Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Jerry Kopel

Security Guards Club SDS Leader

First Published: Columbia Daily Spectator, Volume CXIV, Number 98, 27 April 1970.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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Two members of SDS, Mike Golash and Alan Egelman, were seized by campus guards Friday while selling newspapers on campus, and detained in the security office in Low Library for 45 minutes before being released. No charges were pressed against them.

Golash, a leader in the radical organization which for the past week has been participating in a boycott of Johnson Hall cafeteria, was severely beaten by the guards as he was dragged to the security office. He emerged from Low appearing pale and shaken, limping noticeably, with a deep cut under his eye.

Although there is a university regulation forbidding “the hawking of wares” by any campus organization, this rule has been seldom enforced.

Joseph Nye, business manager of the university, termed the affair “an unfortunate incident.” According to Mr. Nye, a guard had informed the security office on his walkie-talkie that a student was selling newspapers on the campus walk.

Subsequently, Mr. Nye stated, the guard received the order to move the student off campus. Mr. Nye stated he had been informed that the rule prohibiting the selling of newspapers on campus had been previously enforced, and added that students who have displayed materials on Low Plaza had obtained the permission of the administration.

Friday’s incident began when Golash was approached by three uniformed campus guards as the former graduate student was selling issues of Challenge,/em>, the monthly newspaper of the Progressive Labor Party, between Ferris Booth Hall and Butler Library.

The security police ordered Golash to stop selling Challenge, and told him that he could no longer display the newspaper on campus.

As Golash continued selling the radical paper, he was joined by Egelman, a junior in the College. Shortly thereafter, three more uniformed guards and a plainclothes guard approached the two radicals.

Egelman asked the plainclothes guard for proof of identification, and the security policeman identified himself as Ernest Wood, the chief guard on the campus security force.

Sgt. Wood then told Egelman to show identification, and after the junior displayed his CUID, the chief guard demanded to keep the identification card.

When Egelman refused the order, Sgt. Wood and the two other guards grabbed Egelman and began dragging him to the security office. Then three other guards seized Golash, and also started to carry him away.

As Golash was dragged past Butler Library, the guards pushed him against the wall of the building and clubbed him repeatedly in the stomach.

As Egelman and Golash were brought into Low, a crowd of thirty supporters gathered around the Southeast entrance of the administration building. The crowd began a shouting match with several guards stationed at the doorway, taunting the police with cries of “Pigs! Pigs!”

Through an open window on the side of Low, Egelman shouted that he was not going to be arrested, but that the university was pressing charges against Golash. Shortly afterwards Egelman screamed to his supporters to obtain medical aid for Golash.

Several of the radicals gathered at the entrance were then refused admission into Low when they requested to use a university phone to call for a doctor.

One student, Steve Cohen ’73, shouted “Let’s go in!” and started to push against the guards in the entrance. As the guards started clubbing the freshman, ’another student, Andy Kaslow ’72, attempted to restrain Cohen and pull him outside.

The guards however, clubbed Kaslow to the floor of the doorway entrance, striking him several times as he lay there. Several guards then grabbed the sophomore and threw him down the doorway steps.

Although he lay moaning on the sidewalk for several minutes, Kaslow rose unaided and did not appear injured.

A few moments later, Golash and Egelman emerged from Low and announced that no charges had been pressed against them. Golash stated that Mr. Nye had spoken to him and “appeared apologetic about the whole thing.”

Egelman thanked his fellow radicals, asserting that the administration “had been scared to do anything when they saw the people gathered outside here.”

At Johnson Hall, cafeteria workers who had threatened a possible work slowdown called off their action after meeting with union officials yesterday morning and afternoon.

The employees are calling for the rehiring of a former worker, James Colbert, and the dismissal of the head manager of Johnson Hall, Mrs. Jean Phair.