Posted on February 1, 1995

O Tempora, O Mores! (February, 1995)

American Renaissance, February 1995

A Story You Didn’t Hear

Auburn Calloway joined the Navy through an affirmative action program. He became a pilot, but had problems with the job, and left to work for Flying Tigers. He was dismissed for poor performance not long before the company was acquired by Federal Express. The new owners rehired the black pilot. However, his work and his attitude were still so bad that Federal Express scheduled a termination hearing for April 8, 1994.

Mr. Calloway decided to strike first. On the 7th of April, he was to fly as co-pilot on a DC-10 out of the Memphis airport where Federal Express has its headquarters. The captain was a small white man, and the second officer was a white woman. Once the plane was airborne, Mr. Calloway planned to murder the two whites, turn back to Memphis, and crash the plane into Federal Express headquarters. There are often hundreds of aircraft on the Fed-Ex tarmac, many of them being fueled. Thousands of employees work in and around the headquarters building. If a fully-fueled DC-10 had hit the area it could have been a massacre of spectacular proportions.

What didn’t happen

Fortunately, the staffing for the flight was changed, and three white men were assigned as crew. Mr. Calloway was no longer needed on the flight, but he was not to be denied his holocaust. He requested permission to fly with the crew as a passenger, and this was granted. He boarded the plane with a guitar case.

As the DC-10 climbed through 18,000 feet, Mr. Calloway opened the case and took out two sledge hammers, two claw hammers, a spear gun, and a combat knife. He attacked and injured all three crewmen before they could react. The co-pilot then put the plane into a dive, which pinned Mr. Calloway to the ceiling of the cockpit. He turned on the auto-pilot, and the three battled Mr. Calloway as the plane headed back towards Memphis. Mr. Calloway is a large man and holds a black belt in karate. He was not fully subdued until a ground crew boarded the plane, and even then he tried to kill a paramedic.

As a result of the struggle, the co-pilot is paralyzed on his right side and cannot work. The pilot’s left ear was cut off. The second officer’s wounds have healed, but his head is misshapened. At least they are alive, as are untold numbers of Federal Express employees who would have died if Mr. Calloway had carried out his plan. [Roy Wayne, Federal Express — an epic survival tale, The national Educator, Nov., 1994, p. 1.]

We would be curious if any readers have heard this astonishing story, which comes to us via a newsletter called The National Educator (Box 333, Fullerton, CA 92632).

What’s in a Word?

Raymond Tittman is a white American whose ancestors lived for several generations in Tanzania. He applied to Georgetown University Law School as an African-American, and was accepted. When he arrived on campus, Georgetown refused to enroll Mr. Tittman, claiming he had lied. African-American, they explained, means black. [What am I?, Counterpoint, Nov. 1994, p. 23.]

Never Forgiven

The National Endowment for the Humanities has announced a grant of $340,000 to the American Library Association so that it can mount a traveling exhibition called “A More Perfect Union — Japanese Internment During World War II.” [Commint, no date] Even worse than the exhibition’s incongruous name is what it symbolizes. The nation has already apologized to the Japanese; it has even paid survivors $20,000 each; but the sins of the white man must not be forgotten.

The National Park Service is also helping to keep the memory alive. In 1993 it opened Manzanar National Monument, at the site of one of the detention camps in central California. [Frank Clifford, Ethnic Imbalance threatens to erode U.S. National parks, SJ Merc News, 11/28/94, p. 1A.]

Gone With Apartheid

The demise of white rule has brought some rarely publicized changes to the moral tone of South Africa. The white regime was so closely associated with the Dutch Reformed Church that the latter was often called the National Party at prayer. Christianity underlay the government’s strict bans on pornography, prostitution, and homosexuality.

The new, black regime has cast all this aside. Streetwalkers now openly ply their trade, “swingers” clubs have opened, hard pornography is on sale, and homosexuality is sympathetically portrayed on national television. South Africa could become the first nation on earth to legalize homosexual marriage. [Bill Keller, Apartheid’s Gone, and anything goes, NYT, 12/28/94, p. A7.]

