|Houston Informer, March 1, 1946. Used with
permission of the Houston Informer
Editorial From Galveston Daily News
There is nothing that can be said in mitigation of the fact that the state of Texas has failed to provide adequate higher educational facilities for Negro citizens of the state, particularly for professional training. Its politicians have persisted in hemming and hawing and in refusing to meet the issue squarely and honestly. It is all to the good, we think that the matter now has been brought to a showdown buy a clear-cut case in which a Houston mail carrier was refused admission to the law school of the main university at Austin [line illegible] except that he is a member of the Negro race. There was no question of his scholastic or other qualifications, and Dr. T.S. Painter, acting president is to be commended for not attempting to dodge the issue by pretending that there was any other reason for barring the Negro [line illegible] that the Houston man was refused admission for no reason except that he is a Negro. There was nothing else that he could do. The decision as to whether Negroes are to be admitted to the university or whether they are to be provided adequate training facilities separately is not one for him to make but the state legislature. If segregation of the races is to continue to be enforced in state supported institutions of higher learning, then the legislature has a moral as well as a legal obligation to see that Negro citizens are provided with a first-class university of their own where professional training equal in quality to that provided white citizens is available.
It is an obligation which the politicians and white citizens of the state alike have to date been able to ignore or to evade. It appears that the time is now at hand when we shall no longer be able to do so, and, as we say, we believe that is all to the good.
In the past the state has tried to satisfy requirements of the law by providing appropriations to help finance the education of Negroes seeking professional training at institutions in Northern states where they were not barred. This advice for avoiding the states obligation to provide adequate education facilities for its Negro citizens was ruled out by the supreme court. The legislature, at its last session, instead of meeting the situation forthrightly and honestly [line unreadable] naming Prairie View Normal "Prairie View university" and increasing its appropriations to make it appear that the state actually is providing a first-class university for its Negro citizens. Nobody who is honest could pretend that these measures were adequate. It amounts to little more than a gesture and another attempt to sidestep the issue and to keep from doing something about a matter in which Texas is grossly remiss. Gov. Stevenson has suggested as the solution for the problem that has not now been thrown into the lap of the main university at Austin that appropriations be increased sufficiently to provide the Negroes of Texas with a really first-class university. That is, of course, the only fair and honest thing to do if we are to continue to bar Negroes from the state-supported white schools. It is going to cost a considerable amount of money to do it, but whatever it costs, we would be less than honest if we do not admit that the cost is chargeable to the fact that we want to maintain racial segregation. In other words, if we want to perpetuate the custom of racial segregation, we must be willing to pay a reasonable price for it.
(This forthright statement from a Texas white daily deserves wide attention, so we reprint it for our readers: Editor.)