Chuck Steiger: OK, I believe we're on the air. My name is Chuck Staiger and I'mtalking today with Mr. Leonard Lyles, who is, is the personnel director?
Leonard Lyles: No, my job is Director of Equal Opportunity Affairs. And ofcourse, that comes under the Personnel Department.
CS: In Brown Williamson,
LL: Brown Williamson Tobacco Corporation.
CS: And today's date is May 20, 1977. And this interview is one of a seriesconcerning black history in Louisville, Kentucky. I wonder if we could just begin with getting some general biographical background. Where you were born and raised, your parents, your education and your profession and how you got into it.
LL: Well, you know, it's amazing trying to recall all that actually. Iunderstand that I was born in Nashville, Tennessee. Of course my mother and family moved here when I was three years old. We basically was raised in the 1:00inner city, 16th and Walnut. Of course, we moved several times. We lived with my grandparents around Algonquin Parkway some time after that. I went to elementary school and went to Central High School.
CS: When were your born, by the way?
LL: I was born January 26, 1936.
Central High School, I played athletics there of course. Leaving Central HighSchool, I went on to the University of Louisville, and participated in athletics there. From there to Preston Football. That's kind of real quick the way things kind of developed.
In the beginning I guess, we lived, as I said, in the inner city. We didn't livein the best neighborhood. Of course, the inner city neighborhood, I think you're familiar with most inner cities. They're pretty much the same. A lot of people, in many cases the housing conditions are poor. But I was fortunate enough to 2:00have a fairly good structured family. My mother did quite a bit to try to help me out. Her name is Alice Lyles and she lives on Jefferson Street right now. My father was a laborer. His name is Harrod Lyles. Fortunately or unfortunately, we didn't have all of the things I think that is needed today, particularly today, maybe then it wasn't so bad to develop and build the kinds of things that most kids need. It was just me and my sister. I have a sister names Doris Lyles, who now she resides in Atlanta, Georgia. It was not easy growing up. It was quite difficult when I started work at an early age, around 12 years old. I was shining shoes or working at the car wash. Spent quite a bit of time doing construction type work. I was fortunate enough to have enough interest to stay in school during the whole time, and of course, I'm sure if it was not for 3:00athletics, I probably would have fell by the wayside years ago. So, that basically is the beginning in terms of Leonard Lyles coming to Louisville, Kentucky and moving on from there to (inaudible)
CS: I'm curious you mention, your dad was a laborer, and you did someconstruction work. In his experience, if you remember, and with yours, were there any problems with blacks getting into unions, did that prevent any of them from. . . ?
LL: Of course. There's always been a problem. I think even today there's stillsomewhat of a problem in some way. Although then, the best you could hope for, I think, without any education or anything else; even sometimes when you had the education you were denied the opportunity to work in various classifications. But of course, my father being just an average person, the best he could get was a job as a laborer. Either carrying brick or mortar or working as a helper, 4:00etcetera. Going from there, I think if you observed your parents doing this kind of work, and that's all you see and that's all they do, and if things don't improve substantially, many cases the youngster falls into the same old stereotyping type of job classifications and they grow up and do the same thing and this repeats itself. I think this problems is the start of problems that's affected the black community in terms of being able to upgrade and get into some of the higher levels of jobs where you can earn, and of course get equal treatment.
CS: You mentioned briefly, in one of our other interviews, Dr. Parrish indicatedthat the administration building at UofL, where the arch is, the brick arch is, that was done by black brick layers. I'm not sure of the date. But, over the 5:00years, when the unions came in, blacks were really excluded from doing that type of work. I didn't know if your father had run into that.
LL: Not really. He wasn't a brick layer. He was a laborer. He did more of theservicing out to the apprentice, or what you might call the craft type individual. But that's very true. In the beginning they laid back the. . . I guess maybe he could have been trained if he could have had the opportunity to become a brick layer, but that's basically what he did. But of course, we understand, historically blacks have had skills and the ones who were imported in that had the iron trade, or knew about masonary work, what have you, I assume that that work was done by them to help develop the country, in terms of free labor, or whatever kind of labor it was. But then as this became a higher paying skill, and it got organized, of course they were exempted from it. This has 6:00always been a problem in that type of thing. I also understand there were other areas where minorities or blacks had input and in roads as far as hotel servicing and, well, you name it, it was there. But, that got lost, or strayed or stolen, as time went on, if it involved economics, of course. But I'm sure he had some difficulty because basically you were looked at as a laborer and that's pretty much the classification, and most minorities or blacks were concentrated in those classifications as laborers. And that still is true today. I think if you look at most organizations, you'll find a heavy concentration of blacks at the opt-tos' and laborers categories, compared to the officials and managers and technicians and professionals. They historically, this is one of the problems, I'm not saying that it's all the problem, but it certainly is one of the problems when the people have been denied the opportunity to train and learn and develop in those areas and of course, give their kids that same opportunity in 7:00terms of a model for the kids to see their father doing these kinds of jobs. Then that tends to have people exempted. So this is some of the problems that we still have, I think, to some degree.
CS: We talked with Mr. Price at Mammoth Life, and we were talking about some ofthe problems that a black owned insurance company has in getting new business, especially when the majority of their business is black. He indicated something that maybe you could comment on. When they would try to finance, say invest insurance money in a shopping center or a building of some kind, hotel, they did not run in the same social circles as some of the people in the white community who would be doing these kind of projects, which was kind of a handicap. Have you found that to be true.
LL: Yes and no. I think today you just can't live in the black community. I8:00think you have to expand yourself and be flexible and work with people who can be of assistance to you in whatever field or endeaver you're going into. But there's no question that if you don't know the right people, or the people who deal with the high finace who can give you the kind of interest rates that will help you get started, or where you can get the tax benefits or get the operating capital or the kinds of knowledge that's necessary to be successful, that's always been a problem with the enturpenur or the black who's interested in developing a future business, is the fact that so often things are over looked, mislaid, but when the black decides to develop something, the city, or somebody comes up with rules and regulations that prohibits the minority or the black person from being successful. I found some problems like that. I've had to deal 9:00with race issue in some instances in developing my shopping center.
CS: This is on Broadway?
LL: Twenty-eighth and Broadway. Lyles Plaza. Gentleman wanted to talk to meingress and egress, and I said, "My friend, you know, I can take you right now to several centers on Shelbyville Road as well as Poplar Level Road and other places, where the ingress and egresses 15 times worse than what I'm proposing here, and for you to even consider disapproval based on the information you're giving me is just ridiculous."
CS: (inaudible) the entrance to the shopping center?
