Once Upon a Time in Texas: A Liberal in the Lone Star State

Paperback | September 1, 2012

byDavid Richards

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Once upon a time in Texas...there were liberal activists of various stripes who sought to make the state more tolerant and more tolerable. David Richards was one of them. In this fast-paced, often humorous memoir, he remembers the players, the strategy sessions, the legal and political battles, and the wins and losses that brought significant gains in civil rights, voter rights, labor law, and civil liberties to the people of Texas from the 1950s to the 1990s.

In his work as a lawyer, Richards was involved in cases covering voters' rights, school finance reform, and a myriad of civil liberties and free speech cases. In telling these stories, he vividly evokes the "glory days" of Austin liberalism, when a who's who of Texas activists plotted strategy at watering holes such as Scholz Garden and the Armadillo World Headquarters. Likewise, he offers vivid portraits of liberal politicians from Ralph Yarborough to Ann Richards (his former wife), progressive journalists such as Molly Ivins and the Texas Observer staff, and the hippies, hellraisers, and musicians who all challenged Texas's conservative status quo.

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Once upon a time in Texas...there were liberal activists of various stripes who sought to make the state more tolerant and more tolerable. David Richards was one of them. In this fast-paced, often humorous memoir, he remembers the players, the strategy sessions, the legal and political battles, and the wins and losses that brought sign...

Today, David Richards lives in Mill Valley, California. An attorney in private practice since 1957, he has also served as head of litigation in the Texas Attorney General’s Office, as general counsel for the Texas AFL-CIO, and as a cooperating attorney for the Texas Civil Liberties Union.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:296 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:September 1, 2012Publisher:University Of Texas PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0292745915

ISBN - 13:9780292745919

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments1. Texas, Our Texas2. Coming of Age in Waco and Austin—1950s Style3. Off to Dallas to Practice Law4. The 1960 Election: The New Frontier Beckons5. Returning to Dallas Hat in Hand6. Representing Labor Unions in Dallas, Texas7. Dallas, 1966: The Federal Courts and the Winds of Change8. The Radical Left Shows Up in Texas9. A Gleeful Return to Austin10. Changing the Face of the Texas House of Representatives11. Life and Times with U.S. District Judge Jack Roberts12. The Texas Department of Public Safety Gets Caught Snooping on "Radicals" at the Unitarian Church of Dallas13. Frank Erwin and UT Take on the Rag14. Law and the Counterculture15. Austin Politics--Come the Revolution16. Student Voting Comes of Age17. Redistricting East Texas in the 1970s18. Mad Dog Memories19. Of Time on the River20. A Decade or So of Voting Rights Wars in Texas21. "The Times They Are A-Changing"22. The 1982 Elections: Triumph of the Yarborough Democrats23. The 1990s and the Last Guffaw24. The Trail Doubles Back