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Murphy, Thomas H. (ed.) / Wisconsin alumnus
Volume 84, Number 6 (Sept. 1983)

Letters,   p. 4

Page 4

ROTC Ups and Downs
Thanks and congratulations to the Alum-
nus for the article (July/Aug) on the ROTC
program--and to the author for such an ex-
cellent and factual story.
   It was almost nostalgic to think of the
many hours I spent in the old red-brick gym
and armory during my sojourn in Madison
from 1920 to 1924.
   The University's military program has
had its ups and downs during the years from
1860 to the present, but the UW definitely
benefited by it-as did the nation by the
many hundreds of reserve officers who
were trained and served in times of need.
   May the ROTC in its present improved
form continue to play an active part in the
life of our alma mater.
LE Roy L. WAHLE '24
I enjoyed the article, but one correction,
please. The caption under the picture on
page ten should read, "Spring review on
the lower campus." I should know, I was
there! There was no mall in 1926 and the
troops would have had a difficult time drill-
ing on the present one.
   It was a clear area that served many pur-
poses, such as the "Bag-Rush" between the
freshmen and sophomores. The ice-hockey
rink was set up there each winter and the
engineers' St. Patrick's Day parade usually
formed on that spot. It was used for band
practice and as a parade ground, etc.
Grinnell, Iowa
... ROTC was not "a dead issue at Wiscon-
sin in the eighteen years after 1923." (It)
was very much alive in the early 1930s. In
the summer of 1933, the legislature started
an investigation of communism on the UW
campus. All over the state, newspapers ran
lurid stories and the committee conducting
the investigation held several meetings.
Then the whole thing was suddenly
dropped-after a lot of damage had been
done to the University's reputation.
   A leader in the legislature told us later
that it started as an attempt to get the sup-
port of the American Legion. The price of
Legion backing was an effort to pass a com-
pulsory ROTC bill and the legislators knew
that such a bill had no chance unless they
could stir up public sentiment with some-
thing like a Red Scare. When it became
clear that the bill had no chance anyway,
the whole thing was discontinued.
. . . What a superior job of research and
writing it is! Ms. Hacskaylo uncovered a lot
of history and I am most grateful.
Law School
Director of Officer Education
As an alumna who spent much of her time
writing to fulfill the requirements of an art
history major, I am appalled at the article
"Terri Huff: The Best We've Ever Had"
(May/June) by David Medaris.
   There are two uses of slang words on
page fifteen that I find render the article un-
printable: "Qualls cracks up and laughs all
through the next sentence" and "There she
was, talking at courtside with a little girl
wearing heart-shaped deely-boppers."
   First things first: to "crack up and laugh"
is redundant. Plus, the expression is incor-
rectly used. My copy of Webster's dictio-
nary defines it as "to have a physical or
mental breakdown."
   Second, what on earth is a "deely-
bopper"? Mr. Medaris could at least have
aided the reader's imagination by telling us
where the little girl was wearing these
   I enjoy reading the Wisconsin Alumnus
and hope that such lapses in quality will be
avoided in the future.
Marburg, West Germany
The American Heritage Dictionary (1981)
defines "crack up" as: "to laugh boister-
ously or to cause (a person) to laugh boister-
ously." The deely-bopper fad is on the
downside, but millions were sold over the
past several years, to be worn by children,
on the head, like antennae.--Ed.
Reply to a Reply to a Reply
In answer to Mr. Rose's reply to Mr. Sme-
jkal's letter in the May/June issue, I submit
the following. There have been numerous
leaders who have hoped to conquer all.
Now the Russians have taken over the role
of world conquest. They started with Cuba
from which they could springboard to Cen-
tral and South America-eventually to
Mexico and the US. Naturally our country
did the things Mr. Rose pointed out be-
cause of fear for our future.
   Mr. Rose writes: "Communism de-
velops when conditions become intolerable
for segments of a population. It cannot be
imposed from the outside, and physical
proximity to such a country means noth-
ing." Hogwash! Ask the Polish people, the
citizens of Afganistan, Hungary and Cze-
   I, for one, do not object to paying taxes
or going into bankruptcy to avoid the catas-
trophies that have occured in these commu-
nist satellites.
   Perhaps if Mr. Rose had spent a little
time in Russia as I have, he would feel for
the plight of those people. They cue up for
food, their clothing is too small or too large
and all the same color, they can't afford
shoes and automobiles. Their whole econ-
omy is geared to one thing and one thing
only-world conquest.
D.W. MAAS '40, MD
Carmichael, Calif.
Since the original feature appeared six
months ago, we will now close discussion on
reactions to it. -Ed.
                          continued on page 22

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