GEORGE, THE REBELLIOUS PICKET High Court May Get Case A SINGULAR HOME * * * * Emergency Quarters for Orphans Near Lieut. Junius e Ranger “We located our man at Round Rock ..” “Later the cops called me up and said, ‘Look, Tex, this is going too strong when your god-damned goons come running up our steps with their pistols out,’ ” George laughed. George was changed with making malicious threats, with simple assault, with aggravated assault, and with assault to commit murder. But he acted as his own lawyer and got off on all counts. “After that we had no trouble from the communists around here,” he said. “We just railroaded like they had done.” He served as agent two years that time, then went back to sea as bos’n. This time he has been agent for three years. Safe From Smear It is this background of anti, com m u n i s t belligerency that makes George almost invaluable in Texas unionism, for in Texas any show of labor assertiveness is invariably metnot only on the part of employers who might be excused for pulling such a counter-ploy but also on the part of most of the daily presswith the poorly veiled hint that this is the work of Moscow. After all, how can George be accused of being soft on communism when he has fought it in the very manner advocated by the more athletic employers? And so came the June 16 seamen’s walkout. There were a number of issues, but the central CLASSIFIED UNION DEMOCRACY IN AC-TION reports rising reform movements in labor. 10 issues $3. Sample free. Box 62 Knickerbocker Sta., NYC 2, NY. HOUSTON READERS ORDER YOUR PERSONALIZED CHRIST-MAS CARDS NOW WIDE SELECTION WIDE PRICE RANGE. SHIRLEY JAY MO 5-5266 evenings. =-=4::===-0.0=-CsC.C.MCC:4 The -Le $1’1 Lounge TEXAS BEER . . . 15c Monday, August 28th 2-5 and 8-10 P.M. 2610B Guadalupe GR 7-0218 and most dramatic issue was the NMU’s demand that many of the U.S.-owned merchant vessels now permitted to operate under foreign flags and hire non-union crews be forced to return to U.S. registry. Or, to simplify the issue in the words of George: “We want them s.o.b.’s back under the American flag.” He and the NMU claim that they are asking nothing that was not granted a quarter century ago and has since been steadily violated by ship owners. George cites the Merchant Marine Act of 1936 to the effect that 50 per cent of U.S. shipping must be done in U.S. bottoms. “The records show that actually only nine percent of our shipping is done in American bottoms,” he said, “due to the laxity of the Maritime Commission, and it has been getting worse year by year. All we want is for the shipowners to operate by the law. If we could get them to mind the Act of ’36, we would be in good shape.” But no sooner were the picket lines up than, says George, “those oil companies were jumping from court to court getting restraining orders without hearings. They would even go up to San Antonio. Apparently they have a judge up there who is quick on these things.” These were district courts. “We believe that because most shipping is interstateand B. A. Babbin, plant manager for American Oil Company conceded that 90 percent of it is interstate our strike matters should come first within the framework of the National Labor Relations Board, secondly in federal court. District courts shouldn’t figure in it. “With the strike still going, we could have appealed the injunctions, but it would have taken months, and by that time the strike would have been over and the impact of our effort would have been lost. “I felt the quickest way to establish jurisdiction vas to violate TEXAS LAWMEN the district court order. So I consulted attorneys, and they agreed that in all probability I would go to jail. “I got me a picket card and picketed that damn refinery gate course, I had told the newspapers and television I was going to do it, because I wanted to be damn sure they knew about :t. I didn’t want the judge to get out of citing me because he didn’t know I had gone against the order. “Well, he obliged. He cited me. I was sentenced to 72 hours in jail and $100 and costs.” This is the verdict that is under appeal. As for the effort to get the socalled “runaway” ships returned to ‘U.S. flag registry, the NMU has at least got the labor department to studying the matter. “We feel we couldn’t have did better than to throw it in the lap of the government,” said George. “I’m not optimistic about it, but it will spotlight the trouble. I think Kennedy is obligated to do something now to strengthen U.S. shipping.” The strides of the NMU since its 1948 upheaval have been considerable. .Ten years ago seamen in that union had no retirement fund. Today the oldsters can retire on as much as $265 a month. Ten years ago relatives of a seaman could get $200 to bury him. Now every NMU seaman is covered by a $3,500 insurance policy, at no expense to himself. Ten years ago a hospitalized seaman could get $5 a week. Now, if he is single, he gets $30 a week, $40 if married. Ten years ago seamen who stayed with the same ship a year got seven days vacation. Now they get two months. Wage increases have been comparable. George fears no return of communist control. “Everybody loves a winner,” he said. “When the commies were winning, they had support. Now we are in the saddle, and we’ve got support. That’s the way it is, podnuh. People are sheep.” B.S. NOTE AUSTIN The second and third installments of the series on the Galveston labor convention should be read as continuous, so that the reference to “the delegates” in the first paragraph of the last installment last week is limited, as was intended, to the delegates who attended the industrial union conference that was being described. HOUSTON Within the next fortnight Houston will open the only neglected children’s home of its kind in the South or Southwest, an emergency receiving home with a capacity for 38 youngsters. The unique feature of the “Harris County Children’s Home,” as it will be called, is not that it cost $145,000for there are receiving homes in the region that cost morebut that it was built for Negroes. Facilities for neglected and dependent children of that race have been overlooked to the extent that in many East Texas counties such children arefor lack of anywhere else to send thempacked off to the reform school. The failure to provide quarters for Negro neglected children on the state level and in most instances on the local level is bizarre indeed, for, as Paul Irick, chief probation