Brigham Young University
Gary James Bergera and Ronald Priddis
Partisan Politics & the University
Responses to War and the Military
[p. 173]Throughout the late nineteenth century, the political and economic views of Brigham Young Academy faculty and students tended to mirror those of their church leaders who advocated political solidarity, protective communal economics, and selective pacificism. “The Kingdom of God cannot rise independent of [other] nations until we produce, manufacture, and make every article of use, convenience, or necessity among our own people,” Brigham Young preached only days after arriving in the Great Basin in 1847. Young eventually marshalled Mormon immigrants into some 150 communal enterprises, vestiges of which can be seen today in such corporations as ZCMI (Zion’s Cooperative Mercantile Institution). With the approach of the Civil War, Young commented, “If we could have our choice, it would be to continually walk in the path of peace.” Nor could he find fault with those who based their refusal to fight on moral grounds. Thirty years later, as the Spanish-American War developed, George Q. Cannon, first counselor in the church’s governing First Presidency, echoed, “We must make any sacrifice that honorable people can to avert war.” Following the church’s protracted struggle to achieve statehood in the mid-1890s, Mormons abandoned their political and economic independence in favor of mainstream American social and political policies. Intent on dispelling accusations of disloyalty to their country and its leaders, church authorities rallied to the defense of the United States government, whether at home or abroad, with growing patriotic zeal. The economic communitarianism and pacificism that had characterized nineteenth-century Mormonism were, in the process, largely discarded as obsolete theological baggage. As the academic showplace of Mormonism, Brigham Young University eventually emerged as a leading champion of conservative political thought, free market capitalism, and military service.1
At the onset of World War I, most Mormons, including BYU faculty and students, remained unreceptive to the prospect of intervention in [p. 174] foreign disputes. “In the event of active conflict with the central powers, . . . we urge the men and boys of the BYU to remain conservative and not rush into the army,” wrote student editors in the 4 April 1917 White and Blue. “The mad rush of emotion imperils our very existence. . . . From the standpoint of the school, it wastes the forces that might be made to lift humanity to a higher level.” However, following the entrance of the United States into the world conflict, both church and university leaders were moved to action by pro-war propaganda. Church apostle and U.S. senator Reed Smoot told students in November 1917, “Mormonism must triumph in all the world and this fight is only to open the opportunity.” BYU president George H. Brimhall wrote to one of the school’s pro-German benefactors three months later, “The only thing that we know about Kaiserism and the Kaiser is that both of them ought to be killed, and we are doing everything we can, from raising potatoes to building ships, to crush out autocracy as represented by the Kaiser and Kaiserism.” “The Germans from Kaiser to corporal have been controlled by a dark power behind the veil,” English and theology professor N. L. Nelson editorialized in late April 1918. Before the war’s end, some sixty-five Utah Valley men, many of them BYU students, had enlisted in the U.S. armed forces; patriotic coeds contributed sweaters, socks, scarves, and hats to those in military service. The small student body also voted to abstain from candy because of the military’s need for sugar. (Unfortunately, student willpower proved short-lived, as candy sales showed no decrease [WB, 14 Nov. 1917].) During the height of the European war, White and Blue editors warned in March 1918, “We must all be careful not to drop any chance remarks that might give information to the German spies. . . . A careless remark dropped in the street car may furnish a spy with the missing link in a long chain. When in doubt don’t say it.”2
In mid-1918, when the Department of War announced the establishment of the Student Army Training Corps (SATC) on American college campuses, BYU dutifully forwarded an application to Washington, “vigorously manifest[ing]” its “Americanism and democracy.” President Brimhall wrote to church president Joseph F. Smith, “There is a demand here in the school for military training, and unless we supply that demand, a number of our boys will undoubtedly leave school to get this training.” Endorsed by Senator Smoot, BYU’s SATC was inaugurated in early October 1918. Over 500 eager students applied for admission; 141 were accepted. Federal subsidies covered the cadets’ tuition and fees for one to three terms and provided a thirty-dollar-per-month living allowance. The curriculum emphasized vocational and technical training. To provide the necessary instruction for their military students, school administrators hastily constructed a Mechanic Arts Building (later renamed the George H. Brimhall Building) [p. 175] at a cost of $43,000. Less than two weeks after the first SATC classes were held, however, an influenza epidemic swept through the state, forcing university officials to suspend academic work. The armistice with Germany was signed the following month and BYU’s SATC camp was dismantled in late December, after less than three months of operation.3
For many church members, including BYU students and faculty, the end of the “war to end all wars” heralded the promise of universal peace, and possibly the beginning of the Millennium. Students were especially enthusiastic at the prospect of U.S. president Woodrow Wilson’s League of Nations. Following Wilson’s visit to the campus in September 1919, eager students drafted a resolution to their U.S. senators to “use their utmost influence for the immediate ratification of the treaty and League of Nations, without reservation or amendments.” But Republican senator Smoot, a member of BYU’s Board of Trustees, responded that he was “compelled,” under his oath of office and his fears for the future of the U.S. government, to vote against the treaty. “I cannot vote to submerge our nationality with a super-internationality, which would be the result if the League of Nations in its present form were ratified,” he wrote to students in an open letter. The senator soon became a target for student insults. BYU’s glib yearbook editor Nels Anderson publicly compared Smoot’s intelligence to that of a monkey.4
Fifty-two BYU faculty, including Herald R. Clark, T. Earl Pardoe, and Carl F. Eyring, immediately wrote to the senator urging that he reconsider his position. President Brimhall, too, added, “I am for the League of Nations, first, last, and all the time.” Troubled by such opposition, Smoot wondered if it might not “be best for me, under the circumstances, to resign as one of the directors of the university.” Fearing repercussions similar to those of the 1911 evolution controversy (see Chapter 4), Brimhall set aside his support of the league and replied to Smoot that his “strength and love and loyalty must be kept officially close to the school.” Shortly afterwards, the U.S. Senate formally rejected Wilson’s league proposal. Brimhall apologized to Smoot for the students’ abuse and pledged his personal support in the senator’s up-coming re-election.5
During the 1920s and 1930s, many students across the country protested compulsory military drill in their schools–only one-fourth supported the possible involvement of America in future foreign wars. In a 1926 Y News editorial, BYU students boasted, “We do not participate in politics. Our curriculum does not include a course in republicanism, democracy or socialism. Our faculty has never imposed their political views on their students.” At the same time, church president Heber J. Grant had become, according to his biographer, a “thoroughgoing skeptic over the purposes of war;” while his first [p. 176] counselor, Anthony W. Ivins, told students, “We shall renounce war, and . . . not be guilty of slaying our brothers. . . . America [can] best proclaim its mission by a peaceful, moral example” (Walker; YN, 26 Jan. 1933). When Mormon military officers visted the campus in the late 1920s to encourage undergraduates to enroll in the Citizens’ Army Training Camp, one student answered incredulously, “How in the name of common sense can people have the undiluted brass to go about using [the] church as a pry pole with which to introduce and popularize military drill? . . . The entirely negative response among the students to the invitation to join the [reserves] was commendable” (YN, 11 May 1927). A second added, “The principles of militarism and true Christianity are of the most distant relationship” (YN, 25 May 1927). Later, visiting lecturers praised Italy’s Benito Mussolini as a “Moses and a Savior” and challenged students to “actively avoid being propagandized into another world catastrophe” (YN, 11 March 1932, 23 April 1937). Perplexed by his government’s military preparations, one undergraduate thoughtfully wrote that “in the face of the government taking over industry we thrust the charge that [it, too,] is fascist. When we think of going fascist to defeat the fascists, it doesn’t make sense” (YN, 24 May 1940). Another complained that “some leaders of our country . . . are thinking once more of sacrificing individuals and individual rights for the efficiency of the mass units, and that isn’t Americanism!”6
Despite growing support for U.S. intervention in Europe following the declaration of war by France and Great Britian in September 1939, most BYU students remained opposed to American involvement. A poll of students less than a year later revealed that over 80 percent did not favor “American entrance into the present World War.” But in the wake of Japanese raids in Hawaii and Manila, BYU president Franklin S. Harris admitted in the Y News, “It is inevitable that there will be a certain amount of hysteria and students will want to rush off and do something different than they are doing at the present time, [although] this would be unwise.” Just five days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, one student wrote, “Of course, Japan attacked us so we are justified in declaring war, but with all the minds in the world couldn’t we have avoided everything in the first place?” A second echoed the same day, “To oil the gun and leave the mind to rust is folly, for this nation or any nation.” Once again, however, the church and university moved to meet the demands of their government. By April 1942, 6 percent of all Mormons were serving in the military or in defense-related industries–a figure that would double by the end of the war. Church authorities purchased over $17 million in government bonds (Lee and Petersen to First Presidency). President Grant personally donated to war charities and counseled his grandchildren to serve their country (Grant to White; to Judd; to [p. 177] Anderson). “We have felt honored that our brethren have died nobly for their country,” the First Presidency wrote; “the church has been benefitted by their service and sacrifice.” Paralleling official rhetoric of the late 1910s, Grant’s second counselor, David O. McKay, and other ranking church leaders declared the war to be a “moral struggle to preserve liberty” (in Walker).7
For an increasingly diverse BYU student body, the response to the war was mixed. An undergraduate anti-war satire, “O, Frabjous Day,” was favorably reviewed by the school’s journalists but roundly condemned by some speech and dramatic arts faculty as “communist propaganda.” The Y News eventually announced its support for the war by encouraging the purchase of defense bonds. As the monthly totals of students enlisting or being drafted steadily increased, enrollment plummeted. Over a five-year period, the size of the student body shrank by an average of 15 percent each year. In July 1942, BYU became one of 300 colleges to participate in the federally funded Army Specialized Training and Naval College Training programs to provide technical instruction for new recruits. Some 300 privates, housed on campus under general military orders, were enrolled at the university for three terms before transferring elsewhere for advanced training in engineering or mechanics. BYU also sponsored programs in Civilian Pilot Training, Radio Technician Training, and voluntary emergency skills. Many students joined local reserve units, as well; 150 of the Y’s reservists were called to active duty in 1943. The Y News editorialized, “Expendability is . . . the price of greatness. It is the spirit of Christianity and it is the spirit of democracy.” Anxious that the university not exaggerate its role in the war, President Harris cautiously explained, “[We will] offer the type of pre-induction preparation which lays a safe base for individual and world freedom and peace, [but] will continue to give intellectual discipline and enlightenment for young people, which will [allow] them to carry on their usual work in society.”8
By the war’s end in late 1945, the names of BYU student and faculty veterans, including over 100 killed or missing in action, filled eight pages in the Y News. With the return of BYU’s veterans, most of whom were taking advantage of G.I. benefits, enrollment swelled from 1,811 in 1945 to 4,366 the following year, an increase of more than 140 percent. The university established a veterans’ office and appointed Hugh B. Brown, LDS Serviceman’s Coordinator during the war, as Veterans Counselor. Struggling with their religious heritage, many young Mormon veterans “had difficulty in harmonizing the idea of God with what they had seen” during the war, Brown later remembered. The effect of military life on the church’s youth also prompted church leaders to vigorously denounce peacetime conscription in December 1945. “We shall make our sons the victims of systematized [p. 178] allurements to gamble, to drink, to smoke, to swear, to associate with lewd women, to be selfish, idle, irresponsible save under restraint of force, to be common, coarse, and vulgar–all contrary to and destructive of the American home,” the First Presidency warned. Church officials further believed that “by building a huge armed establishment, we shall belie our protestations of peace and peaceful intent and force other nations to a like course of militarism.”9
ROTC and the Peace Corps
Not until the appointment of Ernest Wilkinson as school president in mid-1950 did the push for a Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) unit at BYU gain serious momentum. Members of the school’s Board of Trustees had vetoed a request from the government to establish an ROTC unit on campus fifteen years earlier. Following deepening U.S. commitment in Korea in 1951, however, Wilkinson succeeded in securing the acquiescence of reluctant trustees for a BYU air force ROTC unit. Wilkinson, a veteran of BYU’s short-lived 1918 SATC program, later assured anxious parents during a 1956 Leadership Week address, “One of the strange things in our church, and this happens often, is that people assume that the authorities are against anything pertaining to military training. . . . [In fact,] the brethren were happy to authorize the formation on this campus of an air force ROTC.” He explained that “an ROTC set up with prudence under the spirit of our Heavenly Father will prepare our men to render service in the most effective method.” Wilkinson was convinced, as he emphasized in a 1968 speech, that military training afforded students “one way in which, in accordance with prophecy, the elders of Zion may help to save our country.” Given the alternative facing most students of draft age, the response to Wilkinson’s ROTC program was overwhelmingly favorable. Polls showed that 90 percent of the student body supported the prospect of an ROTC unit, and one student confessed, “An ROTC unit here–now–would have certain very definite advantages. . . . Male students who feel the warm breath of their local draft boards down the back of their necks would not have to transfer to schools which already have [a military program] to finish their education.”10
By late 1952, enrollment in BYU’s air force ROTC unit had skyrocketed to 1,800, and included more than three-fourths of all freshmen males. Enrollment dropped off significantly during the early 1960s to less than one hundred, but by 1965 the number of cadets on campus had more than quadrupled, many of whom were again seeking deferred status as a result of the United States’ involvement in Vietnam (Boone). BYU subsequently obtained permission to establish an army ROTC unit, and the Daniel H. Wells ROTC building was dedicated [p. 179] in 1969 by Boyd K. Packer, assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, managing director of the church’s military relations committee, and a war veteran. By 1971, BYU boasted the “largest entirely voluntary college [army] ROTC program west of Texas” (in Boone). Following the withdrawal of American troops from Vietnam in the mid-1970s, enrollment in both campus ROTC units again decreased, though student participation has remained strong. In late 1975, after several unsuccessful attempts, school officials secured Board of Trustees approval to allow women to join campus ROTC units, provided the transition be “done on as low a visibility basis as possible, and that the minimum possible publicity [be] given to the matter” (Board Minutes, 3 Dec. 1975).11
At the beginning of fall semester 1961, administrators suggested that ROTC cadets supervise formal United States flag raising and lowering ceremonies every weekday near the Abraham O. Smoot Administration Building. School officials concluded that the display would not only inspire greater patriotism in a lax student body, but would help to make the ROTC program more visible. Evidently, many students viewed the ceremony as an unnecessary inconvenience, and one university official complained, “Very few will stop to pay proper respect by standing at attention; . . . many will look at the flag as it is [being raised and] continue their gait toward class” (DU, 12 Jan. 1062). To students not “want[ing] to waste a couple of minutes of [their] precious time to pay tribute to our national flag,” one observer recommended “a less conspicuous approach” to classes than through “the center of campus” where the ceremony was staged (DU, 14 Nov. 1962).12
Irked at such apathy, officials arranged to have the national anthem played in conjunction with the daily flag ceremonies. The response was again mixed. While many, perhaps a majority of students, stood at attention during the music whether they were within sight of the flag or not, others protested the dose of superpatriotism. One wrote, “I believe that forcing people to surrender even one minute a day through coercion is un-American” (DU, 28 March 1967). Another pointed out that most students “hustle across the open campus to the nearest building” at the beginning of the ceremony or wait in their classrooms until the flag has been lowered (DU, 31 Oct. 1967). A third writer observed, tongue-in-cheek, “I have also watched many of the foreign students during these precious moments. . . . They seem to show a passive tolerance and not a deep passionate commitment. They need to be taught true love of America, and if they are not going to develop that love they can leave–especially those ungrateful Canadians” (DU, 18 Dec. 1968). Queried for a 1983 Daily Universe story, others replied that hearing the national anthem twice each day “merely makes the anthem common, promotes a faulty sense of American [p. 180] superiority, and represents a dangerous example of forced nationalism.” Despite mixed enthusiasm among students, the tradition of pausing during the morning and late afternoon rite has remained one of BYU’s distinctive characteristics.13
President Wilkinson’s fervent encouragement of ROTC units was matched by his opposition to Peace Corps recruiting among the student body. Both the Peace Corps and its domestic counterpart, Volunteers In Service To America (VISTA), were repeatedly refused permission to recruit on campus. Although Mormon businessman J. Willard Marriott and Hugh B. Brown, by then first counselor in the First Presidency, voiced protest at this policy, Wilkinson argued that the programs were inefficient welfare subsidies to third world countries which attracted students away from military and church missionary service. But the irony of sponsoring an ROTC unit while denying the Peace Corps access to campus did not go unnoticed among students (see DU, 2 Nov. 1970). Because of increasing public criticism of the university’s inconsistent policy, Peace Corps representatives were eventually allowed, in late 1970, to interview interested students “on the same basis as any other company interviewing students,” through appointments initiated by students in response to announcements on university bulletin boards.14
In many ways, the initial response of most BYU students to the Vietnam War differed importantly from their reaction to the first three American wars of the twentieth century. Where Mormons had previously remained suspicious of the intentions of U.S. government leaders at the onset of American mobilization, U.S. Cold War rhetoric had by the early 1950s made considerable headway among church members. Nearly 60 percent of BYU students polled in one survey believed, for example, that war with the Soviet Union was “inevitable.” Significantly, many based their responses on interpretations of Mormon scriptures. A 1952 survey revealed that more than three-fourths of BYU males favored “compulsory military service,” but that a majority also felt a person should not be “forced to go to war if he considers it to be morally wrong.” Within fifteen years, support of the government’s military involvement in Vietnam had become a measure of patriotism and loyalty, and following Congress’s passage of the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution in 1964, 84 percent of BYU males expressed a willingness to fight in Vietnam (DU, 19 October 1965). The following month, while a growing number of American college students across the country protested U.S. intervention in Vietnam, eighty BYU students marched through the streets of Provo to mail a letter carrying 6,500 signatures to U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, [p. 181] proclaiming their support of the war. Marchers carried signs reading, “I’m a War Monger–I Support the Troops,” “Remember the Dead,” and “Go To College–Learn To Riot.” They also sang the national anthem, the school pep song, and “other patriotic songs.” “In these days of student protests,” commented one student, “it is good to know that some colleges like BYU are not joining in” (DU, 20 Oct. 1965). A second complained that the government had not adopted a sufficiently firm “anti-communist policy–both politically and militarily” (DU, 19 Nov. 1965).15
As U.S. commitment in Vietnam deepened, church officials announced in December 1965, “Latter-day Saints are not pacifists. . . . Neither are they conscientious objectors.” “Mere membership in the church does not make one a conscientious objector,” the First Presidency’s secretary emphasized privately one year later. He explained, “It is not possible for an individual citizen to have the information that is available to the president and the Congress, and without all of the facts he is not in a position to judge.” University-screened speakers reminded students that “freedom is bought with the red blood of soldiers, not red paint on posters” (DU, 15 April 1966). One zealous undergraduate pinned his draft card to his shirt and announced that he was “protest[ing] against protestors” (DU, 6 Dec. 1967). Fears that a weekly “Free Forum” sponsored by student government was turning BYU into “another Berkeley” proved unfounded when a 1967 poll showed that 80 percent of students believed the United States “should not pull out of Vietnam” (DU, 22 March, 18 Oct. 1967). That same year, administrators announced the inauguration of an annual “American Week” to “promote support for a better America.” Military Week soon followed to demonstrate support for the school’s ROTC units. In early April 1968, Elder Boyd Packer publicly condemned conscientious objection as a viable alternative to the draft, and when Ramparts magazine began criticizing U.S. presence in southeast Asia, BYU Bookstore officials stopped stocking the monthly journal. Faced with “jeopardiz[ing] its already fragile and restricted arrangement with the U.S. government for deferments from the draft for LDS proselyting missionaries,” the First Presidency could not do otherwise but affirm its support of the draft in 1969 (Quinn). Thus, while backing military service, BYU and church officials also provided students with school and mission deferments. President Wilkinson told graduating seniors, “I trust you will all be good soldiers,” assuring students in 1970 that Vietnam was “just as ‘moral and just’ as any war we have fought in our history.” Following withdrawal of U.S. troops in 1973 and the surrender of South Vietnam two years later, a disillusioned Wilkinson, writing in his journal, termed the war “the most humiliating incident in the history of our country.”16
[p. 182] Perhaps the most probing study of the reaction of BYU students to Vietnam was conducted in 1968 by BYU psychologists Knud S. Larsen and Gary Swendiman. From their sample of 305 students, Larsen and Swendiman found that an average of only 27 percent could correctly identify the historical origins of the war and that, consequently, most lacked “a solid foundation on which to base their policy preferences.” Nonetheless, a majority of students agreed that “communists must be crushed before peaceful solutions can be implemented” and believed that the Viet Cong “represent[ed] more of a conspiracy than a popular movement.” Most were also convinced that “continued American intervention in the war is justified.” Interestingly, Larsen and Swendiman also discovered that those students tending to be “more hawkish about the war” were also more active in the church or had recently returned from an LDS mission. A second study in 1968 by T. Tammy Tanaka added that most BYU students shared a common belief, reinforced by church and university leaders, in America as “God’s chosen land” and hence backed American foreign policies as moral. In addition, a number of polls demonstrated that the political orientation of the student body was becoming increasingly conservative. From 1967 to 1972, for example, the percentage of BYU students identifying themselves as Republicans or American Independents blossomed from 54 to 75 percent, while the number of students identifying themselves as Democrats rose from 13 to only 16 percent.17
Despite BYU’s deserved reputation as an “oasis of calm amidst [the] campus turmoil” that rocked American colleges throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s, dissent was not entirely absent from the Mormon campus (U.S. News & World Report). Indeed, when compared to World War I, World War II, and the Korean war, Vietnam proved to be the most divisive of any world conflict among BYU students. As with student unrest nationally, dissent at BYU tended to embrace not only the war–the primary focus of American student protests–but also the individual and political rights of students, student participation in campus decision-making, and minority discrimination. “Why should the [Vietnamese government] waste [its] own people when [it] can sucker American boys to blindly fight and die instead?” asked one student in the Daily Universe. During the campus’s Military Week, a second wrote, “I respect and admire our soldiers and our campus ROTC, but I do not believe it a fit honor to our war dead to display the weapons that killed them.” On-going, occasionally heated discussion of American military policies, evident in many of the letters to the school’s daily newspaper, the columns of the Young Democrats’ surprisingly vocal newsletter, and the underground Zion’s Opinion, also found outlets in more visible forms of social protest. Nor was debate confined solely to students.18
[p. 183] An unexpected voice in support of student pacificism came in late 1969 from visiting apostle Gordon B. Hinckley, whose church assignments included writing a letter to parents who had lost sons during the war. “I have felt very keenly the feelings of many of our young men concerning this terrible conflict,” he reported at a BYU devotional service. In defense of conscientious objectors, Hinckley confided, “A man has to live with his conscience, his principles, his convictions and testimony, and without that he is as miserable as hell. Excuse me, but I believe it.” Utah senator Frank Moss (D) echoed Hinckley’s sentiment six days later. But at a special Veteran’s Day devotional service the following week, Hartman J. Rector, Jr., a navy veteran of World War II and member of the First Council of the Seventy, appeared on campus in full-dress uniform to highlight his support of U.S. policy. “This nation represents the last great bastion of freedom and liberty,” he asserted. “We have an obligation to the world as well as to ourselves.” Not unexpectedly, some students disagreed, maintaining that Rector had simplified “a very complex question” in a way that was not “completely responsible.” The next year, again only a few days apart, Hinckley reaffirmed his hatred “of war with all its mocking panoply,” while Rector speculated, much as Reed Smoot had done more than fifty years earlier, that war “was an instrument in the hands of the Lord” to further the church’s missionary interests, this time in Vietnam. Meanwhile, that spring, Frank Child, an advisor to Vietnam for the Ford Foundation and Yale University, told students, “In the name of freedom we stamp out freedom,” while former Mormon U.S. presidential candidate George W. Romney admitted that the war “was the most tragic foreign policy mistake in our nation’s history.”19
Eventually the debate on campus over the merits of the Vietnam War passed from the exchange of ideas to more militant activism. Although BYU students of the late 1960s and early 1970s were influenced primarily by their peers on other American campuses, a tradition of sometimes large-scale demonstrations was not unknown to many BYU alumni. In 1910, for example, students paraded through downtown Provo in support of prohibition, which church and school officials opposed. The following year, students gathered on campus to express opposition to the threatened dismissal of three faculty members who were teaching organic evolution. In 1919, they demonstrated in a show of support for the League of Nations and later boycotted devotional services because of a policy of forced attendence. Forty years later, in the early 1960s, a protracted struggle to extend the university’s Christmas recess period divided the school. [p. 184] At the height of the controversy, more than 2,000 angry students assembled at the football stadium, where they burned the dean of students in effigy and then attacked the school cafeteria with raw eggs. The mid-1960s also saw the emergence of BYU panty raids, or “lace riots,” and the hardening of the school’s policy on “demonstrations.” Following one particularly destructive siege on the women’s dormitories in 1965, an angry Wilkinson ruled that any student apprehended at the scene of a “riot,” which he defined legalistically as a gathering of two or more people disturbing the peace, would be “automatically dismissed from school.”20
As fall semester 1965 commenced, Wilkinson warned the dean of students, in what may be the earliest reference to the possibility of campus protests against Vietnam, to “look out” for “incipient tendencies” among students “so that we can nip [them] in the bud” (Wilkinson to Cameron). To students two days later, Wilkinson beamed, “All of us feel very good because we feel that the student body is completely behind us.” Despite mounting anti-war sentiment among students nationally, not until late 1968 did the first major political demonstration occur at BYU, when some sixty students wearing black armbands attended a speech by Curtis LeMay, the conservative running mate of third party U.S. presidential candidate George Wallace (Zion’s Opinion, 13 Nov. 1968). Facing away from LeMay, the students attempted to disrupt his address by applauding at inappropriate intervals. Fearing that such activities might escalate, school administrators soon established a list of “suggestions regarding disturbances” and appointed a campus committee on student and civil unrest (Nielsen to Committee). They also adopted, two years later, a detailed civil disturbance plan and discussed the feasibility of organizing a campus “riot squad” (Nielsen to Brewster).21
As U.S. fighting intensified through 1968-69, so did student unrest. In March 1969, representatives of a “Free Student Coalition” presented a list of sixteen demands–including recognition of a student Mobilization for Peace club, abolishment of ROTC class credit, and establishment of a civil rights week–to an unreceptive BYU administration. Wilkinson, in an April memo to his public relations director, expressed increased anxiety that “nothing get started on this campus against the ROTC” and blamed nation-wide demonstrations on “communist revolutionaries.” “Their ultimate goal,” he later explained publicly, was “outright opposition to the ‘middle class’ and defiant destruction of our existing social order. . . . Any student who, by any revolutionary tactics, would attempt to destroy our government . . . should have his revolutionary dreams fulfilled by having his citizenship revoked.” At devotional services in late April, Elder Boyd Packer invited would-be critics of traditional religious and democratic values to study elsewhere. When rumors of a possible student demonstration [p. 185] against the appearance of U.S. vice-president Spiro Agnew surfaced in early May, fine arts dean Lorin F. Wheelwright suggested that the university “alert some of our outstanding students to be ready to stand up for what we believe, . . . such as athletic heroes, queens, student body officers, and our outstanding debators. It would be hard for the media not to recognize such students or to ignore their statements in favor of our position.” Wilkinson agreed, and administrators subsequently identified four such students to “give balance to the controversy,” but Agnew’s scheduled appearance took place without incident.22
In an attempt to improve relations with the student body, Wilkinson “subjected” himself to a probing “interrogation” by nearly 300 students at a campus “Free Forum” in late May 1969. Wilkinson afterwards confided to his journal that “I rather like the give-and-take of [the] free discussion,” but sensed that “from this confrontation, there is more unrest on the campus than there has been in any previous year.” As a reminder to students that the university would not tolerate violent dissent, Wilkinson had the school’s Code of Student Conduct amended that fall to provide for “disciplinary action” in the event of “obstruction or disruption of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary procedures, or other university activities, including its public service functions.” Student plans for participation in a nation-wide boycott of classes in mid-October to protest the war were averted when ASBYU officers voted instead to “support the idea that each person should write his congressman expressing his opinions either for or against the Vietnam War.” As a compromise, several campus workshops and lectures on war and pacificism were scheduled during the national moratorium.23
Throughout the succeeding few years, nervous school administrators initiated a program of covert surveillance directed at the university’s “radical” students. For example, at Wilkinson’s insistence, BYU security officers maintained a close watch on BYU student activist and Vietnam veteran Jerry Owens, a leading participant in November 1969’s moratorium demonstrations staged in Salt Lake City, as well as on approximately forty other people involved in the weekend demonstrations. Chief Swen C. Nielsen reported, “Heretofore some of our students with radical political views have floundered about rather aimlessly; however, it appears now that they are being used by some rather skillful agitators, some of whom are what we might call `known communists.'” Wilkinson instructed Security to continue its surveillance of students to prevent any “entanglement” between the university and communist sympathizers and, in early 1970, asked trustees for a supplemental financial appropriation to cover “additional security protection” (Ex. Com. Minutes, 19 Feb. 1970). Increasingly defensive, Wilkinson issued a special statement in March on “campus conduct”:
[p. 186] Any person who participates in or supports illegal or disruptive action designed to subvert the purposes of the university and its sponsoring institution will be subject to immediate arrest and criminal prosecution. Furthermore, any student involved in such acts will be subject to immediate expulsion from Brigham Young University, as well as criminal prosecution. Channels for appeal for violations of law will be the courts, rather than the university or ecclesiastical officers (Bulletin, 13 March 1970).
