Elkins or McAshan Croup? Both! Say Banking Umpires AUSTIN The State Banking Board Commissioner J. M. Falkner, Treasurer Jesse James and Attorney General Will Wilson has sidestepped a politicallyexplosive bank charter controversy involving two powerful Houston banking groups \(ObThe board this Thursday, by a two to one vote, granted a charter to both groups, although ordinarily charters are granted, other things being equal, on a first-come, firstserved basis. The negative vote was cast by Falkner. The groups, one led by Judge James Elkins, one by Harris McAshan, seek to open a branch bank in the new Meyerland Shopping center at Houston. McAshan’s group, associated with the Texas National Bank of which R. D. Randolph, husband of Texas’ Democratic na tional committeewoman, is a vice-president, filed application for the charter last Feb. 11. Three days later, the Elkins group, which includes the First City National Bank, filed their application. On June 20, Falkner and Wilson voted against James to turn down both applications, on the ground Houston had enough banks. McAshan and BULLETIN The Banking Board on Friday rescinded its decision here reported when Will Willson switched his vote. associates then applied for a national charter, whereupon the Elkins group filed for a rehearing by the Banking Board. McAshan’s group then did the same, saying this was “a protective measure.” The one great rule of composition is to speak the truth. Thoreau Oryt. 4 \(1.4t 1.1 ;3-c ,SS r 421 An lnclepe -cl% 1249 eile2y Newspaper tine we will serve 1W group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. Vol. 49 -.AS, AUGUST 2, 1957 10c per copy No. 12 Texas Unions Merge, Debate Race \(For Texas AFL-CIO’s varAUSTIN Labor in Texas united and laid down a liberal program for social reform but tripped over the tight knot of its own local unions that are still holding Negroes back in jobs. Meeting in the hotels and at the city coliseum here most of this week, the 1500 delegates and visitors at the Texas AFL-CIO merger convention relaxed and enjoyed it when the heat would let them. The only serious fight was over civil rights. But it was serious. The civil rights committee heard five hours of testimony. Some Negroes accused their locals of discrimination and segregation, and others, especially from the Port Arthur area, retorted that an. integration program would cause great dissension among their local members. The minutes of the committee disappeared during the dinner recesslost or, more probably, stolen. The convention itself broke into \(Lyman Jones flew to Lubbock this week to get a firsthand report on. the Texas LUBBOCK Above the Plains in summer \(and always suddenly, it dark cloud towers, electrically-charged anvil shapes, black except when flash or streak o f lightning flares from behind them. Plains people know these mean storm; sometimes rain, sometimes dust, sometimes only gusty wind but always storm. extended debate Thursday morning, and a few delegates were threatening to pull their locals out of the merged council until a compromise was adopted that saved everybody’s face but yielded to the segregationists on one important point. The civil rights committee’s four-page report included the statements: “We recommend that each of our affiliates take steps to provide equal job opportunities for all of our members regardless of their race We recommend that the Texas State AFL-CIO use every possible means available to insure no discrimination within the locals themselves and that in those cases where there are segregated locals that they be eliminated.” In lieu of most of the committee’s report, including those statements, the convention agreed to substitute the national civil rights plank of the AFL-CIO convention of 1955. This plank, as civil rights Not to be seen, but felt, I were the cumulus thunderheads of the mind massing this week over the oddlyhandsome Hispanic c u m Baptist facade of Texas Technological College. W. D. Watkins, chairman of Lyman Jones Texas Tech’s board of directors, in a move obviously stunning to Tech administrators and faculty members, has slammed the door any hope of review of the board’s committee chairman Jim Pierce of Fort Worth said, is actually much stronger and more explicit than the committee’s document, but it does not contain the direct slams at segregation and discrimination in Texas locals. Pierce said only about one percent of formerly CIO unions in Texas are segregated. The only reasonably clear test of Texas AFL-CIO sentiment for desegregation came on an effort to postpone the whole matter for a year. With about 500 delegates on the floor, delegates mainly from Port Arthur, Beaumont, and Port Neches locals got only 113 votes. It would be fair to conclude that convention sentiment for a strong civil rights program was about four to one. The vote on substituting the national program of the unions for the convention committee’s plank was 301-151. Among those opposed were many delegates who wanted the convention on record explic July 13 firing, in secret session, of teachers Byron Abernethy, Herbert Greenberg, and Per Watkins, who heads AndersonClayton’s Western Cottonoil at Abilene, was not present when the board, led by radical of the right J. Evetts Haley, refused to renew the three teachers’ contracts. Last weekend Watkins sent a statement to the Abilene newspaper by messenger and left town. Said the statement: “Upon my return from vacation I, as chairman of the board …. visited personally with each member of the board and consulted with many friends and exstudents of Texas Tech regarding the action … on July 13. After careful study and due deliberation and with the approval of the board I wish to make the following statement, as promised: “The board’s unanimous and carefully deliberative action in