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October 15, 1962
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October 15, 1962


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One of the few local cries of sanity to rise above the terror at the University of Mississippi last week came from a football player. At a peak of the rioting the Rebels' fullback, Buck Randall, leaped in front of a mob of jeering racists, many of them students, near the school's administration building. What he said might not qualify him for NAACP membership, but it made him a rare and courageous bird among Mississippi's natives last week.

"Listen, you guys," Randall hollered. "There's a marshal in there shot in the neck. I was there and saw him. You got to cut it out. It's not worth it, getting a bunch of white boys shot over this. Let's go back to class and work it out some other way. I'm appealing to you!"

Without waiting for a reaction, Randall sprinted through the tear gas to a mound where a Confederate flag had been placed and another section of the mob had gathered. He scrambled to the top and shouted for attention. A rioter stepped forward and asked angrily: "What do you want to say, Buck?" Randall looked at him defiantly and replied: "Listen, you......! You get back in that bunch or I'll whip you right here."

The questioner retreated and the gang around the mound went silent. Randall repeated his appeal, and the students—jolted by the news that a man had been shot—began to drift away. Not many, alas, heard Randall's pleas and not all who did heeded them. But it could be said that on the most disgraceful night in the university's history a member of the football team, which has always been Ole Miss's greatest pride, had saved a tiny fragment of her honor.


As editors constantly confronted with the problem of what to print in limited space, we appreciate the headaches that the editors of Scribner's newly published one-volume Concise Dictionary of American History must have suffered. That is a lot of subject matter to be packed into 1,168 pages. Bearing all this in mind, and considering the fact that the editors put Abner Doubleday in his proper place as the man who never invented baseball, we can even forgive them for omitting any mention of the game of golf. What we find hard to forgive is Editor Wayne Andrews' choice of words in explaining this omission. "We can't include everything," he said in a recent interview, "so we did pieces on the MAIN sports, but left out golf."

The italics are ours.


At the moment Bobby Fischer, the chess player, seems well on his way to becoming one of the world's most widely read authors, with his words now circulating in Dutch, Spanish, Swedish, German and (in a partial and garbled form) in Russian. This week his spirited prose is being translated into Icelandic. All this international ferment arises from the brief statement Bobby recently contributed to this magazine (SI, August 20). In it Bobby said he was not going to play in any future tournaments to determine the challenger for the chess championship of the world: the setup was such that only a Russian would be permitted to emerge as Champion Mikhail Botvinnik's challenger.

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