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COMMUNITY CONTROL                              GALAMISON
Black community was the Regents' Bill. It also gained the widest support. Some of the formidable forces supporting the Regents' Bill were Mr. Robert Sarnoff of RCA, the Citizens' Committee for Decentralization composed of a broad cross section of conservative agencies, the Ford Foundation, Mayor Lindsay, the Board of Regents, and the State Commissioner of Education, James Allen. Apart from the fact that the Bill suffered ignominious defeat at the hands of the white majority in the state legislature, two other peculiar occurrences seem worth repeating. The United Federation of Teachers which had its own decentralization plan demanding the ouster of the Board of Education joined in a disgraceful alliance with the Board of Education to defeat the community control legislation. Secondly, both the Board of Education and the UFT attacked the community control concept on the pretext they were concerned about those aspects of the plan which inadvertently created segregated school districts. It was a pernicious and sinister response to a meaningful issue. It was a blatantly cynical and hypocritical effort to keep the Black community under the heels of education and union forces which had long since violated their right to function in the Black community. In the process of this struggle the concept of community control caught fire in the Black community and with or without empowering legislation the local community will not rest until control is achieved. One unmistakably evident truth that hardly needs mentioning is the truth that neither the Board of Education nor the UFT is really concerned about segregated schools in the ghetto community. They are concerned about the prospect of community control and power. The defeat of viable decentralization legislation by the state legislature was instructive. When Congresswoman Edna Kelly declared that she would support the use of firearms by police against Black people, there was evoked some bewilderment that a person with this mentality should be the congressional representative for the Bedford-Stuyvesant area. However, a political entity like Edna Kelly is the inevitable result of gerrymandering and political conniving to the detriment of the Black community. The indescribably serious political plight of the Black community was evident in Albany where there is in the legislature only one Black representative who is not from New York City. This means that fairly large geographical areas in New York State, such as Schenectady, Troy, Buffalo, and Albany, itself, have not managed the election of Black representation. In the decentralization legislative struggle, the Black community

Transcription Notes:
Bedford-Stuyvesant is hyphenated at the end of a page border. Generally such hyphens are removed, but I believe that the Bedford-Stuyvesant area is supposed to be hyphenated and therefore I kept it that way. ---------- Reopened for Editing 2024-02-12 10:47:27