At the same time, Wilkinson asked his public relations director to brief him regularly on “disturbances or riots” at other American universities. That May, Wilkinson publicly applauded his school’s “cool” reaction to the expansion of the war into Cambodia and the deaths of four demonstrators at Kent State University (Ohio). To his journal, however, he confessed, “There is certainly a spirit of unrest throughout the country and while it is manifest only slightly at the BYU it is nevertheless manifested here.”24
When specific instances of student protest erupted on campus, BYU officials tended to react decisively, fearing that inaction would exacerbate tensions. For example, undergraduates were told to remove peace signs from their dormitory windows with the curt explanation, “Just do it–you don’t need a reason” (DU, 16 May 1969). More drastically, students who publicly questioned BYU policies were investigated by the Office of Student Life at Wilkinson’s instruction to determine if grounds existed for disciplinary action. After the appearance of one student’s letters to the editor in the Daily Universe, Wilkinson complained to the deans of fine arts and student life, “I wish Lorin would see to it that no further letters of [this student] go into the Universe, and I wish Elliot would see if there is anything we can do with respect to [the student].” Cameron replied that his office had been “watching” the student “very carefully during the entire year.” He admitted that he did not “have anything that would justify taking any action against him at this point” but promised that after the student’s graduation, his office intended “to tag [the student’s] records so that he will not return to BYU.”25
In May 1970, when several students asked permission to collect signatures on a petition calling for the gradual withdrawal of congressional funding for the war, school officials responded by banning all petitions from campus. Wilkinson explained feebly that with the approach of the end of the semester, “students need all of their time to adequately prepare” for final exams (Salt Lake Tribune, 14 May 1970). One letter to the editor replied, “If my memory is correct, a few years ago a petition circulated at BYU was sent to Washington supporting the war in Vietnam. How can this apparent double standard be rationalized?” (DU, 15 May 1970). Another wrote, “I am angry. Angry because of the invisible iron glove that keeps us in our [p. 187] place; angry with the kind of education that teaches us to ‘accept’ rather than discover; angered by words praising us for our silence, words that have undertones of warning.” Five days after announcing the ban, administrators reversed their decision to allow “individual students [to] circulate petitions on campus which do not violate the fundamental objectives of BYU.” Still, “all petitions would be submitted to the dean of students for approval.” Two days later, zealous officials decided to “deny service on the campus to [students] wearing armbands.” Wilkinson discussed issuing a public statement against armbands with Cameron, and at least one dean instructed his faculty: “We will expect all faculty members, including teaching assistants, to ask members of their classes not to wear [armbands] or to ask these armband wearers to leave the class. [They] are tasteless and the messages they convey are generally derogatory of the university and/or the church” (Allen to All Faculty).26
At the beginning of fall semester 1970, Wilkinson distributed a one-page flyer to students entitled, “Men of BYU–A Message from the President,” encouraging enrollment in campus ROTC units. In turn, twelve undergraduates, including ASBYU president and vice-president Brian Walton and Jon Ferguson, published a reply entitled “An Important Message to the Men of BYU,” identifying legal alternatives to military service. Dean of Student Life Elliot Cameron approved the 3,000 pamphlets for distribution during a campus devotional service. Wilkinson, who had not seen the pamphlet before he was handed one at the door, denounced its contents during the devotional and later condemned Walton for “openly proclaiming allegiance to the General Authorities on certain decisions with respect to BYU, [while] trying by devious ways to circumvent those decisions.” Wilkinson invited all BYU veterans to wear their uniforms during a Veteran’s Day devotional at which he reiterated the church’s endorsement of military service. The controversy over the student pamphlet was subsequently discussed by the Board of Trustees, and Dean Cameron wrote to Walton, “Any authorization to distribute this pamphlet which was previously given is hereby rescinded.” Before the end of the year, however, some fifteen other students were allowed to distribute “A More Important Message to the Men of BYU” in response to Walton’s flyer, citing church authorities in defense of military service.27
Other minority voices surfaced on campus, but the threat of administrative sanction succeeded generally in hampering student activism. In October 1970, members of the student club Spectrum staged a series of anti-war skits they titled “Guerilla Theater” in the school’s Varsity Theater. Complaints followed, and the seventy-five students were denied permission to restage their productions on campus. Although they admitted they had not seen the play, [p. 188] administrators ruled that “Guerilla Theater . . . is associated with radical and subversive movements and is contrary to the spirit of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We favor constructive statements rather than negative or destructive approaches.” Spectrum later sponsored a panel discussion on U.S. presence in Vietnam, featuring BYU conscientious objector Andrew Kimball, a grandson of church apostle Spencer W. Kimball. “It turned out to be not nearly so violent [an] attack as we were afraid of,” Wilkinson recorded afterwards in his journal, “[although] I recognize that my presence may have toned it down some. . . . Young Andy Kimball is very sincere in his views but is naive and impractical.” Still, he concluded, “I don’t believe any Mormon can be [a pacifist].” Campus debates concerning the value of BYU’s annual Military Week continued intermittently until the 1973 withdrawal of U.S. troops from Vietnam (see DU, 13 March 1973). By the war’s conclusion, approximately 25,000 Mormons had served in Vietnam, of which nearly 600, including thirty-eight BYU alumni, had been killed, were missing in action, or had been held as prisoners of war (Boone; BYU 4:527).28
Much of the drive fostering student unrest at BYU disappeared with the end of the war, the resignation of Ernest Wilkinson as president, and a national upswing in political conservatism among students. The number of BYU undergraduates favoring a Republican U.S. president increased from 73 to 86 percent during the 1970s; one undergraduate was “appalled” in 1972 to learn that the campaign literature of a Democratic U.S. presidential candidate had been allowed on campus. Two years later, more than 50 percent of the student body opposed the impeachment of U.S. President Richard Nixon for alleged Watergate misdeeds; more than 80 percent believed Nixon should not have resigned. (Almost 60 percent later opposed his pardon, however.) A 1977 poll of students revealed that 89 percent favored capital punishment, and that 22 percent based their opinion on church teachings. Students themselves began referring jokingly to the university as a “hot bed of social rest” (Beginning BYU). Not until the early 1980s did rumors of possible dissent again surface. School officials decided to interview all international students to remind them of the university’s policies on campus disruptions (President’s Weekly Minutes, 3 Jan. 1979). Early the following year, a group of Iranian students interrupted the lecture of a former Iranian ambassador to the United Nations and accused him of being an accessory to tortures committed by Iran’s secret police force, SAVAK. Relatively minor outbursts continued to punctuate campus political presentations, including the heckling of Norma Matheson, wife of Utah’s Democratic governor Scott Matheson, by conservative undergraduates in 1980. But it was the reappearance of artillery on campus during Military Week that has provoked the greatest reaction among students since Vietnam.29
[p. 189] Beginning in the late 1970s, Military Week included target practice with pellet guns for ROTC cadets and the exhibition of howitzers and other heavy artillery between the Harold B. Lee Library and the Ernest L. Wilkinson Center. Highlighting the 1982 festivities, General William C. Westmoreland, former commander of U.S. forces in Vietnam, delivered a public address on campus and was confronted by students displaying large banners, one reading “Plowshares Not Guns,” and by two students wearing army fatigues, their faces painted like skeletons. Other students passed out anti-war flyers and wore black armbands. Afterwards, several of the protestors were warned by university officials that they risked suspension. The Daily Universe branded the demonstration a “mirage,” a “pseudo-event,” and a “publicity stunt.” The “shallowness” of their protest, student editors wrote, was “typical of students who desire to protest against the establishment.” The student activists soon replied with a letter to school officials explaining their protest of Military Week. “The display of armaments on campus,” they wrote, “[is] an offensive glorification of the instruments of war” (in SEP, 20 Feb. 1982). They eventually obtained permission to sponsor a university-wide Symposium on Peace, featuring lectures by local, national, and international speakers. Other peace symposia have since been held in succeeding years.30
Student Political Clubs
Besides public demonstrations, an additional avenue for campus political activism has been participation in officially recognized political clubs. Although politically oriented student groups existed earlier, partisan political clubs did not become officially established at BYU until Wilkinson’s administration. In 1952, he announced that he had “no objection . . . to students organizing themselves into political clubs,” provided they not become “preponderantly partisan, emotional or demagogic in their approach.” By 1968, six known student political clubs had emerged: Young Democrats, Young Republicans, Young Independents, Young Conservatives, Young Americans for Freedom, and Young American Independents. Petitions to organize student chapters of the leftist-oriented W.E.B. DuBois Club, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), Americans for Democratic Action (ADA), and the Peace and Freedom Party were refused. Administrators contended that the DuBois Club was a “communist front organization,” that SDS championed violent revolution, and that the Peace and Freedom Party advocated “the indiscriminate use of contraceptives” and supported “free love.” Consequently, only one club, Young Democrats, provided a forum for politically moderate and liberal students. Because of this, Young Democrats not only boasted the largest membership of any student political club during the 1960s [p. 190] but also drew repeated threats of banishment, such as in 1969 when members displayed a peace symbol in the Wilkinson Center, distributed anti-draft literature, and publicly exhibited books by revolutionaries Che Guevara and Malcolm X (Zion’s Opinion, 25 March 1969). Young Americans for Freedom and Young American Independents served as the primary outlets for ultra-conservative student activists. In 1966, Young Americans for Freedom sponsored visits from conservative apologists Jerreld L. Newquist, author of Prophets, Principles, and National Survival, and John Stormer, author of None Dare Call It Treason. Two years later, student leaders of Young American Independents publicly defended racial segregation as a moral obligation to prevent the miscegenation of the races.31
Accompanying changes in church and university leadership in the early 1970s, the number of political clubs allowed on campus was cut in half. An application for a student branch of the John Birch Society was turned down in 1971. The next year administrators adopted an official policy of recognizing only two clubs, the Young Republicans and the Young Democrats. Proposed clubs subsequently refused recognition included the Belmont Club, the Assembly of BYU Statesmen, Common Cause, the League of Women’s Voters, and the American Party (see Ex. Com. Minutes; DU, 2 Oct., 13 Dec. 1974). The Board of Trustees clarified its position in January 1975 when it noted that the Republican and Democratic parties enjoyed an “established record of not creating the kind of difficulties with which the board is concerned.” Additional political groups were barred from campus “to avoid the excessive politization that has characterized many institutions of higher education to the detriment of their learning activities.” When students affiliated with Young Americans for Freedom petitioned for official recognition two years later, they were told to “operate within the framework of either the Republican or the Democratic Party.” Dean Elliot Cameron added the following year that the Young Republicans and Young Democrats existed “only because of the grandfather clause–they’ve been here for years and years so they are still permitted. If [they] ceased to exist for a year they would not be rechartered,” because the board “does not want the student body polarized.”32
Despite official encouragement to work within traditional parties, the political affiliation of some BYU students has followed national trends of greater pluralism. A relaxation of school policy was evident, for example, when administrators allowed the Utah Association of Women to organize on campus in late 1979 “as long as they pursued the non-political aims outlined in their charter.” Early the next year, officials voiced “no objection to a student chapter of United Families of America being established on campus, as long as the purpose would be one of education rather than being used as a springboard for [p. 191] lobbying efforts.” And following the U.S. presidential campaign of independent John Anderson in 1980, students pushed for the organization of a Young Independents political club. With the support of BYU executive vice-president W. Rolfe Kerr, President Jeffrey R. Holland announced approval for this third student political club early the next year. Yet, “as an alternative middle ground to the two major party groups,” the Young Independents club was to be “the only other ‘catch-all’ political club approved.” As a result, Young Americans for Freedom representatives were again turned down, and Amnesty International was refused permission to organize on campus. More recently, however, students succeeded in establishing a quasi-political club, Response, to “plead the case of human rights and explore the alternatives for resolving conflicts in the world.” During its first two years, Response sponsored several successful peace and human rights symposia. While offering additional outlets on campus for political activism, Response, Young Independents, and even Young Democrats have remained largely in the shadow of the Young Republicans, currently the largest of BYU political clubs. Young Republicans, with its emphasis on partisan politics, laissez-faire economics, and limited federalism, continues to reflect the political views of the greater part of today’s increasingly conservative BYU student body.33
Administrative Support for Conservative Politics
Perhaps as a result of their own nineteenth-century communitarian heritage, many Mormons sympathetically greeted the rise of Russian socialism following World War I. For example, shortly after a tour of Soviet communal settlements in 1930, BYU agronomist Thomas L. Martin explained that the Soviet distaste for religion centered primarily on the Russian Orthodox Church. “Russia seemed to be over-churched before the revolution,” Martin said, “and is even more so now. I found eleven churches in two blocks.” A second BYU eyewitness to Russian socialist experiments, President Franklin S. Harris, later acknowledged his regret at “leaving this land where . . . we had all become attached to a great people who were sacrificing and struggling that better human [conditions] might be worked out.” Students, too, were apparently receptive to quasi-socialist programs. More than 60 percent supported U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal welfare acts in 1934. Indeed, Utahns generally “let federal money pay the way” throughout the depression as official LDS relief programs, inaugurated in 1933, proved ineffective in dealing with state-wide poverty (Bluth and Hinton). By 1936, communist showings at Utah’s election polls and rumors that some Mormons had joined the [p. 192] Communist party of the United States prompted the First Presidency to warn members that “communism [is] hostile to loyal American citizenship and incompatible with true church membership. . . . No loyal American citizen and no faithful church member can be a communist.” Critics of BYU were quick to cite Thomas Martin’s and Franklin Harris’s qualified praise as evidence that Soviet communism was being taught at the church university (Broadbent to Harris). BYU president Howard McDonald’s student health plan would be criticized ten years later as “socialized medicine” because of a mandatory ten dollar per student allocation from tuition receipts (see BYU 2:465-66).34
Not all BYU students and faculty shared their church’s growing anxieties about communism. One 1947 campus editorialist termed Russian communism an “international bogey man” and branded J. Edgar Hoover, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and arch anti-communist, the world’s “ace truant officer.” BYU English professor Parley A. Christensen wrote sympathetically in the late 1940s of socialist experiments, observing that “no reputable historian [had ever] ascribed the greatness of America to ‘Free Enterprise.'” Christensen also condemned capitalism, which, he wrote, “has never been interested in anything except ‘bread,’ and the profits [that could be made] from it.” One 1950 visiting guest lecturer suggested, “We have been spending too much time fighting communism when we should have been preaching freedom.” Yet the majority of church and university officials had become ardently anti-communist during the Cold War years following World War II. J. Reuben Clark, Jr., first counselor in the First Presidency, asserted in 1949, for example, “The plain and simple issue now facing us in America is freedom or slavery. . . . Our real enemies are communism and its running mate, socialism.” Less than three years later, church president David O. McKay stressed, “Only in perpetuating economic freedom can our social, political and religious liberties be preserved.” In a 1954 speech, he queried, “In education for citizenship, why should we not see to it that every child in America is taught the superiority of our way of life, of our Constitution and the sacredness of the freedom of the individual?” Communism, McKay told BYU students in 1960, “has as its ultimate achievement and victory the destruction of capitalism.” As if to dramatize his resolve, McKay endorsed the U.S. presidential bid of anti-communist crusader Richard M. Nixon six months later.35
The concern among church and university officials over the growth of communism manifested itself most conspicuously in the 1951 appointment of Ernest Wilkinson as BYU president. A Republican convert and conservative critic of the federal government, Wilkinson needed little encouragement when church leader Stephen L Richards charged him at his inauguration to “implant in youth a deep love of country and a reverential regard for the Constitution of the United [p. 103] States.” Nor did President McKay’s later prayer go unheeded that Wilkinson would “have [the] vision to understand more than anyone else in education circles the dangers of communism and . . . be a leader in our schools in protecting our people against this ungodlike philosophy” (Wilkinson Journal, 28 April 1960). “This institution,” Wilkinson promised, “is definitely committed to a philosophy which is the antithesis of that espoused by the communists. . . . More than any other school, Brigham Young University has a better basis for teaching correct principles of government” (Wilkinson to Widtsoe). What Wilkinson hoped to establish was an exemplary church institution of higher education where a loyal and patriotic faculty would “teach ‘correct’ economic doctrines–doctrines which would assist in salvaging the American system of free enterprise from threatened extinction” (Wilkinson to Clark and McDonald). To this end, he actively promoted a politically conservative image both for himself and his university, while championing the campus appearances of anti-communist crusaders and lobbying for the establishment of a curriculum that favored Republican party principles. He also attempted to recruit a core of similarly minded administrators and faculty. In the process, however, he became fearful of dissent, preoccupied with rumors of teacher disloyalty, and particularly distrustful of faculty in the political sciences, economics, and history.36
Wilkinson’s impact on the previously bipartisan BYU community was immediate. “There had been some activity politically at the university before Ernest Wilkinson became president,” remembered longtime friend George S. Ballif, “but not nearly as much as [after] his administration began. . . . There were many university professors who were Democrats, and some . . . stayed on with the university after Ernest came, but they weren’t very vocal Democrats.” In 1953, one faculty member characterized the “professional radicalism” of his colleagues as extending “no further than [to a] belief in Social Security or Adlai Stevenson.” But even this was sometimes enough to raise Wilkinson’s hackles. Until 1959, he refused to authorize special commemorative activities honoring the United Nations, including participation in state-wide model United Nations conferences, because the international organization competed with the “American form of republican government.” BYU officials reluctantly approved a short-lived student exchange program with Russia and eastern European countries in 1960 but denied permission to the university’s a capella choir to perform in Russia several years later.37
While anti-communist speakers appeared regularly before campus audiences during Wilkinson’s presidency, liberal and leftist lecturers were intentionally excluded from the university’s platform. “There are certainly going to be no communists speaking to our students,” Wilkinson insisted, “nor are there going to be any fellow [p. 194] travelers who invoke the Fifth Amendment for the purpose of refusing to tell of their communistic affiliations” (Wilkinson Journal, 9 Sept. 1957). Church and school officials tried unsuccessfully to persuade FBI director J. Edgar Hoover to address students on communist “masters of deceit.” “Over the years,” Wilkinson wrote to Hoover in 1958, “we have had great admiration for your distinguished and unselfish public service which has not been surpassed by anyone else in the nation.” Speakers who accepted the school’s invitations challenged students to “become as indoctrinated in Americanism as Soviet children are in communism.” Attention in campus publications occasionally focused on such outspoken faculty as conservative apologist and religion professor Hyrum L. Andrus. “When the conservative position in modern America is viewed in light of the Kingdom of God, its strengths become apparent,” Andrus told students in a November 1962 Daily Universe guest editorial. “[However,] liberalism, like the plan proposed by [Satan] and his hosts in the War in Heaven, is deficient and perverse.” The next day, BYU alumnus Reed Benson, Utah coordinator of the John Birch Society, insisted that communists were “absolutely amoral. . . . We haven’t treated them yet for what they are–murderers.”38
In response to the apparent politization of their school, especially evident in campus-wide assemblies and devotional services, many students publicly criticized Wilkinson for his “unabashed partisanship.” “The political speakers at university programs, with one exception, have been of one political party,” wrote one student in 1954. “I believe that this has unconsciously influenced many students, and that by being so arranged, these programs have degenerated from an educational function into a political harangue.” Another added, “[Selling] politics on the market of righteousness is repulsive to intelligent students and townsfolk alike. If this is to become a university, we must have fewer ‘little’ deeds from Big Brother.” Other students complained that patriotic songs such as “America,” “America the Beautiful,” the “Star Spangled Banner,” and the “Battle Hymn of the Republic” were sung “over and over” during school assemblies. In 1961, when Wilkinson announced that the year’s commencement speaker would be Barry M. Goldwater, a conservative Republican senator from Arizona and later U.S. presidential contender–whom Wilkinson would introduce as “essentially one of us”–one undergraduate composed the following “special glossary of terms” for those unfamiliar with right-wing rhetoric: socialism–“any plan for social change or betterment not cleared with either Barry Goldwater or President Wilkinson;” conscience–“a special sense of right and wrong which is possessed only by . . . a few Republicans of the extreme right, most of whom the students of Brigham Young University have been privileged to hear speak during the last year;” and freedom of [p. 195] assembly–“freedom to listen almost every Monday to a defense of President Wilkinson’s political philosophy.”39
Throughout the early 1960s, the number of partisan speeches featured on campus as part of the university’s devotionals or forum assemblies sometimes accounted for nearly 60 percent of the total offerings. Students especially “object[ed] to the use of our devotional as the vehicle of political indoctrination.” Daily Universe editors wryly added, “Most of us who have been around for a while realize that President Wilkinson is a conservative Republican. We know these things because he has told us many times.” Another student wrote, “One need no especially acute perception to note that the weekly forum speakers tend to advocate the same political and economic philosophy. Can we claim intellectual honesty for ourselves . . . when we present only one side of an issue while the other is disparaged or at best neglected?” Not all students were as dissatisfied with the administration’s choice of speakers, however. More than a few expressed shock when David R. Mace, director of the American Association of Marriage Counselors, claimed that “Soviet families are happier and more stable than American families.” One undergraduate quickly complained, “It would appear Dr. Mace is in actual essence a socialist at heart and chooses to support his views with what he saw in Russia.” Still, many students, a majority according to one estimate in 1962, remained relatively neutral, unswayed by their president’s partisan policies.40
