Integration Statute at Florida State University

The Florida State University is to be congratulated for erecting the “Integration Statue” (FSView/Flambeau, 1/29/04-2/1/04). And the three representatives of that era are to be commended for their perseverance and excellent achievements. Now, it’s time for FSU to dismantle the “Legacy” admissions criterion which is a vestige of racism. Specifically, “Legacy” harkens to the mentality that concocted the “Grandfather Clause” — a provision in several southern state constitutions that enfranchised poor whites and disfranchised Negroes by waving high voting requirements for descendants of men who voted prior to 1867. FSU and other predominantly white state universities in Florida maintain a “Legacy” program that gives preference to white applicants with blood ties to alumni — a “grandfather clause.” This preference works primarily to the advantage of white applicants for admission to FSU because the first African American didn’t granduate from FSU until 1965. FSU should follow the lead of Dr. Robert Gates who has been president of Texas A&M University for just one and one half years but one of his earliest decisions was to abolish the “Legacy” program there. That information is not widely known in our fair city because it has not been reported in the local news media. When another concerned citizen contacted the Editor, Tallahassee Democrat Newspaper about the Texas A&M articles which have appeared in the Houston Chronicle and the FSU director of admissions about its “Legacy” program his inquiries were met with evasiveness by both of them. FSU, it is time to take the next step.

Dr. Richard Mashburn, Jr420 Gaither DriveTallahassee, Florida