LL: Yes, that's what I'm talking about. For automobiles, trucks, what have you.I have one, two, three, four, five, six different ways to get in and out. And I know of several places that only have two. You can take Farnsberry's right there, I hate to use their name, but that's the name of the store in this little strip center on Shelbyville Road. There's only two ways in and you can't hardly back up without bumping another car. So, it was difficult for me to deal with 10:00that situation and I had lay on the line. I think so often you have to do your homework and put people on the spot to explain to them why are you being so difficult in this situation. Is it because I'm a minority or black, or just what is the reason here? Yes, I can understand progress, you certainly want to develop things that are better than what you've given the people the right to develop in the past. But still, I think that my statements and my information was valid, and it proved to be so. But, it's just the agonizing time that it takes to convience people that you're trying to do something worth wild. So these are the kinds of problems I think that a number of blacks run into because historically, I think maybe, some of the city fathers, or people who are involved in giving you permits, etcetera, are not used to blacks coming to them with ideas and trying to develop and do something in the community. As long as it's run down, and it's raggedy and underdeveloped and the people who own the housings and so forth, keep it that way, fine. And they say that's what they 11:00want, that's what they like, but you try to change it, all of a sudden it becomes an economical valus and people tend to say, "Well, what's going on down there?" They prefer to say, "Well, that's the West End, you know how that is." But as soon as you talk about developing, progress, all of a sudden everyone wants to put restrictions on you. I think these are some of the things that make it difficult. It's no different, and I must say this, the program in the paper, you might have seen this program, they're talking about you can purchase a house for a dollar. But yet, you have to live in the house and they showed some figures as what it's going to cost to renovate the damn thing. I said, "Well what in the world is this?" Because I could probably do it, and some other contractors could do it, but they don't want to live in the house. But they could probably buy, for a dollar, ten, fifteen houses in one block. Revamp them or rehab them or what have you, and rent them out or sale them. But when you tie a guys hands and say you've got to live in the house for a period of three years or, you're going to have to remodel it. You're talking about 40, 20, 60, 80 thousand dollars. I forget what those figures were, but they were high, just out 12:00landish. Whereas, the program should stretch out and say, "Ok, fine, we're talking about getting a house for a dollar. We're talking about anyone who's capable of developing, can do it. We're talking about works from the program where you can work with the people who supply the wood, the masonary, the plumbing, and so forth, and would give you a break all the way down the line. Therefore, you could get something done. But, that's a slap in the face for someone to say, "Here's what this is, go and do." Then turn right around and restrict anybody who would be capable of doing it from doing it. That's just the kind of thing I'm talking about. That kind of program, I don't want to say too much about it, but I feel I had to say it based on the kind of things we're talking about here now in terms of development and in terms of making sure that the total community, as well as neighborhoods, develop and be viable and be able to assist one another and have the kind of relationships around our city that we all should be thinking about. Rather than thinking in terms of restrictions, and thinking in terms of stereotyping people as to the way it used to be, the way it is, and not trying to invest and explore and find out why.
CS: Do you think anything is. . . .the situation may be getting better? I know13:00this is a recent example that you just gave, but in the past, if you developed your shopping center today or. . . ?
LL: On an individual basis, I'd say yes. On an individual basis, it's gettingbetter. Collectively, I'd say no, in terms of the minority of the black group as a group of people. They are affected, I think, with the economical slap in the face more than anybody in this country. I'm talking in terms of education, I'm talking in terms of housing, I'm talking in terms of pay. I think now the median income for black is three times less than that of white. I think the figures now will reflect figures all the way back from 1953. So, this is '77, so if it's as bad as it is now as it was in '53, in terms of the masses, then I don't see any growth. Yes, you can talk about growth when you talk about someone being appointed to the Supreme Court, or the political situation, where you have a 14:00large number of black politicians and all that. There's lives (inaudible), and you could point to that. But, when you talk about the total well being of the black community as part of the total community, I'd have to say that I'm not sure that that much progress has been made.
CS: Along those lines, I have a quote here from a book that I was reading. It'sentitled From Slavery to Freedom. And one passage said that ". . . during the years of the negro revolution," and they were talking about the '60's, "it was widely assumed that the vigorous thrust for equality had begun to close the economic gap between Negros and Whites. The assumption was entirely erroneous, caused in part by the opening of a few widely publicized opportunities, that can best be described as massive tokenism. Economic differences failed to increase, and in 1963, the unemployment rate of Negros was 114 percent higher than whites."
You would say that the same situation exists today?15:00
LL: That's exactly what I'm talking about. I think you can look at figures and Ithink they'll show you. The Fifties and the Sixties and then the Seventies, and you can relate that information and you see that even though you and I can sit here and point to individuals who've done well. As you might say tokenism, or whatever you might want to call it. And they're used as model, etcetera. But overall, when you look at the total group, in terms of the numbers of blacks in this country, I guess about 30 million, or whatever it is. The numbers of the blacks in the city of Louisville, you're talking about maybe twenty-five percent. When you're looking at it from that point of view, I'd say about two percent or three percent are doing fairly well, and the rest are still fumbling in the mucky clay, I would say. So, until the total segment can get some relief, in terms of an effective group, only then do I see real progress. And I think 16:00those numbers will bear out what I'm saying, and until it's looked at like that, in terms of a martial plan for the cities, where you have high population among blacks. If we can rebuild Europe, surely we can do something about our cities and give people a hand up, not a hand out, so they can participate and be recognized and become a part of the main stream and make a contribution. I think until all of us recognize that, blacks as well as whites, and particular whites who control the economical situation or the political scene. Until that's recognized and dealt with, I don't think we'll have a healthy situation until that time.
CS: I don't know if this is going to be a fair questions, you mentioned amartial plan for the cities. If you could develop a martial plan for the cities, what do think the three or four top priorities goals should be? Education, jobs. 17:00. . ?
LL: Well it's difficult to say, but I think that the first thing would have tobe jobs. Because without income, without profit and people producing things, you can't do much else. Education is fine, but it depends on what kind of education you're talking about. I think if everybody's working, irregardless of what kind of job they have, if they're paying taxes and they're working, and they have something to occupy their minds and something to do, well I think that's good. I think education will come form that because most education costs money, or there's some kinds of programs that don't cost money, but any how, I just say that the jobs and a decent place ot live would come first on my agenda because generally, I think most people have common sense and mother-with, therefore they know how to survive. But if one doesn't have a job, or doesn't have any outlook of getting a job, it's pretty hard for that individual to believe in anything. I think in any kind of plan, one would have to take a hard look at the problems 18:00and try to identify the problems. Once they're identified, then set the plan into motion in terms of what's the high priorities, and try and work on that, maybe on a block to block basis. I think that in this city, there's some kind of way the private enterprise and the banks could get together and talk about it in terms of taking a block, or taking 'X' number of houses per unit, meaning the bank or meaning the industrial group, and deciding on forming some type of cooperative and saying we are going to do this. Then, of course, if there was some federal matching money, or city or government matching money, and go along with that, and either rent or sale of just redo the whole thing. Of course, set up a staff of people to train and educate and deal with beautification, and that sort of thing. And education, as far as how to live, and health, and welfare and all that.
