THE PORTABLE PULPIT
Muhammad Cassius Clay Ali, the wandering walloper, is off again, this time to Frankfurt, where he is to fight that world-famous German heavy, Karl Whatshisname. Since his status as a potential soldier is still in a sort of legal limbo, Ali left the Kentucky State Appeals Board with a new reason why he should not be drafted. "I have," he told them conscientiously, "been ministering around the country."
Ali made this latest legal feint at a special 3�-hour hearing on the matter in Louisville. Actually, he has been a Muslim minister for two years, Ali said, taking out two hours a day for training. This role was never publicized, he said, but Mr. (Hayden) Covington, his new attorney, noticed it. The board then gave Ali permission to leave the country and retired to ponder the appeal.
The hearing "set me back mentally and makes it harder to train," said Ali immediately after it concluded. Still he would like to fight in two-month cycles—say, Cleveland Williams November 10 in the Houston Astrodome and WBA champion Ernie Terrell, if Terrell is not too old by that time, about January 10. And with that Ali went weakly to a nearby restaurant, where he ministered to a cheese sandwich, steak, lima beans, a salad, lemonade, a pudding and a piece of butterscotch meringue pie.
THE DEADLY GRASS
The tragedy started as just another small summer horse show at the Acredale Ring in College Park, Md. The riders were mainly home-town amateurs, and some of them, while waiting for their classes on the hot Sunday afternoon, let their horses graze. Then suddenly, in the middle of one class, Gaines Tyler's palomino mare Brandy dropped dead in the ring. Within minutes other horses were stricken, and the toll by last weekend was 13 dead. The loss was incalculable, from family pets to $5,000 show horses.
Cause was quickly traced: the grass around the ring had been sprayed with a powerful weed killer containing arsenic. Labels on the containers had clearly warned: "Keep livestock and domestic animals off treated area." But somehow nobody had been informed about the spraying.
Distraught owners blamed the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission; commissioners blamed the manufacturer of the spray, and the manufacturer blamed the grounds keepers—just the sort of foolish, extra-legal round robin that occurs in such cases.
Little good can come now from trying to pin the blame. The grounds should not have been sprayed just before a show. Or, if sprayed, they should have been posted. Either way, the tragedy of College Park, against the background of increasing use of chemicals, will serve as a grim warning for the future.
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