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A CERTAIN VACUUM IN OUR L dreamers and Roosevelt . . . a prototype of ‘socialism made drunk with power,” and always the imminent “invasion of the rights of property” and “subversion of the Constitution” and all the other catchwords jerked from any context, and on without end. Is it possible, or is it counted too naive to inquire, that Joseph Pulitzer’s magnificent statementcirculated and cited among every freshman journal.ism student in Texasstill means anything in the air-cooled editorial rooms of our commonwealth? It is the PostDispatch platform, and it sounds ominously alien: “I know,” Pulitzer wrote, “that my retirement will make no difference in its cardinal principles, that it will always fight for progress and reform, never tolerate injustice or corruption, always fight demagogues of all parties, never belong to any party, always oppose privileged classes and public plunderers, never lack sympathy with the poor, always remain devoted to the public welfare, never be satisfied with merely printing news, always be drastically independent, . never be afraid to attack wrong, whether by predatory plutocracy or predatory poverty.’ -‘ Here in this newspaper office, a belittered kind of place that draws cock s u r e cockroaches, phlegmatic summer bugs, and an occasional novice who is able to test himself in its “drastic independence,” we may have failed in his challenge, but we like it very much. “I know it is a sin For me to sit and grin At him here. But the old three-cornered hat, And the britches and all that Are so queer. “And if I should live to be, The last leaf upon the tree In the spring . . Let them smile as I do now, At the old foresaken bough .Where I cling.” The Last Leaf Oliver ‘Wendell Holmes AUSTIN We are all familiar with Jefferson’s old aphorism that if he had his choice between a government without newspapers or newspapers without government, he would not hesitate to choose the latter. This was all well and good for Jefferson and his contemporaries, basking in the Enlightenment. But if Jefferson came to Texas now, and had to read for a living wage the big Texas dailies, day after day searching their sprawling grey interiors for the one occasional morsel of enlightenment and liberality he so presumptuously anticipated for a future society of free and literate men, he would doubtless turn heel, without hesital tion endorse a paper-less government of a Czar and his Rasputin, or of a Nabob of Powtowdi and his son Pendaris II, and have done with it. For ten days now I have been reading their offeringsthe AUstin American, in our capital city, home of the largest seat of learning in the Southland ; the Dallas News, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Abilene Reporter-News, -the Houston Chronicle and the resttollowed their grimaces and contortions, their growing sense of desperation and despair. I emerge with the impression that here is a society, the greatest and most distinctive society in the greatest and most benevolent nation in history \(though controlled these days and bemaking its last desperate stand against that inevitable floodtide of absolutely regimented and uncontrolled evil. Kindly indulge one indignant traveler who has forgotten all this is old shoe. SAVE FOR a mere handful of exceptionsthe Houston Post, the Corpus Christi Caller, sometimes the Dallas Times-Herald, one or two othersthe Texas big-city editorial page is not only a barefaced anachronism, it is a high crime against the proud state from which it springs. This state cries out for one newspaper of sizable circulation, just one, with the independence and the courage to stand clearly and firmly, day after day, against the outrageous editorial extremes of a Dallas News or a Fort Worth Star-Telegram, one newspaper with a Ralph McGill, or a Harry Ashmore, or a Jonathan Danielsand, I am told, about $3 million to get it going. Admittedly there are a few other states in the Union with more backward and narrow big-city presses. There are many others with papers more lacking in the professional touch. Most of these big Texas dailies are technically well-edited \(due, in part, to the emphasis on craft education. in the state’s various schools of on some -of them. The Dallas News, Willie Morris whose editorial page will probably be a fascinating showpiece for some impartial social historian 50 years from now, maintains an excellent fine-arts section. Many of them have good sports writers. Some of them have nice pictures. One or two of them have funny raconteurs. . Most of them have, to boot, elaborately edited “Living,” “Life,” or “HuMan” sections, with all sorts of interesting bits on how to paint a lawrchair or catch the symbolisms and hidden meanings in a TV western, as well as enthralling psychiatric advice on the pitfalls of puberty and the hazards of middle-age by some of the most noted charlatans and soothsayers in our culture. But for these papers to nurture such a generally neurotic, insular, xenophobic set of editorial outlooks, to be so intent on shouting their hosannas everytime they flush their myriad villians from beneath every new idea,. or among every cafe-ful of hymn-singing black kids, or behind every nonconforming little weekly with sufficient circulation to make a man-sized dent in the Dallas TimesHerald Monday morning sales in the eastlobby of the Baker Hotel, leads one to believe that the Texas press. is considerably short on equilibrium and common sense. FOUR OR FIVE years ago I walked into the Houston Chronicle, sought out a top ranking executive, and asked if he would be interested in an occasional contribution froin England. Without a second’s sor, beatnik, housewife, motherly schoolteacher, available maiden, in angry determination they seemed to have more their idealism together than their liberalism, more the mists of the whitecaps of the race far beyond their ken than the graVities of percentages, possibilities, and pi -ocedures. Liberals responsible mainly to themselves, they listened to a song and heard a conscience. They paraded around the outside, 5,000 strong, with handmade. signs, and parleyed their few tickets into rules-defying crowds in the hall. They knew they would lose, and wouldn’t, and they did, and didn’t. Their emotions subsided like a hurricane does, leaving the Kennedy tides to resume, dependable. and of certain future. We have no sociographs for the race, after all, and with luck never will. You could see the misty feeling in the Johnson camp and feel the quiet sagging down among some Kennedy ones the night that Johnson was named. It was ,probably not, as Gov. Williams maintained, “a mistake,” Sen. Kennedy will likely be right, the Republicans have no use for Rockefeller now. It was simply a compromise, which seems to encircle