AM. Mb. of an employee of the Model Laundry and Dry Cleaning Company of that city. You will note that the gross pay is $32.31 for 54 hours of work. After deductions, the employee had $25.40 take-home pay. Printed in large red letters in Spanish are the words, “CUOTAS SINDICALES BAJARIAN EL VALOR DE ESTE CHECK.” In translation, this means, “UNION DUES WILL LOWER THE VALUE OF THIS CHECK.” This employer is using this slogan on all of his payroll checks, since an effort is now under way to organize his employees. I know of no better argument for the extension of the minimum wage law to laundry workers than this check stub represents. Sam Twedell,international vice-president, district five, Amalgamated Meat Cutters and Butcher Workmen of North America, 8658 Garland Road, Dallas, Tex. What Is Good In Texas Culture? . I have just read your double issue [June 11-25], and I want to ask you some questions about the section on the artists and intellectuals. I understand and am in agreement with the major arguments of the first and third articles, but I feel that there is one very important consideration not discussed. . . . I think the germ of the idea I want to ask about lies in Mr. Weismann’s essay on art: “After coffee in mugsit was December and snowing that evening no one mentioned anything about art or anything you’d said.” In that whole paragraph, and two paragraphs later when he speaks of “those good people of Pikeville,” Perceptive Reader can see the reasons Why his “faith in the power of art” has made him “almost a stranger in [his] own countryand . . . almost an intimate in a foreign land.” I would suggest that the author’s familiarity with the international language 16 The Texas Observer The St. Louis Post-Dispatch of July 16 reprinted part of William Arrowsmith’s “Culture in Texas” from the June 11-25 Observer. The Post-Dispatch entitled its reprint, “Texas’ Richly-Mounted Cultural Lag.” of art has perhaps made him somewhat contemptuous of that dialect which his own countrymen speak. In the culture of necessity which he recognizes the miners are living in, the tool is the work of art, and they were discussing art in the terms that meant most to them when they showed interest in what kind of tools he used, on Remember the unadorned engine that was the most popular feature of the exposition \(Philadelphia or Pittsburgh, decades of form expressing function? And all it was meant to do was run the show-off machines. But still the European aristocraticart as a product of leisure does persist, even after the writings and works of Sullivan, Wright, Williams, and a few other proponents of essentially American perspectives. The author’s attitude toward the miners is pretty clear in his use of “those good people of Pikeville.” Even my freshman English students at the University of Illinois are taught how to interpret that signal. Nowhere in the essay is there any indication that the professor has had the training necessary for an understanding of his own countrymeneverywhere is implicit his affinity for a cultural tradition transplanted to American. soil. And most students in the humanities receive just such a training as his. No wonder we have the problem discussed in the next essay of antiintellectualism. Speaking now very generally, I think the anti-intellectual has, in many cases, a justifiable complaint. Too many college professors are the products of economic escalation via education. It’s the fastest way for a middle-class boy with no taste for business to join a recognized elite. And that fact is also the reason why so few of them ever look at their own society with a view to participating in it. By remaining safely in the academy they can be superior to and contemptuous of their onetime playmates, and all in the name of intellectualism. The type, “intellectual,” has a bad name, but the individual honest one is often as much respected by honest businessmen as he is by his colleagues. I liked very much what Mr. Arrowsmith had to say about “The purpose of the arts and the humanities . . .” However, although his criticisms of the Texas pseudo-culture are doubtless justified, not once does he say what is good in Texas. It’s not enough to point out what’s wrong without giving some examples of what, by those implied standards, is good. Isn’t there something organic to Texas by which its cultural achievements can be measured? What is Texas culture? What is the best of it? Measured by what? And culture doesn’t mean only what’s pretty, and/or art. You have to face the gas stations as well as the rose gardens. They both reflect the people’s culture in the broader sense of the word. I realize Mr. Arrowsmith and I agree here, but it would be helpful if he would point out some examples of how a few Texans have followed one of the greatest of classical principles, that art should be organically a part of its own time and place. . . . Isn’t there someone who can point out the architect or the artist or the writer who is both native and good, whose work perhaps fits the Dobie formula: “Great literature [art] transcends its native land, but none that I know of ignores its own soil.” I think only the critic on the scene, who is aware of the peculiar qualities of his own time and place, is qualified to judge its art. He must have both historical perspective and local involvement. I would count them as of equal importance.’ Mr. Arrowsmith probably has both. That’s why I would like to see him take a positive stand and state what is good about Texas, on what basis. . . . Mrs. John Walker, 408 W. Green, Urbana, Ill. 1 Suggest You Shut Up’ Excuse me, sirs, but count me out when you are counting “liberals” by your definition. I just cannot understand what is so fascinating to you about the word “warhawk,” which you seem to apply to any and every effort to meet communist aggression. When you take on the responsibility of sniping at our military actions in Viet Nam and the Dominican Republic, you are dealing with the lives of people, and unless you have something positive to suggest, I suggest you shut tip. If you can suggest an alternative which does not include surrender to communism, then please do so. The silly article by Jacques M. P. Wilson would be better material for the Daily Worker than for the Texas Observer. To pretend that 50 known communists in the leadership of the recent Dominican revolt is an insignificant number indicates a mental [fault] or a deliberate attempt to distort the nature of the communist strategy. Less than 50, known communists were involved when they stole the Russian revolution, and fewer than that were responsible for the blood-bath which Castro put Cuba through. How about a few words of sympathy for the massacred millions throughout the world who have been victims of communist terrorist tactics? . . . In many cases they murder just for fun, to make sure a country is deprived of leadership, until they can get there. What alternatives do you suggest? What should we have done in the Dominican Republic? Just wait for the blood-bath? Just wait for the Russian or Chinese missiles armed with nuclear warheads? .. . Neil Parsons, 3055 Leahy Dr., Dallas 29, Tex.
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