officer for Harris County, pointed out, though Negroes constitute only 16 to 18 per cent of the population, they constitute about 40 per cent of the juvenile welfare case load. Neglected and dependent white children who must be reared by the state on a long-term basis now can be sent to the Corsicana State Home or the Waco State Home. But there is nothing like these on the state level for Negro children, with the consequence that when they are to be taken care of on a long-term basis, it must be done in foster homes. Houston welfare officials who are angered by this discrimination have often suggested that if a judge ever got up the courage to commit just one Negro child to either of the state schools, the Supreme Court would do the rest in breaking down this welfare barrier. And, in fact, it is rumored that Judge J. W. Mills, Harris County juvenile judge, may eventually make the crucial commitment order. He has been quite a fighter for the rights of neglected Negro children. ‘Rotten Situation’ The new emergency receiving home will be just thata place to temporarily take care of Negro children who have been plucked from what Irick generically calls “a rotten situation”a broken home, drunken and brutal parents, that sort of thing. But since it can house only 38, and since the Harris ‘County juvenile department must handle hundreds of Negro children each year, obviously the turn-over at the emergency receiving home must be rapid. It is. The youngsters are quickly processed to foster homes. At present the county can rely on 90 foster homes, and Irick has one woman on his staff who does THE TEXAS OBSERVER Page 2 August 25, 1961 .\(1.iptowli t fsocia lisl Owagla $3 for one year; send to New Politics, 507 Fifth Avenue, New York 17, N.Y. Sponsors of this new quarterly include Norman Thomas, James Baldwin, Saul Bellow, Nat Hentoff, Erich Fromm, JuleS Feiffer, and Hal Draper. nothing but screen potential foster homes, which are paid at the per capita rate of $41.25 a month for taking the youngsters off the state’s and county’s hands. “The colored youngsters we have placed in foster homes are just the hard-core cases,” Trick explained. “There are plenty of neglected kids running loose we should file on, but we’re reluctant to file on them” because Harris County is not outfitted to take care of them on a long-term basis, and the state offers no help at all. To file on them would only clog the welfare machinery. Placing neglected children in foster homes is a ticklish matter, said Irick, and it is especially ticklish with Negro children. What Then? Out of 100 placed in foster homes, he estimates that ten will not be able to adjust, and if they don’t adjust by their tenth birthdaythe earliest age at which they can be charged as a delinquentthey may be sent off to the reform school. But they can’t stay there forever \(the average stay for boys is seven months, for are released, the county is again faced with the question of what to do with them on a long-term basis. Try another foster home? “This is where a state home for neglected children would really help out,” said Irick. Placing neglected Negro children with relatives sometimes has only marginal value, and sometimes has actual disadvantages, he said. “The Negro race doesn’t have the social stability of the Anglos,” he said. “You may have a bad Anglo kid, but somewhere in the family is a stable person who can take him in and help him. But sometimes when you transfer a Negro kid to another person in his family you are transferring him to a worse situation. The same is true of Mexicans.” When a home situation is so bad the court “terminates parental rights,” the youngster becomes a legal orphan and thereby open for adoption. Perfection Wanted But Negro children are especially hard to place by adoption for the reasons that the Negro professional classthe class in which adoptions are most popularis relatively limited, and secondly, many Negro professionals simply aren’t aware of this pool of available orphans. Harris County welfare officials are now conducting an educational program in the Negro community, to let Negroes In the upper economic class know of the waiting orphans. Irick said they even have trouble putting all their white orphans out for adoption. “Oh we don’t have any trouble placing them if they are six-months-old, have an IQ of at least 120, are curly-headed and have all the attributes of Johnny Weismueller,” he said. “But the 10 or 12-year-old youngster is often hard to place. You don’t have people running over you to get them. People come in here insisting they want to adopt a child, but when it comes down to the decision, what they mean is they want a perfect six-month-old baby. I’m often tempted to tell them, ‘You couldn’t get one that age if you conceived tomorrow.’ ” B.S. IN 4 Back in 1878 a hard riding, Last shooting gent named Sam Bass was holding up too many Texas banks and railroad trains. Not less than ISO Bass-huntersdetectives, marshals, deputies, Pinkertons, express and railroad agents were after him. But it took a Ranger and his special company to catch and erase the bold, bad bandit at Round Rock, on July 20. Lieut. Junius Peak commanded those Rangers. before this historic event June Peak had proved his cool courage and good judgment in .quite a few encounters with enemies and outlaws. Twice wounded in the Civil War, Peak subsequently served as deputy sheriff and marshal at Dallas. He had successfully mopped up New Mexico’s biggest band of cattle thieves, scouted Indians and charted waterholes in West Texas. In 1880 Peak left the Ranger service for more peaceful pursuits such as railroad construction in Mexico and ranching in Shackelford County another Ranger to leave his signature on the pages of Texas history. Texas lawmen have always served their state well as have Texas industry and commerce. Providing payrolls and community revenue, one industry has also provided the refreshment of moderate beverages. In Texas the brewing industry “belongs.” Brewers, wholesalers, retailers and the United States Brewers Association are working constantly in cooperation with today’s lawmen, to assure the sale of beer and ale under pleasant.’ orderly conditions. UNITED STATES BREWERS ASSOCIATION. Inc if SIC
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The Texas Rangers are tasked with investigating corruption and crimes by public officials. Those officials are rarely held accountable.