CS: Kind of maintain (inaudible).
LL: That's correct. And I think if that sort of thing was put into motion, then19:00they could do a pilot project in one neighborhood, and see how that worked out. Get it going and get the people excited and get it working. Have neighborhood captains and so forth. Then, kind of move from that neighborhood to the next neighborhood, and just going like that. Keep the ball rolling and have meetings and whatever. I think it could be done. I don't know all the ins and outs of it. I understand that the cost factors are there, but I think if everybody would pitch in, I think we could eliminate some of the cost factors. It's no different than if I wanted to build a house and wasn't able to do it. And then the city said, "Here's a house, we're going to give you a piece of property, now you're going to have to do the rest." Well, that's tough, because if I don't have the resources or know-how, I can't do anything. It's like you giving me a car, and I can't drive. But I think if you go all the way down the line and deal, as I said before, with the people who supply the wood and the bricks and the pipes and electrical and etcetera. Everybody says we're all going to do your part. Whatever it takes to get the city developed. Whatever it takes, we're going to 20:00do it together. We're going to help each other and get this thing on first base. I think if that kind of attitude existed, and if someone would call in all these kinds of people. Say, "Look, here's our problem. We've got these problems in our city totally. Now, here's the target areas. Here's the first part and the second part, and here's what we want to do. We are going to require a lot from everybody. We're going to require the blacks to do such and such. We're going to require the industrial people to do this. We're going to require the financial institution to do this. We're going to require, or ask, or solicite your help. For the supply and service people to do such and such." Then give everybody a task. Then try and go from that point of view in terms of what can be done. Don't start talking about, well, we got to pay taxes. Well if we do that, we're always going to do this. . . .You give me a house for a dollar. Then you turn around and tell me to live in it and renovate it, and then give me a time limit. Then giving me figures that it's going to cost $40,000.00 to rehab it. Heck, no. I'm a poor man. I just can buy it for a buck. Now you're going to tell me I've 21:00got to spend $40,000.00. Where am I going to get it from? I don't care if you tell me about three percent money, one percent money, it makes no difference. That's a tough task. I think it can be done if enough people will sit down and it make it a part and look at in terms of a project.
CS: The economy's a scale, and buy in bulk?
LL: That's correct. And you could do a pilot project by utilizing one block. Icould find any block. I thought of it myself, I thought of developing. But I know I have to go to the bank. I have to go borrow money. I'll probably not live long enough to see it to be a reality. It would take a lot of time, a lot of effort, and a lot of help. If the banks can't work with me, or if the supply source people can't work with me, and the people who are going to live there don't work with me, it just can't be done. But I think it could be done if enough people would get behind it. I think a lot of things you try and do, like the inner city development down there and so forth, there's a lot of problems tied to that and a lot of reasons why that's not working. I'm not one to know 22:00everything, but, I think a lot of times people do things just to get ahead, or get their name there, and then they move from that to something else, but never complete the project. So, I think the key is to try and look at the city as a whole, and look at the community as a whole, and look at neighborhoods. Then decide what can be done. I know that Butchertown, or where ever it is, the people are aggressive, and they're doing a hell of a job. They've gotten some direction and they aren't waiting for anybody, they're just going out and doing this thing. But some neighborhoods are more depressed than that. You have people who don't have the leadership, or maybe, they don't have the know-how or the contacts, etcetera. So, it's much tougher for them to get started. But, on a small scale, I have been able to observe home owners in the west end making some effort. I'm not talking about the west end where you have the affluent black, I'm talking about just in the area between East Street, where I am. I've been able to observe people making all kinds of efforts to restore and rebuild. I 23:00think many things could happen. I've had companies to give me paint, or give me certain things. And I say, "Ok, fine, I know somebody who could use that." I say, "Look, we get some help, get some of the guys on the corner, or whoever can swing a brush, and get some supervision, and I'll give you the paint if you do this." So these are the kinds of things I think can be done in a big scale. Someone would head the committee. You'd have officers, you'd have accounting, the whole bit. Decide on how to get it done. Then I think you generate more activity and more people would decide to join in and they could see something happen. I noticed that happening just between East Street. I, of course, developed a center there. Took me five years to do it. Across the street is this little, old, run down place, a restaurant. I'd like to purchase it but the guy wants too much for it. He won't fix it up. The lady who's renting it from him, it's a restaurant, she's trying. She's doing the best she can. The guy who cleans up for me, cleans up around her place. The guy opened a small store across from my center, so, he's doing something. I noticed at Two Turns, over 24:00there, they purchased, National Distillers, and they're going to put some warehousing in there. So, they're developing that. Dr. James, up the street, she's put her medical center there. There's the roller rink up the street. There's a little ice cream place. Church's Chicken has come in. So, a lot of things can happen. If you look at Church's, that means that there's 5, 6, 8, 10 jobs for black kids in the community to get those jobs. What I'm saying is, it can happen. It's happening on a small scale. I notice a lot of the houses in between, the residential, they're trying. But, you've got some property there, that's just sitting there, that's owned by people who are supposedly responsible people, but there's no pressure on them to do anything. So, they're not concerned about it. If they would all just give it to me, I'd be happy to try and find other people who wanted to help and participate and put them in. If I could get other help to remodel, what have you, I know guys who I think would help at a reasonable cost. So this could be done. I don't mean me, so much, but I'm just saying that because I see the problem. I'm dealing with it the best I 25:00can, but you've got to have a financial base before you can do anything. You've got to be able to help yourself before you can help someone else. These are some of the things that I see from a point of view, and that's one reason why I'm back here in Louisville, because I like the city. I know a lot of people, I went to school here. I feel like I want to make a mark here, I want to leave something when I pass on that shows that at least there's one man who tried, who made some effort to bring services to the community and jobs, and be a taxpayer. And of course, be productive. So often it's very hard to get recognition in your own city, where you feel that you have some credibility. People tend to look at you and look at the negative side. If you have difficulties or problems, they blow it out of proportion. For what reason, I don't know. Maybe that's just the nature of a human being. I hate to believe that. These are many of the problems that you face when you're out there dealing and trying to move forward. So 26:00that's just some of the things that I see on the surface. I think it's going to take a lot of recognition from a lot of people before we can get the job done.
CS: Maybe we can back track a little bit and start from when you went fromCentral to U of L, through the football program, which you majored in. Did you have aspirations to go in and try pro football at that time?
LL: No, I was not. I went to the University of Louisville. I really didn't wantto go there. I was going to go to a black school because then I wasn't. . . like for me, I never had been into an integrated scene before. I went to Central High School, where it was all black school. Of course, the university was very scary for me.
CS: That was just recently it integrated too, wasn't it?
LL: Yes, it was. There's a lot to be said about that too, but anyway.
CS:: What year did you begin at Louisville>
LL: Fifty-four. I graduated from high school.27:00
CS: The municipal college was just in '51.
