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I’m Sending Texas Southern U. $25 As New Campus President Takes Over


The Houston Chronicle ran an article yesterday about the new president of Houston’s Texas Southern University. His name is Dr. John Rudley.

As the article details, Texas Southern has had some problems in recent years. A former president of the school was involved in scandal and graduation rates at TSU could be somewhat higher.

Dr. Rudley says he can fix these and other issues at this historically black institution.

I hope Dr. Rudley is the person for the job. Black folks and all folks in Houston need a strong Texas Southern. For one thing, life is hard and these kids need to be educated. For another thing, Houston needs as many educated people as possible to help deal with longstanding problems we have here of poverty and pollution.   

I think Dr. Rudley is going to get folks on-board with the program, and that TSU graduates are going to be, as they have been already in many cases, leaders in our city and across the nation.

The great Congressman Mickey Leland went to TSU.

I’m going to send TSU a $25 donation. That won’t build a new hall on campus, but it might at least buy some pens and paperclips.

I’m also going to include a note with my donation asking that I not be added to any mailing list. Little is more frustrating than making a small donation to a worthy cause, and seeing all the money you sent wasted in the form of newsletters and solicitations for more money.

I will also e-mail this blog post to the president’s office so he can make sure I’m taken off any  mailing list.

I look forward to Texas Southern University assuming its place of leadership in Houston. I will post more on the school as events progress. 

Here is the web page for Texas Southern.

September 1, 2008 Posted by | Houston | , , , , | 2 Comments

Mickey Leland In The Texas Observer On Party Loyalty

Though I am of the left, I believe in a big tent Democratic party. In America we have two main parties for 300 million people and people will differ and disagree. In Texas, we have over 23 million people and again, people will differ and disagree.  

A workable standard for party loyalty was well-established 26 years ago by late Houston Congressman Mickey Leland.

Mr. Leland wrote an article for The Texas Observer in 1981 called The Tumor in the Texas Democratic Party. The article is reprinted in the book Fifty Years of the Texas Observer

Mr. Leland wrote about Texas Congressional turncoats such as Phil Gramm and Kent Hance who helped sponsor the poor-bashing tax cuts and budgets offered by Ronald Reagan.

Here is what Leland said—

Now, I want to carefully distinguish between those members of Congress who have or who will vote contrary to the Democratic position either out of personal belief or because their districts demand it….and those few members who go far beyond a vote and undertake a leadership role in sponsoring and working for the Republican program.

Mr. Leland got it exactly right. You don’t have to vote with the majority of Democrats every time, but you do have to have a good reason to bolt the party. If you vote the other way out of conviction or for survival, we can still work together at the end of the day.

If you’re selling out your colleagues for personal political gain or you’ve moved impossibly far away from the positions of your party, then you’re no longer welcome.     

October 4, 2007 Posted by | Books, Houston, Political History, Politics, Texas | , , , , | Leave a comment