refusing to renew the contracts of the professors in question was carried out in compliance with its legal obligation to the citizens of Texas, assumed under oath of office, with the firm conviction that it was for the best interests of Texas Technological college. “Inasmuch as no one’s constitutional rights have been violated in any way and since the board has not received any additional information which would cause them to change their prior unanimous action, we therefore consider the incident closed.” Board vice-chairman Jim Lindsey of Midland, who presided at the July 13 meeting, said the statement meant what it said: “… the action is final and there will be no hearing.” Most obviously surprised by the itly against segregation and discrimination in Texas unions. \(The national AFL CIO program calls for “full and equal rights for all Americans in every field of life”; federal fair employment practices legislation to prevent job discrimination based on race; a “peaceful and effective” transition to unsegregated education; desegregation of all public facilities “supported or aided by federal or local taxes,” and deseg. regation specifically of trains, buses, public housing, parks, theaters, and restaurants. \(On the issue of discrimination within. unions, national labor pol icy as affirmed by the Texas convention s a y s: “our affiliates should seek to have non-discrimination clauses included in every . collective bargaining agreement they The floor debate was excited, sometimes angry. C. W. Nectoux, president of OCAW Local 4-23 in Port Arthur, said the integration issue is “hurting us very much.” Dan Fells of OCAW Local 4-228 in Port Neches said it would “split up our locals in Jefferson County.” W. L. Rushing, a Houston millwright, said the integration issue ought to be left to legislators. P. D. Jackson of Dallas motion picture operators said progress is being made but the resolution would provoke “condemnation.” A Negro delegate, J. L. Kennard of laborers’ Local 18 in Houston, declared, “I’m a firstclass citizen. I fought in the war as a first-class citizen and as a first-class soldier.” G. E. Gauthier of the same local stirred the convention. “I’m a citizen. I raise children, I raise grandchildren, and … I don’t want to feel I’m not welcome here! Don’t tell me somethingprove it to me!” Another N e g r o, Arthur Guidry, OCAW 4-254 Port Arthur, said AUSTIN When there are close to a quarter of a million Texas families involved in anything, the probability exists that the thirig may be going somewhere. When most of the 225,000 deeply involved individuals heading those families are striving to help the thing on its w a y, no matter how lightly some may push here or there, it will occur to not a few that it is best to stay out of the road, or move in the same direction. Al Heiken Some politicians, including the Governor of Texas, gave indications this week they will not needlessly seek a collision with the Texas labor movement in the future. The Texas AFL-CIO came into being while some were still wrestling with the need of adjusting themselves to thinking it possible. When the two separate, one Negroes in Port Arthur have second-class diplomas, second-class teachers paid second class salaries, and live in first class homes in fourth class sections and .pay first-class taxes to furnish building they are not allowed to enter. The adopted constitution of the merged organization calls for cooperation of “all workers,” collective bargaining for “all workers,” and promotion of “the organization of the unorganized into unions of their own choosing.” Another object is “to encourage all workers, without regard to race, creed, color, national origin, or sex, to share equally in the full benefits of union organization …” Ronnie Dugger This was the first time the issue of discrimination in Texas unions has been joined in public. Many changes in the direction of equal!. working rights have been taking place without much public notice. \(Time this week prevents a full treatment of the committee and convention debate; the Observer will have a fuller report on the controversy next issue. We possess the only complete notes on `Mutual’ Gov. Price Daniel and Atty. Gen. Will Wilson addressed the convention; Sen. Ralph Yarborough, who said he was unable to come because of civil rights and other issues pending in Washington, sent a filmed message; Sen. Lyndon Johnson, who was also invited, did not appear. More interesting than any thing Daniel told the convention were his remarks to the building trades meeting Sunday. He said he was happy to report that no legislation hostile to labor had been passed by the last legislature, which par day CIO and AFL conventions acted to confirm unity, there was an impatience among the delegates to get the job finished. But a few habits were strong. In the CIO state council’s last session at the Commodore Perry hotel, steel workers couldn’t resist flexing a muscle in defiance of the ruling oil workers telephone workers coalition. Few of the delegates took it seriously, however, when a steelworker leader nominated telephone worker representative Paul Gray of Fok Worth in Opposition to his fellow CWA member, Sherman Miles of Corsicana, for political and legislative director of the merged council. Gray, who had stepped out that moment, declined as soon as he returned to the room. With little comment, the merger agreement and new con-. stitution were approved, Fred Schmidt was confirmed, as the CIO nominee for secretary-treasurer of the Texas State AFL-CIO, Some of the delegates were joking: “This is the last meeting of the goats. Next time we meet we’ll all be sheep.” Finger-Pointing Rights Report Is Subbed Tech Bolts the Door gainst Prof Rehearing A Force to Consider
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