LL: That was a little ahead of me. With letters, and flack in the paper aboutthat, and of course the reassigning of teachers, and that sort of thing, there's only one person that was able to be hired, I understand one or two, whatever it was. But anyway, I wasn't even thinking about going to college. I was a pretty good athlete in high school, at Central. Then the University thought I could get in school, and they thought I could make it with some help. They said Leonard, if you come out, we'll recruit three more blacks, so you won't feel lonely, and (inaudible) fellow who didn't have much resources, so therefore, we'll give you a place to live on campus. No grat, of course, because in those times they 28:00weren't giving up anything, not that I wanted that sort of situation. I think about all you could get was laundry money then. Anyway, they made the offer, but I didn't have any real aspirations of going there. Football was just way, way out of sight. I was thinking maybe when I graduated from high school I would go in the services. Anyway, I looked at it and thought about it, and thought I would give it a try. I talked to my mother and so forth. I went on the University, and thank goodness for people out there that had an interest in my welfare, and one named Dr. Wood. He's been with me through thick and thin, and he's still there now if I needed him. We've kind of got to know each other real well. He was always one to be there if I needed help. Some other people at the University, Mrs. Inberger, who was an English teacher who stayed by me and helped me and flunked me, and said, "You should take it over." That helped. I realized my short comings based on the fact that we didn't have this structure from the beginning. Without that kind of help of other people, Coach Dan White, 29:00and Mr. King, and many others who took some kind of interest which helped me to develop and think that I could make it. After getting in the University, being there for a few years, I began to get a feel for it and I liked it. I had no problem going to class. I never was late, I always would go to class. I wasn't sharpest person in the world, but I would try. Based on that, I think the people accepted me as an athlete who was attentive and did all he could do. Therefore, I was able to get through school, with a lot of help. Remedial training, and classes, and of course, I married my wife, Faith Lyles, or Faith Wilson, (inaudible) my senior there and she by my sophomore year. She gave me a lot of help. She's pretty sharp and without her help I would have some difficulty. Anybody I needed help from, I'd go to them and ask. I was able to graduate on time. That was a big plus for me. I was playing pretty good ball and I was a 30:00pretty fast guy in track. I started getting these inquiries about playing profession football. (Inaudible) there's something else I could do, and they were talking the decent money. I'd never seen that kind of money before, so I said, "Well, maybe I'll give it a try." I decided to try professional football and fortunately it worked out for me and it helped me to go on and do what I've had to do to this point. That's more or less one of the foundations of my life, is athletics. I'd have to say that and it kind of hurts me a little bit to look at the situation now in terms of the athletic program in the city, in terms of what's being talked about is cutting the budget. Maybe there's something to that, but I think athletics, the way I feel about it is it's certainly necessary for some men, because that's probably, as bad as it might sound, the only thing that keeps them in school. I'd like to believe that every athlet is concerned about his acedimic background. He should be. Every time I talk to kids, I talk about that. Based on my experience and knowing that the two go together. So 31:00often, that can be a foundation for a kid to build an interest as to why he should have the other as well as the athletic background. So that pretty much gets us into the university. Of course, in the pro ball, which, as I said, that wasn't a plan of action. I didn't say, "Ok, I'm going to prepare myself for professional football." Like most kids do today. Most kids today know about the money, the economics of it, and what they can do, and all the competition.
LL: . . . Coach Wood and Coach Camp and Coach Dunn, Coach Tribue, and Dr.Hellman, and all the people out there, they were concerned about me being successful and they were concerned about the four of us graduating. Because of 32:00the fact that it was first, and maybe we could say a token thing. The eyes of the city were on the school to see what was going to happen. Fortunately, we were fairly successful in having a pretty good ball club. We went to the Sun Bowl that one year.
CS: Did the other three fellows graduate too?
LL: Yes, three of the four graduated. That was a good mark, I think, which gavesome credibility to the situation of the model bringing blacks to the university, and of course, living on campus, which was all a first, and getting used to and some sinking time, and all that. But, it wasn't easy. It was quite difficult, but I'd say it worked out. I'd have to say that I think the program was successful.
CS: How did the faculty accept black students at that time, black athelets?
LL: There wasn't that many students, there wasn't that many athelets. I thinkthey could kind of operate (inaudible) from us and didn't have to see us at all. I think they were able to deal with it. And, fortunately, I'd have to say that 33:00the people there were older people. The students and maybe they were not the kind of black that they deal with today, who could somewhat be more aggressive and want more and expect more and demand his rights better with the black student affairs and all that. Then that wasn't thought of in that sense. We're there, we were trying to struggle to stay there and we were trying to make it. You didn't have the numbers, so consequently, you were tolerated or accepted, which ever way you want to look at that. I think the people who were there were more older people, more mature.
CS: The students now or the. . . ?
LL: The students, right. Older black students. Some of the young kids fromCentral would go there, and high schools, but you only had one school to feed the school at the time, one high school, basically. You had some people from the services and some I guess had gone municipal and they were trying to get their paper to get out to get a job. They weren't concerned about the social 34:00activities. See what I mean, trying to get through school. That was a different situation, I think, than it is now. Now you go to college, you want the same thing that every body else wants. You want to have a good time, you want to go to sororities and fraternities and participate in all the activities. Then, just to get there, because it was an opening door process, more or less. It was difficult times, but you kind of, more or less, maybe accepted your place. I should say that, I think. This was kind of the way it was. Today, kids won't take that. They want the whole piece, they don't want just part of it. I think we were so busy, wrapped up in trying to make it, didn't have time to think in terms of what we should get. It's what we could make out of what we had. I'd say a percentage of the instructors were fair and favorable. I think they were educated enough to understand that if the school administration were going to 35:00accept blacks, then they had a responsibility, an obligation to at least make an effort to be fair. I don't know what the attitude was like or what the deep emotional feelings were. The main thing at the time was to at least be treated fairly as possible. I don't recall too many problems because I was an athelete. I did well, and of course, when I did well, that was a mark for the school. So, the school got mentioned in the press and they knew who I was. I think based on just the athletic ability alone, the felt I was Mr. Who's Who. Not in the sense that they were going to have me out for dinner or that we going to introduce me to their neighbors, but at least, well, that's our boy. He's done well, he's Ok, if all of them are like him, fine. So, you had to kind of accept that at that point in time. That's pretty much the way it was I think. 36:00
CS: Were you there when Johnny Unitas was?
LL: My first year was John's last year. He was graduating. I played one yearwith John.
CS: I didn't know that he might have influenced you going to Baltimore then.
