THE GREAT WALL Word of something being up in Austin got back East, so Observer contributing editor Larry L. King of Washington, D.C., was dispatched to investigate. Here is King’s dismayed report to his Eastern constituency. Austin There have been suggestionsnot all of them originating in Texasthat we build a fence around the Lone Star State, something like China’s Great Wall, very possibly to keep out foreign culture strains and to preserve for ourselves those peculiar customs native to our bogs. When word recently seeped back to the decadent East that such a Great Wall was being constructed around Governor Connally’s very own Little White House, Texas expatriates were thrown into such a tizzy they laid aside their books, bottles and beards long enough to vote one of our number his expenses home. I drew the short straw, and have now seen The Great Wall at first hand. ThOugh nobody has explained the purpose of this redbrick structure, certain theoriescontaining both negative and positive values leap to mind. Let us first torpedo the notion that Honest John’s Great Wall was erected in the name of Beauty. It is not as good looking as, say, Congressman Joe Pool or the chairs and tables out back of Scholz Beergarten. It is only slighty prettier than the Observer’s home offices or Ben Barnes’ public record. Esthetically, it matches the mansion’s design about the way Preston Smith’s gubernatorial speeches match up with common sense, and is just about as germane to our times and condition. You may quote me as saying that I am not strongly for the Beauty theory. Some few of my fellow paranoids believe that our Great Wall is meant to keep Don Yarborough out of the mansion for good and all. The thing wrong with this theory is that Don has been kept out of that sacred place without anybody finding it necessary to throw bricks in his path in the past and, besides, he was in France so long that those of us with extrasensory political perception know that he is scheming on an ambush of DeGaulle. There are those who think the governor’s Great Wall was planned to be whitewashed. This is a very tempting theory and history is on its side: not even Torn Sawyer’s home precinct has been the site of as many official whitewashings as has Austin, Texas. And yet we are told by Establishment spokesmen that the Great Wall is destined to remain red. Who am Ia loyal Texas expatriateto dispute pronouncements coming out of the Governor’s mansion? It has even been suggested that the fence was formed so as to hem Truth up in a corner, and thus permit Texas’ daily newspaper editors to recognize Truth when they see it. I, personally, do not think the State of Texas would waste money for such a profitless purpose. Nor can I hold with a suspicious minority that the Great Wall is designed to keep political secrets from leaking out of Honest John’s official abode. Hardly had Governor Connally piped 44 of his most trusted advisors into the walls to whisper of how reluctant he is to serve the public again when that wily ole Sam Wood, Ace Political Reporter, leapt over the wall like Clark Kent in costume to ferret the secret out and expose it from Brownsville to Amarillo. No doubt this hurt the governor deeply, since it let thousands of public-spirited citizens brag on him in tones of Salvation and cry demands that he sacrifice himself once more on the altar of Good Government. Larry L. King Maybe the Great Wall was built for Preston Smith to butt his head against, or for Senor Barnes to wail at during the next two years while speaking ill of Fate. Perhaps it is soon to be moved down the road a-piece to plug up Credibility Gap. It could be that the Great Wall is to hide behind if one happens to be in the presence of my hero LBJ after he has just read the last Gallup Poll, or maybe we are going to put up sidewalk stands by it and sell liquor-by-the-drink. Possibly somebody over at the intersection of Colorado and West I 1 th Streets thinks the edifice is ideally situated for mounting the heads of exotic creatures shot down on African safaris. Perhaps it is to stand Sen. Ralph Yarborough up against, the better to reason with him at firingsquad paces, or maybe it was thrown up against the day Valley field hands pass this way again begging the benefits of Democracy. I just don’t know: here Willie Morris and Bob Sherrill and other Exiles have gone and voted me expenses to investigate the Great Wall, and I am here without any answers. I do, however, have a suggestion for future use of the Great Wall in case history takes some uncertain bends. Now, just suppose that in November, 1968, our two great political parties offer us a choice for President between Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon. Everybody who thinks he or she deserves a better shake at the polls in a free Republic will need to attend his misery the best way he or she can, and I can’t help but think of what, a nice leap into oncoming traffic the disgruntled could ‘afford themselves by utilizing the topmost portion of The Great Wall. Dubs on its highest point. 0 October 27, 1967 15 3100 N. OCEAN BOULEVARD FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA OPEN ALL YEAR On the ocean Private beach Swim ming Pool Palm studded lawns DancingEntertainment Games Air-Conditioned Heated Luxurious Room and Apts. . . . All with balconies Golf privileges.
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The Texas Rangers are tasked with investigating corruption and crimes by public officials. Those officials are rarely held accountable.