Political Intelligence continued from page 24 prison in Louisiana on June 14 to start serving his sentence. Civil rights leaders have complained that the case smacks of racism and urged President Clinton to consider a pardon for Canty, who with his wife was returning to Houston from a vacation in Jamaica in 1991 when two black college students began arguing with flight attendants over the operation of a radio-cassette player. Canty, a communications specialist for Reuters news service, awoke from a nap to tell the flight attendant and a co-pilot the boom box would not interfere with navigation equipment. The Continental Airlines flight later made an unscheduled stop in Cancun, Mexico, to remove Canty and the two students, who subsequently were convicted in Houston federal court on charges of threatening a flight crew. A videotape of the argument showed no disruptive behavior by Canty and he had no prior criminal record, but Canty was sentenced to four months in prison, while the students got 14 months and eight months, respectively. Canty told the Austin AmericanStatesman he has quit his job and he was prepared to go to prison if the his bid for executive clemency fails. TOM CRADDICK for Governor? The Midland state representative and chair of the House Republican Caucus claims high name recognition among Republicans around the state and says he has been encouraged to seek the nomination to challenge Ann Richards in 1994, the Austin AmericanStatesman reports, but the Beaumont Enterprise retorts that Craddick may not even hold onto his position atop the GOP caucus. Representative Jerry Yost, R-Longview, said it was “almost a foregone conclusion” that Craddick, who has held the chair since the caucus was formed six years ago, will be replaced next year after some Republican House members complained that the leadership was concentrated in too few hands and the views of moderate and rural Republicans were ignored in policy discussions. BANK SNOTS. Officials of the state’s two largest bank holding companies are resisting efforts by the Texas House Agriculture Committee to subpoena top executives and lending records as part of an examination of community lending practices. State Rep. Pete Patterson, D-Brookston, the committee chair, has had a running battle with national banks over their lending practices in the communities they are chartered to serve, but the statewide banks are not required to break down lending information by communities. The subpoenas sought information from Bank One, Texas, and Nationsbank, Texas, for a June 17 hearing, but Bank One officials filed a lawsuit in federal district court in Dallas to quash the subpoena. Kevin McCommon, an aide to Patterson, said committee staff was still negotiating with Nationsbank but he was pessimistic about getting the information voluntarily. Robert Harris, Texas Banking Association president, told the Austin Business Journal the state House committee has no jurisdiction over the national banking system and his staff was instructed to fight the required release of such information. Patterson sponsored a bill in the past session to require “call reports” that detail local activity at branches of all banks with $300 million or more in deposits; it passed the House but died in the Senate. FAST RELIEF. Diane Wilson ended her 30-day hunger strike on May 14 after Goy. Ann Richards’ staff and a Houston lawyer go Formosa Plastics Corp. to review ways to recycle and limit discharge from its $1.3 billion plant expansion at Point Comfort. Wilson, a shrimper, started the hunger strike on April 14 after the Texas Water commission granted a permit to Formosa, manufacturers of polyvinyl chloride, to discharge 9.7 million gallons of waste daily into upper Lavaca Bay. the Spanish of Southern Mexico. It is a language of a people who irritate the rest of the Mexicans, people whose writers would have called Rosaura’s farts “pedos” instead of the more esoteric “flatos” of Esquivel’s novel. Described by one of their own, Mauricio Gonzalez, in his El Rio de la Misericordia, these Nortenos do not paint murals, but they show the world that there are Mexicans who wear shoes, eat three times a day, know what they mean when they say “yes” or “no” and have never addressed anyone with the word “Patroncito.” They have never accepted the official myth that Mexico is an Indian nation. They admire Benito Juarez because he was a Mason. They speak English fluently and feel more at home in San Antonio or Philadelphia than in San Luis Potosi or Queretaro. Their men have never dressed as charros and their women have never worn rebozos. They are independent from and suspicious of what goes on in Mexico City and the rest of the Mexicans have always felt a need to ignore them. One way of doing that is by excluding them from the great national celebrations, like the ritual parade of the 20th of November in Mexico City, where the folklore of the north is never seen nor celebrated. Another is by saying that they and their culture are like the culture and people of Cuahutitlan the rest of Mexico outside of Mexico City. Which is precisely what Como aguapara Chocolate, in any language, does. It is a wasted opportunity. Instead of telling a story through the lives of the people whose geography she expropriates, the author hired a theatrical troupe from the south and led them to the border. And there is not enough magic in all of Mexico to make these actors what they are not. We are entertained. But in the end, we are deceived. Oh, yes. My father let me spend the summer of 1957 at our ranch because in the fall I would enroll at Texas A&M. It was not until I was marching across the Aggie campus, counting cadence as a cadet of Bravo Battery of the Field Artillery, that I would slowly begin to realize that I was a “Meskin.” JOURNAL Texans Unfunded As Donors Dry Up Caution: The election of neoliberal politicians may be hazardous to progressive organizations. Texans United, a grassroots environmental organization with offices in Dallas and Houston, reportedly is facing financial difficulties, with employees working without pay. Rick Abrahams, the group’s executive director, said Texans United is funded through June, but its chances of surviving the summer are more speculative. Part of the problem, he said, is that the group, which concentrates on organizing communities \(mainly -has no national organization to support it and it has been unable to raise money from Texas foundations, most of which are tied to the petrochemical industry. In addition, he said, there is a perception among many potential donors that “with the election of so-called progressives, such as Ann Richards and Bill Clinton and Al Gore, that there is no longer a need for grassroots activism.” He added, “It was much easier under Republican administrations because everybody understood what the problem was.” Texans United is unimpressed with Richards and her environmental record, as it organized a recent Capitol action to protest the decision of her Water Commission to permit a waste incinerator near Channelview. Texans United’s habit of criticizing Democrats as well as Republicans has likely driven off potential funding sources, he acknowledges. To help, contact Texans United, 12655 Woodforest Blvd., Suite 200, Houston, Texas 77015. 22 JUNE 18, 1993 `*,
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