By 1963, political issues occupied much of Wilkinson’s time, occasionally taking up to 70 percent of his meetings with church officials, according to his own estimate. The long-standing possibility of running for public office became increasingly attractive as Wilkinson regularly toured the country, delivering stirring defenses of free enterprise to interested civic, social, and religious groups. He contemplated establishing a patriotic Freedom Institute at BYU but, he claimed, was thwarted by faculty bent on “teaching [the] welfare state.” Amid the clamor to allow a variety of opinions on campus, Wilkinson unexpectedly announced that Soviet journalist Gyorgi I. Velikovosky would appear at a university-wide assembly. The president uncharacteristically explained, “We have had so many references to communism this year, it seemed well that students should have the opportunity to hear from a real communist.” Two-thirds into his well-attended address, Velikovosky suddenly dropped his thick Russian accent and annouced that he was George Velliotes, a California businessman and former history teacher, who had adopted the masquerade to dramatize “the evils of communism.” Dismissing the criticisms that followed, Wilkinson reiterated, “Brigham Young University stands squarely behind the prophets of this great church and the political leaders of [p. 196] our country in denouncing communism as a devilish and satanic gospel. I am surprised that anyone thought otherwise.”41
In many ways, Wilkinson’s anti-communist activism mirrored a growing affinity among some General Authorities for ultra-conservative ideologies, especially those espoused by the nascent John Birch Society. Because of his own conservative partisanship, church president David O. McKay occasionally became a willing accessory to anti-communist histrionics, despite resistance from his Democratic counselors, Henry D. Moyle, Hugh B. Brown, and later N. Eldon Tanner. For example, when Salt Lake City police chief and former FBI agent W. Cleon Skousen published in 1959 an alarmist expose’ of communism, The Naked Communist, McKay publicly admonished church members during General Conference to read “that excellent little book.” Skousen’s polemic quickly became an ultra-conservative manifesto. Despite mounting opposition from members of the BYU faculty and his own counselors, McKay privately encouraged Skousen, who had served as an administrative aide to Wilkinson until 1956, “to keep up his good work in talking against communism and the increase of socialism in this country” (Wilkinson Journal). The church president also endorsed the anti-communist activities of Utah governor J. Bracken Lee, Wisconsin senator Joseph McCarthy, J. Edgar Hoover, Senator Barry Goldwater, and Vice-President Richard M. Nixon, as well as conservative church leaders J. Reuben Clark, Jr., Thorpe B. Isaacson, LeGrand Richards, and especially Ezra Taft Benson. Indeed, for many, the conservative politics of Apostle Benson, former U.S. secretary of agriculture, epitomized much of the political piety that characterized the church and university throughout the 1960s.42
At the university, the reaction among students and faculty to the emergence of an ultra-conservative faction among church authorities was divided. Religion professors Reid Bankhead, Glenn Pearson, and Hyrum Andrus favored Birchist ideology and had to be reminded not to “interject their personal opinions and feelings in the classroom.” After meeting John Birch Society founder Robert Welch in the mid-1960s, Wilkinson wrote in his journal, “The John Birch Society is a real patriotic living and moving organization.” He hoped to “press forward for more training along this line at the BYU.” Although Wilkinson considered it impolitic to join the society, he added, “I would probably agree with 90 percent of their teachings.” But BYU political scientist Louis Midgley publicly rebuked society devotees in 1964, asking how “anyone at a university–anyone who reads books and thinks”–could “take it seriously? . . . Their morality is simply the old notion that the end justifies the means; any stick to beat the [p. 197] devil.” Two months later, twenty-two faculty members signed an open letter to the student body condemning conservative author John A. Stormer’s sensationalistic None Dare Call It Treason as a “piece of fanaticism.” They explained that their letter was written because Stormer’s book was “being distributed in certain BYU religion classes . . . [and] regarded as authoritative because of this sponsorship.”43
However much President McKay privately supported Birchist goals, he feared that the controversy surrounding the society’s successful proselyting of church members was “causing considerable . . . embarrassment to the church because of unfounded statements being said and written on both sides of the subject.” He consequently instructed BYU officials, “in no uncertain terms,” not to “bring speakers to the campus to discuss [the] subject, nor [to allow] faculty or students to debate the subject, nor [to allow] articles to be written on [the] subject in the Daily Universe. . . . The matter [should be] dropped entirely.” As a result, school administrators later vetoed the proposed speaking engagements of Robert Welch himself and Tom Anderson, a member of the society’s national board. McKay’s instructions also prevented some church and university leaders from backing a student chapter of the society in the early 1970s.44
When Wilkinson resigned as president in early 1964 to run for the U.S. Senate, he had already become a leading Utah spokesman for the conservative wing of the Republican party. His ten months on an often bitter campaign trail crystallized his intense political views. He became increasingly critical of Democratic social reforms, “the welfare state which has now come upon us,” and his own party’s drift towards “socialism.” Following his return to the campus in 1965, Wilkinson, freed from his responsibilities as church schools administrator, turned the focus of his fears towards the university. Determined to mold BYU into a showcase of conservative politics, he regretted that in his absence “there [had been] a marked tendency for so-called ‘liberal elements’ to take charge of the economic and political things of the university.” “We are facing a great crisis in this country,” he added in a letter to President McKay, “and many of our political science and economics teachers are teaching false doctrine.” “The problems that I will face,” he confided to his journal, “are much larger than those I faced when I first came in as president of the B.Y.U. Whether I will have the energy and the fortitude and patience to solve some of them remains to be seen.” But, he vowed, “I am going to do what I can to reverse [this] trend which may mean the elimination of certain faculty members.” As a result of the president’s renewed zeal, “hardly a day went by that we did not hear something about socialism or the like,” remembered Wilkinson staff employee Jan Izatt. “And, of course, he was always on the lookout for anything subversive on campus and anytime there were reports of the same, he would really get [p. 198] upset. . . . He didn’t want anything tainting our campus, and he pretty much saw to it that people of that kind were kept out.”45
Criteria for promotion in faculty rank were subsequently expanded to include “commitments to business history and . . . to the business community,” as well as “affiliations with the conservative elements of economics.” Wilkinson balked at appointing economics faculty whose views differed from his own (see Ex. Com. Minutes, 28 Jan., 3, 25 Feb. 1965; Wilkinson Journal, 1-6 Feb. 1965). The university’s required course in American history was “adjusted” in 1968 to include “treatments of economics and the American system of free enterprise,” as well as J. Reuben Clark’s writings on the U.S. Constitution (Ex. Com. Minutes, 21 Nov. 1968). But after reviewing an administrative survey of student attitudes two years later, Wilkinson wrote to business dean Weldon J. Taylor that “there is still a lot of room for improvement as to the appropriate answers if we are going to maintain our republic.” Dance bands brought to campus were screened for possible communist sympathizers. University administrators contacted local radio stations when their programming featured such musicians as folksinger Joan Baez, “known to be a communist and the leader of certain riots in this country.” When Wilkinson learned that the number of students using federal food stamp subsidies had more than doubled in recent years, comprising 80 percent of all food stamp recipients in Utah Valley, he asked the Board of Trustees “for guidance.” Trustees initially concluded that “any additional comments or actions would draw attention to the program,” but Elder Ezra Taft Benson later condemned the practice in a devotional address.46
The Development of a Speakers’ Policy
Although the number of conservative guest lecturers prior to 1965 had been disproportionate, the imbalance was even more striking after Wilkinson’s senate bid. Favored BYU speakers included General Carlos Romulo of the Philippines; George Mardikian, a San Francisco restauranteur and U.S. military advisor on food preparation; Kenneth McFarland, superintendent of the Topeka (Kansas) Public School District; and news commentator Paul Harvey. As Wilkinson explained to McFarland in 1966: “I am looking for the very best speakers in the nation, but they must have honest-to-God American thinking, who inspire us to greater heights rather than sow the seeds of disillusionment.” In an effort to distance himself from criticisms, Wilkinson partially delegated responsibility for the selection of university-wide speakers in 1965 to a Speakers Committee composed of four administrators, three faculty members, and the student body president. Under Wilkinson’s watchful eye, committee members adopted a policy of prohibiting speakers who “advocate the overthrow of the [p. 199] government of the United States or of its constituent units by force, or in any other way violate restrictions imposed for public safety;” or who “advocate or espouse ideas inimical to a belief in a divine creator, honesty, morality and individual responsibility, or take advantage of [their] forum in any other way to demean the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or its doctrines or policies” (“Policy”). Wilkinson, who retained final speaker approval, instructed school officials in 1968 to check the names of speakers against lists supplied by leading anti-communist groups for evidence of leftist affiliations.47
During Wilkinson’s 1964 absence, acting president Earl Crockett approved the speaking engagements of four alleged communist sympathizers: Louis Untermyer, a consultant in English poetry to the Library of Congress; Max Lerner, a syndicated newspaper columnist; Stringfellow Barr, a historian and political satirist; and folksinger Allan Lomax. Upon his return, Wilkinson immediately cancelled the contracts of both Barr and Lomax (Wilkinson to Bernhard; Wilkinson to Bateman). When television reporter Howard K. Smith, who had also been invited during Wilkinson’s absence, spoke favorably of U.S. president Lyndon Johnson’s New Society, Wilkinson promised that Smith would not be invited again (Wilkinson to Horton; Wilkinson to Stafford). Wilkinson also argued that the joint appearance of nationally syndicated columnists Drew Pearson and Jack Anderson would “have serious repercussions with certain members of my Board of Trustees, who are acquainted with what they consider to be the unethical conduct of these two gentlemen” (Wilkinson to Taylor). Following the appearance of U.S. vice-president Hubert Humphrey in October 1966, Wilkinson complained that he had been pressured by Democratic General Authorities into allowing the vice-president to speak on campus (Wilkinson Journal). He was particularly annoyed that he had not had enough time to provide an articulate Republican rebuttal. Less than two years later, Wilkinson refused to cancel classes for the campus appearance of presidential candidate and U.S. senator Robert F. Kennedy (D–Massachusetts). Still, more than 15,000 students packed the George Albert Smith Fieldhouse to hear the charismatic Kennedy quip, “I had a very nice conversation with Dr. Wilkinson, and I promised him that all Democrats would be off the campus by sundown.” The next week, Republican senator Charles H. Percy (Illinois) attracted fewer than 5,000 students. In late 1970, Wilkinson accompanied Senator Barry Goldwater and Utah’s Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, Laurence J. Burton, to the school’s Homecoming Assembly. Despite the protests of surprised ASBYU student body officers, Wilkinson invited Senator Goldwater, who had not been cleared by the Speakers Committee, to address the captive audience.48
During the late 1960s, trustees expanded the speakers’ policy to prohibit speakers who were “engaged in programs or movements [p. 200] antagonistic to the church or its standards,” which Wilkinson interpreted to preclude “atheists,” “subversives,” “those [having] any link with Russia or who would destroy our country,” and “those who would defame or ridicule our concept of strict morality.” Because most speakers continued to represent a narrow political spectrum, limited by Wilkinson’s interpretations of the guidelines, complaints from both faculty and students continued to surface. “It is my impression,” wrote BYU political scientist Ray C. Hillam, “that the committee is entirely responsible for censoring rather than promoting . . . possible speakers for the university.” Five months later, Wilkinson replied publicly to his critics, “It is a matter of deciding whether to host speakers whose views on matters parallel our own as opposed to those whose views we do not respect.” Although one undergraduate asked rhetorically the following week, “Do you want BYU to invite a representative of Satan to speak to us?” an impressive 60 percent of the student body countered in a 1970 poll that “viewpoints contrary to the church stand should have an opportunity for exposure on campus.” Perhaps aware already of the sentiment among students, Speakers Committee members tried to increase student participation in choosing speakers in 1969. However, Wilkinson advised the committee, “Before you do anything of this kind you [should] consult with me because I am not at all sure that students are the ones to select these assembly speakers” (Wilkinson to Wheelwright). Among those prevented from appearing on campus primarily for political reasons throughout the late 1960s were Donna Allen, Erich Fromm, George Wallace, the Shah of Iran, Gore Vidal, Marshall McLuhan, Whitney Young, Stewart Udall, Betty Furness, and Jesse Jackson. Wilkinson also criticized the on-campus speaking assignments of members of his own faculty, including economist J. Kenneth Davies; political scientists Stewart Grow, Melvin Mabey, and J. Keith Melville; and historian Thomas Alexander, whom Wilkinson had previously termed a “socialist” (Wilkinson to Thomas; Wilkinson Journal, 10 May 1970).49
Stemming, in part, from criticisms of Wilkinson’s speakers’ policy, Neal A. Maxwell, newly appointed church commissioner of education, announced his intention in November 1970 to establish a uniform speaker selection process for all church schools, including BYU. (The push for a consolidated speakers’ policy coincided with Wilkinson’s resignation, made public five months later.) The executive committee of the Church Board of Education ruled in February 1971 that the “names of prospective speakers [for general audiences were to] be submitted to the [Board of Trustees] prior to any contact being made with speakers in order to avoid any possible embarrassment.” Shortly before his release, Wilkinson attempted to expand the list of “proscribed performances” to include the “advocacy of birth control and [p. 201] deviance from the Word of Wisdom,” the “advocacy of hostility between the races,” and the “advocacy of violent and/or irrational, emotional confrontations.” Instead, however, the board adopted a statement mirroring the 1965 BYU Speakers’ Committee guidelines, with the following additions: that proposed speakers not have committed “acts of immorality, dishonesty, or other conduct [which] would make it inappropriate for the Church Educational System to feature [them] as a speaker;” that “any person who has qualified as a candidate for the . . . office of president of the United States [be allowed to] address general assemblies . . . without prior submission of his or her name to the board;” and that “no speaker be disqualified solely on political grounds.” “Our platform,” a depolitized Board of Trustees concluded, “should be available for invitation to representatives and members of all political parties and persuasions to explain their points of view.” The board’s resolution represented a major reversal of the precedent established by Wilkinson.50
Because of the board’s policy, BYU speakers came to include spokespersons from the Democratic, Republican, American Independent, and Libertarian parties. When an invitation was extended to former Israeli prime minister Golda Meir in 1974, trustees insisted that “an invitation [also] be extended to someone representing the Arab world.” Following actor Robert Redford’s much-publicized appearance on campus four years later, during which he criticized Utah’s two Republican U.S. senators, school officials invited Senators Jake Garn and Orrin Hatch to publicly answer Redford’s attack. In November 1979, Wilkinson’s moderate successor, Dallin Oaks, recommended to the First Presidency that BYU’s policy be further amended to allow any officially declared candidate for the U.S. presidency from either of the two major parties to speak regardless of moral conduct or reputation. Oaks explained that according to the board’s policy, at least two presidential hopefuls “probably would not withstand scrutiny on moral grounds.” Oaks had been approached by supporters of Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D–Massachusetts), as well as by newspaper reporters, asking if Kennedy had been “banned at BYU.” “We currently stand in imminent danger of a coast-to-coast wire service story” about the school’s policy, Oaks wrote, stressing that the university could “not delay the issue much longer.” At Oaks’s urging, the board approved his recommendation.51
Despite the new tolerance for presidential candidates of varying lifestyles, other speakers were rejected during the 1970s on the basis of alleged sexual immorality. Among those disapproved for allegedly advocating or engaging in illicit sexual behavior were Moshe Dayan, Ben Bradley, Jerry Brown, Betty Ford, and Allen Ginsburg. By the late 1970s, politics again emerged as a criterion in speaker selection. For example, both morality and politics were cited in disapproving [p. 202] liberal Democrat George McGovern in 1978. One university official stated that he was “not about to let [McGovern] come and sit in front of the student body with his concubine,” while a second admitted, “Ezra Taft Benson would hit the ceiling if [McGovern] spoke on this campus” (DU, 9 April 1980). In rejecting consumer advocate Ralph Nader the following year, academic vice-president Robert Thomas wrote, “Most of his comment is simply carping, and we don’t need to pay for that” (Thomas to Polve). Administrators again began checking the names of prospective speakers against rosters supplied by conservative action groups. Some trustees, too, renewed their conviction “that visiting speakers . . . [should] speak on topics that will not be offensive to the membership of the church” (Ex. Com. Minutes, 7 Nov. 1980). Still, university officials–careful to distance themselves from the restrictive policies of the late 1960s–have not been intractable. For example, when television actor Mike Farrell refused to speak on campus in 1983 because BYU had initially stipulated that he not address “any political issues,” the school reconsidered its decision and offered him an open forum.52
Covert Faculty Surveillance
One of the most common reasons cited in faculty dismissals nationwide during Cold War anti-communist crusades was reputed “un-American” sympathies. In 1950, some thirty-six members of the University of California faculty were fired for refusing to sign an oath of loyalty to the United States. Attempts were made at other colleges to rid their campuses of suspected leftists and communist sympathizers, using oaths, disclaimer affidavits, certificates of allegiance, and pledges of patriotism. From 1965 to 1970, the number of political dismissals more than doubled as a result of American involvement in Vietnam. For Wilkinson, the possibility of subversive infiltration at BYU had always presented a serious danger but never more so than after his 1964 defeat. “We are clearly in the midst of a great campaign to create a socialistic state,” he fretted in his journal, repeatedly condemning university “liberals [who] want to make the BYU a pulpit for all of the left-wing groups in the country.” The president was determined to “have a more patriotic and dynamic political science and history department,” but admitted, “How to get this is a real problem.”53
In his attempts to secure an ideologically pure faculty, Wilkinson adopted a number of measures which, in retrospect, proved to be both ill-conceived and counter-productive. During the early 1950s, Wilkinson had periodically solicited individual eyewitness reports of employee disloyalty from sympathetic faculty and school administrators. Shortly after arriving in Provo, for example, he asked religion professor Sidney B. Sperry for a “confidential memorandum of the [p. 203] various criticisms or complaints” regarding the “attitudes of some of our faculty members.” Several years later, however, Wilkinson vowed to “set up some kind of machinery for getting the facts,” because “most people have a tendency to exaggerate or color the facts when they are alone and think they can get away with it” (Wilkinson Journal, 21 April 1958). He consequently instructed BYU legal counsel Clyde Sandgren to monitor a student club’s 1959 dinner dance scheduled at a local restaurant managed by the head of Utah’s Communist party. About this time, Wilkinson also began appointing administrative “fact finding” committees, which, under his direction, were assigned the task of investigating complaints of faculty or administrative malfeasance. In 1960, for example, he assigned two university subordinates to investigate the allegedly unethical behavior of a third school administrator. “Should any person refuse to give you the facts as they know them,” Wilkinson charged, “you are authorized to inform that person that his services will be terminated. . . . Somehow we must develop a group of ‘he-men’ who have the courage to tell what the facts are.”54
By the mid-1960s, Wilkinson came to rely most heavily on trusted in-house “lieutenants” to gather the information he needed. When Reed Benson, a son of church apostle Ezra Taft Benson, suggested in late November 1960 that he be appointed to the faculty to “find out who the unorthodox teachers were and report to his father,” Wilkinson wrote that he did not “want espionage of that character.” But by 1965, Wilkinson began asking a number of friends both on and off campus to confidentially forward to him “specific information” regarding the reported “socialist teachings” of BYU historian Richard D. Poll. “I am sure you know that it’s difficult for me just to act on hearsay,” he confided to Mark Benson, another son of Elder Benson, “so if you can document any irregular statements [Poll] has made, together with giving me information as to how that may be proved, I will be grateful.” A graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, Richard Poll had joined the BYU faculty shortly before Wilkinson’s appointment as president. Though an active Republican, Poll’s moderate political views set him apart from Wilkinson’s hard-line conservatism but did not prevent his advancement to full professor or appointment as chair of the Department of History and Political Science in 1954. Still, Poll’s public disagreements with W. Cleon Skousen and Ezra Taft Benson over the appropriate response to communism (and with other church leaders on organic evolution) earned him the reputation among some Mormon conservatives as a liberal troublemaker.55
Wilkinson first confronted Poll directly in early 1963, informing him that he would not receive any further administrative [p. 204] advancements because of his participation in “fringe activity of doubtful validity.” Specifically, the president objected to Poll’s critique of Skousen’s The Naked Communist, entitled This Trumpet Gives an Uncertain Sound, and Poll’s involvement in BYU’s chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), a nationwide faculty-rights organization known for its advocacy of academic freedom and faculty participation in university governance. (Poll had been elected president of the AAUP chapter at BYU when Wilkinson allowed its establishment in 1960.) Heightened tensions between Wilkinson and Poll continued through mid-1965 when Poll took a sabbatical leave to Europe. Wilkinson asked the head of university relations, Stephen R. Covey, to prepare a dossier on Poll and submit a recommendation on renewing his teaching contract. With Poll still abroad, Covey submitted his 54-page confidential “Report on Richard D. Poll” the following year. Covey asserted that during Poll’s fifteen years at the university, he had reportedly:
1. Highlighted disagreements among church authorities, putting “them in a bad light,” to “justify his own and other liberals’ actions”;
2. Criticized church president David O. McKay as a part of his review of W. Cleon Skousen’s The Naked Communist;
3. Been affiliated with the American Civil Liberties Union, “considered by many to be a communist front organization”;
4. Invited political activist Dorothy Marshall to speak on campus when she and her husband were both “known affiliates of communist front organizations”;
5. Oriented his classes towards “liberalism,” and been a “rallying point for the ‘liberal’ element on campus”; and
6. Been a member and a leading officer of the BYU chapter of the American Association of University Professors, where his influence “tended to be both constructive and critical (negative) towards the university and policies established by the Board of Trustees.”