LL: No, not really. Baltimore drafted me, number one draft choice. I knew thatJohn was there and I guess maybe I wanted to play with John in the back of mind. At the time, if you were drafted number one by somebody, you pretty much accepted that because you knew you were going to get a pretty good. . . .The economical situation in terms of pay would be much better than going to a team where you might want to go, and you were drafted number twenty-seven. It was pretty much laid out, but of course, I knew John fairly well in the times and the days that he went to U of L. It was good to go to a ball club where at least you knew somebody. John and I are good friends today. We communicate quite a bit when we have an opportunity. John and several of the ballplayers, I was able to develop good relationships. As a matter of fact, on Sundays, we didn't have very much. My mother was just a normal, working person. No professional or anything like that, just a service worker, just a job. But on Sundays, of course the cafeteria wasn't open at the University, and she'd always fix dinner for me and whoever I'd bring by. She'd fix a lot of food and I would take John and Jack Mead and George Cain and Andy Walker and whoever wanted to go. We'd go by and we would eat. Even today, when I see John, he'll ask about my mother and he never has forgotten the time when we'd sit there and eat the beef, and the greens, and the cornbread, and whatever we had. That was the time in life, I think, people will always remember. No matter how far you get up the scale, I think you can recall the good times. I do quite often.
CS: That's good, you have some good memories. How was life in pro football for you?
LL: It was tough. Not being the greatest pass catcher in the world, I went to a37:00team like the Baltimore Colts, where at that time you had to play flanker as well as running back. Had a hard time adjusting. I had the speed and the size and all the other things, but I couldn't adapt to the system. I don't feel that I was given full opportunity to adapt, understanding that, to some degree, because they needed to win now. I don't hold any malice against the Colts for releasing me '58, after the '58 season, during the '59 season, because I was unable to perform to the expectations of the coach, and I'm sure some of the players. That didn't discourage me that much, it did some. And, of course, I was picked up by the San Francisco Forty-Niners in'59 and '60. I went out there and played two seasons. Thank goodness for people like Jack Christenson, who was 38:00able to determine that I had some ability. He worked with me as a defensive back. I played some offense, but I never was able to do the kinds of things that the pros wanted me to do when you play as an offensive back. There's always some other good backs too, so it never quite worked out. But, Jack was able to look at me and see some capabilities that I couldn't even see or the head coach or the scouts even. Jack started working with me on an individual basis, after practice and any time. Thank goodness for that, because that was the beginning of my professional career. I'd say in '59 and '60 and '61.
CS: Move from the offense to the defense?
LL: To the defense, right. Then, went back to Baltimore, I was a veteran, and Ilived in California. Live styles a bit different there. I was able to build some confidence. I kind of realized who I was and what I could do. When I got back to Baltimore I was kind of a veteran, I was seasoned and I was tough. I couldn't be 39:00discouraged. I had the fight and determination and the mental toughness, and that's when I broke in, when I got to Baltimore. Baltimore was tough because it was the kind of ball club that wasn't going to carry over six blacks. If you had seven, then someone's got to go. At that time, the seventh person had to room by himself. But, as time moved on, and of course, Don Shula came in as coach. Then, he said, "Well, here's the rooming list, and this is the way it is." I looked up and I was rooming with (inaudible), a white. It didn't make any difference, that was it. So therefore if I room with you, we'd walk to breakfast together, cause we get up and we got to go to practice at the same time. But if you segregate the players, then everybody assumes that's the way it ought to be. That's the kind of thing we live with. We pray together, ate together, but we didn't associate, and have a social life and that sort of thing. I think it's not true today. See it somewhat different. There may be some things that don't quite always stack up, but I think overall. . . .
CS: Did Don Shula change the policies?
LL: Yes, he changed the policies and the system as far as (inaudible). And I40:00think that's some of the reasons why we won the championship in the years that we were there. Of course, we did win the world championship in '58, my first year. But we had the talent and we had the people to do it. I can remember many tough times, scrambles and problems. And blacks kind of stayed together, you know, six of us kind of paled around together and talked about the problems. We tolerated the situation. If you were good, you were alright, you know, you are a good man. Let's just go get it done, make a touchdown for us, etc., etc. Which is fine too. But then it took a long time to build the social atmosphere. Not that you need that, you can get along with out it. It's happened that way for years. But, that only solidifies the bond between people on a team, I think, when you have everything together you're able to communicate totally. Families, wives, players, etc., I think that's been built up over the years. But it wasn't easy playing professional football. It was tough. You had to play out there at 41:00about 65, or 70, 80 percent, because you were hurt most of the time. Played a lot of exhibition games, about five. The season was relatively shorter, had about 12, 14 games. Competition was pretty keen. I had to learn a lot of things in professional football. You don't have any friends, you're out there trying to win a job. I think that it was difficult for a black to some degree, but then depending on his ability to break in or to be productive on the ball club, that had a lot to do with his plight. At any rate, a lot that changed. Individual basis, and a team by team basis, things are somewhat different. I can see a big difference between the Baltimore Colts in 1958, '59, and the San Francisco Forty-Niners when I went out there to play for them in '59, '60 and '61. Totally different atmosphere between feeling of the ball players, the attitude, the 42:00association, the social life and so forth. Understandably so, looking at the location of the two teams. I know one time at Bullhorn, seating arrangements were segregated. I don't know if it's ever been that way in California. Maybe it was, but when I went out there, it was real nice.
CS: It was integrated with the Forty-Niners at San Francisco, and segregated inBaltimore when you first began.
LL: In the beginning, right. You felt more a part of in San Francisco. You feltlike you were a part of a team. The guys were free swingers, you know, we got along real well. Baltimore was a little clickish, a little tight, edgy. Not to just. . .I won't say that because it may not sound right. Because everybody that's one race or another, might not always be the same or have the attitude. But you had groups of people on the ball club that had their own little 43:00interests. That was some times a difficult part. Out in San Francisco, Bob SaintClaire, our captain, he's hell of a guy. He just made everybody happy. He was, we're all going, or whatever it was, Bob would take care it. John Brody, hell of a guy. It was out of control in Baltimore. The contrast, the difference, guys would go to their club, or their place, and Baltimore, it's more. . . I don't like to say Southern, but the atmosphere was the way it was. Only in the years when I got back in '62, '63, '64 did we get invited to the Italian place to eat, or did we start working as a unit in terms of if something was going on, the extra curricular, then everybody went. Or you got the message, someone told you or made sure you got there. You got recognition on whatever it was. So it took time.
CS: (inaudible) change.44:00
LL: Oh yeah, sure, change.
CS: Pro football is a funny thing you mentioned, you have to build as unit, as ateam to win, yet in the very beginning of the season, you're competing for the job, and I guess all through. Plus, people get traded and are leaving all the time. Did all those things perhaps hurt or maybe contribute to race relations?
LL: Oh no, no. That happened, that was always happening, that was just procedure.
CS: Part of the life?
