|Houston Informer, November 23, 1946. Used
with permission of the Houston Informer
Sixteen Student Organizations Represented
AUSTINUniversity of Texas students took the offensive in behalf of Heman Sweatt as zero hour approached on his application for admission to the University law school. Students from 16 campus organizations met Monday night with representatives of the NAACP and declared themselves to be opposed to segregated educational facilities in principle. While Sweatt is in no need for funds for legal expenses, consideration was given to raising of funds for an educational campaign in and around the University.
John Stanford, University of Texas representative of the NAACP, presided over the meeting of 60 student representatives of organizations. The meeting was held in the University YMCA, where talks were made by Dr. James Morton, president of the Austin branch of the NAACP and chairman of the science department of Samuel Huston college; Kenneth R. Lamkin; and Edward M. Brown, associate secretary of the University of Texas YMCA.
In its two and one-half hour session the students covered a wide range of territory. There were those in the group who wanted to come out openly for supporting Sweatts entry to the University as the proper position to take in keeping with the stand on anti-segregation.
Opposed to the groups taking that flat and unequivocal position was Jack Lewis, director of Youth Work at the University Presbyterian church. Lewis explained that he was personally against segregated education but that he questioned the wisdoms and the strategy of taking the extreme stand.
Rev. Brown spoke on "Segregation from the Christian Point of View." He declared that segregation of educational facilities is "unchristian and uneconomical." To support his contention he quoted statistics compiled by a Howard University professor to show that segregated institutions of higher learning are not practical.
Later in the meeting, Rev. Brown offered the following petition which was adopted: "We, the undersigned hereby endorse and intend to support the NAACPs effort for equal educational opportunities, as evidenced in the case of Heman Marion Sweatt seeking admission to the University of Texas Law School." This was interpreted as being an anti-segregation stand since the NAACP, which the group endorses, is opposed to segregation.
In the same meeting the group left the way open for some support of segregated education by passing a motion which called for support of the mandamus issued by the 126th district court, by which Judge Ray Archer declared that Sweatt should be granted admission to the University of Texas unless a law school for Negroes, equal to that of the university, should be provided within six months.
Judge Archer gave educational authorities six months to provide the "equal" law school. Under his ruling the school must be established before December 17. Unless such a school is established by that date, Judge Archer said that he would sign a court order requiring the university to admit Sweatt.
Some of the campus organizations represented did not send their representatives with definite instructions to support the campaign, but rather as observers. Those organizations represented included: Canterbury Club, Campus Guild Co-op, Wesley Foundation, Community Church Student Fellowship, WICA, YMCA, American Veterans committee, Mortar Board, Lutheran Students Association, Baptist Student Union YMCA, Latin-American League, Common Sense, Alba Club, and Hillel Independents.