A Negotiated Peace, but with the Comanches -SA Had Enough? Enough of state government doing the Texas Trot . . . “a-one step for ward and a-three steps b a c k?” Some of us have . . . . . . so shuck the thick lead suit. Many of us out here in the fallout think we know how Texas must move. How about you? We call ourselves TEXAS LIBERAL DEMOCRATS. I’m shucking. -Enclosed is $5.00, my annual dues to Texas Liberal Democrats My name is I get my mail at City & State \(NOTE: Send dues to Mrs. Latane Lambert, 7046 Holly Hill Austin It was a hell of a Sunday to be Easter, there under the hot afternoon sun, standing along the east side of Ranch Road 1, where it ties in with U.S. Highway 290, about ten miles east of Johnson City. Those people had guts or ideals or something, holding those signs up, wearing lapel buttons, staging a three-hour vigil to let President Lyndon B. Johnson and the general public know that they didn’t like what was happening in Vietnam. It was a pretty day with dandelions and bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes splashing their yellows and blues and scarlets over the green fields. Birds sang in the oak trees, and it was hard to imagine anyone not wanting to go laze on a lake shore or take the kiddies out hide-and-seeking with Easter eggs. But .these people there 12 The Texas Observer Don Adams were about 50 or 60 of them under the orgatlized leadership of the Houston Citizens for Action in Vietnam preferred to drive about five hours to stand five miles away from the LBJ ranch with placards and slogans, then drive back home another five hours. They couldn’t get any closer to the ranch because the road was closed, and the road was closed because Johnson was at the ranch with his wife Lady Bird and their daughters Lynda and Luci. Patrolmen of the State Department of Public Safety stood squinting behind a white wooden barrier, and beside them were Secret Service agents. On the highway scores of cars were parked, their passengers watching. There wasn’t much to watch. No egg throwing, no rough language, no violence. Just standing and waiting. I wondered what the Johnson family were thinking over there at the ranch, entertaining their guests. Someone said the President drove by about mid-afternoon. And Lynda with George Hamilton came by in an open convertible. Neither stopped. It was hard to guess what they said at home, out of earshot of reporters. I WAS THERE sort of by accident. I had driven Saturday night to the Easter pageant in Fredericksburg, where the historical society and fair association sponsor an annual reenactment of the settlement of the colony back in 1846, when the red-bearded Ottfrid Hans Freiherr von Meusebach came there with a group of German immigrants. Meusebach and his bunch didn’t want a fight on their hands, so they negotiated a peace with the Comanches on Easter of that same year, and each Easter for the next 120 years fires have burned on Cross Mountain and other surrounding hills in memory of the event. Right after the peace treaty, the Germans built Vireins Kirche, their first church, from the bell tower of which every Saturday evening to this day toll the Abendglocken, the bells of evening. It was not to the Vireins Kirche, but to the brand new St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, pastored over by the Rev. J. W. Langford, that President Johnson and his family went for Easter services Sunday morning. I doubt if they had heard the Abendglocken the night before, but there they were, and the churchyard was full of Secret Service men and news reporters. Since I was already there, I watched them come and go, pressed by the curious throng which, growing as the word spread, made the SS men grow short tempered. The Rev. Mr. Langford seemed both proud and a little nervous in his flowing white robes, and I suppose everyone in Fredericksburg decided it was going to be another historic event in the historic old town. The President made no important pronouncements, however, and about all he did was look at a carved replica of his ranch house which one of the parishoners had fashioned for him. When I got to the demonstration site about 1:30 that afternoon, people from Austin and Houston already were gathering. Later, people from San Antonio and Denton joined them. Some of them wore lapel buttons with slogans like “Geneva, not Genocide,” and “Make love, not war.” I kept waiting for Dr. Mort Reiber, spokesman for the citizens action group from Houston. I knew that as a psychologist with the Houston State Psychiatric Institute, he had been threatened with the loss of his job last December if he participated in the Christmas peace demonstration staged in this same place by the same group. And I wondered if he would come at all. He was The writer, a West Texan, is now an Austin newspaperman.
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