Detroit (Mar. 20)
The second week of the trial beginning Monday with William J. Cameron, editor of the “Independent,” resuming the witness chair, finds the so-called “Jewish issue” yet outside the record in definite form.
Concerning this phase, Judge Marx, one of Sapiro’s counsel, said:
“The counsel for the plaintiff will change tactics thus far employed in the examination of William J. Cameron and will abandon for the present attempts to secure a statement from Cameron regarding Ford’s attitude toward Jews and how cognizant Ford was of the character of the articles.”
There are twenty-one of these counts, embracing 141 separate instances of purported libel. Marx discussed two instances outlined by United States Senator James E. Reed of Missouri, chief of Ford counsel, in the Senator’s opening statement. He added:
“One of the weaknesses of the defense was indicated in Senator Reed’s statement regarding Sapiro’s supposed connection with the Oregon Hop Growers’ Association. The statement was made that Sapiro was connected with this organization to his own profit. The fact is that Sapiro never heard the character of the articles.
“Another similar misstatement by the defense concerned Sapiro having been ‘the burr of the golden fleece of Oregon; that is, that he represented Oregon wool growers. The fact is that when that organization was first arranged the incorporation papers were drawn up by a young attorney named Goldsmith. The fee was $65. Goldsmith had no connection with Sapiro. It is true he once was in Sapiro’s law offices, but he had severed all connections with it and had moved to Portland when the incorporation papers of the wool growers were drawn. Goldsmith later became attorney for the wool growers at $25 a week. Sapiro never at any time was connected with that organization, directly of indirectly.”
In commenting on Longley’s statement regarding Mr. Ford’s lack of knowledge concerning the Sapiro articles, Marx went on:
“Such lack of knowledge only serves to make the libel greater. It is an indication that Ford, although sponsoring the ‘Independent,’ didn’t investigate what his publication was doing, if indeed, such was the case.”
After the first four witnesses are heard, the reading of 250 depositions will be begun. The depositions were taken by Ford attorneys, and will be supported by more than 250 witnesses. Then will come a rebuttal by Sapiro, who has upward of 150 witnesses to support his libel claims.
Counsel for both sides today reaffirmed their stand that there can be no compromise, no settlement except in court.
According to rumors Bernard M. Baruch, Eugene Meyer, Jr., Otto H. Kahn, and Julius Rosenwald may be called as witnesses by Sapiro.
JEWS NOT ON TRIAL IN DETROIT, SAYS DR. SAMUEL SCHULMAN
The Jewish race is not on trial in Detroit, Rabbi Samuel Schulman, of Temple Beth-El, New York, said in his sermon Saturday morning. Aaron Sapiro is seeking vindication for himself, not for his race, Rabbi Schulman declared.
If Sapiro was correctly quoted, he made a great mistake in saying he sought vindication for his people, Rabbi Schulman stated.
“He should not identify himself with his people in this matter,” the speaker said. “He should seek, and I hope and am convinced he will obtain, vindication for himself.
“Israel does not seek vindication in Detroit. Without fear and with faith, without defiance and with dignity, the Jew should face anti-Semitism. Wherever he can, he should ignore it with contempt. Wherever he must he should fight for his rights. Always he should remember that he belongs to a community, described as the servant of God, the people in whose hearts is ‘My law.’
“The Jew is not on trial in Detroit,” the rabbi said. “It would be absurd to think that whatever the jury or the lawyers on either side, or even the judge might say, could determine the reputation of the Jew. That reputation is made. The record has been made. It is a record of 4,000 years. As Webster said of his beloved Massachusetts: ‘There she stands.’”
Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, in referring in his Sunday morning sermon at the Free Synagogue to the Ford-Sapiro trial in Detroit, said:
“I offer the homage of my reverence, to a man ready to face the richest and, in some senses, the most powerful man on earth, and say, ‘You may libel me, but you shall not lie about my people.’”