At the conclusion of his report, Covey made no recommendation regarding Poll’s retention but added that he had been a “popular and effective teacher, a very intelligent and able person, and an effective leader.”56
Immediately, Wilkinson ruled that Poll was “probably guilty” on all counts but was troubled by Poll’s apparent popularity. Surveys of more than 2,000 of Poll’s former students showed that approximately 80 percent classified Poll’s lectures as either “conservative” or “middle-of-the-road,” while 82 percent reported that his courses had helped them “strengthen [their] understanding of the American constitutional system and [their] sense of civic responsibility.” When Poll learned that other BYU faculty were receiving contracts, he wrote to [p. 205] his department chair and made contact with a member of the Board of Trustees to find out why he had not yet received his. Wilkinson subsequently announced to members of the executive committee that he had decided to “renew Brother Poll’s contract but would carefully observe the latter’s conduct during the coming school year” (Wilkinson Journal, 26, 27 April 1966; Ex. Com. Minutes, 28 April 1966). A number of politically conservative General Authorities continued to press for Poll’s dismissal; in October 1969, Poll resigned to accept an administrative position at Western Illinois University, where he joined former BYU social sciences dean John T. Bernhard, who had been appointed WIU president the previous year. Poll checked on faculty and administrative vacancies at BYU after Wilkinson’s resignation, but administrators were reluctant to provoke those church authorities who had been glad to see him go. In 1977, Poll taught a summer term at BYU and, after his retirement from Western Illinois, taught history at BYU part-time. Neither appointment required board clearance.57
A second professor subjected to close scrutiny during Wilkinson’s administration was economist J. Kenneth Davies, a graduate of the University of Southern California. A specialist in labor economics, Davies was both a vocal defender of unionizing efforts and a critic of right-to-work legislation that threatened to undercut the negotiating position of unions. Like Poll, Davies had emerged as a leading member of the school’s chapter of the AAUP. By the mid-1960s, Wilkinson had concluded that Davies was one of the school’s “most erratic teachers” and maintained a close watch of his professional and personal activities. When, in early 1966, Davies accepted a confidential listing of faculty salaries from a BYU employee for consideration by the school’s AAUP members, Wilkinson seized upon the opportunity to brand Davies a thief and to assemble a roster of unrelated prior accusations in an attempt to pressure Davies to resign.58
Wilkinson was particularly irritated by Davies’s refusal to identify the employee who, with access to the school’s main computer, had made a copy of the university’s salary schedules. The president presented Davies’s case to the Board of Trustees in early March 1966, characterizing the incident as an example of theft and insubordination and asked if he should “dismiss Brother Davies.” The board authorized Wilkinson “to take such disciplinary action as he sees fit.” Aware that Davies would be taking a leave of absence during the coming school year, Wilkinson agreed to extend his teaching contract one year, with the understanding that academic vice-president Crockett, business dean Weldon J. Taylor, and economics chair Richard B. Wirthlin would “persuade him not to return.” Davies, however, gained the support of his immediate superiors when, in response to the administration’s accusations, he wrote to Wilkinson, “The whole problem would not have arisen if we had an open, honest salary system at B.Y.U. by which [p. 206] a faculty member could evaluate his financial worth to the administration by comparing his own salary with the minimum, maximum, and average for his rank. At present, only a favored few have had sufficient information with which to improve their negotiating position with the administration.”59
Resentful of Davies’s counter charges, Wilkinson asserted to Dean Taylor, “Had this been the first indiscretion of Davies, I would possibly not have taken the action I did, but there comes a time, if we are going to maintain proper decorum on our campus, that I have to take action.” Nine months later, Davies unexpectedly announced his intention to return to the university. Wilkinson immediately ruled that his contract would not be renewed (Wilkinson to Crockett). Davies, however, feeling that Wilkinson’s actions stemmed from his opposition to Wilkinson’s 1964 Senate bid and his public criticisms of the John Birch Society, insisted that his case be aired before an impartial university committee. As news of the stand-off spread throughout the school, many faculty, both at BYU and elsewhere, interpreted the administration’s position as an attempted breach of tenure and transparent subterfuge to rid the school of dissenting opinion. Davies arranged to meet privately with first counselor in the First Presidency N. Eldon Tanner and Apostle Harold B. Lee to explain his position. Under the weight of faculty and board opinion, administrators informed Davies that he would be granted an official hearing, but only “as a matter of grace,” as school policy made no provision for such an allowance (Crockett to Davies).60
Following the appointment by Wilkinson in late February 1967 of a three-man faculty committee to hear the case, the administration formally drafted five charges against Davies. They were:
1. Receiving and using stolen property;
2. Accusing the administration and trustees of dishonesty;
3. Calling President Ernest L. Wilkinson a “maniac” and a “rat;”
4. Criticizing church president David O. McKay and disbelieving “certain” teachings of the church; and
5. General misconduct, disloyalty, and offensiveness to the standards of the university.
Officials also announced they would retain final authority in the case, regardless of the committee’s recommendations. Davies took issue with the administration’s position as both prosecutor and judge, then asked that his accusers be required to appear personally before the committee. He also requested that the hearing be open to all interested faculty and that the administration pay for the transportation of witnesses called in his behalf. Committee members agreed that testimony would be accepted only from persons who appeared before them during the hearings but rejected all other requests.61
[p. 207] Only days before the president’s committee was scheduled to open its hearings, Wilkinson assured the Board of Trustees that Davies would not be re-employed. Meanwhile, an unexpected complication arose when several undergraduates publicly declared that they had been recruited by administrators to form a “student spy ring” to monitor the lectures of faculty in the social sciences, one of whom was Davies. Fearful of the repercussions that a formal hearing into Davies’s case might bring, officials disbanded the investigating committee and offered to renew Davies’s teaching contract with an increase in salary. An elated economics faculty celebrated their victory, but Wilkinson warned Davies on 10 March that he would be expected to refrain from advocating “views at variance with the concepts of the restored gospel as interpreted by the presiding officers of the church.” An irrepressible Davies replied within the week, “I am willing to serve under the same conditions and limitations which apply to all faculty members, interpreting them to include the degree of academic freedom we have historically enjoyed.” More than a decade later, under President Jeffrey R. Holland, Davies was appointed chair of BYU’s managerial economics department.62
The 1966-67 Student “Spy Ring”
While illustrative of Wilkinson’s approach to faculty control, the Poll and Davies cases represent only two such instances involving the surveillance of faculty accused of espousing “liberal” beliefs. By 1966, Wilkinson had concluded that the most effective means of combating the “advocacy [of] concepts at variance with the view[s] of our prophet” was to encourage selected students to covertly monitor the political and economic sympathies of their teachers on and off campus. In mid-April 1966, Wilkinson summoned his comptroller and aide, Joseph T. Bentley, to inform him that he intended to deliver a forum address, “The Changing Nature of American Government from a Constitutional Republic to a Welfare State,” that would “rock the campus from one end to the other.” According to Bentley, Wilkinson asked him if he “knew of some reliable students who would advise [the administration] as to the comments of teachers” in response to this speech. Bentley suggested Stephen Hayes Russell, “a very competent and reliable student,” and several other undergraduates he believed could be trusted. Russell, an economics major, had previously received funding from the president’s office to attend a conservative economics symposium in New York, sponsored by the Foundation for Economic Education.63
Wilkinson’s intent, Bentley insisted in 1982, was to “subdue criticism of the brethren. . . . In some of these classes, sentiments were expressed against Elder Ezra Taft Benson. Wilkinson was loyal [p. 208] to the brethren.” According to Stephen Hayes Russell’s 1967 statement, he was summoned to Bentley’s office and informed that he had been “selected by the administration to assist in a confidential project.” Flattered, Russell eagerly agreed. According to Russell, Bentley warned that “President Wilkinson’s name must remain clear from the project,” and that “if I got caught at this, official university reaction would be that I was working on my own.” Then, with Russell present, Bentley “commenced writing a list of ‘liberal professors,'” inviting Russell to make any additions he “deemed proper.” The final list included political scientists Ray C. Hillam, Louis C. Midgley, Stewart L. Grow, Melvin P. Mabey, and Jesse R. Reeder; economists Richard B. Wirthlin and J. Kenneth Davies; and English professor Briant S. Jacobs. Many of the faculty listed had campaigned for Wilkinson’s opponent during the 1964 election. Bentley introduced Russell to his assistant, Lyman Durfee, who promised Russell whatever clerical assistance he needed. Russell recalled how “Brother Bentley praised me for my conservatism and expressed hope that I would use my abilities to realize my full potential as a Libertarian economist. That day in his office, I developed a deep respect and appreciation for a fine man.” Bentley, too, subsequently remembered the confidence that he and Wilkinson had in Russell. “We seized upon the opportunity to use this young man to set up the monitoring groups,” Bentley later acknowledged (authors’ interview).64
Immediately after his meeting with Bentley, Russell contacted a number of friends, many of whom he had met at local John Birch Society meetings. He assured them that “an important situation had arisen in which they could assist me in serving the administration.” The small group assembled that evening, 20 April 1966, in room 370 of the Wilkinson Center. While one of the students stood guard at the door, Russell read a prepared mission statement, repeated his instructions from Bentley on the need for complete secrecy, and asked those who were not sympathetic to leave. Of the eight faculty targeted, Ray C. Hillam, a graduate of American University (Washington, D.C.) who had joined the faculty in 1960, was reportedly “on the top of the [administration’s] list. . . . They wanted to know about him and they [were] going to get him,” Russell promised. When copies of the teaching schedules of the eight professors were distributed, only two or three of those present could say that they were enrolled in any of the targeted classes. Russell consequently asked “for volunteers to monitor the other classes for [the] three periods following the president’s speech or until the professors made a statement on the address to the class–whichever came first.” Eight students volunteered: Lyle Barnett, Eugene Bryce, Michael Call, Curt Conklin, Ronald Hankin, Ted Jacobs, Mark Skousen, and Lyle Updike. Russell instruc[p. 209]ted them to “bring their reports to [him]” the following week so that he could deliver them to the administration as soon as possible.65
As promised, Wilkinson presented his hard-hitting address the next morning. The nine undergraduates dutifully attended their assigned classes, asked leading questions, took careful notes, and promptly reported back to Russell, who typed a composite twelve-page report. At Bentley’s urging, Russell submitted his findings directly to Wilkinson. Russell said that he “read a few of the more explosive and derogatory remarks to [the president] and then handed him the report.” Wilkinson expressed his appreciation and Russell left. Privately, Wilkinson fumed in his journal over the professors’ remarks, observing that many of the school’s faculty “think much more of their political convictions than they do of following their prophets” (Wilkinson Journal, 29 April 1966). “Instead of being more lenient with communist and socialist ideas,” he would resolve less than two weeks later, “we have got to be much more firm” (Wilkinson Journal, 10 May 1966). Wilkinson handed Russell’s report to Vice-President Clyde Sandgren and instructed him to meet with the students individually to verify the accuracy of their allegations. Russell and other sympathetic students continued to monitor classes throughout the next ten months. Some students met personally with professors and, on at least one occasion, recorded a conversation without the knowledge of the faculty member involved. The list of “tainted” professors expanded to include Russell Horiuchi (geography), David Hart (political science), Gordon Wagner (economics), and social sciences dean John T. Bernhard. The students’ reports were channeled to Wilkinson through either Bentley or Sandgren, who were expected to verify the reports before forwarding them to the president’s office.66
In mid-July, one of Hillam’s students confided to him that Sandgren had asked him to confirm a number of allegations against Hillam made by Russell and James C. Vandygriff, a student registered in one of his classes. Hillam immediately contacted Sandgren to lodge a protest. Sandgren expressed surprise that Hillam had not been told he was under investigation but assured him that he was not “on trial.” Skeptical, Hillam contacted his department chair, Edwin Morrell, who registered a personal protest with Wilkinson over the way the investigation was being handled. According to Morrell, Wilkinson replied that he “should not object because surveillance [was] a common practice used by the FBI.” Wilkinson afterwards decided to “turn over these charges [against Hillam] to Vice-Presidents Crockett, [Ben E.] Lewis, and Sandgren and let them determine whether the charges are true and, if true, what [the] punishment should be.” In his defense, Hillam not only denied the allegations against him but strenuously protested the “motives and methods” of the students who had gathered the information against him. He later met privately with Wilkinson, who [p. 210] assured him that students had not been organized to “spy on” the faculty, confidently predicting that Hillam’s charge of improper administrative procedure would be put to rest during the vice-presidents’ hearing.67
After an initial conference with the three vice-presidents in mid-August, Hillam was asked if he could meet with them again in one month. He agreed and asked that his department chair, Ed Morrell, be allowed to attend. Sandgren initially consented but, when Wilkinson objected, begged Hillam not to press the issue. Hillam insisted, and the vice-presidents eventually agreed that Morrell could appear as a witness in Hillam’s behalf and mutely observe the proceedings but ruled that he would not be allowed to participate otherwise. Rumors that “the administration had used students to spy on members of the faculty” began circulating among both faculty and students. Though some administrators were embarrassed by the resulting “unrest,” Wilkinson, writing in his journal in early September, refused to “apologize” or “get in a very defensive position.” On 13 September, one of Russell’s colleagues, Ronald Hankin, inadvertently revealed to a neighbor of Louis Midgley that Midgley had been one of several professors under administrative scrutiny. Two days later, an associate of Hillam also overhead Hankin relate virtually the same story. Other faculty began piecing together past incidents that, at the time, had appeared inconsequential. On 16 September, the day after Hillam’s hearing opened, Wilkinson reassured his faculty, “I now hear that I am bugging phones and have instituted an elaborate spy system. This latest rumor is as false as the others. . . . But, in the spirit of candor with which I speak to you today, may I ask you to get your information from authentic sources rather than from those who couldn’t know.” When representatives from a Salt Lake City television station telephoned Hillam afterwards for an interview, Hillam refused to discuss the issue with the media.68
Official hearings finally commenced on 15 September. Hillam was confronted with a lengthy list of statements he had allegedly made several months earlier. He was charged with being pro-communist because he had reportedly endorsed the entrance of the People’s Republic of China into the United Nations, and with being disloyal to the university for having discussed the school’s reaccreditation problems with students. Hillam was charged with having said, “BYU is becoming an evangelical college and a center for indoctrination for conservatism,” and that “within one month, BYU’s graduate school accreditation [would] either be taken away or [be placed] on a three-year probation.” During the hearing, Hillam questioned Russell closely in an attempt to establish how he had assembled his information. Economics chair Richard Wirthlin was also allowed to question Russell, who denied any involvement in concerted surveillance activities. [p. 211] Towards the end of the hearing, however, an excited Louis Midgley unexpectedly stuck his head in the room and whispered, “I have [Hankin] and he will tell everything.” Puzzled, Sandgren asked what the interruption had been. Hillam announced that he would like to introduce a witness in his defense. He opened the door and introduced a buoyant Hankin. Sandgren suddenly became “very uneasy,” according to Russell’s account. Hankin explained his story of an “administration-organized spy ring,” and when Lewis asked, “Who is the administration?” Hankin answered that Sandgren would know more about it than he would since “Brother Sandgren” had personally contacted the students to confirm their reports. Embarrassed, Sandgren hedged, “Well, I only heard a rumor. That is why I called you in.” Sandgren then demanded that Russell account for “these accusations being made against the administration.” Obviously flustered, Russell evaded the question and asked instead that he be given three days to study the evidence and prepare a response. His request was granted.69
According to Russell’s 1967 statement, he “dashed right to President Wilkinson’s office and told him of Hankin’s expose.” Wilkinson looked at the young undergraduate and, “with an instructive tone of voice,” said, “You know of course this is the first I’ve heard of this group.” The president suggested that Russell contact Bentley for “advice on how to reply to the vice-presidents.” After Russell left, Wilkinson asked to see his three vice-presidents and was distressed to learn that both Lewis and Crockett believed Hankin’s story. He telephoned Bentley and suggested that Russell be used as the adminstration’s “scapegoat.” According to Russell, Bentley refused, pointing out that Russell “was a good and conscientious student and had only done what [he] had been asked to do.” Russell remembered that Bentley told him what had happened and confessed that he “was worried” about Wilkinson. “He’s involved and he’s scared.” The next morning Wilkinson recommended that Russell have an attorney draft his response to the vice-presidents. Bentley suggested that they approach H. Verlan Andersen, a politically conservative faculty member with legal experience. Bentley, Anderson, and Russell met together the next day in Bentley’s home to “work out [his] five-page reply.” In his statement, Russell “criticized the manner in which Brother Sandgren had conducted the hearing” but avoided direct comment on the existence of a student “spy ring.” He charged instead that Hillam’s evidence was “shaky,” based on the testimony of an unstable witness, Ronald Hankin.70
Meanwhile, Hillam met with a number of colleagues in his home for a “strategy session.” During the meeting, Sandgren phoned Hillam asking him to meet with him in his office. Sandgren wanted Hillam to write a memorandum expressing his appreciation that the hearing had been conducted fairly. “Like hell you’ll write a memo and get [p. 212] Sandgren off the hook,” one of Hillam’s colleagues protested when told of Sandgren’s request. Following their strategy meeting, the professors began conducting their own investigation. Hillam and Midgley tape recorded an interview with Hankin and gathered testimonies from other students. Richard Wirthlin went to Wilkinson four days later and accused Russell of “spying on teachers.” According to Wirthlin, Wilkinson “exploded” and demanded that he “give him all his evidence,” insisting that Hillam, not Russell, was the subject of the hearing and that the vice-presidents had no right to look into allegations of spying. Wilkinson then threatened to investigate Wirthlin by looking into charges that had accumulated against him (authors’ interview).71
Within the week, BYU economist Larry Wimmer enlisted the cooperation of Edwin Firmage, a former mission companion and grandson of the first counselor in the church’s First Presidency, Hugh B. Brown, to arrange a meeting for Hillam, Morrell, and Wirthlin with Presidents Brown and Tanner and Elder Harold B. Lee. Wimmer later explained that he initiated the conference, which ran counter to school protocol, because he believed Hillam “could not expect . . . a fair and impartial hearing before the vice-presidents” (Statement). “Elder Lee was concerned about the moral implications of the whole affair,” Wimmer remembered, who found Lee’s approach to be a “breath of fresh air.” After listening patiently to Hillam’s story, the church leaders, at Tanner’s suggestion, recommended that the professors keep accurate, duplicate records of their investigations. Less than one week later, Hillam left for Vietnam on a Fulbright scholarship. On 17 October, the three vice-presidents formally issued their findings, accusing Hillam of minor “indiscretions” and advising him to be more cautious in the future. Hillam’s counter charge, that he had been the object of an organized group of student “spies” acting under instructions from the administration, was not addressed in the report. Wilkinson found his vice-presidents’ report “pretty much of a whitewash” because “they advocate no disciplinary action of any kind, yet admit that [Hillam] is largely responsible because of his inflammatory statements in class.” Three days later, during a second university-wide faculty meeting, the president “reiterated” that he had “not knowingly” urged any students or others to report on faculty members. “I feel confident,” said Wilkinson, “that no members of the Administrative Council would do so.”72
The following week on 28 October, Ed Morrell met with the three vice-presidents to protest the deliberate omission of Russell’s activities from their report. Initially, the vice-presidents “suggested that Morrell not pursue the matter further” but, by 3 November, had amended their findings to include, for the first time, the admission that Russell had “organized a group of students to obtain reactions to President [p. 213] Wilkinson’s speech.” Wilkinson wrote Hillam the next day to assure him that he had not encouraged any student to “spy” on the faculty because such would have been an “improper administrative procedure.” Late the following month, Crockett mailed Hillam a teaching contract. Disappointed with the minimal salary increase, Hillam responded that he would wait until after the resolution of his charges against the administration before accepting the university’s offer. Others in the social sciences watched the struggle between Wilkinson and Hillam with growing dismay; faculty morale deteriorated. Richard Wirthlin, for example, decided to accept a position at the University of Arizona. During a tense December meeting with social sciences faculty, Wilkinson fended off a barrage of accusations calling into question his administrative competence on a number of issues. The defensive president concluded that without additional intervention, the campus would soon become a haven for “liberals” and asked Verlan Andersen and W. Cleon Skousen to draft a letter to the faculty from church president David O. McKay confirming in writing “what [McKay] had told me many times, that he did not want socialism evaluated on our campus” (Wilkinson Journal, 13-25 Dec. 1966).73
Five months later in May 1967, Wilkinson met with the ailing church president, phrasing the recent incident as a difficulty he had encountered in assuring that faculty “not advocate socialism or the welfare state.” Wilkinson convinced McKay to sign the letter his aids had drafted, which requested that faculty in history, sociology, political science, and economics “continuously teach [their] students the evils of socialism and the welfare state.” That June, Wilkinson read the letter to members of his Board of Trustees. “Freedom of speech at BYU,” he asserted to trustees, “should be consistent with revealed truth coming from revelation and the inspired word of God through His prophets. . . . This very freedom imposes certain . . . limitations of speech on teachers at BYU, in that they are not to advocate concepts at variance with the revealed truth coming from revelation and the inspired word of God.” At the conclusion of Wilkinson’s presentation, Elder Ezra Taft Benson moved that the board “go on record as wholeheartedly approving [the] letter as the policy of the Board of Trustees.” While some members, knowing McKay’s condition, questioned the letter’s authorship, Elder Marion G. Romney countered that the letter “could not have been drafted by a lawyer because it had the ring of the prophet all through it” (Board Minutes, 7 June 1967). McKay, who was in attendance, sat quietly throughout the board’s deliberations. Finally, all voted in favor of the proposal, except a suspicious Harold B. Lee, who abstained. When Wilkinson suggested that a clarifying statement be issued to explain the intent of the letter, the board ruled that the letter “should stand alone.” Wilkinson subsequently agreed to delete from the letter references to [p. 214] specific campus departments as well as explicit injunctions prohibiting the teaching of socialism. As eventually distributed (and later published in BYU’s official history), Wilkinson’s letter, bearing McKay’s signature, read, “I am aware that a university has the responsibility of acquainting its students with the theories and doctrines which are prevalent in various disciplines, but I hope that no one on the faculty of Brigham Young University will advocate positions which cannot be harmonized with the views of every prophet of the church.” Copies of the letter were sent to all faculty with their teaching contracts from 1968 to 1971.74
On 28 February 1967, Wilkinson learned that “some very rebellious students,” as he referred to them in his journal, specifically undergraduates Ronald Hankin, David Sisson, and Colleen Stone, had contacted area newspapers and television and radio stations, announcing their intention to publicly raise the “spy ring” incident during an ASBYU “Free Forum” in the Wilkinson Center. Alarmed, Wilkinson immediately met with the dean of students, Elliot Cameron, and the chief of BYU security, Swen Nielsen. The university had assembled a list of “very serious charges” against Hankin and Sisson, Wilkinson explained. Cameron and Nielsen would do well, he continued, to bring these students immediately in and “interrogate [them] so as to keep them occupied during the period they were going to make these false accusations.” Wilkinson discovered afterwards that neither Cameron nor Nielsen succeded in locating the three undergraduates before their scheduled public appearance and wondered whether he was “getting the proper support from the dean of students” (Wilkinson Journal, 28 Feb. 1967). Without implicating other students or faculty, Hankin reported to a large crowd gathered in the Memorial Lounge on 28 February that he had been approached by “someone who was supposed to represent an administrative official” to help in obtaining information on the “views” of certain BYU professors. Both Hankin and Stone were later interviewed on local television news programs.75
In the wake of Hankin’s confession, the university seemed to erupt. Campus officials hotly denied the charges, but AAUP members requested that the Board of Trustees formally investigate Hankin’s allegations. Disillusioned after nearly a week of official denials, Edwin Morrell threatened to resign his position as political science chair (Wilkinson Journal; Wilkinson to McKay). Crockett hurriedly sent Hillam a second teaching contract, explaining that the university had assembled its final budget and was now able to offer him a 10 percent salary increase, comparable with that of other faculty of his rank. Less than two weeks after Hankin’s public expose’, Wilkinson issued a formal, public statement on 11 March in which he acknowledged “the organized surveillance of faculty by students,” accepted responsibility as president of the institution where the incident had occured, and [p. 215] regretted any “misunderstanding and uneasiness which [had] been engendered.” Tellingly, however, Wilkinson did not detail the extent of his and other administrators’ personal involvement. The next month, Hankin and Sisson were dismissed from school after administrators uncovered evidence of a number of burglaries each had previously committed. Accusations surfaced that the two “whistle-blowers” were being punished, but administrators insisted that their public disclosures regarding the spy incident were unrelated to their expulsion.76
As a result of the publicity given Hankin’s accusations, Stephen Russell reported hearing his name “on every front . . . mentioned with derision. I felt the burden of the whole affair had been carried long enough,” he soon concluded. Less than one week later, Russell gave “a detailed confession of the affair” to his bishop, and also spent nearly “three tearful hours” with his faculty advisor, Larry Wimmer, who asked Russell to repeat his confession to President Tanner and Elder Lee. At their request, Wilkinson prepared a lengthy statement of the controversy for the Board of Trustees, admitting to having asked Bentley to recruit Russell and other students because
the administration . . . has a right to know what teachers are teaching at BYU. . . . I recognize that reports as to what a teacher [says] are sometimes inaccurate, and that students sometimes obtain wrong impressions and draw wrong conclusions. . . . But, the question of what was said, difficult though it is to find out, is something that has to be determined by the administration. . . . Students and church officials should, therefore, be encouraged to report what they consider to be the advocacy of improper teachings.77
Hillam returned to BYU and resumed his teaching position in late September 1967. In Vietnam, he had been awarded a Medal of Honor by the South Vietnamese Army and a Civilian Patriotic Service award by the United States military. In a memo to Robert K. Thomas, however, Wilkinson continued to “wonder if I did right in persuading Hillam to come back by increasing his salary.” Alienated from his social sciences faculty, whom he criticized as having become “entirely secular,” Wilkinson wrote in his journal, “We must try to find someone for a dean next year, who will put the spiritual approach above everything else.” Dean Bernhard, one of Wilkinson’s closest advisors and his campaign manager in 1964, had earlier resigned to accept the presidency of Western Illinois University. At the urging of Elder Benson, Wilkinson entertained the possibility of asking either Glenn Pearson or W. Cleon Skousen, both politically conservative members of the College of Religious Instruction, to fill the vacancy left by Bernhard’s departure. Wilkinson had come to trust his religion teachers [p. 216] more than the faculty of the College of Social Sciences. “They are as loyal and faithful and helpful as they can be,” he observed in his journal. “I hope you will see to it that the College of Religious Instruction, as a part of the gospel teachings, continues to decry the evils not only of communism but also of socialism,” he told religion administrators in February 1968. “It is . . . just as appropriate to teach this in the College of Religious Instruction as it is in the Department of Political Science, and with more authority.”78
