30,000 In Miami Join A Rally For Decency
Posted 11 August 2008 - 08:13 AM
The New York Times
March 24 1969
MIAMI March 23 - Some 30,000 hand clapping persons, some waving signs saying "Down With Obscenity," rallied in the Orange Bowl today to support a teenage crusade for decency in entertainment.
Teenagers organized the rally after Jim Morrison, 24 years old, the lead singer of The Doors, a rock group, was charged with indecent exposure during a concert in Miami on March 1. Six warrants have been issued for Mr. Morriosn' arrest.
Mike Levesque, 17, the originator of the rally, a senior at Miami Springs High School, said the idea had grown out of a Roman Catholic youth group discussion two days after the concert by The Doors.
"This is not a protest rally," said Julie James, 18 a member of the teenage Rally For Decency. "We're not against something. We're for something."
TALKS ON GOD AND SEX
Teenage speakers gave three minute talks on God, parents, patriotism, sexuality and brotherhood. There were appearances by professional entertainers, who donated their time.
"Five virtues ," selected as the keynote of the rally, were "belief in God and that He loves us; love of our planet and country; love of our family, reverence of one's sexuality, and equality of all men."
"Sex is definately being exploited and it is because society has been losing its reverence for one's sexuality," Miss James said.
The shirt sleeved crowd basking in the warm sun cheered for Jackie Gleason, Anita Bryant and the Lettermen, popular music singers who appeared in order to applaud the teenage rally.
"I believe this kind of movement will snowball across the United States and perhaps around the world," Mr Gleason said.
"I think it's great there should be more things like that," said Tony Butala of the Lettermen.
Young Levesque said he was thrilled by the rapid growth of the decency movement and the support it had gained from adults.
The crowd was about evenly split between teenagers and adults.
Letter to a Student Concerning the Miami Teen-Age Rally for Decency.
March 26, 1969
I was extremely interested to learn about the admirable initiative undertaken by you and 30,000 other young people at the Miami Teen-age Rally for Decency held last Sunday.
This very positive approach which focused attention on a number of critical problems confronting society strengthens my belief that the younger generation is our greatest natural resource and therefore of tremendous hope for the future.
I hope that you will express my appreciation to everyone involved and my congratulations on the success of their efforts.
Note: The letter was dated March 25, 1969, and released March 26, 1969. Mike Levesque, 17, senior at Miami Springs High School, was the organizer of the rally.
Posted 11 August 2008 - 06:00 PM
Posted 12 August 2008 - 07:56 AM
Posted 12 August 2008 - 10:08 AM
Wasn't Jackie Gleason also known as a "lush" at this point in his career?
This link is a collection of news footage shot after the Miami incident from Watson Media Center. I don't know if any of these teenagers interviewed are Mike Levesque.
These news clips are some of the same as seen before but it does include an interview with Jim Morrison.
What Follows is a few Dept Justice Memos of which you'll notice the investigators used newspaper clippings as part of their report. There is no indication that they interviewed any witnesses in these memos. In addition, there was one officer in the news footage links above that mentions the words "inciting a riot." In the last documents are memos titled, "Possible Racial Violence" issued by the FBI.
On March 3 1969
Huge crowd of young people. MORRISON'S program listed one hour during which time he sang one song and for the remainder grunted, groaned, gyrated and gestured along with inflammatory remarks. He screamed obsenities and exposed himself which resulted in a number of the people on stage being hit and slugged and thrown to the floor. There were 31 off duty police officers hired by the sponsors who observed most of the action by MORRISON but failed to make any arrest is to do so might possibily incite a riot.
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