the usual domains of the verdict. Man may be what he wants to be, and really be what he wishes he were ; but coming to what is, he becomes infinitely less than he is. RD hesitation, the man who runs a newspaper which circulates several hundred thousand replied : “Well, you know we don’t like socialism on the Chronicle.” There was no laugh in his reply, so that was that. Any story from the land of Magna Carta, Stratford-onAvon, King’s Chapel in Cambridge, William Wordsworth, and the Battle of Britain was too risky busine .is. What little else buttresses the editorial philosophy of such newspapers besides the almighty, well-zippered pocketbook? Not much : Self-made, old-style American individualism, generally somewhat to the right of the kind .Hoover’ upheld . to the last while a whole nation threatened to collapse. cited chapter and verse with the same relentless monotony, apparently with little inkling htere may on occasion be necessary safeguards against it in a complex industrial society. Superpatriotism : rattle the pistols, bring out the gunboats, shoot down the incorrigible wogs Racism, varying in subtlety and degree. Smugness. ‘Provincialism. All of this comes to us without grace, or sophistication, or humility, with little hindsight and scarcely no foresight, going on from one day to the next, grinding away in the same old time-honored rut : the Democratic conventions captured by “Northern socialists,” “sons of carpetbaggers,” prodded on by the “dictatorship of the ADA,” “compared to Chester Bowles and Co., Debs and Thomas . . . timid MARSHALL The writer yields to no man short of Thomas Jefferson in his dislike and distrust of prieStcraft, whether in the church, law, medicine, or governMerit. But as Arthur Krock has said, the separation of church and state is a political, not a religious issue. What a man thinks is open to discussion, favorable and unfavorable; what he believes in secular affairs is subject to scrutiny ; but his beliefs concerning the Almighty must be above question or third party disci’ssion. Sen. Kennedy has said he will support the Constitution ; he has made every assurance a reasonable man could ask that he believes in the separation of church and state. His position could be strengthened in no. way other than by a public statement from the Pope that he will not move the Vatican to Staten Island if Kennedy becomes president, After all, it is the type of ,government, not the faith .of its representatives, -that assures immunity from ecclesiastical control. An emperor may crawl to the feet of a Pope, but an American president will never do so ; nor would the Pope want to ‘read what the opposition party would say about both * of them if he did. The Catholic is not the only church interested in politics. All are, and all H. 111. Baggarly in the Tulia Herald: WHEN WE read that Dr. W. A. Criswell, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, had told his congregation that “the election of a Catholic as President. would mean the end of religious liberty in America,” we can only term such a statement asinine, and unworthy of a man in Dr. Criswell’s position. Just for the sake of argument, let’s assume that Senator Kennedy is seekig the presidency at the order of the Pope, that the Catholic church is seeking to exert its influence in politics. Let’s assume the worst. Pray tell, what power does the President have to tamper with religious liberty? What could a President do to interfere with religious liberty ? After all, Congress .might have something to say about that. should be. Cotton Mather used government against witches ; the Irish Catholic priests who were run through by the swords of Cromwell’s doughty men lay just as dead as the Huegenots who fell. on St. Bartholomew’s day. Bishop Cannon of the Methodist church helped fasten the Volstead Act on us and kept senators and congressmen in just as great a sense of fear and intimidation as ever did Sen. McCarthy. Yes, and even the 40 “saints” of the Mayflower saw to it that the 62 “strangers” aboard knew something of their _conception of reli gion. If anyone doubts the presence of church in government, let him try to circulate a local option petiti6n in a dry Texas town that boasts a Baptist college. We must not repeat 1928 in Texas. That “experiment, noble in purpose,” brought us to the battle of the Anacosta flats when American troops charged American veterans. Sen. Kennedy is going to take the issue to the people as the political one it is. We must all help him keep it in this realm. How much better can we separatists demonstrate our faith in the doctrine than by electing a Catholic? If the principle merits survival it will prevail ; if it is too weak to stand the test, it never existed. FRANKLIN JONES SECONDLY, should a Catholic President be elected, all the Protestant world would be breathing ‘down his neck, seeking some indication that he was about to thrust a knife into the back Of Protestantism. Protestants are in the majority in this country and should Kennedy make the slightest gesture against them or religious freedom, he would be kicked out at the next election. After all, we still have a president every four yearsand at most, Kennedy could not be in office more than eight years. If Kennedy made the slightest effort to change the traditional church and state separation principle, he would be kicked out and we wouldn’t have another Catholic nominee in 100 years. THE TEXAS OBSERVER Page 5 July 22, 1960 AUSTIN There appears to be a difference between liberalism and idealism, like quicksilver on the fingers difficultt to shape, but real nonetheless. Liberalism, a large, organized, and winning force in the United States, is neither undernourished nor undernourishing. One may tip one’s hat to all the liberal sign-posts in quite self-interested dedication. Not to say, of course, that any of us can resist a lovely flower when we happen upon it, or the belief in our nobility when it comports with our incidental self-interest. Not either to say that many expedient liberals are not idealists. Compromise is the stuff of present possibility, and seems to have a grave sovereignty over the affairs of politics, as does the moon over evidently raging tides. ‘Where the two, the liberal and the idealist, part, one really cannot say, , somewhere within the shaft of the moon, where gravity loses the mist. We must not, of course, have partings and divisions, and all must pull together in the organizational clomp. So stick the tides of Acapulco and Hyannisport. We will try to remember the Kennedy roll call, but we will never forget the Stevenson demonstrations. The way they chanted, “We Want Stevenson” had only three syllables, the first three, assorted, they had a common rccognitipn. Student, profes A Difference The Catholic Issue Criswell Reproached