Some five months after his return, Hillam submitted to Vice-Presidents Crockett, Lewis, and Sandgren a list of objections to their report. Accompanied by his department chair and college dean, Hillam met with the vice-presidents in March 1968; Joseph Bentley and Larry Wimmer also presented evidence to the vice-presidents’ committee. Wilkinson met privately with Hillam at the end of the month, admitted that “things got out of hand,” and, according to Hillam, apologized that students had monitored classes in which they had not been officially enrolled. In mid-May, the three vice-presidents amended their report to include a condemnation of Wilkinson for having withheld important information from them and for having organized a group of students to obtain reactions to his April 1966 speech. They also apologized for not having arrived at this conclusion earlier. Finally, they noted that Hillam was under consideration for the chairship of the Department of Political Science and recommended his appointment as a show of official administrative support. On the basis of their endorsement, this action was taken.79
Though largely pleased with this revised report, Hillam pushed for “a further explanation” of the administration’s involvement in directing student spies. He asked that the activities of Bentley, Sandgren, Wilkinson, and Russell be, at least, generally outlined. Several drafts eventually passed between Hillam and Sandgren. When finally completed on 15 May 1969, more than three years after Wilkinson first called Bentley into his office, the vice-presidents’ report vindicated Hillam of all charges and detailed the complicitous participation of Wilkinson, Bentley, Sandgren, and Russell. By this time, however, at least four social sciences faculty had left BYU employ–Richard Poll, John Bernhard, Richard Wirthlin, and David Hart–in part, because of the administration’s handling of the Hillam case. Of those targeted faculty who remained, two, besides J. Kenneth Davies and Ray Hillam, were later appointed department chairs: Larry Wimmer, over economics, and Russell Horiuchi, over geography. With Wimmer’s help, Stephen Russell was later admitted to graduate school at Ohio State University. Following graduation, he taught at the Air Force Academy, Brigham Young University, Arizona State University, and the National War College in Washington, D.C.80
[p. 217] Chastened from all sides, Wilkinson pursued his anti-socialist crusade less ardently over the next few years until his resignation in 1971. Still, rumors of student spies continued to plague his administration, and Wilkinson still pressed associates to “keep in close touch” with “trouble making” faculty, suggesting in 1971 that Louis Midgley’s promotion to full professor be postponed “another year” to “see if he doesn’t mellow a little more.” Only one year before his death in April 1978, Wilkinson unflinchingly insisted that “students were never organized by the administration to spy.”81
The Report of the 1966 Accreditation Committee
Though generally unrelated to the covert surveillance of BYU faculty, the visit of the Accreditation Committee of the Northwest Association of Secondary and Higher Schools in April 1966 underscored the extent of Wilkinson’s partisanship and Hillam’s warnings about the school’s precarious status with regard to reaccreditation. The committee’s three-day fact finding tour confirmed for most of the thirteen visitors the suspicion that BYU was primarily an “evangelical school.” At the conclusion of their stay, committee chair Laurence Gale voiced several of his group’s more pressing criticisms during an impromptu meeting with President Wilkinson and Vice-President Crockett. “We are a body of very impressed, yet deeply disturbed, men,” Gale read from a prepared statement, “who are struggling with our professional consciences pertaining to a recommendation of accreditation to the higher commission for any institution in which (1) there is limited academic freedom; (2) there is no provision for tenure; (3) the faculty has little actual voice in the formation of academic policies; (4) a search for truth into all areas of inquiry is limited; [and] (5) the federal government is suspect.”82
Specifically, the committee questioned the virtual exclusion of non-Mormons from the faculty; inequitable salaries; the absence of legal tenure; heavy workloads; opposition to federal aid; low faculty morale because of limited involvement in university governance; the basing of faculty promotions on a “belief in church teachings;” and the “mixing of academics, religion, and politics.” Committee members seriously questioned whether “the religious concepts of the church and the strong administrative control exercised by the Board of Trustees and the president” could permit the degree of freedom “necessary for a great graduate school.” They concluded that their recommendation to the Higher Commission would be to accredit BYU for an additional three years, instead of the usual five, at which time they would require a status report of BYU’s progress towards satisfying their recommendations. “Most of their recommendations,” Wilkinson [p. 218] afterwards contended in his journal, “[are] clearly outside the proper scope of the functions of the Accreditation Committee. . . . We will not even attempt to satisfy them.” When Wilkinson later announced the committee’s findings to his Board of Trustees, he stressed that committee members had “apparently been in touch with former members of the BYU faculty” and had met with “members of the BYU chapter of the American Association of University Professors and other dissident members . . . in a closed session.”83
Both publicly and privately, BYU officials tried to minimize the impact of the committee’s report. Wilkinson insisted to his trustees that the committee’s comments “were not based on fact” and that “there was no question of [re]accreditation.” Vice-President Crockett told a Daily Universe reporter that “Brigham Young University has been fully accredited . . . for many years and will continue to be so accredited. [We were] in no sense placed in jeopardy by the recent visit of the inspection team.” When California educator and nationally syndicated newspaper columnist Max Rafferty hinted that BYU might not be fully reaccredited, school administrators claimed that Rafferty’s prediction was “highly exaggerated.”84
The visitation committee’s final report, submitted to BYU in mid-August, reiterated in considerable detail its earlier generalization that BYU was “an institution of tremendous strengths and serious weaknesses.” Of the twelve academic areas evaluated, John R. Howard’s review of the College of Social Sciences was by far the most severe. Howard insisted that “unrestricted freedom of inquiry . . . does not exist” at BYU. He found that faculty were officially discouraged from objectively teaching price support and control policies, Keynesian economics, socialism, communism, and “current social questions and areas of church history;” that guest speakers tended to emphasize only one side of current social, political, and economic questions; that Wilkinson had publicly stated his intent to make BYU “the institutional spokesman for the free enterprise philosophy in the United States;” and that, as a result, conservative applicants for faculty positions were preferred over political moderates. Incensed by Howard’s criticisms, Wilkinson drafted a tersely worded, thirty-three-page refutation and announced his intention to lodge a formal protest when the Higher Commission met in November. Ironically, academic vice-president Crockett had only recently been named chair of the Higher Commission.85
Wilkinson described his appearance before the commission on 27 November as “not an easy meeting” and “probably the first time there was ever a direct challenge to what an accreditation committee had done.” When commission members delayed their final decision, Wilkinson feared that they would “regroup their forces and try to place some embarrassing restrictions on our accreditation” (Wilkinson [p. 219] Journal, 28 Nov. 1966). However, when the commission reconvened, it announced that it was reaccrediting BYU “for a period of five years, subject to a progress report in [two years] pertaining to institutional administration, academic freedom, and graduate programs.” “Anything less than this,” Wilkinson afterwards asserted in his journal, “would have been [the result of] disloyal members of our faculty who gave erroneous information to some members of the committee, who in turn did not investigate fully the facts.” School officials quickly publicized news of the commission’s decision but decided not to release the committee’s April report because of its “many mistakes of fact” (Wilkinson to Hartvigsen; Faculty Minutes). Nor did they include in their releases mention of the commission’s required two-year progress report. Later, in 1977, Wilkinson insisted that because the committee’s final report had failed to address his criticisms, “it was never an official report.” Vice-President Robert Thomas echoed that the report “was a personal vendetta between Wilkinson and some members of the visitation committee and that, consequently, the report was biased. Many members of the committee came from schools less distinguished than BYU.” But when a second accreditation committee visited the university ten years later, it praised administrators for having implemented many of the 1966 report’s recommendations.86
The Re-emergence of an Ultra-conservative Emphasis
The partisan intrigues that had come to characterize Ernest Wilkinson’s twenty-year reign as BYU president proved difficult to harness following his resignation. Both Harold B. Lee, appointed church president in 1972, and Wilkinson’s moderate successor, Dallin H. Oaks, struggled during the early 1970s to distance the church and the university from political machinations. At his installation as BYU president, Oaks declared, “Brigham Young University has no political objectives, only intellectual and spiritual ones. . . . Our attitude toward matters purely political should be that . . . ‘error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.'” Oaks subsequently formulated a school policy prohibiting deans, directors, and other administrators from taking an active part in partisan politics. The following year, Harold B. Lee’s First Presidency cautioned Mormons to avoid “activities which leave the church open to charges of partisan bias.”87
Perhaps the first to experience BYU’s push for partisan neutrality was religion professor and anti-communist crusader W. Cleon Skousen. In December 1966, after touring as a popular anti-communist lecturer, Skousen had contacted Wilkinson about becoming a member of the College of Religious Instruction. (Skousen had earlier served as director of BYU’s Alumni Association.) Wilkinson welcomed the [p. 220] opportunity to hire a conservative colleague and assigned Skousen to teach Old Testament. When news of the appointment reached other religious instruction faculty, several protested the action as “academically indefensible.” Skousen’s hiring, Richard L. Anderson wrote in April 1967, “has done more to hurt the morale of the men in the College of [Religious Instruction] who have the Ph.D. degree than anything that I can remember. I and they have wasted many years in language and history if Skousen now steps into this college on the basis of his superficial writing. Popularity is not the same thing as quality.” Characteristically, however, Wilkinson refused to reconsider his decision. Backed by sympathetic administrators, Skousen tackled his teaching duties with much the same enthusiasm that had marked his political activism. He was soon admonishing his students to “speak out against those who seek to diminish or destroy liberty under law [and] the Judaic-Christian culture of this land,” and concluded from the scriptures that students were under a divine obligation to “serve in the armed forces to protect the liberties of mankind and defend the innocent from predatory attack” (attached to Wilkinson to Ludlow).88
In mid-1972, Skousen founded the Freemen Institute, a quasi-educational organization “to promote the restoration of the Constitution.” Shortly thereafter he began confiding to friends that he had been “authorized” to offer a special BYU religion course on “Priesthood and Righteous Government.” Officially, his class would be listed simply as “Gospel Principles and Practices: A consideration of the basic principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ in the light of the practical needs and problems of today’s youth.” Skousen had decided not to include any mention of politics in the class catalog in order to “avoid a ‘hassle’ with the Curriculum Council,” but nonetheless hoped to enroll a group of not more than forty “‘hardcore’ conservatives who were already aware of the communist conspiracy for world domination and wanted to know what to do about it.” When told of Skousen’s political intentions, Oaks informed the First Presidency, “Cleon Skousen will not be permittted to teach any course under the heading of ‘Gospel Principles and Practices,’ this winter or any other time. . . . I have seen enough evidence to indicate that Skousen ought not to be allowed that latitude.” President Lee concurred: “Professors must decide whether or not they are going to be teachers . . . or whether they want to go off on a tangent and represent themselves.”89
As a result of separate conferences with both Oaks and Lee in 1973, Skousen promised to “eliminate all references to church doctrine and church leaders” from his Freemen seminars. He also agreed not to speak to his BYU classes on the communist conspiracy. Less than two years after President Lee’s death in late 1973, however, Skousen again began publicizing his conservative philosophy and his Freemen Institute in the classroom. President Lee’s successor, Spencer W. Kimball, [p. 221] informed Skousen that he “and others associated with the Freemen Institute [should] discontinue any activities [including “classroom and lecture activities in behalf of Brigham Young University”] which reasonably could be interpreted as giving church sanction to the Freemen Institute” (First Presidency to Skousen). Skousen, however, interpreted the First Presidency’s reprimand as permission “to continue . . . offering seminars which would be free of the `Freemen Institute’ title.” Consequently, Freemen philosophy continued to surface in Skousen’s religion lectures throughout the next two years until his retirement in 1978.90
By the mid-1970s, relations between the politically moderate Oaks and several of the more conservative members of his Board of Trustees had become strained. The president’s chief critic, Ezra Taft Benson, had been named president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in late 1973 when Spencer W. Kimball became church president. Despite the added pressures of his weighty calling, Benson remained uncompromising in his political posture. During the mid-1960s, he had already developed a wide reputation for his conservatism by vigorously denouncing the civil rights movement, U.S. Supreme Court decisions, and indecisive federal officials, whom he castigated as dupes of Soviet communism. “Socialism, communism’s twin sister, has become America’s dominant political philsophy,” he asserted. Benson entertained the possibility of running for U.S. president and was offered a spot as running mate to third party presidential contender George Wallace in 1968. He subsequently maintained that a “liberal Mormon” could not be a “good Mormon if he [were] living the gospel and understood it.” He thus opposed the appointment of Neal A. Maxwell as church commissioner of education in 1970 because, in part, Maxwell “leaned too much in the direction of self-styled liberals” (in Cook). Following Wilkinson’s resignation, Benson had concluded that conservative arguments would probably not be receiving the support from BYU faculty that they deserved. Tellingly, his only criticism of Wilkinson was that he “could have given more attention to the social sciences, and to the philosophy of the men who were hired as leaders in those departments” (Interview). During Oaks’s tenure, Benson not only condemned the basic economics textbook used in undergraduate classes as Keynesian propaganda, but suggested that the required course in American history be restructured to “teach patriotism, loyalty to the Constitution, and the free enterprise system.” In late April 1976, he grilled Oaks to discover if he had faculty who both understood and defended “the idea [that] we cannot be free if the government has the power to redistribute the wealth;” that “the free market is the most efficient producer and distributor of wealth;” and that “the [church’s] United Order was a free market system and was the farthest removed from socialism of any economic system. . . . Is BYU as [p. 222] friendly to solid conservative constitutionalists,” Benson asked, “as to those whose departure from political and religious orthodoxy is far greater and in a more dangerous direction?” (in Oaks to Bateman and Hickman).91
Within the week following his conference with Benson, Oaks met with a group of university administrators to discuss what he termed “BYU’s tenuous position in the silent contest with extremists of the right wing.” Oaks pleaded, “We need to set our house in order on matters where the extremists would receive support from moderate conservatives so that extremists could not level criticisms that would command support from anyone else.” In March the next year, when accusations were forwarded that the school’s political science and history departments favored liberal appointees, Oaks asked academic vice-president Robert Thomas “to rate each faculty member on a political scale from far left liberal (assigned a value of 1) to far right conservative (assigned a value of 9).” Oaks then reported to Gordon B. Hinckley, chair of the executive committee of the Board of Trustees, “The average rating for the fifteen full-time members of the political science faculty was 4.9. The individual ratings varied from 3 to 8. The average for the history department was on the conservative side of the line, 5.8. There the ratings varied from 3 to 9. . . . The middle-of-the-road average alignment of our faculty in these departments,” Oaks explained, “is in sharp contrast to the situation that would prevail in any other major university of which I am aware.”92
Only two weeks earlier, however, the leader of Utah’s Communist party and a BYU alumnus, Wayne Holley, had been invited to address several political science classes. Oaks, who had not been warned of the appearance, was deeply chagrined. Martin B. Hickman, dean of the College of Social Sciences, explained to Vice-President Thomas: “This was an opportunity for students to hear the views of one who claims to be a communist within a context where those views could be challenged and critically examined under the guidance of responsible faculty members.” Fearing that the incident could cost the university considerable ground among certain trustees, Oaks assured Elder Hinckley that he believed it was “clearly outside the bounds of reasonable judgment to invite an avowed communist to speak on the Brigham Young University campus for reasons so obvious to me and all of us that there is no reason to detail them here. Our teachers should accept the responsibility of characterizing the philosophy of that group, without giving a forum to its advocates.” Less than three weeks later, President Benson appeared before BYU students and faculty and publicly castigated “any BYU instructor [who] grants a forum to an avowed communist for the purpose of teaching communism on this campus. It may be done on other campuses in the United States, but it will not be done here.”93
[p. 223] Prompted in part by this experience, but also wanting to discuss related matters with those faculty most affected, Oaks called a special meeting of the nearly forty members of the history and political science departments in early April 1977. He confided to the group that “a significant number” of trustees had raised “serious questions” about their departments. One trustee had even insisted that he “would not allow his children to study political science at BYU.” Oaks believed that the invitation to Wayne Holley, however well-intentioned, represented a serious tactical error in setting a precedent that could be used by ultra-conservatives. While church authorities “know we have testimonies,” he continued, “they question our judgment and sensitivity. . . . We must not have anything done at BYU or said publicly by BYU teachers and administrators that can be misinterpreted. . . . It doesn’t matter that it couldn’t reasonably be so used, or that it was distorted. We must not give occasion for retaliation or give ammunition to our enemies.”94
Only a few weeks later in May, Oaks was dismayed to learn that President Benson had arranged for ranking General Authorities to attend a formal briefing on economic education (Pope to Oaks). That August, Benson criticized four out of five recommendations for honorary degrees Oaks submitted to the Board of Trustees. Benson then prevailed upon school administrators to invite anti-Equal Rights Amendment crusader Phyllis Schlafly to address students, despite her having been rejected by the Speakers Committee because of her “extreme position” (DU, 9 April 1980). When one member of the Board of Trustees subsequently began soliciting reports on the alleged “liberal teachings” of BYU faculty in anticipation of a possible “purging” of the College of Social Sciences, Oaks was outraged (Holland to Oaks). Faced with prospects similar to those that engulfed the university in 1967, President Spencer Kimball moved to quell the controversy by warning board members directly:
We understand that a member, or members, of the board directly, or through others, have sought evidence about alleged statements made by faculty members in courses taught on the BYU campus and have stated or implied that such evidence is to be used by a church official in a so-called “hearing.” . . . Since these reports, if correct, reveal a departure from the approved procedures that govern the university, it is felt that the Board of Trustees should . . . affirmatively disapprove any kind of surveillance of BYU employees with respect to the nature of their performance of university duties other than investigations conducted by or requested through the president of the university in accordance with board policy.95
Still, the First Presidency’s stance failed to dampen some trustees’ dissatisfaction with university policies. The October 1979 appearance [p. 224] on campus of Soviet chief justice Lev Nickolayevich Smirnov was followed, for example, by a vigorous protest from President Benson. Ironically, the request to sponsor Smirnov’s visit had been extended by U.S. chief justice Warren Burger and had been approved by the Board of Trustees. “It is well for us to keep in mind that practically every visitor to the United States from communist Russia has an assignment of spying also,” Benson warned Oaks. “They are also our enemies. . . . We must be constantly on the alert to reduce to the minimum the constant efforts to weaken and destory us as a nation by these godless leaders dedicated to our destruction. The communists have no place on the campus of BYU. I thought we had determined that years ago.” In response, Oaks wrote, “I can see the disadvantages of the Soviet chief justice’s visit, but also the advantages (including the cost of our refusing to receive him when the request came from the chief justice of the United States), and my judgment was that in all the circumstances it was best to have him. His appearance was also, of course, ratified by the Board of Trustees in advance of the date.” But school officials later cancelled the ASBYU-scheduled appearance of Vladimir Pozner, a news commentator for Radio Moscow, fearing the reaction of board members to a second visit to campus by a possible Soviet operative. In a partial attempt to disarm their conservative critics, members of BYU’s College of Social Sciences published a 1979 collection of essays defending the divinely inspired nature of the U.S. Constitution and free market economics.96
In no other area was President Benson’s impact on the university more keenly experienced during Oaks’s administration than in his lobbying for the employment of conservative political scientist Richard Vetterli. As a graduate student at the University of California at Los Angeles in the early 1960s, Vetterli had undertaken a study of Mormon political history, drawing heavily on Richard Poll’s 1939 master’s thesis (Poll to Hinderaker; Wilkinson Journal, 21 Dec. 1962). He soon thereafter arranged for the publication of his completed thesis which he titled Mormonism, Americanism, and Politics. The book’s conservative polemic encountered a harsh reception in professional reviews (see Lyon and Ellsworth). But Ernest Wilkinson, a staunch supporter of Vetterli’s brand of conservatism, was so encouraged by Vetterli’s writing that he promised him a position on the political science faculty. Having resigned before Vetterli completed his Ph.D. studies at the University of California at Riverside, Wilkinson pressed Oaks and academic vice-president Thomas to fulfill his verbal agreement with Vetterli. But by late 1975, after four vacancies in the political science department had been filled by other candidates, Wilkinson directed his pleas at a more sympathetic Ezra Taft Benson.97
When a fifth vacancy opened in the department in 1977, Benson launched a concerted behind-the-scenes campaign to secure Vetterli’s [p. 225] appointment. Oaks candidly admitted to Elder Gordon Hinckley, “I am dubious that Vetterli has the qualifications to carry [the] banner in a way that would satisfy the expectations we would have of a scholar in that [department].” The position eventually went to a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara. In an effort to soften Benson’s criticisms, Oaks agreed to hire Vetterli as a visiting lecturer during the summer. Still, Benson pushed. “We made a serious mistake by not adding Dr. Vetterli to the faculty at BYU,” he wrote. “I hope you still have this possibility in mind.” Two years later, in March 1979, when a sixth vacancy opened, Benson again importuned: “You no doubt [sense] my very deep feelings regarding the type of instruction we need in order to prepare the ‘rising generation,’ as the Book of Mormon calls them, for the crucial days ahead. My only desire is to be helpful to assist in bringing this about. In my judgment, our weakest spot in our instructional program at BYU is in our social sciences, which I have had occasion to study in some detail.” Oaks responded this time to church president Spencer Kimball, “Richard Vetterli is not our choice for the position. Our current disposition is to leave the vacancy open for another year… while we seek a solution of the very obvious problem posed by the differences of opinion about this vacancy.”98
However, within three months, the question of Vetterli’s employment was officially resolved at a special meeting of the Board of Trustees, where the executive committee, “in view of all the circumstances involved in this special case, recommended that Richard Vetterli be hired by BYU.” An elated Benson “spoke in favor of the appointment, indicating that he had known Brother Vetterli for approximately twenty-five years and that he knew of no man at BYU whose philosophy concerning the church, politics, and economics more closely resembled his own views on these matters.” A defeated Oaks “indicated that he should be directed by the board to hire Brother Vetterli if that were the board’s decision.” The Board of Trustees unanimously instructed Oaks “to hire Brother Vetterli,” who, they promised, would be “subject to usual university policies and observe regular lines of authority and communication.”99
Before the end of the next academic year, Oaks was replaced as president by former BYU religion dean Jeffrey R. Holland. Although the specifics of the unexpected administrative change were never completely aired, the four-year stand-off between Oaks and Benson over Richard Vetterli was cited in the press as a major contributing factor (Utah Holiday). For his part, Benson remained a vocal advocate of conservative politics. In 1980, he publicly defended his right to speak out on political issues, asserting, “Some so-called experts of political science want the prophet to keep still on politics. . . . [But] those who [p. 226] would remove prophets from politics would take God out of government.” Meanwhile, renewed charges that the church “fosters a Republican partisan bias” began to mount (see Sunstone Review, Nov./Dec. 1981, July 1982). By the 1980s, according to studies based on political affiliation and voting characteristics, Utah, with 70 percent of the population Mormon, had become “the most Republican state in the union.” Significantly, the most active and orthodox Mormons tended to be the most devoutly Republican. In April 1984, the composition of the Board of Trustees shifted to the center of the political spectrum when Dallin Oaks was called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, a balance in number if not in seniority. Still, nagging questions remained about the continuing influence of partisan politics on a campus where conservatism sometimes assumes an importance akin to religion.100
1. Young, address, 28 July 1847, in C. Edward Jacob, ed., The Record of Norton Jacob (Salt Lake City, 1949); Leonard J. Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom (Lincoln: Univeristy of Nebraska Press, 1966), p. 329, see also 353-412; Young, in JD 10:230, 248; Cannon, in Conference Reports, April 1898, p. 86; Richard D. Poll, et al., Utah’s History (Provo, Utah: BYU Press, 1978), pp. 248, 388-91; Leonard J. Arrington, Feramorz Y. Fox, and Dean L. May, Building the City of God: Community and Cooperation Among the Mormons (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1976), pp. 311-35, 359-64; Dean L. May, “Towards a Dependent Commonwealth,” in Poll, Utah’s History, pp. 217-42; Armand L. Mauss, “The Angel and the Beehive,” BYU Today, Aug. 1983; D. Michael Quinn, “The Mormon Church and the Spanish-American War: An End to Selective Pacificism,” Pacific Historical Review, Aug. 1974, pp. 342-66; Ronald W. Walker, “Sheaves, Bucklers, and the State: Mormon Leaders Respond to the Dilemmas of War,” Sunstone, July/Aug. 1982, pp. 43-5; and D. Michael Quinn, “Conscientious Objectors or Christian Soldiers? The Latter-day Position on Militarism,” Sunstone, March 1985, pp. 14-23. During the latter third of the nineteenth century, Mormons typically favored the Democratic party over the Republican party. On one occasion, Brigham Young even referred to U.S. president Abraham Lincoln as a “cursed scoundrel” and longed for the day when such “wicked rulers” would be “wiped out” (Scott G. Kenney, ed., Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 9 vols. [Midvale, Utah: Signature Books, 1984], 5:605-06).
2. Walker, “Sheaves, Bucklers,” p. 49; editoral, WB, 4 April 1917; editorial, WB, 9 May 1917; “Senator Smoot Speaks,” WB, 21 Nov. 1917; Brimhall to Frank Warren Smith, 15 Feb. 1918, Brimhall Papers; “Doctrine of the Devil,” WB, 24 April 1918; Banyan, 1917, p. 14; “Liberty Loan Subscription Reaches $1,600,” WB, 31 Oct. 1917; “Candy Tabooed,” WB, 7 Nov. 1917; “What About that Candy Pledge?” WB, 14 Nov. 1917; “Beware of Spies,” WB, 20 March 1918.
3. Calvin B. Lee, The Campus Scene, 1900-70 (New York: David McKay, Inc., 1970), pp. 20-22; George H. Brimhall, “BYU and Its Relation to the Great World War,” p. 1, BYUA; Brimhall to Joseph F. Smith, 2 April 1917, Brimhall Papers. For BYU’s SATC program, see Brimhall to Major Moore, 17 Sept. 1918, Brimhall Papers; E. H. Holt to Alfred Osmond, 29 Aug. 1918, Brimhall Papers; “SATC Report of Officers,” pp. 16-17, UA 110; Brimhall to James F. Shirley, 31 Aug. 1918, Brimhall Papers; and Church Board of Education Minutes, 28 Aug., 16 Oct. 1918. First Presidency to Brimhall, 16 Sept. 1918, Brimhall Papers. The Mechanic Arts Building was renamed the Brimhall Building during the administration of BYU president Franklin S. Harris.
4. See, for example, B. H. Roberts, in Conference Reports, Oct. 1916, p. 143. “College Students Adopt Resolutions,” WB, 15 Oct. 1919; “Smoot Responds to Resolution,” WB, 5 Nov. 1919. Before mailing his reply to the students, Smoot read a draft to a number of senators (Smoot Journal, 24 Oct. 1919, Smoot Papers, Archives and Manuscripts, BYU). For student quips at Smoot’s expense, see WB, 12, 19, 26 Nov. 1919. Brimhall to Smoot, 11 Dec. 1919, Brimhall Papers; Smoot to Brimhall, 29 Jan. 1920, Brimhall Papers; Smoot to Nels Anderson, 29 Jan. 1920, Brimhall Papers.