LL: Of course. It's only bad when a group of people are always the ones to betraded or let go, or dealt with if you got hurt and didn't get the treatment. They'll say, "Well, you've got to get well faster or we've got to let you go." That's the only time the system broke down. The same thing applied to everybody. You understood that if you didn't make it, you're job was competeing against you, and it was your job against my job. Tough thing to understand is when I was 45:00better than you and the majority preferred you and not me. Then they would let me go, and here I am, and you're still there. That's happened in many cases, not only with blacks, with whites too. That was more prevalent then. If you had a black that was borderline, or he wasn't on the first team, but he was better than the guy on the second team. The guy on the second team had been there 3 or 4 years and every body liked him, he was part of the click. So, let the black go, keep old Bill.
CS: That's the way it was then, has it kind of changed now?
LL: It's more competitive and it's changed a lot of things. The coach is lookingfor the guy who can win for him. It doesn't make much difference what I think. In many areas you see blacks dominating athletics. Although, if you look at it closely, you'll find that even though they're dominating athletics in terms of percentage of representation, you'll find that by classification, by position, it's still certain positions that are laid out for blacks and to compete against each other and there are positions that's for whites. That's the only other 46:00avenue. Then, of course, when you get into broadcasting and you get into management and ownership, you also get a skewed situation where there's no participation. These are the kinds of things, I think, that you could talk about now, but then it was pretty much difference in terms of not letting the players, or maybe more or less, segregating one another. But I've seen a big change in athletes over the years. It's much different now.
CS: Were you able now, while you were playing at Baltimore, and I gather you(inaudible) to Louisville, were you able to keep your ties with Louisville and begin building any type of business interests.
LL: Not business interest, but job wise, yes. I was playing in Baltimore and I'dalways come during the off season. I worked in Louisville for several companies here and there. When I got the job with Brown-Williamson, back in '61, '62, '63, whatever it was there, then I realized that football wasn't everything. I could see myself building a future, working in the company. Learning the various 47:00departments and the activities and the tasks. Then I realized there was money to be made. Looking at various things that I wasn't even aware of, it was not different than this offer you saw in the paper not too long ago. These people that showed 100 of the top 10 salaries in the United States, what it was, they were making like a million something a day. I forget all these embarrassing (inaudible). You wouldn't think an executive or a company official that that kind of money existed. You felt, well, being black and football, sports, that's where the money is. But, that's not where the money is. That's just a place where you can maybe get some recognition, or publicity, and make a few dollars. I began to realize that. Then as I worked in the company and learned more information, got more involved in business and management, I realized that I could do more. I began to explore possibilities of land development, ownership, and this sort of thing. It wasn't easy. It's still not easy, it's just tough. It's tough for anybody, not necessarily black, but it's tough for anybody to be 48:00a business manager or to be a business owner, property owner. The thing that helped me I think is the fact that I realized early and I started every off season working in real estate or working as a sales rep for somebody. Then, when I got with B and W, I liked it and I decided to just throw the towel in here and work every year. I'd come back after the season was over and go back to work. I've been able to build a career at Brown-Williamson and I'm real pleased with that.
CS: Did you have to have any academic training in business or did you have any?
LL: No, I did not. I majored in Economics and Sociology and minored in PhysicalEducation. Most of mine I learned in the street. I learned from reading. I learned from people that were already in business. I learned from trial and error. I think I'm fairly sharp, or knowledgable. I don't know all the techniques of, maybe of anything, but I think I'm able to listen and observe and 49:00read. I think I know how to make a dollar and the bottom line is cash flow, or tax credit, or whatever you want to call it. Therefore, when I see something, I try to look at the bottom line, or the outcome or how could it be productive, and whatever it takes to get that done. That's the things I kind of zero in on. I was able to learn from people who had had the experience or people who had been in business before, who took the time to sit down with me. I think a big part of management in business is participation and doing the job as a manager. Figures aren't difficult, they're right there. You either make $100,000 and you spend $200,000 making $100,000, or you spend $50,000 and make $100,000. If you're going to spend 43% to make 70%, that's good. As long as your sales exceed 50:00your purchases, I think you're doing pretty good. But then, you've got to also look at your expenses and your labor. When you get all that away, you look at your net effect and you got some cash left over, then you say, "Well, I think I'm doing pretty good." And I would have to say that what is, is that simple, I think. Try to make that happen is difficult. Even isolate the problem and find out why you lost money or why did I purchase this piece of equipment versus that one, which one is going to last the longest? What can I expense, what can't I expense? Those kinds of things, once you get a handle on that and learn how to buy and sale and of course accommodate people if you have that kind of service business, then I think one can be successful. I think historically, blacks have that in their background, but it's probably lost to some degree. I think there's a rich culture going on, and anyone can do it. I don't mean blacks, but I think, 51:00it's just historically blacks have not done it. I think in the beginning there was something that hadn't been nourished and (inaudible). I think if I can do it and encourage other people to do it and my children can follow me, and so forth, then you get a generation of people that's able to put things together. I realized early that there was more to making money, or there's more to life, or there's more to everything than just playing football.
CS: How did you get hooked up with Brown and Williamson?
LL: The manger, general manager of the Baltimore Colts. I was talking to him oneday and I was telling him that I was interested in some type of job in industry or what ever. In many cases the head office of the Colts, or colleges, they're trying to find jobs for the athletes. Now they have a full program, I understand, where they try to locate athletes in the various businesses. They 52:00have a program to try to train or fit people here or there, if they're so inclined to do so. At that time there wasn't much of that. But, I talked to this guy up there who happened to know and officer here and he wrote him a letter. I came in for an interview. Nothing happened. The next year I came back for an interview. Nothing happened. I continued to come and I continued to call until they called me in. We (inaudible) "Well, you know we can't pay you the kind of money you made in playing football." I said, "Fine, I understand."
"We don't have no place for you really, but we'll try you under this guy." Andthey kind of forced me into an area with a guy, (inaudible), college sales, or what you might call a college program, (inaudible) type program. I worked for Joe and things went real well. I enjoyed it and didn't mind the work. I think they might have felt I was going to fall by the wayside because of the pittance that I was making. I always did save my money, and I was able to survive off of 53:00that. The next year I'd come back and I'm get home, I'd say January, December. January 1st I'd be at the door, "What's my assignment for this year?" I think some people used to make bets that they probably won't see him for a few months, he's out having a good time, going to Florida, spending money, what ever. The season was over, the next day when I got home, it was in the office, what's my assignment. I think I impressed enough people that they realized my intentions were to work at Brown and Williamson. They had a few problems in certain areas that I was able to go and rectify the situation. Show that we had representation. This was during the time of the Sixities, when it was practical to have a black representing a company or working in a company. Particularly if 54:00blacks were utilizing the product, if you follow what I'm saying. It was a good thing to do, or it was the tokenist type thing to do. I worked out of that and through that up to a position of responsibility. A position where the company, I'm sure, felt they could trust me and they knew that I had credibility. They could send me out with money or what ever else. They'd give me some assignment and I'd come through. I could get the job done. It kind of grew piece by piece. Each year they would challenge me with a new assignment or the same assignment with more responsibility. Then, of course, they didn't have any blacks as supervisors in the factory. I was the first one to go into there and try that. It worked out quite well that year and I did that for about three years in a row when I came home. Then I was asked would you recommend some other people, which I was pleased to do. I know the year that I was going back to play ball, what helped me was being an athlete, to kind of break the ice of getting a black supervisor over whites, or with whites, or what ever you want to call it, which 55:00is kind of a first. When I left that one year, all the people that worked for me on my floor collected up some money and gave me a nice card. I think a lot of people were surprised. They didn't think this sort of thing could happen. I thought I had a real good rapore and I got along well with the people. I think I was a pretty good supervisor. It grew on through there, but that broke the ice, more or less. Of course, the next black, then the next black and then the factories began to build up in terms of supervision. Now I'm right back into the same kinds of work but at a higher level in terms of equal opportunity. I was kind of at the bottom, building and helping to get it started. I guess it's ironic, but it worked around where, being a fellow contractor, we have to have goals and time tables in affirmative action program. So, for some reason or another, I'm back into the same thing, but more at a higher position and an enforcement level. I understand the total process. It's been good for me. That's 56:00pretty much the way the thing worked out. I think I influenced a lot of people throughout the total corporation by being a person that could understand and work and deal with the problems and the issues. Get the job done without a large amount of misunderstanding and problems.
