Pittsburgh (Jun. 29)
Jewish community relations specialists and leaders took issue here this weekend with demands by some black extremists that college admissions be based on the ratio of the Negro population to the whole and that the same “proportional quota system” be applied to private and Government employment. The 250 delegates to the 25th annual convention of the National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council went on record in favor of Jewish support for special education, job training, welfare aid, employment and other assistance for disadvantaged minority group members. But they insisted that such aid must be based on individual need, “not race, religion or ethnicity.” The NCRAC is the coordinating body of nine national organizations and 82 local human relations agencies.
The issue of “compensatory racial or ethnic quotas” arose recently in the controversy over admissions to City College of New York. The delegates, in a policy statement, contended that a free admissions policy based on minority group population figures “would be inconsistent with the concept of equality of education.” The statement affirmed that the means employed to further Negro demands must be decided by Negroes but added that “uncritical acceptance of Negro demands simply because they are voiced by Negroes is patronizing and condescending, as discriminatory in its way as uncritical rejection of Negro demands.”
In a related area, the NCRAC called on President Richard M. Nixon to reject proposals that it said would dilute Federal guidelines on public school desegregation. Such proposals, the NCRAC said, would mean the continuation of Federal aid to schools that continued to practice segregation. A Council resolution urged the President to “make it clear that the present guidelines, which require prompt compliance with the law, will be firmly enforced.” The guidelines were established five years ago by the Department of Health, Education and Welfare to implement the 1964 Civil Rights Act that prohibits Federal funding to any public or private facility or service guilty of discrimination. The NCRAC’s resolution denounced “talk of a more realistic approach” by proponents of a delay in desegregation and “officials who have ignored their obligations for five years,”
The NCRAC delegates also deplored black advocates of “full and permanent black separatism” and rejected their contention that white and black cultures were incompatible. The convention stated its support of movements in the black community that “foster group involvement, a common group culture, racial pride and a shared experience of a community controlling its own destiny.”