5. Faculty to Smoot, 30 Oct. 1919, BYUA; Brimhall to Smoot, 7 Nov. 1919, Brimhall Papers; Smoot Journal, 13 Nov. 1919; Smoot to Brimhall, 12 Nov. 1919, Brimhall Papers. See also Smoot Journal, 13 Nov. 1919. Smoot to Brimhall, 17 Nov. 1919, Brimhall Papers; Brimhall to Smoot, 20 Nov. 1919, Brimhall Papers; Smoot to Brimhall, 28 Nov. 1919, Brimhall Papers; Smoot Journal, 29 Feb. 1920. For church responses to the League of Nations controversy, see James B. Allen, “Personal Faith and Public Policy: Some Timely Observations on the League of Nations Controversy in Utah,” BYU Studies, Autumn 1973, pp. 77-98. For a national perspective, see Thomas A. Bailey, Woodrow Wilson and the Great Betrayal (New York: Macmillan Company, 1945).
6. For national anti-militarism, see “Anti-Militarists,” Time, 18 May 1925 (cf. “ROTC Trouble,” Time, 6 April 1936); “War on Campuses,” Time, 3 June 1940; and “Pacifists–39%,” Time, 5 June 1933; “No Politics Please,” YN, 3 Nov. 1926; Walker, “Sheaves, Bucklers,” p. 51; “Forceful Denunciation of War in Wednesday Address,” YN, 26 Jan. 1933; “Military Bunkum,” YN, 11 May 1927 (cf. Glenn Dickson and Don B. Cluff to Editor, YN, 18 May 1927); “Military Bunkum Continued,” YN, 25 May 1927; “Roselli Defends Mussolini as One Who Tyrannizes to Save,” YN, 11 March 1932; “World Nearer to Warfare Than During 1913–Loper,” YN, 23 April 1937; “Sez Vich,” YN, 24 May 1940; “Information by Osmosis,” YN, 30 May 1941.
7. “Talk and Action,” Time, 24 June 1940; survey results in Stanford Gwilliam to Elbert D. Thomas, 4 June 1941, in ASBYU Student Body History/Correspondence, 1940-41, BYUA; Harris, in YN, 18 Dec. 1941; “Osmosis,” YN, 12 Dec. 1941; “Off the Record,” YN, 12 Dec. 1941; Improvement Era, May 1944, p. 274; Harold B. Lee and Mark E. Petersen to the First Presidency, 30 Sept. 1947, George Albert Smith Papers, Archives and Manuscripts, University of Utah; Grant to J. Parley White, 14 April 1942, Grant Papers, Church Archives; Grant to Tom Judd, 7 Oct. 1942, Grant Papers; Grant to Hugo B. Anderson, 18 Nov. 1942, Grant Papers; First Presidency to the World, 6 April 1942, in MFP 6:157; Walker, “Sheaves, Bucklers,” p. 51.
8. “Review of the Year’s Surprise Production,” YN, 1 May 1942. Negative reponses include letters to the editor, YN, 8 May 1942. For the Y News‘s support of the military, see the 13 Feb., 6, 13 March, and 1 May 1942 issues. Lee, Campus Scene, p. 75; “Army Calls Y Reserves to Active Duty,” YN, 25 March 1943; “Take It or Leave It,” YN, 16 Dec. 1943; Harris, in Wartime Messenger, April 1942, P. 3, BYUA.
Relations between most of BYU’s civilian students and the uniformed non-Mormon cadets were initially strained. “We have 35 Navy Flight cadets on the campus who don’t think the Y is very grand and who don’t think people of Provo are very friendly,” reported the Y News. “In fact, they don’t like us. But don’t be angry at them. It is our fault entirely. We haven’t gone out of our way to make them feel welcome. We haven’t spoken to them or made them feel at home. They’ve been completely alone. What has happened to our proud title of ‘The Friendly School?'” (“By Jove,” YN, 11 March 1943). The following year when the school’s 250 army cadets were ordered to leave for training in Oregon, some students wondered what kind of memories would remain with the cadets: “the lamentable lack of respectable night life in Provo[?]” (“BYU Bids Farewell to ASTP Cadets,” YN, 21 March 1944; “Goodbye Privates,” YN 21 March 1943). But as one departing recruit replied, “A lot of us are leaving girl friends behind; some are leaving wives” (“Departed Cadet Reviews Y Life from Beginning,” YN, 21 March 1944). The most telling response came from cadets Bill Smith and Dave Stephens in the 21 March 1944 Y News column “Straight from the Grave.” The two soldiers confessed that they would always remember the Utahna dance hall in downtown Provo, “the most misunderstood place in town,” and “the top three rows in the Paramount [theater] balcony.” “How can we forget the ‘keep your distance’ policy of the [Joseph] Smith building dances,” they continued, “[and] the casino in Room 70 at Allen Hall? . . . S’long,” they closed, “and think about us once in a while; we’ll never forget.” (“Straight from the Grave” appeared periodically throughout the winter semester.)
9. “BYU Men at War,” YN, 1 June 1944; BYU 2:777-80. For G.I. benefits nationally, see “Beginning of the End,” Time, 30 July 1951 (cf. Lee, Campus Scene, p. 78). Brown, in Eugene E. Campbell and Richard D. Poll, Hugh B. Brown: His Life and Thought (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, Inc., 1976), p. 189. First Presidency, Letter Concerning Military Training, 14 Dec. 1945, in MFP 6:239-42. The letter was drafted by First Counselor J. Reuben Clark, Jr., a leading church critic of U.S. militarism. See D. Michael Quinn, J. Reuben Clark: The Church Years (Provo, Utah: BYU Press, 1983), pp. 213-14. For additional background, see Joseph F. Boone, “The Roles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Relation to the United States Military, 1900-75,” Ph.D. diss., BYU, April 1975, pp. 335-37, 409; Walker, “Sheaves, Bucklers,” p. 51.
10. Board of Trustees Minutes, 5 June 1935, 22 Sept. 1950; “Post Mortems,” DU, 18 Jan. 1951; “BYU Considered for Air ROTC Unit,” DU, 30 Jan. 1951; “President-Elect Arrives to Take Office,” DU, 6 Feb. 1951; Wilkinson, “Your Boy in the Service,” 33rd Annual Leadership Week, 1956, pp. 11-12, in Wilkinson file, BYUA (cf. BYU 2:630); Wilkinson, “ROTC Enrollment at BYU,” 24 Sept. 1968, p. 9, UA 586; “BYU Men Voice Approval of ROTC Establishment,” DU, 13 Feb. 1951.
11. Boone, “Roles of the Church,” pp. 446, 457-60, 462; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 28 May 1970, 16 Nov. 1972; Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 Jan., 6 June 1973, 3 Dec. 1975 (cf. Oaks to Bartley E. Day and Richard B. Jensen, 3 Dec. 1975, UA 586); “Female Grad to be Commissioned,” DU, 5 April 1983. Some church leaders feared the effects that military training would have on their young womens’ faith and morals. See Boyd K. Packer to Oaks, 6 Nov. 1975; Barbara B. Smith, “Your Promise to the Land of Promise,” 17 Feb. 1976, in ASBYU Women’s Office History, 1975-76, BYUA. See also “Military, LDS Beliefs Conflict,” DU, 16 Jan. 1984, and rebuttal article “LDS Success in Military Depends on Individual,” DU, 19 Jan. 1984. Wilkinson had hoped to establish an army ROTC unit with the air force unit, but army bureaucracy apparently stalled the initiative. University and church leaders also debated the possibility of establishing a navy ROTC unit in the late 1960s, but eventually withdrew the petition. See Board of Trustees Minutes, 10 Jan. 1952, 7 May 1969; Boone, “Roles of the Church,” pp. 463-64.
13. Roger B. McFarland to Editor, DU, 23 April 1965; David L. Daly to Editor, DU, 28 March 1967; “The Flag Dilemma,” DU, 31 Oct. 1967; Mike Noonchester to Editor, DU, 18 Dec. 1968; “Playing the National Anthem Excessive?” DU, 5 April 1983.
14. Board of Trustees Minutes, 3 May 1961; Deans’ Council Minutes, 5 Jan. 1965; Board of Trustees Minutes, 1 Sept., 3 Nov., 1 Dec. 1965; Milan D. Smith and J. Willard Marriott to Thorpe B. Isaacson, 29 Nov. 1965, copy in authors’ possession; Board of Trustees Minutes, 10 Jan. 1952, 3 June 1970 (cf. Executive Committee Minutes, 18 June 1970); “Church Continues Ban on Peace Corps Recruiting on ‘Y’ Campus,” Daily Herald, 10 June 1970; Scott Hinckley to Editor, DU, 2 Nov. 1970; Ben E. Lewis, Minutes of a Meeting, 20 Nov. 1970, BYUA; Board of Trustees Minutes, 2 Dec. 1970.
15. “BYU Students Present Views in Poll on Important Issues,” DU, 5 Feb. 1952; “Wars and Rumors of Wars,” DU, 5 Feb. 1952; “Men Prefer War, Women Marriage,” DU, 19 Oct. 1965; “Y Students March Through Provo,” DU, 1 Nov. 1965. Wilkinson was one of the letter’s signers (“Viet Nam Letter Receives Praise,” DU, 29 Oct. 1965). “Draft Card Burning No Joke,” DU, 3 Nov. 1965; “Viet Protestors, Blight on America,” DU, 20 Oct. 1965; “Political Forum,” DU, 19 Nov. 1965.
16. Editorial, Church News, 4 Dec. 1965, written by Apostle Mark E. Petersen; Joseph Anderson, Secretary to the First Presidency, to Chaplain Brent M. Holmes, 30 Oct. 1970, Church Archives. For an opposing view, see Gordon C. Thomasson, ed., War, Conscription and Mormonism (Santa Barbara: Mormon Heritage, 1971). “Dr. McFarland Stresses ‘Stand Up, Be Counted,'” DU, 15 April 1966; Phillip H. Porter to Editor, DU, 6 Dec. 1967; “Alarm Over Free Forum,” DU, 22 March 1967; “Y Opinion Places Romney on Top,” DU, 18 Oct. 1967; Torch of Freedom (Provo, Utah: BYU Press, 1967); Packer, in Conference Reports, April 1968, pp. 33-36; Judith Yandoh to Editor, DU, 12 Nov. 1968; Wilkinson, “Commencement Message and Report,” 31 May 1968, BYUA; Quinn, “Conscientious Objectors,” p. 21; Wilkinson, “Student Problems: Civil Disorder, Vietnam,” 16 June 1970, in Speeches, Summer School, 1970-71, p. 6; “Statement by the First Presidency,” DU, 19 May 1969; Wilkinson Journal, 4 July 1975, Wilkinson Papers.
17. Knud S. Larsen and Gary Schwendiman, “The Vietnam War Through the Eyes of a Mormon Subculture,” Dialogue, Autumn 1968, pp. 152-62; T. Tammy Tanaka, “Why No Revolts at BYU: The Silent Language of the Mormon World-View and Patriotism at Brigham Young University,” M.A. thesis, BYU, 1968. Student political affiliations are reported in Larsen and Schwendiman, “Mormon Subculture,” p. 153; “Nixon Leads Seven to One,” DU, 3 Nov. 1972. Other reasons for the general absence of violence among BYU students can be inferred from Jack Quarter, The Student Movement of the Sixties: A Social/Psychological Analysis, Occasional Papers, No. 7 (Ontario: The Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, 1972); and Otto Klineberg, Marisa Zavalloni, Christiane Louis-Guerin, and Jeanne Ben Brike, Students, Values, and Politics: A Crosscultural Comparison (New York: The Free Press, 1979).
18. “No Flag-Burning at Brigham Young University–A University Without Trouble,” U.S. News and World Report, 20 Jan. 1969, pp. 58-59; Verne A. Stadtman, “Constellations in a Nebulous Galaxy,” in David Riesman and Verne A. Stadtman, eds., Academic Transformation, Seventeen Institutions Under Pressure (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1973, sponsored by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education), pp. 1-11; “U.S. Policy,” DU, 7 Dec. 1967 (cf. “Gray?” DU, 7 March 1968); Mark Jasinski to Editor, DU, 27 March 1969.
19. Boone, “Roles of the Church,” pp. 577-78; Hinckley’s comments are combined from “The Loneliness of Leadership,” 4 Nov. 1969, in Speeches, 1969-70, p. 3, and “Elder Hinckley Speaks of Leaders’ Loneliness,” DU, 5 Nov. 1969. The second half of Hinckley’s comment did not appear in Speeches. The previous year, Hinckley had told Mormons during April’s General Conference, “I make no defense of the war from this pulpit. There is no simple answer. The problems are complex almost beyond comprehension” (in Conference Reports, April 1968, p. 24). “Senator Moss Says Leave Vietnam,” DU, 11 Nov. 1969; Rector, “Let Us Stand Up For Freedom,” 11 Nov. 1969, in Speeches, 1969-70, p. 8; Jay D. Christensen to Rector, in The Young Democrat, Dec. 1969, BYUA; Hinckley, “Lest We Forget,” 10 Nov. 1970, in Speeches, 1970-71, p. 3; “Missionaries to Nam,” DU, 16 Nov. 1970; “War Topic of Viet Advisor,” DU, 22 April 1970; Romney, “A New Age for America,” 27 April 1970, in Speeches, 1969-70, p. 5.
20. “Greatest Parade in the History of the World,” WB, 8 Nov. 1910; Brent Grant Thompson, “Utah’s Struggle for Prohibition, 1908-17,” M.A. thesis, University of Utah, 1979; John T. Wahlquist, “B.Y.U. Reminiscences,” pp. 1-2, in N. L. Nelson file, BYUA; “Dean’s Council Vetoes Student Body Petition for Registration Delay,” DU, 12 Dec. 1950; “Senate Vote Falls Short, IOC Subjection Remains,” DU, 10 May 1960; “Grumble, Grumble,” DU, 20 May 1960; “Students Question Dean on Vacation, Rent, Jobs,” DU, 26 Oct. 1960; “Short Holiday Ahead,” DU, 27 Oct. 1960; “Vacation Mad Students Rally at Cannon Center,” DU, 9 Dec. 1960; “It’s Official! Leave Friday,” DU, 12 Dec. 1960; “Angry Students Erupt in Protest Rally,” DU, 3 Dec. 1962; “Five Days Added for Travel,” DU, 11 Oct. 1967; “Six Face Discipline for Friday Student Rampage,” DU, 5 Dec. 1962; “On the Acropolis,” DU, 14 Dec. 1962; “300 Participate in Riot,” DU, 24 Feb. 1965; “Dean Sets Action Code,” DU, 28 Sept. 1965 (cf. Carol Berry and four others to Editor, DU, 30 Sept. 1965). For another university’s response to panty raid “uprisings,” see Donald Loucks, “A Triad of Lace Riots,” Journal of College Student Personnel, June 1961, pp. 13-18.
21. Wilkinson to J. Elliot Cameron, 22 Sept. 1965, Wilkinson Papers; “President Wilkinson Blasts Misconduct In Annual Address,” DU, 24 Sept. 1965; Ralph McDonald to Editor, Zion’s Opinion, 13 Nov. 1968, BYUA; “Suggestions for School Leaders Regarding Disturbances,” BYUA; Swen C. Nielsen to Committee on Civil Disturbance, 24 Oct. 1968, UA 586; Nielsen to Sam F. Brewster, “Confrontation and Disaster Alert Plan,” 25 March 1970, cf. 18 March 1970, UA 586. For later plans, see “Emergency Communications Plan for Brigham Young University,” Feb. 1977, UA 586. Nielsen to Brewster, 14 Oct. 1968, UA 586.
22. “Sixteen Demands of Free Student Coalition Delivered by Ralph McDonald at Hyde Park Forum, March 5, 1969, 12:00 noon, Memorial Lounge, ELWC,” UA 586; Wilkinson to Ed Butterworth, 12 April 1969, UA 586; “Pres. Wilkinson Lays Riots Squarely On Revolutionaries,” DU, 18 April 1969; “Rout Campus Rioters With Force, Y. President Declares,” Salt Lake Tribune, 19 Aug. 1969; “Packer Discusses Role of Dissent,” DU, 1 May 1969 (cf. Briant S. Jacobs to Editor, DU, 5 May 1969); Lorin F. Wheelwright to Wilkinson, 24 April 1969, and Wilkinson to Wheelwright, 25 April 1969, UA 567b; Lael J. Woodbury to Wheelwright, 1 May 1969, UA 567b; “Agnew Condemns Violence,” DU, 9 May 1969.
23. Wilkinson Journal, 9 May 1969. See also a transcript of the question-and-answer session attached to Lyle Curtis to Wilkinson, 3 June 1969, BYUA; “Brigham Young University Code of Student Conduct,” Fall 1969, BYUA; “Miller, Beutler Protest War, Apathy During ‘Indoor’ Hyde Park Forum,” DU, 9 Oct. 1969, and “The Program,” The Young Democrat, 20 Oct. 1969; “Moratorium Motivates Collegians,” DU, 15 Oct. 1969; ASBYU Executive Council Minutes, 13 Oct. 1969, UA 460b; “Task Force: ‘No Simple Solution'” and “Hyde Park Sparks Heated Debate,” DU, 16 Oct. 1969.
24. Swen C. Nielsen to Wilkinson, 17 Nov. 1969, copy in authors’ possession. Owens, who was asked by Dean of Student Life J. Elliot Cameron if he had any “morality problems,” was eventually suspended from school for hair length violations. For additional details, see “Dissent at BYU,” SEP, 20 Feb. 1982. Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 Jan. 1970 (much of this meeting was devoted to a discussion of student affairs at BYU and other American schools). Board of Trustees, Special Executive Committee Minutes, 19 Feb. 1970; Bulletin, 13 March 1970, reprinted in J. Wesley Sherwood, “Emergency Operations Plan, Brigham Young University,” Sept. 1979, p. E2, UA/PM 35; Wilkinson to Edwin Butterworth, 16 March 1970, UA 586. See box 54, folder 1, for Butterworth’s catalog of nationwide student disturbances. “Y Pres Lauds ‘Cool’ Students,” DU, 11 May 1970; Wilkinson Journal, 11 May 1970. Bomb threats several weeks earlier had prompted Salt Lake City police to initiate an unusually heavy guard at Temple Square during the church’s General Conference.
25. Bob Anderson and Glenn Blake to Editor, DU, 16 May 1969. See also Wilkinson to J. Elliot Cameron, 11 Dec. 1969, and attachment, copy in authors’ possession. David W. Child to Editor, DU, 6 May 1969; Wilkinson to J. Elliot Cameron, 12 May 1969, copy in authors’ possession; Wilkinson to Wheelwright and Cameron, 20 April 1970, UA 567b, cf. Wilkinson to Cameron, 3 April 1970, and Wilkinson to Cameron and Swen C. Nielsen, 18 May 1970; Cameron to Wilkinson, 20 May 1970, copy in authors’ possession. The student, Bill Cowden, was a member of the radical Students for a Democratic Society (Cowden to Editor, DU, 1 April 1970). For a second letter in support of the SDS, see Ivan D. Sanderson to Editor, DU, 7 April 1970 (cf. Wilkinson to Wheelwright and Rodger Dean Duncan, faculty advisor to DU, 9 April 1970, UA 567b). See also the anti-SDS editorial in DU, 13 April 1970, and Wheelwright to Wilkinson, 14 April 1970, UA 567b.
26. “War and Riot Messages Sent,” DU, 8 May 1970. See also “Election, War Spark Five Petitions,” DU, 21 May 1970, and Wilkinson Journal, 11 May 1970; “Draft of Statement on Decision Not to Have Political Petitions Circulated at the Present Time,” BYUA; “Petition Ban Explained,” DU, 14 May 1970; “BYU Bans Student Petitions,” Salt Lake Tribune, 14 May 1970; Paul S. Carpenter to Editor, DU, 15 May 1970; Linda McKenzie to Editor, DU, 21 May 1970; “BYU Eases Restraints on Campus Petitions,” Salt Lake Tribune, 16 May 1970; “Petitions Okay with ‘Order,'” DU, 19 May 1970. The ban against non-student petitions has generally remained in effect. See President’s Weekly Meeting, min., 20 July 1977. Ben E. Lewis, “Minutes of Meeting Held on Monday, May 18, 1970,” BYUA; Wilkinson to J. Elliot Cameron, 19 May 1970, copy in authors’ possession; A. Lester Allen to All Faculty, 19 May 1970, copy in authors’ possession.
27. “Dean States Pamphlet Okayed for Distribution,” DU, 27 Oct. 1970; J. Elliot Cameron to Wilkinson, 6 Nov. 1970, copy in authors’ possession; Wilkinson Journal, 24 Oct. 1970 (cf. Wilkinson to Ben E. Lewis, 28 Nov. 1970, Wilkinson Papers); “Uniforms on Campus Okayed by Wilkinson,” DU, 9 Nov. 1970; “Wilkinson States Military Position,” DU, 11 Nov.1970; Board of Trustees Minutes, 29 Oct., 4 Nov. 1970; Cameron to Walton, 3 Nov. 1970, in ASBYU History, 1970-71, p. 115, BYUA (see Chapter 6 for additional responses to Walton’s pamphlet). Wilkinson to Ben E. Lewis, 1 Dec. 1970, copy in authors’ possession; Performance Standards Committee Minutes, 8 Dec. 1970, UA 553; Ben E. Lewis, Minutes of Meeting, 11 Dec. 1970, BYUA.
28. For the decline in student unrest nationally, see Phillip G. Altbach, “Student Activism in the 1970s and 1980s,” in Philip G. Altbach, ed., Student Politics: Perspectives for the Eighties (Metuchen, New Jersey: The Scarecrow Press, Inc., 1981), pp. 8-11. “Club Presents Guerilla Theater,” DU, 29 Oct. 1970; Gale Lee Gray to Editor, DU, 30 Oct. 1970; Performance Standards Committee Minutes, 11 Dec. 1970, UA 553. Appeals to committee members to reconsider their decision were unsuccessful (Tom Litster to Lorin F. Wheelwright, 11 Jan. 1971; Performance Standards Committee Minutes, 1, 12, 16 Jan. 1971). “Spectrum Panel Probes Vietnam,” DU, 26 Feb. 1971; Wilkinson Journal, 24 Feb. 1971. For Kimball’s anti-war activities, see Wasatch Front, Oct. 1970, p. 7, Special Collections, BYU. “War Escalation Debated Today,” DU, 24 April 1972; “Quartet Debates War,” DU, 25 April 1972; JoAnn Bammes to Editor, and Lee Willes Davis and Carla Bangerter to Editor, DU, 27 April 1972; Scott Lloyd to Editor, DU, 13 March 1973 (cf. “Questions, Complaints Heard,” DU, 23 Oct. 1974); Boone, “Role of the Church,” pp. 475-77; BYU 4:527.
29. See “GOP Affiliation Vaults to Highest Level Since Eisenhower Era,” Salt Lake Tribune, 25 Nov. 1984; “Nixon Leads Seven to One,” DU, 3 Nov. 1972; “Political Speeches Highlight Y Week,” DU, 29 Oct. 1976; Herb Robertson to Editor, DU, 14 Sept. 1972 (cf. Mark Zelig et al. to Editor, DU, 15 Sept. 1972); “Nixon’s ‘Impeachment’ Not Understood,” DU, 20 Nov. 1973; “Most Students Say ‘No’ in Poll,” DU, 4 June 1974; “Y Students Support End of Impeachment,” DU, 9 Aug. 1974; “Pardon Verdict: ‘No,'” DU, 10 Sept. 1974; “Majority On Y Campus Favor Cap. Pun.,” DU, 14 Jan. 1977; “Pros, Cons on Death Sentence,” DU, 13 Feb. 1978; Beginning BYU, 1976-77, p. 43, BYUA; President’s Weekly Meeting, 3 Jan. 1979, BYUA. The university’s “disaster and/or civil disobedience plans” were also updated (J. Wesley Sherwood, “Emergency Operations Plan, Brigham Young University,” Sept. 1979, UA/PM 35). “Disputes Follow Iranian Speech,” DU, 28 Feb. 1980; “Mrs. Matheson Heckled,” DU, 23 Oct. 1980.
30. “Military Week Gets Off to Firing Start,” DU, 24 Feb. 1981; Thomas S. Hales to Editor, DU, 26 Feb. 1981. Ironically, the First Presidency later issued a statement condemning the MX missile system as “a mammoth weapons system potentially capable of destroying much of civilization” (“LDS Church Leaders Oppose MX,” DU, 7 May 1981). “Not Just a Speech–Banners, Protests,” DU, 12 Feb. 1982; “Vietnam Involvement Criticized,” DU, 10 March 1978; “Westmoreland Demonstrators Interrogated,” SEP, 14 March 1982; “‘Plowshares Not Guns’ at BYU,” Sunstone Review, April 1982, p. 3; “Students Protest Military Week,” SEP, 20 Feb. 1982; “Symposium on Peace,” DU, 23 March 1982.
31. “Political Clubs Draw Note of Wilkinson,” DU, 25 March 1952; J. Elliot Cameron to Wilkinson, 26 Nov. 1968, Wilkinson Papers (cf. Board of Trustees Minutes, 3 May 1967); “BYU Refuses SDS Formation,” DU, 21 Nov. 1968; “Sounding Board,” DU, 6 Dec. 1968; Bob Keith to Editor, Zion’s Opinion, 25 March 1969; “Author Will Lecture on Mormon Positions,” DU, 18 April 1966; “Newquist Says ‘Follow Prophets Political Ideas,'” DU, 20 April 1966; “Apathy Reigns Today,” DU, 6 May 1966; “Election Fever Spreads,” DU, 17 Oct. 1968.
