The Press: Fifth Amendment Firing

Before the House Committee on Un-American Activities last year, TV Scriptwriter Theodore S. Polumbaum of the United Press took refuge in the Fifth Amendment: he refused to say whether he was or ever had been a Communist. Next day U.P. fired him. Polumbaum, it said, had "intentionally created a doubt as to his honesty . . . and [his] conduct . . . was incompatible with the best interests of journalism."

The American Newspaper Guild protested the discharge, contending that Polumbaum should be judged on whether his copy had shown bias, not on his...

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