New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 25, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
Back in time
Black woman refused service in restaurant
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) -Entering the Belvoir Restaurant in southwestern Virginia was like stepping back into the racial turmoil of the 1960s, says a black woman who claims restaurant owners Roy and Patricia McKoy refused her service last year because of her color.
The McKoys, already are under court orders to serve blacks, are being sued for discrimination by three black women who, in front of news cameras and reporters, tried to enter the Marshall, Va., restaurant last Dec. 7.
Attorneys for the McKoys told a federal court jury on Wednesday their clients were made victims of a ’ staged media event" when Lori Jackson and her daughters, Denise Johnson and Debrah Williams, showed up at the Belvoir
Following the restaurant incident, the women, residents of Prince William County, filed suit in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, where an all-white jury of two women and four men could call for an injunction
against the McKoys and award unspecified damages to the women.
A decision in the case was expected
The 30-seat restaurant, located about 50 miles southwest of Washington, D.C., has been the target of court actions since 1967, when a federal judge ordered the McKoys to stop discriminating against blacks and to place a sign in their place saying everyone would be served "regardless of race or color.”
Also on display at the restaurant has been a sign saying the court had. "unconstitutionally forced us to serve people we do not want to serve," several witnesses said.
Roy McKoy, 60, was found guilty of failing to comply with the order in 1974 and again earlier this year. He was sentenced to short jail terms
Defense lawyers portrayed the McKoys as owners of a "Mom and Pop" operation who have been the targets of media harassment in their widely reported troubles. Lori
Jackson said on the stand Wednesday she went to the restaurant after a call from lawyer Victor Glasberg, who had in turn been called by-Washington television reporter Jim Upshaw.
Upshaw rekindled publicity when his crew showed up at the Belvoir on Nov. 26, 1984, at which time McKoy said the restaurant was closed and that coffee would cost "$500 a cup.”
‘‘The media descended on them, and now they’ve become national celebrities,” attorney William Beeton charged. "The question is not whether anybody has been discriminated against, but whether this is a staged media event.”
The women claim the events of last Dec. 7 were part of longstanding policy at the restaurant, and that they suffered emotional distress and embarrasment.
"It was Uke being hit in the face with a brick, ice water, taking me back to the ’60s," Ms. Jackson said, her voice breaking with emotion on the stand. "I saw the hatred. I
Peso devalued to help economy
MEXICO CITY Apt In a bid to arrest a deteriorating economy, the government lias slashed the value of the peso by 20 percent, ordered reductions in the massive bureaucracy. and vowed to reduce barriers to foreign trade Actions spelled out Wednesday night in an unusual news conference by the government’s three top economic officials were some of the toughest measures taken by the 21?-year-old adnunistration of President Miguel de la Madrid
The moment is difficult and has generated uneasiness and uncertainty in some groups of the population,” said Jesus Silva Herzog, the finance minister.
Carlos Salinas de Gortari, the budget secretary , said "A problem like the one we are facing demands acting on all fronts, without exception, internally as well as externally, to retim e the social impact which the crisis provokes."
Private anal) sis recommended tough actions by tile government, but most had hoped they would have been put in place months ago. Many observers believe the government avoided taking any harsh steps until after tile July 7 national elections The devaluation of the peso was the sharpest since December 1982 when the economy was mired in a deep recession Silva Herzog said today's value of the "controlled" peso will be nearly 281) pesos to the dollar, compared to Wednesday s fixing of about 233 pesos
Earlier this month tile government devalued the peso in tile tourist market in an initial effort to calm wild fluctuations that have driven it to record lows against tile dollar. Its value in recent days has ranged from 370 pesos to the dollar to as much cs 400 pesos along the U S border. Mexican officials have become
increasingly alarmed about the
direction of the economy; because of the weakening peso, lower oil prices, high inflation and sluggish demand for its non-oil exports.
Mexico owes roughly $94 billion to U.S. and other foreign banks, and depends largely on oil sales to bring in enough foreign revenue to pay interest costs on its debt.
A US economist, who spoke on condition he not be identified, said the new measures will slow the economy, and probably increase prices, adding to inflation, in the short run. At the current rate, inflation would be more than 50 percent for the year
The analy st said the actions also should lower the prices of Mexican goods sold overseas w hich will make them more competitive. On the other hand, unporters of foreign goods would pay more.
Salmas de Gortari said the government would immediately cut spending to save 150 billion pesos, or about $400 million, this year and more in 1986
To accomplish that, he said nearly all Cabinet departments will shut down some operations and cut costs in others The number of aides and advisors, even to Cabinet ministers, will be trimmed.
Hector Hernandez, the commerce secretary , said the government will speed up the pace at which it lowers harriers that protect its industries from foreign competition.