32. “Minutes of the Meeting of Dean Cameron with Vice-Presidents,” 19 March 1971, BYUA. See also “John Birchers Warn Americans to Beware of Communist Evils,” DU, 5 Dec. 1983. Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 18 April, 20 June, 19 Dec. 1974 (cf. President’s Weekly Meeting, 4 Dec. 1974); Stan Harrison to Editor, DU, 2 Oct. 1974 (cf. Dallin H. Oaks to J. Elliot Cameron, 20 Oct. 1976, BYUA); “Political Party Policy Questioned,” DU, 13 Dec. 1974; Board of Trustees Minutes, 9 Jan. 1975. The board’s decision was reaffirmed within two years (Executive Committee Minutes, 13 Aug. 1976). President’s Weekly Meeting, 5 Oct. 1977; “Little Political Activity at Y,” DU, 14 June 1979.
33. President’s Weekly Meeting, 10 Oct. 1979, 20 Feb. 1980; “Proposed Political Club Works for Y Recognition,” DU, 12 Nov. 1980; Jeffrey R. Holland to W. Rolfe Kerr, 25 Nov. 1980; Kerr to Holland, 22 Jan. 1981; Holland to Kerr, 4 Feb. 1981. Copies of the last three documents are in authors’ possession. The formation of Young Independents was initially threatened when a group of students announced, as “an elaborate prank,” an “organizational rally” for the “Young Socialists” political club in late 1981 (Peter Bart, “Prigging Out,” Rolling Stone, 14 April 1983, p. 94). For an attempted “take-over” of Young Independents by “overzealous” members of Young Republicans the next year, see “Campus Chatter,” SEP, 28 Sept. 1982. “Request to Organize Political Club Denied,” SEP, 15 Dec. 1981; “Students Petition to Organize Amnesty International Club,” SEP, 7 Feb. 1982; “Amnesty International Denied Club Status,” SEP, 12 April 1982; “BYU Rejects Amnesty International Group,” Sunstone Review, May 1982, p. 4 (cf. “Campus Chatter,” SEP, 28 Sept. 1982); “New Club Offers ‘Response’ Outlet,” DU, 2 Feb. 1984; “‘Response’ Plans Peace Symposium; Elder Featherstone to Address Group,” DU, 27 March 1984; “Soviet Dissident Tells Story,” DU, 25 Oct. 1984.
34. “Dr. Martin Pleads for Better Appreciation of Other Nations,” YN, 7 Nov. 1930; Harris, “Surging Russia,” pp. 211-12, Harris Papers; “Student Majority Favors New Deal Acts, Policies in Y News Poll,” YN, 3 Nov. 1934; John F. Bluth and Wayne K. Hinton, “The Great Depression,” in Poll, ed., Utah’s History, p. 494; First Presidency, “Warning to Church Members,” 3 July 1936, in MFP 6:18. The First Presidency’s statement was drafted by J. Reuben Clark, Jr. (Quinn, J. Reuben Clark, p. 189). Tom Broadbent to Harris, 10 Aug. 1936, Harris Papers; BYU 2:465-66. See also “Socialized Medicine,” DU, 16 Jan. 1964. Student subscriptions to BYU’s health plan became optional in 1965 (BYU 3:649, fn 77). Similar fears surfaced at other American colleges, as well. For example, University of Michigan president Alexander G. Ruthven told students in 1940 that his school welcomed only those “who are convinced that democracy is the ideal form of government for a civilized people” and later expelled nine students for socialist beliefs and activities (“Warning Note,” Time, 8 July 1940).
35. “Here and There,” YN, 28 May 1947; Christensen, All in a Teacher’s Day (Salt Lake City: Stevens and Wallis, Inc., 1948), p. 188; “President Smith, von Kleinsmid Keynote Convention Program,” DU, 19 Oct. 1950; Clark, “America Faces Freedom-Slavery Issue,” an address delivered to delegates of the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, 14 Sept. 1949, in Church News, 25 Sept. 1949; McKay, “Education–A Freedom People’s Best Investment,” an address delivered at Founders’ Day exercises, Utah State Agricultural College, 7 March 1952, in Church News, 12 March 1952, p. 2; McKay, “Education for Citizenship,” an address delivered at the inauguration of Henry Aldous Dixon as president of Utah State Agricultural College, 8 March 1954, in Church News, 13 March 1954, p. 3; McKay, “Two Contending Forces,” 18 May 1960, p. 5, in BYU Miscellaneous Speeches, BYUA; “McKay Tells Hopes for Nixon Success,” DU, 11 October 1960.
36. Richards, “The Charge,” in Report of the Proceedings of the Inauguration of Ernest LeRoy Wilkinson, 8 Oct. 1951, in The Messenger, Nov. 1951, BYUA; Wilkinson Journal, 28 April 1960; Wilkinson to John A. Widtsoe, 13 Aug. 1949, in Wilkinson file; Wilkinson to J. Reuben Clark, Jr., and Howard S. McDonald, 11 June 1949, Wilkinson Papers. See also BYU 2:541. For Wilkinson’s views on the need to remedy “one of the real problems on the campus[:] false economic and political thinking,” see Wilkinson Journal, 2 Jan. 1956.
37. George S. Ballif, Oral History, 18 Feb., 8 March 1974, pp. 32-33, BYUA; “Scope of Academic Freedom; Dogmatism is Only Real Threat,” DU, 21 April 1953 (cf. Wilford D. Lee, Oral History, 12 Aug. 1975, p. 17, BYUA). Following their spring tour of the campus in 1956, the accrediting team of the Northwest Association of Secondary and Higher Schools observed that “capitalism and the free enterprise philosophy appear to be given strong preference at the administrative level” (“Re-evaluation Report on Brigham Young University,” Nov. 1956, p. 30, BYUA). Wilkinson countered, “This accreditation committee was composed of professors from other institutions, some of whom I feel were a little too much blinded by their ivory towers and not enough illuminated by the realities of life. . . . I do not believe that academic freedom requires that we put on the faculty of colleges of business individuals who are opposed to free enterpise–the very system which, together with our religious devotion, has made our country great” (Wilkinson, Statement, 1956, UA 170). Board of Trustees Minutes, 23 Nov. 1955, 3 June, 2 Dec. 1959; “Board of Trustees Reverses Stand on BYU United Nations Activities,” DU, 10 Dec. 1959; Board of Trustees Minutes, 3 Feb., 25 March 1960, 4 March, 16 April 1970 (cf. 6 Sept. 1967).
38. See “Crusader Tells Menace of Communist Program,” DU, 24 Oct. 1960. One anti-communist crusader predicted a communist takeover of the United States by 1970 (“Reds Plan to Take Over U.S. by 1970,” DU, 30 June 1959; “Reds to Take Over,” DU, 21 July 1959). Wilkinson Journal, 9 Sept. 1957; Wilkinson to Hoover, 29 July 1958, in Wilkinson file. Hoover was later lauded by BYU officials as “one of the most honorable and able men known in government service” with “an impeccable reputation for integrity during his lifetime” (“Justice Investigation Accomplishes Nothing,” DU, 13 Jan. 1978). “Education Answer to Threat of Communism,” DU, 1 May 1962; “Conservatism,” DU, 8 Nov. 1962 (cf. Hal G. Moore to Editor, DU, 14 Nov. 1962). For a debate between Andrus and University of Utah political scientist J. D. Williams on the role of the church in politics, see “Transcription of Debate between Hyrum Andrus and J. D. Williams, March 30, 1967,” UA 438. “R. Benson Advocates Opposition,” DU, 9 Nov. 1962.
39. Roger A. Sorenson to Editor, DU, 2 Nov. 1954; J. Smith to Editor, DU, 4 Nov. 1954; LaLauna Johnson to Editor, DU, 10 March 1961; Wilkinson, introduction to Goldwater, “Brigham Young University Commencement Address,” 2 June 1961, in Speeches, 1960-61; Maurice M. Tanner to Editor, DU, 23 May 1961. For additional definitions, see James H. Bean to Editor, DU, 25 May 1961.
40. Calculated from Speeches, 1952-53, and succeeding years; “Political Vista,” DU, 23 June 1961; Jim Duggan to Editor, DU, 19 April 1962; “Same Old Stuff? Maybe,” DU, 21 June 1962; S. George Sundal to Editor, DU, 22 May 1963; “Home Life Happy in Soviet Union,” DU, 5 Dec. 1961; “Student Inititates Critique Series,” DU, 5 December 1961 (yet cf. Bruce Meeks to Editor and Robert H. Teichert to Editor, DU, 7 Dec. 1961). For one estimate of the possible political makeup of the student body, see “Campus Political Balance,” DU, 5 Dec. 1962. In a stinging attack on American social programs entitled “The Decline and Possible Fall of the American Republic,” Wilkinson asserted that criticism of his policies represented an “unwillingness . . . to follow the counsel of those [who have been] sustained as our leaders and whom we have promised to support and follow” (28 May 1965, p. 4, BYUA).
41. Wilkinson, memos of conferences with President McKay, 19 Jan., 7 March 1962, Wilkinson Papers. Wilkinson defended his right as an individual to endorse Republican candidates for office after dismissing a church educator who publicly supported the candidacy of a Democratic hopeful (“Pres. Wilkinson Defends Support of His Candidate as Constitutional Right,” DU, 6 Nov. 1962). “Communist Will Speak at Wednesday Assembly,” DU, 10 May 1963; “Forum Speaker Strikes Blow at Communism,” DU, 16 May 1963; “Wilkinson Comments Repeated,” DU, 21 May 1963; “Wilkinson Quotes Church Officials,” DU, 17 May 1963 (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 13-15 May 1963). For criticisms of the assembly, see Cheryll Lynn and Elizabeth Fletcher to Editor, Lowell Beal to Editor, DU, 16 May 1963; J. Keith Melville to Editor, Byron Gassman to Editor, DU, 17 May 1963; and “What is the Answer?” DU, 16 May 1963. One student later reported overhearing two faculty members immediately after the lecture. One said, “The only thing that disappoints me is that we can’t have a real communist talk on campus.” The other quickly responded, “A real communist! Are you serious? We can’t even have a real Democrat!” (Elouise M. Bell, “The Implications of Feminism for BYU,” 30 Sept. 1975, in BYU Studies, Summer 1976, p. 528).
42. McKay, in Conference Reports, Oct. 1959, p. 5; Wilkinson Journal, 10 Aug. 1961, 3 March 1963, 6 April 1965; Wilkinson, memo, 6 Jan. 1976, copy in authors’ possession; Ed Wheeler to Editor, DU, 18 Dec. 1963; Byron C. Anderson, “Church and Birch in Utah,” June 1966, copy in authors’ possession; Alison Brethke, “BF, EB,” 9 April 1984, copy in authors’ possession; Campbell and Poll, Hugh B. Brown, pp. 258-59; Richard Swanson, “McCarthyism in Utah,” M.A. thesis, BYU, 1977; Quinn, J. Reuben Clark, pp. 188-95. For a convenient summary of Ezra Taft Benson’s political views, see Benson, An Enemy Hath Done This, comp. Jerreld L. Newquist (Salt Lake City: Parliament Publishers, 1969). By 1976, Skousen’s book had gone through twenty-five printings and sold more than 300,000 copies (“Books by W. Cleon Skousen up to Dec. 31, 1975,” copy in authors’ possession).
43. College of Religious Instruction Departmental Chairmen’s Minutes, 20 April, 6 May 1964, UA 584; Wilkinson Journal, 19-22 Aug. 1965, 13 April 1966; “Birch Society Review,” DU, 22 May 1964; “None Dare Call It Treason Causes Sincere Concern,” DU, 23 July 1964; Richard D. Poll to Editor, DU, 30 July 1964.
44. Combined from Earl Crockett, memo, 11 Dec. 1965, and McKay to Crockett, 4 June 1964, BYUA. On Anderson, see memos exchanged between J. LaVar Bateman and Wilkinson, Feb. to Aug. 1966, UA 516. Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 16 Dec. 1965; President’s Weekly Meeting, 22 Jan. 1975; University Speakers Committee Minutes, 18 Nov. 1966, UA 584; Wilkinson to Ezra Taft Benson, 13 April, 4 May 1971, copies in authors’ possession.
45. Wilkinson Journal, 28 July-10 Aug., 30 Sept., 5 Nov. 1968, 30 Nov. 1970; Wilkinson to McKay, 1 July 1965, copy in authors’ possession; Wilkinson Journal, 2 Jan., 7 April 1965; Jan Chase Izatt, Oral History, April 1968, p. 4, BYUA.
46. Weldon J. Taylor to Robert K. Thomas, 4 Dec. 1968, UA 170; Wilkinson Journal, 29 Nov. 1960; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 28 Jan., 3, 25 Feb. 1965, 4 June 1969; Wilkinson Journal, 1-6 Feb. 1965; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 21 Nov. 1968; Wilkinson to Weldon J. Taylor, 27 March 1970, UA 170; Wilkinson to J. Elliott Cameron, 27 September 1966, UA 584; “Food Stamp Numbers Climb,” DU, 25 March 1971 (cf. Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 Oct. 1970); Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 April 1971; President’s Weekly Meeting, 30 Oct. 1974; “Pres. Benson Warns Against Communism,” DU, 13 April 1977; “Students and Welfare,” DU, 12 Jan. 1976.
47. See Speeches, 1960-71; Wilkinson to Kenneth McFarland, 19 April 1966, Wilkinson Papers; Wilkinson to John T. Bernhard, Stephen Covey, Herald R. Clark, H. Smith Broadbent, LaVar Rockwood, D. Kirt Hart, Dale Taylor, and ASBYU President, 23 April 1965 (cf. Wilkinson to All Deans, 3 Aug. 1965), Wilkinson Papers; “Policy for BYU Speakers Committee,” Aug. 1965, BYUA (approved by the Administrative Council on 7 Sept. 1965 [Administrative Council Minutes, under date, BYUA]); University Speakers’ Committee Minutes, 8 Jan. 1968, UA 584. A contributing factor in Wilkinson’s formalization of speaker clearance procedures was the campus address of liberal activist Dorothy Marshall. Yet Marshall’s appearance would not have been subject to the Speakers’ Committee since she did not address a university-wide audience (see E. Eugene Bryce to Editor, DU, 21 April 1965; Richard D. Poll to Editor, DU, 22 April 1965; Larry Spendlove to Editor, DU, 23 April 1965).
While political views had determined speaker acceptability at other American universities as early as the 1910s, the issue at BYU coincided with a gradual de-emphasis in politics as a determining factor in speaker selection elsewhere. See, for example, Stanley N. Kinney, “The Speaker Ban and Student Organizations at the University of Michigan, 1914-20,” History of Education Journal, Summer 1956, pp. 133-43; “The Speaker Ban Extended at the Univeristy of Michigan, 1920-35,” History of Education Journal, Fall 1956, pp. 1-17; “Browder at Yale,” Time, 11 Dec. 1939, p. 63; “Gag Rule in Ohio,” Time, 5 Nov. 1951, p. 85; and James E. Watson, “The Place of Controversy on the Campus,” Journal of Higher Education, Jan. 1965, pp. 18-24. Prior to the mid-1960s, criticisms of BYU’s speakers had centered on one lecturer’s use of the term “Russian progress” in the mid-1930s; the selection of “heads of large industrial companies” to speak in 1955; the conservative politics of Barry Goldwater six years later; and the possibility of offending church authorities by inviting excommunicated apostle Richard R. Lyman in 1962. See Heber J. Grant to Harris, 7 May 1936, Harris Papers; Wilkinson Journal, 22 April 1955; Wilkinson, telephone conference with President Henry D. Moyle, 19 May 1961, Wilkinson Papers; Wilkinson, memo of conference with President David O. McKay, 22 May 1961, Wilkinson Papers; Wilkinson Journal, 25 May 1961; Wilkinson to Raymond E. Beckham, 3 April 1962, in Lyman file, BYUA.
48. For criticisms of Untermyer, Lerner, Barr, and Lomax, see E. Eugene Bryce to David O. McKay, 30 Nov. 1965, copy in authors’ possession; Wilkinson Journal, 5 Oct. 1965; Wilkinson to Mrs. Grant E. Mann, 18 Jan. 1966, copy in authors’ possession; and Wilkinson to Mrs. Newell J. Olsen, 25 Jan. 1966, copy in authors’ possession. Wilkinson’s assertion that the speakers had been selected before he returned to BYU was accurate but should be qualified: the contracts for Stringfellow Barr and Allan Lomax were signed by university representatives after Wilkinson’s return. Wilkinson was also concerned with lectures treating apostate Mormon groups (see Earl C. Crockett to B. West Belnap, 19 Jan. 1966, UA 584). Wilkinson to John T. Bernhard, 31 Jan. 1966, Wilkinson to J. LaVar Bateman, 14 Feb. 1966, and Bateman to Wilkinson, 18 Feb. 1966, UA 516 (cf. Board of Trustees Minutes, 2 March 1966); Wilkinson to Anne Richards Horton, 2 April 1966, BYUA; Wilkinson to Helen Stafford, 2 April 1966, BYUA; Wilkinson to Dale Taylor, 22 Oct. 1966, BYUA; Wilkinson Journal, 15, 17, 21 Oct. 1966; “Vice-President Humphrey Visits BYU,” DU, 24 Oct. 1966; Wilkinson, memo of a conference with David O. McKay, 24 Oct. 1966, Wilkinson Papers; “Kennedy at BYU Wednesday,” DU, 25 March 1968; “Kennedy Speech Attracts Capacity Crowd,” DU, 28 March 1968 (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 27 March 1968). The complete text of Kennedy’s speech, including questions and answers, is reprinted in “RFK at BYU: The Day the Fieldhouse Rocked,” SEP, 24 Aug. 1982. Not unexpectedly, Kennedy appealed most to democrats and independents; too, women were more impressed than men (Brent D. Peterson, “A Study of the Reactions of a Predominantly Republican College Audience to Democratic Speakers,” M.A. thesis, BYU, 1968). “Senator Percy Calls for Responsibility,” DU, 1 April 1968; “At Forum,” DU, 20 Oct. 1970.
49. Board of Trustees Minutes, 6 March 1968; Wilkinson, memo for trustees, 15 Dec. 1969, BYUA. In an attempt to dispel widespread rumors that he was unsympathetic to his faculty, Wilkinson asked members of his executive committee if speakers representing both the far right and left should be allowed to address campus audiences. The committee ruled that “in this day of wide communication, students are exposed to the rightist and the leftist views without further exploitation of the same on campus.” The committee concluded that the matter “need not go to the Board of Trustees” (Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 23 Feb. 1967). Hillam to John T. Bernhard, 31 May 1968, UA 553; “Wilkinson Defends Policies,” DU, 30 Oct. 1968; Edgar Dodd to Editor, DU, 6 Nov. 1968; “BYU Student Body, 1970,” p. 32, BYUA. Married male freshmen were most likely to agree that contrary views should be aired on campus. Wilkinson to Lorin F. Wheelwright, 17 April 1969, UA 567b. The list of speakers prohibited from appearing on campus is taken from the following: “The Case of Donna Allen, or Censorship at BYU,” ca. 1967, UA 553; “Student Government,” DU, 4 Jan. 1968; Wilkinson to J. Elliot Cameron, 26 Aug., 28 Sept. 1968, Wilkinson Papers (Wallace’s running mate, Curtis LeMay, later spoke on campus [“LeMay Blasts Court,” DU, 5 Nov. 1968, and “Tolerance: A Two-Way Street,” DU, 12 March 1969]); Wilkinson to Robert K. Thomas, 1 Dec. 1969, BYUA, and University Speakers’ Committee Minutes, 1965-71, UA 584. The Speakers’ Committee was once accused of being “too liberal” (“Group Outlines Speaker Policy,” DU, 19 Nov. 1970). Wilkinson to Robert K. Thomas et al., 12 Oct. 1970, copy in authors’ possession; Wilkinson Journal, 10 May 1970.
50. Neal A. Maxwell to Quinn A. Hatch, 20 Nov. 1970, and Maxwell to Wilkinson, 19 Nov. 1970, copies in authors’ possession; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 25 Feb.1971; “General Policies of the Performance Standards Committee–Working Paper, 13 April 1971,” pp. 3-4, BYUA; “General Policies of the Performance Standards Committee–Working Paper, 11 May 1971,” section C, UA 553; Board of Trustees Minutes, 1 Dec. 1971; President’s Weekly Meeting, 3 April 1973; “Policy Set Down,” DU, 27 Nov. 1974; “Procedure Announced,” DU, 30 Jan. 1975.
51. “Work for All–No Inflation,” DU, 3 Oct. 1972; “Allen Flails GOP in Speech,” DU, 13 Oct. 1972; “Agnew is Bad News,” DU, 20 Oct. 1972; “Libertarian Candidate Predicts GOP’s Death,” and “Senatorial Candidates Argue,” DU, 15 Oct. 1976; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 20 June 1974; “Robert Redford Tells Y. Audience Both Utah Senators ‘Embarrassing’ State,” Salt Lake Tribune, 29 March 1978 (see Dallin H. Oaks to Paul B. Cannon, 3 April 1978, copy in authors’ possession); “Hatch Responds to Actor’s Words,” DU, 31 March 1978; Oaks to Spencer W. Kimball and Counselors, 16 Nov. 1979, BYUA. See also Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 15 Sept. 1979.
52. For specific rejections, see Oaks to J. Bevan Ott, 8 Aug. 1974, BYUA; Speakers’ Clearance Files, ASBYU Academics Office, notes in authors’ possession; Jae R. Ballif to Jeffrey R. Holland, 10 July 1981, and Holland to W. Rolfe Kerr, 14 July 1981, copies in authors’ possession. Robert A. Rees, “The Liberty with Which We are Made Free: Intellectual and Spiritual Freedom in the Restored Church,” in Academic Awareness Summer Lectures, 1973 (ASBYU Academics, 1973), p. 23; Steven K. Bergstrom to Editor, DU, 22 Nov. 1977; “Politics Cited in Speaker Selection,” DU, 9 April 1980 (cf. Guy W. Murray to Editor, DU, 11 April 1980); Thomas to James H. Polve, 20 June 1979, copy in authors’ possession; L. Robert Webb to Oaks, 20 Nov. 1979; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 7 Nov. 1980; “Farrell Talks on Political Views,” DU, 16 Nov. 1983 (cf. Gail Richards to Editor, DU, 21 Nov. 1983).
53. For an informative overview of the “policing” of faculty at American universities and colleges beginning in the mid-1940s, see Clarence J. Karier, Shaping the American Educational State: 1900 to the Present (New York: Free Press, 1975), pp. 79-91; David P. Gardner, “By Oath and Association: The California Folly,” Journal of Higher Education, Feb. 1969, pp. 122-34; Lionel S. Lewis, “The Academic Axe: Some Trends in Dismissals from Institutions of Higher Learning in America,” Social Problems, Fall 1964, pp. 51-58; and Lionel S. Lewis and Michael N. Ryan, “In the Matter of University Governance During the 1960s,” Social Problems, Fall 1971, pp. 249-57. Wilkinson Journal, 23 Sept., 13 Nov. 1967, 14 April 1966.
54. Wilkinson to Sperry, 24 Oct. 1951, Sperry Papers, Archives and Manuscripts, BYU; Wilkinson Journal, 21 April 1958, 12 May 1959; Wilkinson to Harvey L. Taylor and Wesley P. Lloyd, 11 Jan. 1960, copy in authors’ possession. For other examples, see Wilkinson to Earl C. Crockett, 18 July, Sept. 1966; and Wilkinson to H. Verlan Anderson, Stewart Grow, Wilford E. Smith, Francis R. Magleby, William G. Dyer, 7 Aug. 1967, and Wilkinson to H. Verlan Anderson, 7 Aug. 1967. Copies in authors’ possession.
55. Wilkinson Journal, 29 Nov. 1960; Wilkinson to Mark Benson, 27 April 1965 (see also Wilkinson to Richard D. Moody, 26 April 1965, Wilkinson to Lucile Walker, 27 April 1965, and Wilkinson to John T. Bernhard, 1 May 1965)–copies in authors’ possession; Wilkinson Journal, 2 Jan. 1963. For Poll’s critique of Skousen, see This Trumpet Gives an Uncertain Sound–A Review of W. Cleon Skousen’s The Naked Communist (March 1962), and Skousen’s rejoinder, My Reply to Dr. Richard D. Poll and His Critique of The Naked Communist (Salt Lake City: Ensign Publishing Co., 1962).
56. Wilkinson Journal, 23 April, 6 May, 11 July 1965; Wilkinson, memo of conference with Dick Poll, 6 May 1965, copy in authors’ possession; Board of Trustees Minutes, 3 Feb. 1960; Wilkinson to Poll, 12 July 1965, copy in authors’ possession. Wilkinson also held up, but for unrelated reasons, the contracts of faculty members Melvin Mabey and J. Keith Melville. For the specific charges against Poll and supporting documentation, see Stephen R. Covey, “Report on Richard D. Poll,” April 1966, copy in authors’ possession.
