Two Men Who Nearly Ruined Dallas

Lori Stahl writes rhapsodically today in the News about retiring Federal Judges Barefoot Sanders and Jerry Buchmeyer. It is less a news story than an editorial, and a highly selective editorial at that. Nowhere does it mention that as of 2006, due to Judge Sanders’ social engineering over 30 years, only 7,821 of DISD’s students were white, comprising just 5% of the district’s total students when whites make up 49% of the district’s residents. And while the article touches gingerly on Judge Buchmeyer’s well-known affinity for the bottle, it nowhere asks how his disease might have contributed to a sense of personal grandiosity that led him to overturn an election and impose a 14-1 City Council system on a city that had rejected it, leading to graft and corruption on a scale Dallas hasn’t seen since the 1930s. In other words, the article is nothing more than an exercise in myth-making, praising noble intentions and ignoring actual results. But social engineering has always been about being “fearless” and feeling noble and never concerned much with actual results. So if today, after 30 years of Judge Sanders’ micromanagement, only 6% of DISD’s students are “college ready” it’s not his fault. After all he’s noble. And if 14-1 has created a ward system where intimidation and payoffs are the price of doing business, it’s not Judge Buchmeyer’s fault. He’s “fearless.” Such is the power of myth, brought to you courtesy of your local daily newspaper.


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18 responses to “Two Men Who Nearly Ruined Dallas”

  1. Peterk says:

    thanks for providing the key background information missing from the hagiographic DMN article. I grew up in Dallas during those trying times, sad to see how far city government has fallen as well as DISD.
    Can’t wait for Rawlins take on this 😉

  2. columbiasooner says:

    Do I smell a petition drive brewing?

  3. Bob Stoller says:

    I guess that Mac Taylor (the original desegregation judge) and the thousands of white-flighters in the 60’s and 70’s aren’t responsible for any of these consequences. Good to see that Soviet-style historical revisionism is still alive and well.

  4. the amanda says:

    The two worst judges, EVER.

  5. SB says:

    Awesome post, Wick. You absolutely hit the nail on the head.

  6. Sharon Boyd says:

    Can’t believe I’m in complete agreement with you. The destruction these 2 judges caused is across the board.

    My neighborhood is under seige by thieves. Two houses were robbed in the middle of the day last SUNDAY!

    The kids in my neighborhood have to cross Walnut Hill to attend elementary school, so that the apartment house kids south of us can overwhelm our neighborhood school.

    The marquee for the school on the corner of Marsh and Walnut Hill is only in Spanish. You won’t see 10 Anglo kids in either Burnett or Cigarillo.

    Evil comes in different shapes. Sanders and Buchmeyer are very personable guys who have done horrible things to Dallas and DISD schools.

  7. Eric says:

    It is quite amazing that anyone can wax poetic on the usurpation of power by the Federal Bench. Can’t win with the electorate ? – then just legislate from the bench. How can such elitism, such Soviet Style government (take that Stoller) telling the great unwashed how we really should have voted, be lionized today? Anyone read the Constitution lately?
    Good riddance. Best news Dallas has had in a long time.

  8. Five percenter (aka Dallas ISD Anglo parent) says:

    All the while, DMN encouraged white flight through its overzealous and one-sided reporting of school district issues. Now they praise the judges who didn’t know when to stop dividing up the white students even when there weren’t any left to segregate. They did the same with the teaching staff.
    Instead of praising Mike Moses diplomacy for finally getting us out from under the judges rule, DMN tried to destroy him through false representations and by defaming him in an ad campaign – whatever sells, eh?
    It’s well documented that none of their newsroom staff have had children in any of our schools.
    The arrogance and hypocrisy in the DMN building is endless. The end justifies the means if it will sell a paper. Thankfully, their sales continue to decline.
    Nothing though can keep the remaining Anglos from loving our schools and being advocates for all our students. We invite you to come aboard.
    The best kept secret DMN’s investigative reporters will never reveal is that Dallas ISD has the best executive leadership team ever. Great things are happening now and greater things are planned.

  9. Highway 6 says:

    Good post. Judges Sanders’ and Buchmeyer’s rulings are examples of blind adherence to to a social ideal run amuk. But then, what do we expect when we let judges, who are trained to handle legal problems, design solutions to social problems.

  10. Bill M. says:

    If Sharon’s (and my) neighborhood is under siege by thieves — and it is — the problem has nothing to do with Federal judges and their decades-ago decisions, and everything to do with the greed of absentee landlords who, by failing to maintain and provide adequate security in the apartments south of Park Lane, turned that neighborhood over to the drug dealers. Despite Ms. Boyd’s obvious distaste for her new neighbors, their children and their language, middle-class Hispanics have been pumping new life into our formerly dying neighborhood. They are the victims here. It is their houses that are being burgled for the most part. The thieves come from elsewhere.

