Cities: On the Brink in Memphis

The sanitation workers' strike in Memphis erupted into one of this year's first race riots. Martin Luther King's murder stirred a second outbreak and a stiff curfew. The steamy city on the Mississippi still seethes in the residue of April's unlearned lessons, and the aloof attitude of Mayor Henry Loeb and other officials hardly helps. This week the Southern Christian Leadership Conference convenes defiantly in the city where its founder was murdered. The S.C.L.C. national convention could bring Memphis to flash point.

An older catalyst is the Memphis police department's traditional policy of heavy-handedness toward Negroes, which ranges from routine...

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