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t* t:1 4. l a t vc ykf,ivt” 5c4NQAttA, / fiRISTIOAS LAJf MST PR t. PASO, T uminarios are a southwestern cyst ignificance is that they light the way r hrist Child to visit that home or church s illuminated. Each year the young people of The first Presbyterian Church perform this long, difficult task of putting out the paper sacks with sand’ arid Candles so that this beautiful custom is perpetuated. 6 ch. -a..c. , liciivilkorA., i. ‘,Iivw iicIvQvi\\f.T. tq i’ . ScQAILLest ilf TevA ‘g t0i2c\(eva \(1.60. ..itcatoie \\.*Ale ‘ JJY Sti bkk toad O t ,;\(\\o, 13’vc k \(.11\(1 \(tO.C i tIo liktuk44P . 1 e c t \(tk tic 1.ed 1, kbi s ,It t %ilt ci!tibt. PsIcqk 11,04, A’ V5 woe \(Nf 0A4Tclt ts lot cirri caytoroloto by Jahn C. l loodbergW i t Activist Alice Embree sent this facetious postcard to Hamilton, knowing her activities were often tracked by police. a cloud over him and was a factor in his not being granted tenure at the university. The tall, balding Hamiltonwho was police chief until 1970 when he went to work as a security consultant for the UT systemwas called a “happy-go-lucky campus cop, friend of the athletes and pretty girls,” by Southwest Scene magazine, but the Whitman shootings are said to have had a sobering effect on his personality. Hamilton’s campus cops worked intimately with the Austin Police Department and other agencies. In return, Lt. Burt Gerding, Austin’s “red squad” cop, coordinated closely with Chief Hamilton but, as one activist recently observed, also looked on him with a dash of condescension, viewing him as something of a greenhorn. Gerding, a wry, lanky gent with a winning style, is an Austin legend. Omnipresent, with a continually amused look and an almost “aw shucks” demeanor, he was the town’s one-man “Good Cop, Bad Cop:’ Gerding was at every meeting and event held by campus radicals, always with his ironic smile, greeting everybody by name. He loved to startle people with the information he had about them. He would offer tidbits of inside scoops or warn of impending dope raids, always implying that he was really on their side. Former campus activist Robert Pardun, author of Prairie Radical: A Journey Through the Sixties, remembers a late-night SDS group skinny-dip at Hamilton’s Pool, an historic swimming hole near Austin. “A few days later, Lt. a wink, announced he had some real nice infrared photos of the event:’ Campus SDS leader Gary Thiher, now a philosophy professor, remembers moving into a new ground-floor apartment on Rio Grande with low windows opening onto an alley in back. “It was our first day there and we were sitting around on the floor talking when, lo and behold, we see Gerding’s face float slowly by in an unmarked police car, his face craning up so he could see into the room.” After Gerding cruised the alley twice more, Gary went outside and asked him what he was doing there. “Well, everybody has to be somewhere,” he chuckled. Former Austin radical Scott Pittman remembers a Texas Ranger commenting to him: “Burt Gerding plays you guys like a fiddle.” When the members of the psychedelic rock band the Thirteenth Floor Elevators were busted in January 1966 for possession of marijuana, rock historian Paul Drummond recalls that band founder Tommy Hall just couldn’t believe it. “He thought Gerding would tip him off.” Gerding, now approaching 80 and in failing health, lives in the Delwood section of east Austin. In an interview, he boasted that he always had informers in SDS and other activist groups. “If you had a meeting, I had a quorum there. They lived among you,” Gerding recalled. He looked upon us as “the enemy” because “you started the cultural revolution, and I felt strongly about my culture?’ He still blames us for the breakdown of traditional American values, but added “I don’t consider you the enemy any more:’. One reason the campus cops and the city police were so sensitive about dissent in Austin, and collaborated so closely, may have been the political climate of the time and the desire to avoid potential embarrassments for President Lyndon Baines Johnson. “The Chairman of the UT Board of Regents, Frank Erwin, was also a honcho in the Democratic Party,” 12 THE TEXAS OBSERVER NOVEMBER 17, 2006