impossi-
ble, and the impossible can never be an
answer. The answer is to organize the
Blacks around Black issues, the Chicanos
around Chicano issues, and the while
around white issues. Then you let them
bargain with each other and that’s when
you’ll have integration."
Quality of Courses
At a Saturday meeting of Crystal
Phoenix teachers at the United Ministries
Center, Dale Brunum, codirector of the
program, noted that classes are holding up
“pretty well" since the quality of courses
and the seriousness of the students have
Of 33 courses proposed at the beginning
of the semester, 29 are still meeting. “The
most popular courses have been Hatha
Yoga, automotive maintenance and begin-
ning meditation," he said. Hatha Yoga has
48 students enrolled, he added.
Registration for courses in Crystal
Phoenix was lower this year than in the
past. Only 375 students enrolled this year
as compared with 600 to 700 last year,
A larger percentage of students this
semester came from the Denton commu-
nity. Several students from junior high
schools and Denton High School have en-
rolled in courses, Branum said.
Because of expanded advertising and
publicity, this semester, sponsors of the
Crystal Phoenix program raised their tui-
tion from 25 cents to $ I. An effort was
made to reach the Denton community as
well as the students on the NTSU campus.
A shortage of manpower this semester
forced Crystal Phoenix to postpone their
campus activities until next year. In the past
the Free University has sponsored such ac-
tivities as Free University Day and A Day
in the Park which was held last spring.
Most of the time and money for these
activities this semester has been spent get-
ting adjusted to the new format of better
quality courses, Branum said.
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The North Texas Daily (Denton, Tex.), Vol. 57, No. 38, Ed. 1 Wednesday, November 7, 1973, newspaper, November 7, 1973; Denton, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth723692/m1/4/: accessed August 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.