Albert Fuentes announced for lieutenant governor without taking counsel, as far as I know, with any, or many, of his associates in the Democratic Coalition, nor even with the acknowledged leaders of his organization, PASO. It’s a free country, but Fuentes must have known that he put his political co-workers in a difficult position. For this reason especially, the matter must be discussed openly and at once. A sensitive man can be made too bitter by discriminations he has sufferednot too bitter to be a valuable person, much more valuable than most people are, but too bitter to be ready for leadership. Yet who can gauge another man’s bitterness, or distinguish clearly between intense idealism and harshness of spirit? I cannot. Yet now that he has announced, Fuentes must be weighed as to whether he does notin some way he may not be to blame for, but cannot be appreciated for, eitherdislike the “blue eyes” just because their eyes are blue. Fuentes has a close, continuing tie with the Teamsters in San Antonio. Neither this paper nor I has participated in condemnations of the Teamsters as ‘a group, yet I am not convinced that Fuentes cared enough about the liberal movement, on this score, when he announced for lieutenant governor. He ran for county treasurer in Bexar County in 1962 and lost, 34,000 to 23,000. Despite his liberalism on civil rights, he did not attract the support of enough of the liberals, including liberals among the minorities, to win. Last June he did not face a straight-out election for his office in PASO and held on to his post by an indirect stratagem. Yet now he asks to be elected to the most powerful office in state government. Fuentes is a sensitive man; it is this very sensitiveness that has caused him to be so deeply, personally hurt by discrimination. Yet now he has offered for high public office, and he must stand to be gauged in public. Decisions on the public good cannot be made on the basis of a desire to avoid personal embarassment. This is the committing time, and while I am open to being convinced I’m wrong, and would be glad to be so convinced, for Fuentes is an energetic and ambitious man and works for liberal causes, I do not think he is qualified to be lieutenant governor, and I think it as well to say so now. Houston The Cullen Center stands at one of the feet of the parkways that join River Oaks \(and its multivarious and outclassed enica, which opened last May, stands on one side of the city street that bisects, and passes under the promenade of, the Cullen Center. One can stand at one’s hermetic, metal-framed picture window on the tenth floor in the Hotel America and watch, at five o’clock, as the bellboy runs down, from the three adjacent flagpoles below, first the American flag, then the Texas flag, and then, from its place of equal height, the CC flag, yellow on blue. As the bellboy ran down this third one, I asked on the house phone what it was. “The Cullen Center flag,” said the feminine voice on the other end of the zero you dial for the hotel operator. Other fingerholes on the dial are for long distance, and says “IRS,” I think, although this may have been one of Dr. Freud’s associational errors of seeing; I cannot but doubt that the revenuers maintain a direct hotel line, even into the Hotel America. The Hotel America itself is a place of luxury where the well-to-do do dine and sport. It is a hotel of blacks and whites and massed marble surfaces and right angles, a triumphant flower of technology. I do not mean just that the materials in the thing, \(if one may use so casual a word for such a monument to our system’s accomthough they do so seemthe vast draperies, the lamps that seem to grow from the tabletops, impeccable carpets whose patterns one must suspect have been me.chanically mixed, everything impersonnally posh. I mean less than this. Let us suppose you do as I did. You enter the elevator from the lobby and either by Incorporating the State Observer and the East Texas Democrat, which in turn incorporated the State Week and Austin ForumAdvocate. We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. We are dedicated to the whole truth, to human values above all interests, to the rights of man as the foundation of democracy; we will take orders from none but our own conscience, and never will we overlook or misrepresent the truth to serve the interests of the powerful or cater to the ignoble in the human spirit. Editor and General Manager, Ronnie Dugger. Partner, Mrs. R. D. Randolph. Business Manager, Sarah Payne. Contributing Editors, J. Frank Dobie, Larry Goodwyn, Franklin Jones, Lyman Jones, Willie Morris, Charles Ramsdell, Roger Shattuck, Dan Strawn, Tom Sutherland, Charles Alan Wright. Staff Artist, Charles Erickson. Contributing Photographer, Russell Lee. Subscription Representatives: Austin, Mrs. Helen C. Spear, 2615 Pecos, HO 5-1805; Dallas, Mrs. Cordye Hall, 5835 Ellsworth, TA 1-1205; Fort Worth, Mrs. Jesse Baker, 3212 Greene St.. WA 7-2959; Houston, Mrs. Shirley Jay, 10306 Cliffwood Dr., PA 3-8682; Lubbock, Doris Blaisdell, 2515 24th St.; Midland, Eva Dennis, 4306 Douglas, OX 4-2825; Odessa, Enid Turner, 1706 Glenwood, EM 6-2269; Rio Grande Valley, Mrs. Jack Butler, 601 Houston, McAllen, MU 6-5675; chance, or because of the idle way a person’s fingers play, you press, not only “10,” but also “8” \(and plip! the numbers are suddenly lit up, and you are lifted entirely alone up through the vitals of this esting to gaze at the figure “8” on a black button illumined all around. It is an eight on a ball, and the shape of infinity, required, for a time, to stand on end. The first time up, at “8,” you see the room sign numbers in the hallway, the arrows to right and left, the different shades of brown in the same shapes on the carpet; but this, the second time up, when somehow again both “8” and “10” are pressed, \(for you are not as efficient as this elevapose on the eighth floor, the doors of the elevator shut on a metal doorknob, and then, at ten, open on precisely, to the detail, the same metal doorknob, at precisely, to the millimeter, the same position to your eyes. It does not seem possible, as you sink onto the tenth floor hallway, that fumbling men have accomplished this miraculous uniformity that lies disguised behind the varied placements of signs and arrows and mirrors. The Hotel America was machined by the technology local for the enjoyment and comfort of very calm and self-possessed Americans who comport themselves as I conjecture the imperials did when they were being watched at Versailles. As for Oswald, his associates and motives, I should assure our readers that I am continuing to inquire and that you may expect some more information in our next issue; perhaps, and I hope, quite more. R.D. San Antonio, Mrs. Mae B. Tuggle, 531 Elmhurst, TA 2-7154; Tyler, Mrs. Erik Thomsen, 1209 So. Broadway, LY 4-4862. The editor has exclusive control over the editorial policies and contents of the Observer. None of the other people who are associated with the enterprise shares this responsibility with him. Writers are responsible for their own work, but not for anything they have not themselves written, and in publishing them the editor does not necessarily imply that he agrees with them, because this is a journal of free voices. The Observer solicits articles, essays, and creative work of the shorter forms having to do in various ways with this area. The pay depends; at present it is token. Please enclose return postage. Unsigned articles are the editor’s. The Observer is published by Texas Observer Co., Ltd., biweekly from Austin, Texas. Entered as second-class matter April 26. 1937, at the Post Office at Austin, Texas, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Second class postage paid at Austin, Texas. Delivered postage prepaid $5.00 a year; two years, $9.50; three years, $13.00. Foreign rates on request. Single copies 25c; prices for ten or more for students, or bulk orders, on request. Editorial and Business Offices: The Texas Observer, 504 West 24th St., Austin 5, Texas. Telephone GR 7-0746. Change of Address: Please give old and new addresses v.nd allow three weeks. Iit..#####.444#####~~4#~4~~~,…e Observations THE TEXAS OBSERVER A Journal of Free Voices A Window to the South 58th YEAR ESTABLISHED 1906 Vol. 56, No. 2 7 OM’ r Pr isst January 24, 1964
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