Tuesday, April 28, 1970: Rubin at Honeywell protest

Posted on November 12th, 2006 – 11:58 PM
By Ben Welter

Through protests and shareholder engagement, the Honeywell Project (1968-1990) sought to persuade Honeywell Inc. to start beating cluster bombs into plowshares. Molly Ivins, then a reporter for the Minneapolis Tribune, was on the scene when Jerry Rubin, one of the Chicago Seven, joined peace activist Marv Davidov and poet Robert Bly to lead the charge in Minnesota in April 1970.

Rubin and Davidov, 1970
Marv Davidov, wearing the beret, welcomed a tie-dye-clad Jerry Rubin to the Twin Cities on April 27, 1970. Is that a cigarette wedged in Davidov’s mouth? Well, the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act was still five years away.

Rubin, Crowd
Zero In On
Honeywell

By MOLLY IVINS
Minneapolis Tribune Staff Writer

More than 3,500 people roared to their feet and cheered last night after Jerry Rubin screamed, “We’re gonna make Honeywell stop makin’ bombs and go back to makin’ honey!”

Jerry Rubin, 1976
March 1976: Well on his way to becoming a Wall Street analyst and venture capitalist, a clean-shaven Jerry Rubin was touting his latest book, “Growing Up at Thirty-Seven” (used copies are available on amazon.com for 88 cents).

“A little off, but right on,” commented one Honeywell Project leader behind the speaker’s stand.

Rubin was the last in a series of rousers at the big yippie-rad-pacifist pep rally last night at Macalester College stadium to get ready for the action at the annual stockholders’ meeting today of Honeywell, Inc.

Honeywell Project, a long-term action group dedicated to getting the nation’s 18th-largest defense contractor out of the armaments business, has worked with Proxies for People to get anti-war sympathizers inside the stockholders’ meeting as legitimate shareowners.

Project members, many of whom have studied alternate products for the company for months, will try to present their views at the meeting.

Outside Honeywell headquarters the Honeywell Project supporters without proxies will demonstrate in a parking lot and adjacent public areas.

Rubin’s speech last night, an hour-long stemwinder, covered the evils of war, American education, money, the corporate system and Judge Julius Hoffman.

Judge Hoffman presided over the trial of the Chicago Seven conspiracy where Rubin was a defendant.

Rubin’s description of the trial, particularly his account of what happened to Black Panther leader Bobby Seale there, brought alternate cheers and groans from the crowd.

One young man finally stood up and roared “Riiiiiight ooonn!” as he jumped up and down.

“I think I just incited him to riot,” remarked Rubin.

The audience was equally enthusiastic about poet Robert Bly, who read, “The Teeth-Mother Naked at Last.” The long-awaited poem bitterly contrasts the war in Vietnam to some of the odder “normal” features of American life and children, alive and dead.

Molly Ivins
Reporter Molly Ivins modeled her new red maxicoat on a downtown Minneapolis street in October 1969. “Even my worst enemies have never accused me of being style-conscious,” she wrote. “I honest to God bought the thing because I wanted a warm coat. I’d suffered through two Minneapolis winters in my sister’s friend’s car coat before I saved enough money out of my munificent reporter’s salary to be able to buy a real Yankee coat.”

Charles Pillsbury, 22, a Yale student involved in the Honeywell Project and who is a member of the old Minneapolis milling family, spoke briefly on the ironies of going through life with a brand-name while believing that corporations must go.

Yesterday Honeywell Inc. confirmed that it will allow no more than three persons per bloc of stock to attend today’s annual meeting at 2 p.m.

Individual share owners will be prevented from dividing their shares among more than three proxy (voting rights) holders each. Company representatives have declined to comment on the legal basis for the decision.

The company also announced that the meeting will be in the company cafeteria, which seats about 700, rather than in the smaller room usually used. An overflow crowd is still expected and closed circuit television will be set up so others can see the meeting.

Marv Davidov, a Project leader, said there would be more demonstrations at Honeywell plants in San Francisco and Los Angeles, Calif., Philadelphia, Pa., Boston, Mass., and Detroit, Mich., today as well as at Honeywell sales offices in Paris, France, London, England, and Copenhagen, Denmark.

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