CS: I realize that nothings perfect in this world, but how do you access Brownand Williamson's integration process?
LL: Better than most. I'd say B&W is a good posture. They're a good corporatecitizen in the community. They are very active in many areas. I don't know that anyone ever reaches their total objective, and that is to see parady in meeting with everybody's full opportunity. I think my boss, Ray Kuhn, who I think is 57:00very open minded and flexible in the area of equal opportunity. I think the policy here is not just words on paper, I think it'd be implemented. I'm able to exercise a certain amount of authority. I think I ought to have a little bit more. But, working for a vice president, maybe I don't need any more, in the fact that he has the total responsibility and I work for him to implement the program. He reports from one level, therefore maybe I have more clout than I think I do. Sometimes you like to see things happen, you like to tell a guy, "Do it." If you are a department head, I just can't walk into your department and tell you change everything, because you report to some other vice president. So you've got to understand that and I have been able to. I found you can work with people, you can make people aware of situations and make them understand the benefits. Through that kind of activity, I think the company has been able to 58:00make progress. We have the understanding of what we have to do and what our goals are. I think we exceed our goals in many instances and I think we will continue. With B&W overall, is probably better, and is good, more or less better, than most companies in the United States in terms of their employment situation and their recruiting and their attitude as far as the company wants to do. I won't deal with individuals, but as a unit, I would say we are doing damn well.
CS: I talked with Lewis Coleman of the Urban League, and he's involved in goingaround trying to get companies to employ blacks. He's finding it difficult. Segregation is becoming more subtle. In other words, he'd go to a company, and 59:00they'll say, "Yeah, we'll hire some. Do you have any black engineers." That type of thing. Do you find this in the community? Not necessarily Brown-Williamson.
LL: That's there. People are going to do that. One is going to procrastinate,not going to do anything. The old question to whether I would hire them, we can't find them. When you're talking affirmative action, you're talking about doing something about the problem. Making it possible. Programs to bring people along. You go to a school and you offer the services of the company to help develop. You make. You use the resources to make things happen. You don't just sit back and wait. Of course there's subtle, it's like, "Oh, I'm sorry, we don't have any more tickets, we're sold out." I can't get in if it's sold out. But, if I sit around long enough and watch them sell one to a white person, then I've got to come back to raise hell. My point here is that it used to be, "No, you can't come in." But, one can easily say, "We're sold out," or "Oh, I'm sorry, we 60:00don't take reservations." That's the thing we deal with today, but that's, in many cases, it's individuals. It's because the posture of the organization, the top people are not committed enough to make sure that the people who are actually implementing the process at the bottom are getting the job done. So, if I'm in charge of hiring, I can do what I want. But if I have to answer to my boss, who said, "Look, I want you to report to me. I want to know just what our posture is and where are we going as far as hiring and recruiting and so forth." I will report. You know you've got to report so you're going to have to get something done. So the whole thing stems, I think, from how you set it up and what kind of a base that you have. I know Lewis very well and I work with him a lot and he's had some difficulties. But, all companies are not that way. I think some are trying vigorously to do the job. There's others that will just spin their wheels. Many companies don't know how, or they have people working for 61:00them that give them bad information, and that's unfortunate. I had a guy call me yesterday from Anaconda, wants to come down and look at some things we're doing here, to talk about affirmative action and what he can do to do something about terminations, losing minority females in the workforce. That's good that he wants to talk about it. Could be that he would even train himself. It's good, but there's a great deal of pressure on companies today too, as you're well aware of. That doesn't get it done because now the law protects everybody. You're getting a lot of backlash in terms of majority groups saying, "Well, if you're going to do something for minority, that's taking away from me." Not recognizing the fact that the minorities only trying to catch up, and catch up just to his own representation, not to exceed 50%, but just to get a piece of the pie, in terms of maybe 20%. Twenty percent, or whatever percentage you want to use, and one can't even deal with that. They don't want us to have that even. 62:00You had your opportunity, you chance. You deal with those kind of things. But, yes, it's in the community and it's in every company. But, I think, the commitment by the people who make the rules and regulations and have the responsibility of authority can circumvent that and make sure that. . . .
CS: This is side 3 of the tape with Mr. Lyles. I believe we ran out of thatother side, but we'll just continue from where we were.
LL: Talking about being a leader in the community. I think people like WoodfordPorter. I think people like Joe Hammon. I think people like Dr. Parrish, all these people are leaders. All these people are people who are recognized in their name. To say that, "Leonard Lyles is doing it, therefore you should, 63:00because he's a leader in the community." Well, you may get a negative response from somebody who says, "Well, he don't lead me. What do you mean? I'm not associated with Leonard Lyles." Some people do. But, I think it depends on what we're going to be talking about when we say who are the leaders of the community. I think it has to be defined in terms of what kind of leadership are we talking about.
CS: Just as a comment, it's interesting because you said almost the same thingthat Woodford Porter said. There's not one leader. It's like saying who's the leader for the white community. It's diverse.
LL: If I'm elected as a preceint captain or if I'm elected as a. . . .or if Irun for an office, and people elect me, then I guess I'm some kind of leader because I've been put in the position by the people. Consequently, the people who voted for me recognize me as their leader or as their spokesperson. Therefore, I would feel that maybe, I think I'm a model. I'm an individual 64:00trying to do a job. Maybe, what I say or what I do, or my actions would influence people. But, I have not been chosen to lead any particular group in that sense. I think that's the way I look at it. Unfortunately, you would be tagged with that stigma of 'Leonard Lyles, one of the leaders in the black community'. Well, they never define what they mean when they say that. Sometimes that could turn off other people who say, " He's not my leader, I haven't elected him to do anything for me." Therefore, for you to write an article and deal with the situation and deal with what I'm saying and accept that as law, is totally wrong. Because, what I might feel or what I'm talking about could be totally different and diverse from what people who live in a certain area might feel.