It will change its current import permit system to a tariff system, he said.
The Mexican economy is highly-protected from foreign competition. Critics say that keeps prices high. By letting in more foreign goods, protected industries will be under pressure to be more competitive, by reducing prices or improving quality.
Shultz primes Mexico for Reagan's visit
MEXICO CITY (AR* - Drug -affic. Central America and other ssues straining US.-Mexico elations were on tile docket of U.S. ecretary of State George P. Shultz i his meetings with Mexican leaders ere today after arriving to begin repanng for President Reagan s xpected visit
No formal agenda was released for he fifth annual bilateral meeting atween top U.S. and Mexican of-icials, but a State Department pokesman in Washington said Regal lmnugration also would be an mportant topic.
Shultz, along with officials from he Treasury and Commerce lepartments as well as the U.S. trade •epresentative, was scheduled to irnve this morning and travel iirectly to a private meeting with President Miguel de la Madrid. A series (rf conferences with the officials’ Mexican counterparts was scheduled for the rest of the day, with Shultz due to leave Friday morning after a breakfast meeting.
Relations beween the two nations were severely tested last February with the kidnap-inurder of U.S. special narcotics agent Enrique Camarena Salazar in Guadalajara, Mexico. U.S. officials first said the Mexican government did not act quickly enough to apprehend the murderers.
Members of the Reagan administration, including FBI Director
couldn’t believe it.”
Patricia McCoy said, however, that she turned the three women away only because reporters and a camera crew were behind them.
Several black area residents took the stand to recount times they had been turned away, allegedly because of their race, while whites from the area testified on behalf of the McKoys.
On Wednesday, Glasberg asked the McKoys about transcripts of testimony in the 1967 and 1974 cases in which they were quoted as saying they would not serve blacks.
“I don’t remember all this stuff,” Roy McKoy responded.
Glasberg also introduced a letter McKoy sent in 1974 to U.S. District Judge Oren Lewis, along with the U.S. attorney general and the president of the United States, saying he was entitled to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, which does not include the dark people.”
"I told them what I thought," McKoy said Wednesday.Minorities challenge teacher skills tests
TYIJ2R (AP) — The state NAACP and two other groups, along with 14 college students, have filed suit in U.S. District Court, asking that a skills test for potential teachers be abolished because it allegedly robs minorities of the right to teach.
The suit contends that the Pre-Professional Skills Test, which is given to college sophomores who plan to be teachers, is an effort to keep blacks and Hispanics out of the teaching profession.
The skills exam tests the potential teachers in math, reading and writing. Those who do not pass are not allowed to take upper level education courses, but they are allowed to keep taking the test until they pass.
The lawsuit challenging that test was filed last Friday on behalf of the state chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the GI Forum, and the League of United I.atin American Citizens (LULAC), as well as 14 college students.
Jose Garza, a lawyer with the Mexican-American I,egal Defense
and Educational Fund, whose lawyers represent the plaintiffs, said the test does not take into account a student’s overall grade point average.
Garza said the cutoff scores on the teacher test were arbitrary.
Education Commissioner W.N. Kirby said, "We don’t think it (the test) is culturally biased.
"We are sympathetic with the problem, but disagree with the directives they are proposing,” he told the Tyler Morning Telegraph. "We are concerned that we have a significant number of minority students that are unable to pass the test.”
Garza said his group had tried to resolve the matter with the State Board of Education at its last regular meeting but was
Kirby said board officials had been meeting with MALDEF and the attorney general, "but we will not compromise our standards.”
The teacher skills test was part of a major reform package approved by the Texas Legislature last year.
William Webster, since have applauded Mexico’s efforts to combat cultivation of marijuana and poppy, while say ing there remains room for unprovement.
Raids by law officers in seven U.S. states, Puerto Rico and Mexico on Tuesday led to the arrests of 120 people in a crackdown on a Mexican drug connection that authorities said had pumped heroin into the United States for two decades.
The Reagan administration has also been critical of Mexico’s refusal to condemn Nicaragua’s Sandinista government. Mexico is a member of the Contadora Group — along with Venezuela, Colombia and Panama — which has been trying for more than two years to negotiate a peaceful settlement to problems rn Central America.
During a visit to Mexico earlier this month Gen. Vernon Walters, the new U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said of the two nations’ policies, "There are certain differences that are evident. You (Mexico) have your principles and your interests and we have ours.”
De la Madrid and Reagan, who traditionally meet once a year, last met in May 1964 when the Mexican president visited the White House. The State Department official, who would not allow himself to be quoted by name, said a date and location were still to be decided for Reagan’s expected Mexican trip.
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