Terrell: relations have improved

Dr. Burnham Teller

Dr. Burnham Teller

by Linda Jo Ambrose

In one week no one has had time to gain historical perspectives or to develop complete explanations of the takeover in Morrill Hall

Eight days after the takeover began, administration officialsâÄô dominant reaction is probably still relief that the takeover ended quickly.

MOST OF the negotiators who represented the University think the blacksâÄô willingness to compromise on the demand for âÄúfinal authorityâÄù over the Afro-American studies program and over the Martin Luther King Scholarship Fund made the agreement possible.

Dr. Brunham Terrell, one of the seven men who represented the university in negotiations with the blacks, said yesterday that permanent bitterness has not developed as a result of the takeover. âÄúThe amount of scar tissue was not great, no feeling of âÄòIâÄôll get him next time around even though I couldnâÄôt this timeâÄô.âÄù

Terrell said relations between blacks and the University have probably even improved because of the confrontation. âÄúThe Afro-American Action Committee (AAAC) feels possibly more comfortable with administrators and administrators definitely understand the students better. ThereâÄôs a healthier attitude on both sides.âÄù

THE MOST unfortunate result of the incident according to Terrell is the reaction from people outside the University who go what he called âÄúa conception of the events that was very exaggerated and distorted.âÄù

Furthermore, most persons who have made judgments about the situation will stick to their conclusions regardless of the findings of an investigative task force, Terrell said.

He added that persons who claim that blatant University racism was demonstrated by angry whites who gathered outside Morrill Hall during the actual University situation.

âÄúI DONâÄôT TAKE members of that crowd as a representative of the student body any more than IâÄôd take those who committed intentional damage representative of the AAAC,âÄù Terrell said.

But public criticism is inevitable Terrell said, regardless of the UniversityâÄôs response. âÄúDoes anybody really believe that if the police had gone in, that this wouldnâÄôt have been subject to severe, intense criticism?âÄù he asked.

PUBLIC criticism of the University is not new, and Terrell said the latest incident will probably become another addition to the list which includes controversies over four letter words, free love, academic freedom, and free speech at the University.

Controversies are more common now, he said, because tension in the entire society is higher.