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The Texas Observer MAY 12, 1967 A Journal of Free Voices A Window to The South 25c Freedom and Order at UT Austin It is becoming increasingly clear, as the academic year of 1966-’67 draws to a close, that the students of this land will tolerate, less and less, the paternalism that has traditionally been imposed on them in U.S. colleges and universities. The Lexington of this revolution was Berkeley, and the wave of the rebellion has reached Texas, which, this year, has been the site of several skirmishes and a couple of more important encounters. Students are coming to demand more of a voice in the decisions that affect their lives. They want self-government, or something more nearly approaching that status. At Texas A&M hundreds of students objected last fall when the school newspaper was taken over by the administration and a friendlier staff installed \(Obs., marched to the home of A&M’s president, Earl Rudder, to protest another decision in which they had no voice to make boarding fees mandatory for civilians living in dormitories. At. Texas Southern University students protested this spring when the local chapter of the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee was thrown off campus for sponsoring a march into downtown Houston. The protest widened to include grievances the students had against the quality of food served at the school and the early curfew for co-eds, among other complaints. Last month, in McAllen, delegates from a number of Texas colleges passed a “Bill of Rights for Texas Students” at the convention of the Texas Intercollegiate Student Assn. Among the provisions were statements that students have the right to peaceful assembly and that disciplinary proceedings should be instituted only for a violation of standards defined in advance and published in a handbook. Students at Prairie View and the University of Houston have criticized the quality of the instruction in certain departments. And finally, last week and the week before, several hundred students at the University of Texas at Austin organized the University Freedom Movement to protest the removal of the Students for a Democratic Society from the campus, the arrest on campus of three college-age nonstudents, and the discipline meted out against six students. The upheaval at U.T.-Austin has involved a number of questions how much protest of U.S. and Texas governmental policies is to be acceptable at a tax-supported institution; how should rules governing student activities be made; and how much control over students’ use of the campus be permitted a college administration? As regards the freedom enjoyed by students and faculty members, the university =111111.110.4111111 my specialty is living said a man \( who could not eat his bread squads right impatiently replied two billion public lice inside e.e. cummings What of the cripple who hates dancers? What of the ox who loves his yoke and deems the elk and deer of the forest stray and vagrant things? .What of the old serpent who cannot shed his skin, and calls all others naked and shameless? And of him who comes early to the wedding-feast, and when overfed and tired goes his way saying that all feasts are violation and all feasters law-breakers? What shall I say of these, save that they too stand in the sunlight, but with their backs to the sun? They see only their shadows, and their shadows are their laws. And what is the sun to them but a caster of shadows? And what is it to acknowledge the lawS ; but to stoop down and trace their shad= ows upon the. earth? But you who walk facing the sun, what images drawn on the earth can hold you? You who travel with the wind, what weathervane shall direct your course? What man’s law shall bend you if you break your yoke but upon no man’s prison door? What laws shall you fear if you dance but stumble against no man’s iron chains? And who is he that shall bring you to judgment if you tear off your garment yet leave it in no man’s path? People of Orphalese, you can muffle the drum, and you can loosen the strings of the lyre, but who shall command the skylark not’ to sing? Kablil Gibran in The Prophet Excerpts of two readings presented at a rally on the University of Texas campus by student Torn Smith. Jii01] here is considered as perhaps the most free in Texas. Chancellor Harry H. Ransom has sought to strike a practical and happy balance between, on the one hand, the students’ and faculty members’ needs for, freedom of expression and, on the other hand, the traditional suspicions of the state legislators, who are often mistrustful of the academic world, particularly that one five blocks north of the Capitol Building. Aggravating this mistrust in the minds of the law makers, who are predominantly conservative, is the fact that most of the campus activists here, faculty and student, are left-of-center and are far more noticeable than their relative numbers would indicate. Most persons on the campus reflect the social and political proclivities of the majority of other adults across the state conservatism, an orientation towards the business community, and, these days, hawkishness on Vietnam. Further jeopardizing the equilibrium that Ransom and others of his administration have sought to effect are the close ties between Texas’ government and the White House, whose chief occupant, a Texan, is most sensitive to criticism, and particularly to criticism of the U.S. role in Vietnam. And it can be no source of comfort to Ransom when the doves in the university community coo loud enough to be heard by Frank Erwin, an Austin attorney, who is both the chairman of the university’s board of regents and the national Democratic committeeman from Texas. THIS WAS THE background, then, when the Students for a Democratic Society met on a Thursday night before the Monday on which Vice President Hubert Humphrey was to address a joint session of the Texas legislature. It was decided, by the ten or twelve S.D.S. members attending the meeting, to distribute leaflets the next day on campus, announcing a meeting for that Sunday on the west mall. The Sunday meeting was planned to organize a rally at the Capitol on the day that Humphrey would speak, so “all those wishing to affirm peace in Vietnam” could do so. The motives of the S.D.S. members at this point are somewhat unclear. Were they unaware that their action, particularly for an anti-war meeting, would spur the administration to take action against them? Or were they assuming that such a rally on the campus would be permissible, since, the week before, a similar rally was held, without permission, by the Negro Assn. for Progress, and no