CS: So everybody has to understand.65:00
LL: Right. I think this is a difficult situation. I think a lot of whites tendto do that. They tend to put that tag on you as he's one of the guys that leads. I think if they say he's one of the models or he's one of the people that's trying to make progress, or what ever, but we have to define our leadership before it goes any further.
CS: That's a good point. Kind of a concluding question. I know you have otherthings to do today. For the future, what do you consider some of the most important goals for blacks in Louisville.
LL: I don't know, that's a pretty tough question. I think several, a bunch ofwhole basic things. That is to be a part and to grow, based on the representation in the workface, based on the representation in the population, based on the ability to perform, based on given the opportunity to excel and 66:00utilize their potential to their fullest in the areas of politics, education, housing and economical benefits. That should be the goal of every black person in the world. To be a part of where he is making his home. To participate in, to consume, his fair share. To give leadership and directon to his piece of ground, or his area. To be recognized and be respected as a citizen of that unit. I think this is all that one can expect out of life. Unfortunately, people have been dealt with to the degree that their thinking could be distorted to the point where one can't set the things I just mentioned as goals. They're looking at, well, someone did this to me, therefore I'm in this situation, so who's 67:00going to help me out of it? So, we have to deal with that for a while before one can really feel the truism of I'm accepted as part of. Then I can probably give fully, and not be so selfish. If in fact I could ever think that I'm an individual and I'm able to participate and given the fair share to compete to the best of my ability. I think these are the kinds of things that the future for blacks, in terms of their outlook and how they can make progress. On top of that, is for people who are in control to recognize the things I just mentioned. To recognize that without their understanding and cooperation and not trying to suppress or be devious in their judgements and activities that maybe affect 68:00other people. Being understanding to the point that they can help nourish the things I'm talking about and help that to grow. It's like a plant. If I look up and there's a weed or there's a flower all of a sudden, I fertilize it and I put water on it and I help it to grow, then it's going to grow strong and straight, hopefully. Without (inaudible) the people who are in control or who have the power to take care of it, would do that, then you'd wind up with something pretty healthy. If you do all that you can do, you go by and pull a leaf off every now and then, or you get angry, and you put a jar over the top of the plant, no sunlight today, but you take it off and get some tomorrow, or give it bitter water, then you're not going to have very much. I think people who have the resources who can cause that to happen, you might say, get things done through people. If we wake up and recognize that no one's competeing with me. 69:00What I can do to make this a better community is to help everybody to grow and to make a contribution. If I look at the people that way and give them that help, then it's easy just to deny. If you've done all that you can do, and you've tried to create progress and make progress, then if I say, "You're not doing your job, you're not carrying your weight, therefore you will be cut out. You will be fired, terminated. We can't use your abilities anymore because it's not in line with what the objectives are for the total community. Then you won't get any sqwack, I don't think, from any particular group saying we're being dealt with. Particularly if you have figures to show that this group is participating as greatly as anyone else based on the representation or based on something that's recognized by the masses of people. I think that's what the future is all about. We've got to recognize that from both sides. If that happens we can make progress. Either one or two things, we're going to succeed 70:00together or we're going to fail together. That's the thing that worries me most.
CS: I'd like to see if you have any general comments you'd like to makeregarding. . . .Just kind of an open forum here. Anything that we might have covered previously, anything else (inaudible).
LL: Nothing general. I just think that the possibility of the total communitybeing successful is based on a lot of things I've already talked about. I recognize that the economics, the city, is growing to some degree, but everybody has to participate fully. The job situation is just pretty bad. We have a lot of problems as far as the court system. I tend to get a feeling that crime does 71:00pay. I don't like to have that feeling. I'm not talking about suppressing any one group, black or whites, but I'm talking about justice. I'm talking about due process. I'm talking about if one dances, he must pay the fiddler. Consequently, there doesn't seem to be much happening between the judge and the lawyer, and that bothers me quite a bit. Any time one commits an act and he gets his opportunity before the bench and he gets chance after chance to keep the victim from getting to court, who has to work everyday, to testify. True, the efforts of one who has the authority to be before the judge to represent the person who has been charged with the crime, they can make it awfully tough for the victim. 72:00Consequently, the victim can't show, so the case is thrown out. These are the kinds of simple things that bothers me. When thieves and hooligans can do pretty much what they want and be free the next day, I have trouble with that. I'm sure that I could address the problem. If I did, I'd probably want to put people, go back to the public square deal. You put the rings up, you put them on display in public, or you send everybody that's not doing right to some island someplace to rid the community of the cancer. I'm not that hard, but more than economics, the problems that people do to one another worry me more than anyting. You never know when you're going to go in your house, when you're going to get ripped off. You never know when you open your door in the business when someone's going to walk right in. Just like you're open. People don't seem to care, no respect, no anything any more. That is, of course, associated with a lot of things. That 73:00worries me more than anything. That's the only observation that I can make that gives me a problem. Like a situation I'm aware of. A person was raising hell and harassing an old, little lady. The little old lady called the police and the person who was doing the harassing, the assailant, his mother had the woman locked up who was the victim. She's under bond and she had to go to jail. She's afraid to say anything to the kid at all, because she was put in jail. Any system that works that way, to me, is just not right. I don't understand that. It's very difficult, hard. You read things all the time about a guy who tries to protect his property by setting up a device to trap the thief. The thief happens to hurt his leg, or lose his leg. The thief, his people or lawyer sues the man for all his property, so he loses. Well, he was the victim being handled by a thief. The thief winds up being the one who wins out. Crime, again, as I say, 74:00seems to be paying. I don't know, it's just a tough situation. I think that's the biggest thing that I have trouble with and trying to deal with as a businessman. You don't know about this until you get into business, then you get the feeling of what's happening to people in other business. This hurts economically. This hurts a lot of things. Jobs, man can't hire many people because of these problems. He spends all his money trying to keep his place together, consequently he can't employ or you have to lay people off because you're losing money. Whatever it is. You have to move. You can't stay in a location because the holligans won't let you stay there. So if you move five businesses, then you've lost maybe 10, 15 employees. These are the kinds of things that bother me a little bit. But, I guess that's about all I can say.
CS: That's something for the future to try to resolve. Well, I want to thank youfor taking the time out with us today. That will conclude our interview unless you have anything else you'd like to add.
LL: No, only just that if it's possible, I'd like to have a copy of the tapemyself. Put you on the spot by saying that here. You can probably erase that. But, if it's possible I'd like to hear what I've said, see how I worked out. 75:00
CS: I'll talk to Dr. Ryan and see what he can work out.
LL: I'm probably the only one that's requested a copy.
CS: So far, yeah. Well thank you very much.