HAVERHILL, MASS. 01830
June 10, 1966
Representative William Bates:
House Office Building
Dear Representative Bates:
We would like to voice our opposition to Bill H.R. 14765.
We firmly believe in equal opportunity to obtain housing for all but feel that this bill, while attempting to protect the renters freedoms is actually depriving the property owner of his freedom of choice in contracting for sale or rental of property.
The person who is renting or buying property has the freedom of choice as to whether he wants to buy or rent and we feel the owner should have the same freedom in choosing who he will sell or rent to.
This property is private property and one of our basic freedoms is the freedom of choice on how to use or dispose of our private property.
We hope you will vote against H.R. 14765 and help protect the freedom of use of private property.
Thank you very much.
Judiciary HR 14765
June 14, 1966
Haverhill, Massachusetts 01830
I appreciate very much your letter of June 10th in which you express your opposition to that petition of H.R. 14765 dealing with real estate.
I believe that any extension of the civil rights law, in this regard, should be in accord with Massachusetts laws. In the Massachusetts laws (Massachusetts Annotated Laws, Chapter 151 B, Sections 1-10 (1951) as amended) as in the laws of numerous other states, there is this same exception to the Fair Housing Acts. This exception is also in the FHA rules and regulations as Secretary Weaver testified recently before the House Judiciary Committee.
This matter is presently pending in the Committee and I understand that it will undertake consideration of such an amendment, which I would be very happy to support.
With kindest regards, I am
William H. Bates
Letter to Congressman Bates, June 10, 1966. William Henry Bates Papers, 1941-1973. North Shore Political Archives 98-02, Folder: “Legislative Files-Judiciary-Civil Rights Act (1966) Box 3-4. Salem State College Archives.