The country is also on a name-changing binge. The names of Jan Smuts and Hendrik Verwoerd have disappeared from streets, airports, schools, and buildings. World-famous Kruger National Park is likely to be renamed, and the names of whites were recently removed from 12 dams and waterworks. The South African Broadcasting Corporation and South African Airways are reducing their use of Afrikaans. [This Week in South Africa, Nov. 29-Dec.5, 1994, p. 2.]

Purity Amid the Pines

The Scots insist on racial purity — at least for pine trees. The Scots pine is a stately conifer that flourishes all over Europe. Everywhere they look alike, but analysis of organic chemicals in the sap has revealed slight genetic differences between the strains that grow in Scotland and those in Lapland or Norway. There are even small differences between pines that grow in different regions of Scotland.

Scottish law now requires that all different subspecies be kept separate. Anyone who wants to grow a Scots pine must plant not just a native one, but the correct regional variety. [Morally pineless, Economist, 10/22/94, p. 101.] Separation for preservation.

Judge for Yourself

A federal appeals court judge in San Francisco has struck down an Arizona law that required state employees to speak and write only English when doing government business. In his decision the judge wrote, “the diverse and multicultural character of our society is widely recognized as . . . among our greatest strengths.” [English-only law fails court test, SJ Merc News, 12/8/94, p. 14A.]

Young Murderer Goes Free

In the Nov. 1994 issue we wrote about a 10-year-old Chicago black boy who broke into the home of an 84-year-old white woman, beat her, tied her up, and slit her throat. He claims he did this because she used to call him “nigger.” The boy, whose name cannot be released because of his tender years, has since been convicted of first-degree murder, put on probation, and released to the custody of his grandmother. People in the Lithuanian neighborhood in which the victim lived are furious.

Although a new law that took effect in January of this year would have provided for the boy to be put in a locked juvenile home, his sentencing took place in December. The judge had only the option of sending him to a mental institution, but experts found the lad entirely sane. [Courtenay Edelhart & Susan Kuczka, His hands tied, judge lets 11-year-old killer go free, Chi Trib, Dec. 9, 1994, p. 1.]

Into the Dark Ages

Wole Soyinka is a Nigerian novelist who has won the Nobel prize. He has publicly criticized the Nigerian military government, so the soldiers decided to arrest him. Mr. Soyinka was tipped off just in time and fled to France. “It’s very strange for those of us who thought Nigeria was the great black hope of Africa,” he observed sadly at a press conference; “Nigeria is going backwards, retreating into the Dark Ages.” [AP, Nobel prize winner flees, Post and Courier, 11/22/94, p. 18A.]

D is for Dinkins

David Dinkins, former Mayor of New York City, teaches a graduate course in public policy at Columbia University. Students do not consider him a success. “He reads his lectures as if they were political speeches — and they are,” says one student. “It’s two hours of Reagan-bashing,” says another.

A typical class involves a 20-minute lecture by Mr. Dinkins — usually a defense of his actions as mayor — followed by a talk by a former aide. Rosco Brown, a former assistant, started his talk by saying that the Republican “Contract for America,” should be called the “Contract to Get Rid of Black People.” [Gersh Kuntzman, Prof. Dinkins gets an ‘F’ from Columbia students, NY Post, 11/29/94, p. 18.]

O Tempora!

Rosa Parks is the black woman who refused to sit in the colored section of a Birmingham bus in 1955. This led to a boycott of the bus system and eventual integration.

George Wallace, former governor of Alabama and one-time foe of integration recently sent Mrs. Parks an 8-by-10 glossy photograph of himself. On it he had written: “To Rosa Parks. You are a great lady.” [Jim Schaefer, It’s the thought that counts, Detroit Free press, 12/23/94, p. 2B.]

Black Flight?

Connecticut has many small school districts, so it has been easy for whites to flee the cities and attend good public schools. The result has been that in Hartford, for example, 93 percent of the public school students are nonwhite (and three fourths are poor). Segregation of this kind cannot be permitted, so the state has been trying to establish voluntary integration plans before a judge orders integration across school district lines. The voluntary plans are likely to fail because so few school boards support them. Who are the staunchest defenders of the status quo? Schools with nonwhite majorities, the very ones that integration is supposed to help. [George Judson, Few Volunteer to Desegregate, NYT, 11/26/94, p. 1.]