57. Wilkinson, memo on report of Stephen Covey regarding Richard Poll, 19 April 1966, copy in authors’ possession; Covey, “Report,” pp. 35-38; Wilkinson Journal, 26-27 April 1966; Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 28 April 1966. See also Wilkinson to Poll, 25 April 1966, copy in authors’ possession. Academic vice-president Earl C. Crockett recommended that Poll be given a $700 salary increase (Crockett to Wilkinson, 28 April 1966, copy in authors’ possession). For continuing criticisms of Poll, see Wilkinson to John T. Bernhard, 16 May 1966; Wilkinson to Stephen R. Covey, 19 Oct. 1966; Ezra Taft Benson to Wilkinson, 30 Jan. 1968: “It is my conviction that [Poll] should have been fired long ago.” Others of Poll’s critics among church authorities included Delbert L. Stapley, Joseph Fielding Smith, and, to a lesser extent, David O. McKay; his supporters included Hugh B. Brown and possibly N. Eldon Tanner and Harold B. Lee. Wilkinson to Robert K. Thomas, 12 Feb. 1968. Copies of the preceding four letters are in authors’ possession. Board of Trustees Minutes, 15 Oct. 1969; “Poll Accepts New Post as Western Illinois VP,” DU, 17 Oct. 1969.
59. Board of Trustees Minutes, 2 March 1966; Davies to Wilkinson, 9 May 1966 (cf. Wilkinson to Davies, 29 April 1966). See also “Statement by J. Kenneth Davies,” 1967, and “Statement,” 10 March 1967; Davies, authors’ interview, 10 Sept. 1984. Copies in authors’ possession.
60. Wilkinson to Weldon J. Taylor, 15 Sept. 1966; Crockett to Wilkinson, 19 Dec. 1966 (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 30 Jan. 1967); Crockett to Davies, 31 Jan. 1967 (cf. Wilkinson to H. Smith Broadbent, Dean A. Peterson, Robert J. Smith, 21 Feb. 1967); Davies to Crockett, 6 Feb. 1967; Wilkinson, memo re: J. Kenneth Davies, 7 Feb. 1967 (see also Wilkinson Journal, 7 Feb. 1967); Davies, authors’ interview. More than twenty Mormon academicians rallied to Davies’s support. For example, Leonard J. Arrington wrote, “For Brigham Young University to dismiss a person as moderate, as balanced, and as judicious as Ken Davies, will bring both the university and the church into the disrespect of the community of scholars. It will call into question the church’s devotion to higher education, to academic freedom, to the truth, and to justice” (Arrington to H. Smith Broadbent, 14 March 1967). Wilkinson to David M. Kennedy, 28 Feb. 1967; Crockett to Davies, 21 Feb. 1967. Davies and Wilkinson also debated their case by correspondence before members of the Board of Trustees. See Davies to Harold B. Lee, 20 Feb. 1967, to Board of Trustees, 1 March 1967, and Wilkinson to LeGrand Richards, 7 March 1967. Copies of the foregoing documents are in authors’ possession.
61. “Statement of Charges Against Dr. J. Kenneth Davies,” Feb. 1967; Davies to H. Smith Broadbent, Robert Smith, Dean Peterson, 28 Feb. 1967 (cf. Davies to Board of Trustees, 1 March 1967); Broadbent to Davies, 6 March 1967. Copies in authors’ possession.
62. Board of Trustees Minutes, 1 March 1967; Earl C. Crockett to Wilkinson, 9 March 1967, and Wilkinson to Davies, 10 March 1967. Wilkinson also noted that he was withdrawing his charges out of deference to Davies’s wife, who had been ill, and because of the number of people who had written in his behalf. Wilkinson Journal, 10, 11 March 1967. Davies to Wilkinson, 16 March 1967 (cf. Wilkinson to Davies, 17 March 1967; see also Davies to Wilkinson, 21 March 1967, Wilkinson to Davies, 3 April 1967, and Davies to Harold B. Lee, 19 March 1967). Copies in authors’ possession.
63. Wilkinson, “Report for the Board of Trustees on Surveillance of Teachers and the Hillam-Davies Case,” 17 April 1967; Stephen Hays Russell, Statement, 13 March 1967. Unless otherwise noted, copies of all documents cited in reference to the student spy ring are in authors’ possession. Many of these documents can also be found in Ray C. Hillam’s extensive files relating to the incident which have been deposited in BYUA.
64. Joseph T. Bentley, authors’ interview, in “BYU Spy Case Unshelved,” SEP, 14 March 1982. The notes from this and other interviews conducted for “BYU Spy Case Unshelved” are in Seventh East Press Papers, BYUA. Wilkinson, “Report for the Board of Trustees,” p. 7; Russell, Statement.
66. Wilkinson, “The Changing Nature of American Government from a Constitutional Republic to a Welfare State,” 21 April 1966, BYUA (cf. “President Wilkinson Blasts Current Trend in U.S. Government,” DU, 22 April 1966). Two-thirds of Wilkinson’s talk, which he maintained had been approved paragraph by paragraph by an increasingly bedridden President McKay, was a virtual repeat of his 1965 commencement address, “The Decline and Possible Fall of the American Republic.” Wilkinson repeated his speech that evening in Salt Lake City but “quoted prominent statesmen” instead of relying heavily on statements from church authorities. By so doing, he wrote, he hoped “to avoid what I think is a mistake on the part of Ezra Taft Benson who in addresses to mixed audiences tries to mix church and state too much by quoting from the leaders of the church” (Wilkinson Journal, 21 April 1966). Within the week, the school’s Young Democrats and Young Republicans sponsored a panel on “Political Extremism” (J. Kenneth Davies, ed., Political Extremism Under the Spotlight, 1966, BYUA); Hankin, Statement; Russell, Statement; Wilkinson Journal, 29 April, 10 May 1966; Wilkinson, “Report for the Board of Trustees;” Richard B. Wirthlin to Joseph T. Bentley, 25 May 1966 (cf. Bentley to Wirthlin, 6 June 1966, and Stephen Hays Russell to Wilkinson, 3 June 1966). Sandgren later commented on the unusual assignment of being asked to “present the president with information that he had created” (Sandgren, authors’ interview, in “BYU Spy Case Unshelved”).
67. Hillam, “Notes regarding an interview with President Clyde D. Sandgren,” 18 July 1966; Hillam, “Telephone conversation with President Sandgren,” 19 July 1966; Wilkinson Journal, 20 July 1966. See also Wilkinson, memo of conference with Ed Morrell, 20 July 1966. Wilkinson to Sandgren, Crockett, Lewis, 21 July, 19 Sept. 1966; Hillam to Sandgren, 22 July 1966; Hillam, “Conversation with President Wilkinson,” 23 July 1966 (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 23 July 1966).
68. Louis C. Midgley to Wilkinson, 13 Sept. 1966; Hillam, To Whom It May Concern, 15 Sept. 1966; Steve Gilliland to Louis C. Midgley, 15 Sept. 1966. For additional evidence, see J. Kenneth Davies, To Whom It May Concern, 26 July 1966; Hillam to Edwin Morrell, 31 July 1966; John P. Sanders, To Whom It May Concern, 5 Aug. 1966; Russell N. Horiuchi, To Whom It May Concern, 11 Aug. 1966; Gordon E. Wagner, To Whom It May Concern, 11 Aug. 1966; Louis Midgely to Hillam, 11 Aug. 1966; Hillam, To Whom It May Concern, 12 Aug. 1966; Richard B. Wirthlin, To Whom It May Concern, 12 Aug. 1966; David K. Hart, Statement, 13 Aug. 1966; Richard D. Poll to Hillam, 12 Sept. 1966; and Jesse W. Reeder, Statement, 21 Sept. 1966; Sandgren to Hillam, 30 Aug. 1966; Hillam, “Telephone conversation with President Sandgren,” 12 Sept. 1966; Hillam, “Interview with President Sandgren,” 13 Sept. 1966; Wilkinson Journal, 10 Sept. 1966. See also Hillam, “Telephone conversation with Lynn Southam, BYU Stu dent Body President,” 12 Sept. 1966; Wilkinson, “Address of Ernest L. Wilkinson to B.Y.U. Faculty,” 12 Sept. 1966, BYUA; Hillam, “Telephone conversation with a representative of KUTV,” 13 Sept. 1966; Hillam, “Telephone conversation with Ernest L. Wilkinson immediately after conversation with representative of KUTV,” 13 Sept. 1966.
71. Hillam, “Conversation with President Sandgren,” 16 Sept. 1966. See also Hillam to Ben E. Lewis, 16 Sept. 1966, not sent. “BYU Spy Case Unshelved;” Hankin, Statement; Ronald I. Hankin and David M. Sisson, To Whom It May Concern, 17 Sept. 1966; David M. Sisson, To Whom It May Concern, 17 Sept. 1966; Larry T. Wimmer, Statement, 30 Jan. 1968; Richard Wirthlin, authors’ interview, in “BYU Spy Case Unshelved;” Wilkinson Journal, 19 Sept. 1966; Wilkinson, memo re: conference with Richard Wirthlin, 20 Sept. 1966.
72. Wimmer, Statement; Wimmer, authors’ interview, in “BYU Spy Case Unshelved;” Hillam to Wilkinson, 21 Sept. 1966; Hillam to Tanner, 22 Sept. 1966; Hillam to Wilkinson, 22 Sept. 1966; Crockett, Lewis, Sandgren, “Report, Findings of Fact, Conclusions and Recommendations,” 17 Oct. 1966 (cf. Crockett, Lewis, Sandgren to Hillam, 20 Oct. 1966); Faculty Minutes, 20 Oct. 1966, BYUA (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 20 Oct. 1966).
73. Crockett, Lewis, Sandgren to Hillam, 3 Nov. 1966; Wilkinson to Hillam, 4 Nov. 1966; Louis C. Midgley to Hillam, 11 Nov. 1966; Crockett to Hillam, 25 Jan. 1967; Hillam to Crockett, Feb. 1967; Wirthlin to Hillam, 9 Dec. 1966; Social Sciences Faculty Minutes, 13 Dec. 1966 (cf. Richard L. Bushman to Robert K. Thomas, 30 Dec. 1966, and J. Weldon Moffitt to Wilkinson, 22 Dec. 1966); Wilkinson Journal, 13-25 Dec. 1966. At Wilkinson’s prompting, the Board of Trustees later reaffirmed its instructions that Wilkinson “engage only those teachers whose religious, social and economic views accord with those of the president of the church, and who are willing to and do follow the advice of the president on all matters, whether that advice be of a religious, social, economic, political or other nature.” Several went so far as to express their preference for the employment of non-Mormons where “worthy” Mormon applicants could not be found (Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 23 Feb. 1967; Board of Trustees Minutes, 25 May 1967).
74. Wilkinson Journal, 14 May, 7 June 1967, 27 Feb. 1968; Wilkinson, memo of conference with David O. McKay, 21 May 1967; McKay to Wilkinson, 25 May 1967, BYUA; Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 June 1967; BYU 4:544-45.
75. Wilkinson Journal, 28 Feb. 1967; J. Elliot Cameron to Wilkinson, 19 July 1967; “Free Forum Filled with ‘Charges,'” DU, 1 March 1967 (cf. Jeri Bowne to Editor, DU, 2 March 1967); “BYU Denies Campus ‘Spy’ Story,” Salt Lake Tribune, 1 March 1967. See also the coverage in the University of Utah’s Daily Utah Chronicle, 6 March 1967. News of the incident reached a national audience by the end of the month (“Spies, J.G.,” Newsweek, 27 March 1967, p. 112).
76. Wilkinson Journal, 1-11 March 1967; “BYU Denies Campus `Spy’ Story,” and “Truth Should Back Viewpoint,” DU, 1 March 1967; Wilkinson to McKay, 7 March 1967; Crockett to Hillam, 7 March 1967; Wilkinson to All Members of the Faculty, 11 March 1967; “Statements Out on `Spy Ring,'” DU, 15 March 1967; Wilkinson Journal, 12, 26 April 1967; “Standards Clarifies Hankin Suspension,” DU, 14 April 1967; Wilkinson, “Report for the Board of Trustees.” Both Hankin and Sisson petitioned the Board of Trustees for a rehearing of the charges leveled against them but were denied. Shortly afterwards, Hankin publicly harassed Wilkinson on campus, and Sisson threatened the president’s life and was arrested for burglary (Wilkinson Journal, 8, 18-19 May, 30 July, 6-7 Aug. 1967).
78. “Hillam Back from Vietnam with Honor,” DU, 3 Oct. 1967; Wilkinson to Robert K. Thomas, 21 Sept. 1967; Wilkinson Journal, 10 May 1967, 2 April 1968, 13 Feb. 1969; “Dr. Bernhard Heads Illinois University,” DU, 21 March 1968. (University of Utah alumnus Martin B. Hickman was eventually appointed dean of the College of Social Sciences, a position he held for the next seventeen years.) Board of Trustees, Executive Committee Minutes, 25 April 1968; Board of Trustees Minutes, 1 May 1968 (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 12 April 1968); Wilkinson to Daniel Ludlow, Chauncey Riddle, Roy Doxey, 19 Feb. 1968, UA 584.
79. Hillam, memo, 31 March 1968; Wilkinson Journal, 26 March, 1 April, 10 May, 1968; Crockett, Lewis, Sandgren, “Amended Report, Findings of Fact, Conclusions and Recommendations,” 10 May 1967; Robert K. Thomas to Wilkinson, 15 May 1968.
80. Hillam to John T. Bernhard, 3 July 1968; Hillam to Clyde D. Sandgren, 7 Oct. 1968; Sandgren to Hillam, 27 Nov. 1968, and attachment; Hillam to Sandgren, 25 April 1969, and attachment; Sandgren to Hillam, 13 May, 4 June 1969; “BYU Spy Case Unshelved,” SEP.
81. For later allegations of spying, see Phares Woods, Statement, 27 May 1969. Wilkinson to Robert K. Thomas, 29 April 1970; Robert K. Thomas, minutes of a meeting with Wilkinson, 4 May 1970; Wilkinson to Thomas and Robert J. Smith, 2 March 1971; Wilkinson, authors’ interview, Feb. 1977.
In his treatment of the episode in both the four- and one-volume editions of BYU’s centennial history, Wilkinson blamed the episode on overzealous students. Angered by this apparent cover-up, Hillam protested, “I had thought the spy scandal was to be forgotten but you have not only raised the matter again but you have given an untruthful account, blaming others rather than fixing responsibility with the person who inititated the spying. The dishonesty which accompanies the `cover-up’ is more distressing than the spying itself.” See BYU 3:775-76; BYU, pp. 752-53; Hillam to Wilkinson, W. Cleon Skousen, Leonard J. Arrington, and Bruce C. Hafen, 1 Nov. 1976; “Y. Teachers Blast `Spy Scandal Coverup,'” Salt Lake Tribune, 24 Dec. 1976; Bentley, authors’ interview, in “BYU Spy Case Unshelved.”
82. Wilkinson Journal, 26-29 April 1966. Only several hours later, Stephen Hayes Russell delivered to Wilkinson his twelve-page report on faculty responses to the president’s speech. The committee’s preliminary statement is found in The Report of the Visitation Committee to the Committee on Higher Education of the Northwest Association of Secondary and Higher Schools on Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, April 26-29, 1966, pp. 15-16, BYUA.
85. Report of Visitation Committee, pp. 6, 96-105; Bernhard to Wilkinson, 24 Aug. 1966, copy in authors’ possession; Board of Trustees Minutes, 19 Jan., 7 Sept., 5 Oct. 1966; Wilkinson to Laurence E. Gale, 29 Sept. 1966, BYUA.
86. Wilkinson Journal, 23-29 Nov. 1966; James R. Bemis, executive director, Commission on Colleges, Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, to the authors, 31 Jan. 1984. Wilkinson’s victory was dampened when, in recounting his experience to the Board of Trustees, Harold B. Lee recommended that the university “take a careful look at its own practices to see whether there is any merit to any of the charges made against it” (Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 Dec. 1966). “Y Program Officially Accredited,” DU, 12 Dec. 1966; Wilkinson Journal, 20 Dec. 1966; Wilkinson to Milton F. Hartvigsen, 31 Jan. 1967, BYUA; Faculty Minutes, 16 Feb. 1967, BYUA; Wilkinson, authors’ interview; Thomas, authors’ interview, in “Academic Freedom at BYU,” DU, 22 Feb. 1977. Ten years later, the 1976 Accreditation Committee observed of the College of Social Sciences, “There can be no question that, overall, the faculty of this college are experiencing the euphoria of participation in a much desired and, by many, long-awaited period of expansion in scope and intellectual ambitions of the university” (1976 Report to the Commission on Colleges of the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges–Evaluation Committee Report on Brigham Young University, March 23-25, 1976, pp. 42-43, 87, BYUA).
87. Oaks, “Response,” 12 Nov. 1971, Inaugural Addresses, p. 22, BYUA; Oaks’s policy is noted in “Republican Bias Charged at BYU,” Sunstone Review, Nov./Dec. 1981, p. 6; First Presidency to Stake Presidents and Bishops, 8 Aug. 1972, in Priesthood Bulletin, Aug. 1972, p. 2.
88. Skousen to Wilkinson, 12 Dec. 1966, copy in authors’ possession; Anderson to Wilkinson, 4 April 1967, BYUA. “I have [had] a very definite feeling, since the culmination of the surveillance episode,” Wilkinson wrote, “that I have to take a strong stand in behalf of administrative–as opposed to teaching–functions; otherwise, the situation at the BYU will get out of hand” (Wilkinson to Robert K. Thomas, 15 April 1967, BYUA). Wilkinson to Daniel Ludlow, 18 March 1969, with attachments, UA 584; Ludlow to ELW, 24 March 1969, UA 584.
89. See Freemen Report, 15 Nov. 1972, p. 7; C. Terry Warner to Robert K. Thomas, 11 Oct. 1972; C. Terry Warner to Oaks, 30 Oct. 1972; Oaks to First Presidency, 1 Nov. 1972; Oaks to Robert K. Thomas, 7 Dec. 1972; Harold B. Lee to Oaks, 15 Nov. 1972, 4 Jan. 1973; First Presidency to Oaks, 18 Dec. 1972. Copies in authors’ possession.
90. Oaks to Harold B. Lee, 8 Nov. 1973. Skousen’s activities are detailed in Neal A. Maxwell to Oaks, 19 May 1975; Stanley A. Peterson to Oaks, 27 May 1975; Francis M. Gibbons to Oaks, 16 Oct. 1975; F. Michael Watson to Oaks, 30 Oct. 1975; Jeffrey R. Holland to Oaks, 31 Oct. 1975, 4 Nov. 1975; Oaks to Spencer W. Kimball, 5 Nov. 1975. Wilkinson was so impressed by Skousen’s record of dedicated conservatism that he suggested Skousen be called as a General Authority (Wilkinson to Ezra Taft Benson, 10 Oct. 1975, cf. Wilkinson to Skousen, 1 Nov. 1975). First Presidency to Skousen, 15 Dec. 1975. See also Oaks to Jeffrey R. Holland and Stanley A. Peterson, 30 Jan. 1976. For Skousen’s activities after 1975, see Jeffrey R. Holland to Oaks, 12 Feb. 1976; L. E. Hirschi to Don H. Peterson, 2 Feb. 1976; Willis R. Dees to Ned Winder, 9, 19 Feb. 1976; Harry Dees to Jeffrey R. Holland, 18 Feb. 1976; Carl S. Hawkins to Oaks, 11 Feb. 1976; Oaks to First Presidency, 18, 23 Feb. 1976; Religious Instruction, Administrative Council Minutes, 13 April 1978, UA 553. Copies of the above documents are in authors’ possession. Following his retirement from the university, a tireless Skousen devoted himself full-time to his Freemen Institute. In late 1984, the institute changed its name to the National Center for Constitutional Studies so as not to alienate members of fundamental Protestant churches. Skousen borrowed the terms “freemen” and “kingmen” from the Book of Mormon. See Linda Sillitoe and David Merrill, “Freeman America,” Utah Holiday, Feb. 1981, pp. 34-36, 38, 40, 42-43, 66-67, 70-71, 73-75, and Utah Holiday, March 1981, pp. 33-40, 52, 54; “Freemen Institute Changes Name,” Sunstone, Jan. 1985, pp. 52-53.
91. Benson, “Our Immediate Responsibility,” 25 Oct. 1966, Speeches, 1966-67 (cf. Wilkinson Journal, 25 Oct. 1966); “Elder Benson Calls for Support of U.S. System,” DU, 5 Dec. 1973 (cf. Benson, “This Nation Shall Endure,” 4 Dec. 1973, Speeches, 1973, pp. 159-71. The published version of Benson’s speech differed considerably in some areas from his speech as delivered. “Is U.S. Patriotism Dying?” DU, 7 Nov. 1978; The Autobiography of Melvin A. Cook–Volume Two: Reflections on Academia (Salt Lake City: Author, 1977), p. 220. For Benson’s possible candidacy, see Hugh B. Brown, interview with Richard Wirthlin and Ray Hillam, 9 Aug. 1966, copy in authors’ possession; “From the Church Editor’s Desk,” Church News, 28 Jan. 1967; “Press Release,” The 1976 Committee, 15 Nov. 1966, copy in authors’ possession; The 1976 Committee, 1966; and George C. Wallace to David O. McKay, 12 Feb. 1968 (cf. McKay to Wallace, 14 Feb. 1968), copy in authors’ possession. Benson, interview with Glenn V. Bird, 19 July 1977; “Support for Candidate Possible Some Day, LDS Apostle Says,” Salt Lake Tribune, 22 Feb. 1974; Benson to Oaks, 10 March 1976 (cf. Oaks to Merrill J. Bateman and Martin B. Hickman, 6 July 1977), copy in authors’ possession; Oaks to Bateman and Hickman, 6 May 1976, and attachment, copy in authors’ possession.
93. Martin B. Hickman to Robert K. Thomas, 11 March 1977; Oaks to Hinckley, 21 March 1977. Copies in authors’ possession. Benson, “A Vision and a Hope for the Youth of Zion,” 12 April 1977, Speeches, 1977, p. 76. For an overview of Holley’s life, see Reynol E. Boutman, “Wayne D. Holley: A Communist Mormon,” in David E. Bohn file, BYUA.
95. Clayne Pope to Oaks, 6 May 1977; Benson to Oaks, 16, 18 Aug. 1977 (cf. Oaks to Benson, 25 Aug. 1977); Oaks to Benson, 3 May 1978. Copies in authors’ possession. “ERA Detrimental, Antagonist Claims,” DU, 13 Oct. 1978; “Politics Cited in Speaker Selection,” DU, 9 April 1980; Jeffrey R. Holland to Oaks, 19 Oct. 1977, copy in authors’ possession; Board of Trustees Minutes, 7 Dec. 1977.
96. “Official of Soviet Court Speaks,” DU, 16 Oct. 1979; “Soviet Chief Justice Sells SALT,” BYU Today, Dec. 1979; Benson to Oaks, 17 Oct. 1979, copy in authors’ possession; Oaks to Benson, 17 Dec. 1979, copy in authors’ possession; “Mixed Points of View Given for Cancellation of Russian Speaker,” DU, 12 Oct. 1983. See also “BYU Cancels Soviet Speaker,” Sunstone Review, Oct. 1983, p. 11; Ray C. Hillam, ed., By the Hands of Wise Men: Essays on the U.S. Constitution (Provo, Utah: BYU Press, 1979), cf. Martin R. Gardner, “Mormonism and the American Constitution,” Dialogue, Spring 1981, pp. 111-14.
97. Richard D. Poll to Ivan Hinderaker, 30 March 1962, copy in authors’ possession; Wilkinson Journal, 21 Dec. 1962. See also Wilkinson Journal, 1-2 Nov. 1969, 22 Feb., 5 April 1972; T. Edgar Lyon, “Politics and the Mormons,” Utah Alumnus, Feb. 1962, pp. 7-9, April 1962, pp. 29-31, July-Aug. 1962, pp. 14-16; S. George Ellsworth, “Review of Mormonism, Americanism, and Politics,” Utah Historical Quarterly, Summer 1962, pp. 272-75; Wilkinson to Benson, 14 Dec. 1975, copy in authors’ possession.
98. Oaks to Hinckley, 21 March 1977. See also Martin B. Hickman to Oaks, 22 March 1977; Hickman to Robert J. Smith, 22 March 1977; Wilkinson to Benson, 25 May 1977; Benson to Oaks, 21 June 1978 (cf. Benson to Oaks, 20 Dec. 1977); Benson to Oaks, 8 March 1979; Oaks to Kimball, 13 April 1979. Copies in authors’ possession.
100. “Quick Change of Presidents at BYU: Was It A Hurry-Up Job?” Utah Holiday, Aug. 1980, pp. 11-12; Benson, “Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet,” 26 Feb. 1980, Speeches, 1980, pp. 28, 29; Roger F. Rawson, Utah State Legislator, 49th District, to Gordon B. Hinckley, 25 Nov. 1980, copy in authors’ possession; “Republican Bias Charged at BYU,” Sunstone Review; “Conservatives Target Liberals at BYU,” Sunstone Review, July 1982, p. 7. For Utah’s Republicanism, see Poll, Utah’s History, Table H, pp. 692-93; Ron Hrebenar, “Utah: The Most Republican State in the Union,” The Social Science Journal, Oct. 1981, pp. 103-14; Afton Olson Miles, “Mormon Voting Behavior and Political Attitudes,” Ph.D. diss., New York University, 1978; “Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles,” Ensign, May 1984, pp. 89-90.