  11. Bobby Ewing says:

    While I appreciate the alternative perspective, I am curious to consider a more probing discussion of how Dallas could have become less segregated without such rulings, how more DISD students would be college ready given different rulings, and how sticking with at large seats on the Council would have made Dallas less corrupt. And I realize this forum does not allow for such extended discussion…so perhaps there is an article already in existence about the failure of DISD?

  12. DISD graduate says:

    Yes, all of Dallas’s problems are the result of mandatory race-mixing. Wouldn’t we be a better, safer, more college-ready city if the poor minority students were still in under-funded, antiquated schools while more affluent non-minority children continued to attend public schools without ever knowing that minority children even existed?

    And, single member districts are inherently evil. They are precisely the genesis of all political corruption. We should elect all our state representatives, state senators and county commissioners at large. Talk about a Super Tuesday!

  13. SB says:

    “Wouldn’t we be a better, safer, more college-ready city if the poor minority students were still in under-funded, antiquated schools while more affluent non-minority children continued to attend public schools without ever knowing that minority children even existed?

    Change the word “public” to “private” and this is exactly what’s going on anyway. Forced bussing fixed nothing. It just broke the schools that would have been decent without it.

  14. Five percenter (aka Dallas ISD Anglo parent) says:

    To ROJ, (
    Save your St. Mark’s tuition outlay @ $20K per year for college days, nicer vacations or that home remodeling. Here’s a partial list of where recent graduates of W. T. White were admitted or are attending… and don’t rebut that it’s just one high school. There’s a SOC (South Oak Cliff) kid doing quite well at Yale.
    Boston University, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Chicago, Citadel Academy, Claremont McKenna College, Clemson University — National Scholar, Colorado School of Mines, Cornell University, University of Dallas, Dartmouth University, Franklin College-Switzerland, Georgetown University, Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of North Carolina, Northwestern University, Princeton University, Rice University, University of Southern California, Southern Methodist University, Stanford University, Texas A&M University, Texas Christian University, University of Texas – McCombs, Tufts University, United States Military Academy at West Point, United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Trinity University, Vanderbilt University, University of Virginia, Washington and Lee University, Washington University — St. Louis, Wellesley College, and Yale University.

  15. Five percenter (aka Dallas ISD Anglo parent) says:

    ..and because at a Dallas ISD high school one can begin Advanced Placement courses as early as freshman year, there are kids who have entered college as 2nd semester sophomores due to their AP success and or dual enrollment with Brookhaven. That saves some $$ too.

  16. looker says:

    let’s play what if… what if judge sanders just said “Parents you have the power to decide which public school your children attend. If your neighborhood school is not your choice, the district will provide transportation to your desired school.”

  17. Ron says:

    Ah, for the good old days of DISD, when Sharon attended, and when they didn’t have to bother with learning the “i before e” rule…

  18. a concerned parent says:

    This is in response to the DMN’s article today, Sunday, April 20, 2008 regarding Jack Lowe.

    Jack Lowe needs to go.

    1. Who moves into Dallas from Highland Park to run for the DISD School Board? Jack Lowe did. Why – to line his pockets. Who else in their right mind would do this. He is not doing it for his children or grandchildren. You think he would let them attend the DISD?

    2. Who runs for school board and then gets a brand new school named for his pappy. I have never heard of such a thing. If it would have happened at another time, who cares, but not while he is serving on the school board.

    3. Lowe has appointed Craig Reynolds not once, but now twice to lead this who ha. This is a shame as Mr. Reynolds is benefiting off it also. Why else are these men involved and why are they pushing the bond package that does not benefit the entire district. They don’t give a dam. They just want a bond package and a way to line their pockets and all they see is $$$, they don’t see the students and they sure don’t give a dam about the teachers and their thoughts or concerns. Why does Reynolds get the job twice. Is there no other person in Dallas that would not have a conflict of interest to run the DISD Bond Program.

    4. Why is no one running against Jack Lowe – it is not because people respect the job he had done or is doing. It is because of one thing $$$. That is no one had the money out there to beat Jack Lowe and his political machine for a job that does not pay the average citizen a cent — but for Jack Lowe that is not the case – he will walk away with millions.

    Something to think about when voting for the next bond election. VOTE NO and by the way if you live in Jack Lowe’s district – just don’t vote for the Trustee because even though you can’t vote against him, you don’t have to give him a vote.