Competent to Stand Trial

Colin Ferguson, the black man who is accused of killing six people on a Long Island Rail Road train late in 1993, has been found mentally competent to stand trial. He has also decided to represent himself, despite being warned by the judge that this was “a very foolish thing to do.” This will put Mr. Ferguson in the curious position of cross-examining some of the very people he wounded in the attack.

Ronald Kuby and William Kunstler, who had been defending Mr. Ferguson, had crafting a “black rage” defense, justifying the killings as a reaction to white racism. They are now off the case. They have maintained from the start that Mr. Ferguson was not competent to stand trial, and perhaps they are right. After he was allowed to represent himself, Mr. Ferguson said, “I believe I can prove my innocence and I feel I can be acquitted.” [John McQuiston, Suspect in L.I.R.R. killings ruled competent for trial, NYT, 12/10/94, p. 29.]

EEOC Bogs Down

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was established by the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to curtail the right of employers to hire whomever they please. Since the number of people in protected classes is huge and growing — it includes women, homosexuals, the physically and mentally disabled, and old people as well as nonwhites — the staff cannot keep up with the complaints. The commission hears nearly 100,000 cases every year and has a blacklog of about 200,000. Even the staff concedes that most of the cases are frivolous. About 60 percent are rejected for lack of evidence, and 25 percent are closed because the worker withdraws the complaint, does not cooperate, or disappears.

It is always a struggle to find someone to run the EEOC. The person must be nonwhite, of course, acceptable to minority pressure groups, and at least minimally competent. A 41-year-old black lawyer named Gilbert Casellas got the job last November, after am arduous search. He would like a 25 percent increase in the commissions $233 million budget, but a Republican-controlled Congress may not go along. [Peter Kilborn, Backlog of Cases is Overwhelming Jobs-bias agency, NYT, 11/26/94, p. A1.] A sensible Congress would abolish the commission.

King Dream Lives On

Martin Luther King’s youngest son, Dexter, has been chosen to succeed his mother, Coretta, as head of the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change. The job was kept within the family despite misgivings by board members, after Mrs. King insisted on the 33-year-old Dexter. Another King child, 39-year-old Yolanda, oversees the cultural programs for the $5 million-a-year King Center. [Ronald Smothers, Living and shaping legacy of civil rights leader, NYT, 11/24/94.]

The King family has recently been at odds with the National Park Service, which runs the five-block-long Martin Luther King National Historic Site (which surrounds, but is different from, the King Center). The Park Service recently bought land on which to build an $11 million visitors center that would be the gateway to the Historic Site. The King Center would like to build a high-tech, multi-media museum at the same location. Even the fastidiously liberal Atlanta Constitution has editorialized against the museum, calling it “a sort of I Have a Dreamland to make a profit off of a Disney-esque trip through the civil rights movement.”

It all boils down to who controls the official expressions of adoration. Says Dexter King: “We feel strongly that the heritage of the civil rights movement is too important to be controlled by a government agency which has only superficial familiarity with the internal dynamics of our freedom struggle.” The Park Service chief of the Historic Site says that “[the King] dream and legacy belong to the whole world.”

Whoever gets to superintend the legacy, taxpayers will foot a large part of the bill. Trustees of the Ebeneezer Baptist church, where Dr. King preached, are in the final stages of negotiating a deal to lease the building to the Park Service so it can be turned into a full-time shrine. In exchange, the Park Service will give the trustees land nearby for a new church. [Ronald Smothers, King Family Feels Pushed Aside by park service, NYT, 12/23/94, p. A14.]

No Affirmative Action Here

Vergie Muhammad is the principal of a junior high school in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. She was recently asked by reporters about a theft from her school. The press reported her reply:

There ain’t no missing books and no books has been lost . . . I always be above board, brother. The one thing I do is make sure I don’t bother these folks, you know, goods and nothin’ like that. And when everything go wrong, I report it. I’m not responsible for everything, but I am responsible for reporting anything that I know. And I haven’t heard nothin’ ‘bout no goin’ out no back door.

[Ed Koch, Some post-thanksgiving advice and reflections, NY Post, 11/26/1994.]