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Meeting Minutes
Torch Club of the Fox Valley
09 April 2015
Atlas Coffee Mill & Café

Notes taken by: Jude Kuenn, secretary
Attendees:  Nancy Bodway, Janet Wullner-Faiss Cloak, David Debbink, Marcia Debbink, Dwight Easty, Mary Flanagan, Walt Hedges, Barbara Kelly, Bill Kelly, Jude Kuenn, Cam Maurice, Amy Oberg, Mary Paulson, Richard Schoenbohm, Katie Shaw, Webb Shaw, Bob Swain, Marge Swain, Helen Thiel, Peter Thiel

Guests: Cynthy Anderson

BUSINESS MEETING

Meeting called to order at 6:40pm.

  1. Guests:  Cynthy Anderson
  2. Minutes from 3/12/15 meeting were accepted, motioned and approved.
  3. Treasurer’s report: balance as of 4/08/15 was $1,605.42. Report was accepted, motioned and approved.
  4. New Business:
    A: Call for delegates to attend annual IATC Convention 6/24-28/15, Holiday Inn Downtown, Lincoln, NE; the ‘Silicone Prairie’. Theme is “Great Plains, Great Ideas”. (Registration must be made by 6/01/15. Fee per person payable at time of registration: $365 after 4/01/15.) Kelly’s might represent us, and Richard is also thinking of attending convention. Please contact Richard or Barbara if interested in being a delegate. Final call will be at the May meeting.
    B: May 14th is final meeting for 2014-15 year. There will be a sign-up sheet for 2015-16 topics and speakers. Think of possible topics you’d like to present and be ready to choose a month to talk. Presentation is voluntary.
    C: Club breaks June-August, reconvening in September. There is usually an August garden party; attendees encouraged to bring a dish to share. Details will be emailed in July.
    D:  Mary Poulson announced upcoming Wednesday Noonhour Philosophers talks are - 4/15/15: Appleton Historical Society by Mark Moderson, member of the Board of Directors; 4/22/15: Innovation Duet by John Brandenberger, Professor of Physics and Adam Galambos, Professor of Economics, LU; and 4/29/15: Onions and Mailboxes: a tribute to Ellen Korte by Rusty McKenzie.
    E: UW-Fox Valley Foundation is hosting ‘100 Friends’ Thursday 4/23/15 at the campus Arts & Communications Center. $100/person, there will be heavy hors d’oeuvres before evening play: ‘Failure: A Love Story’. Contact Barbara Kelly for tickets.
    F: Richard Schoenbohm revealed Greenville Lions annual Catfish concert is Saturday 7/11/15, featuring ‘Alabama Band’. 
  5. Announcements:
    a. Thoughts and positive energy were expressed for Jean Jepson’s husband, who had a stroke 4/09/15.
  6. Business segment adjourned at 6:55pm for dinner.

Bob Swain presented “Lawrence and the Vietnam Protests”
Bob and Marge married in 1958. He graduated in 1959 and joined ROTC. Bob took a three-year deferment for Law School. Residents of NY, Berlin, Milwaukee, they returned to Appleton in 1972. Bob joined the National Guard and served for 20 years. Being away during the local Vietnam protests piqued Bob’s curiosity on how Lawrence University experienced that history. 

Bob resourced Lawrence.edu (also see www.lawrence.edu/library/collections), finding “The Lawrentian” school newspaper online from the 1960s. He also spoke with former students and past professors who lived through and participated in various marches.
The anti-war movement started in 1964-65. In May 1966, SDS was created, the Students for a Democratic Society. Other campuses, such as UW-Madison, were much more reactive and angry about the United States bombing and invasion of Cambodia, the draft and My Lai Massacre, than Lawrence.
The presence of ROTC on-campus incited aggression, saying no credit should be given to ROTC classes. (It was in February 1969 Yale dropped crediting ROTC students.)  As the gap widened, there were also those who thought financial support should be withheld from students participating in protests. November 1968 saw student body divided between pro and anti-Vietnam support.    

It was My Lai Massacre March 16, 1969 that shifted public opinion about Vietnam. Lawrence Chapel was the background for a protest on its steps May 1969. In September that same year, there was a National moratorium on war. LU professors held their own academic protest October 1969, cancelling classes. The Appleton Police allowed peaceful demonstrations on College Avenue, closing half the road to marchers, while the other side of the street allowed traffic flow. Appleton City Council took no action against the protests. Students were well-behaved and there was no destruction. November hosted Renee Davis of the Black Panthers, who spoke at Lawrence. He was standing-in for Abbie Hoffman, who was unable to make the event.
Lawrence’s high point might have been a panel discussion in the Chapel, May 1970. In the audience, Ron Mason left his balcony seat and spoke to the audience from the main floor aisle; reminding everyone not to blame the military for executing assignments they were given.
The Kent State shootings May 4, 1970 woke students to the physical danger of rioting against police and local government. After that, enthusiasm waned for protesting. That same month, then President Nixon, unable to sleep, dressed and walked to the Lincoln Memorial with an aide at 4am, to confront students. These were certainly strange and unusual times in America’s history.
Next meeting is 5/14/15; speaker will be Mary Paulson.

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