Know this, Texas Southern University (TSU) is the most underutilized, unvalued, and undeveloped institutional resource in the Black community. It’s a shame. It is appalling, but it is an empirical fact TSU needs restructuring. TSU has very few quality-control measures. This problem negatively affects all of us in many and varied profound ways, especially the Black community. This editorial is not designed to create more chaos and confusion. Its purpose is to help provide a positive visionary leadership directional solution because, “where there is no vision the people perish.”
Therefore, if the community is not a part of the solution, they are invariably a part of the problem. The Black community is plagued by privilege-oriented political leadership, not sacrificial community service. Political leadership ineptness and immorality in the Black community has created community development stagnation and not community creative institution building. Someone must be held accountable for what exists at TSU, and it starts with the Governor’s Office, and ends with leadership in the Black community, especially administrative leadership at TSU.
At the beginning of the fall semester there must be an internal autopsy coupled with a forensic audit from top to bottom on academic and financial affairs at TSU designed to assess state funding appropriations and expenditures. Maybe we should remember this scriptural message that states, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8: 28). If you are called and individuals prepare themselves through professional academic training to educate, then they should educate, not only themselves, but students as well. Education is a process that is designed to bring the best out of individuals. A university should never simply become a vulgar paycheck system that allows children to suffer, become ill-educated, and ill-prepared to live a meaningful productive life of service to others. Students who are ill-equipped to perform at a senior college level should be encouraged to attend local two-year community colleges.
Houston, if you are not sick and tired of the confusion at TSU, you should be! TSU has systemic problems in all systems and institutional structures. God has blessed the Houston community with an educational developmental institution for children, and our children’s children, and we are spiritually allowing TSU to die on the vine, because of leadership ineptness and immorality. TSU must become a positive developmental building force in the institutional and the community life of Blacks. This is only an honest observation as well as positive suggestions, to assist and aid TSU in overcoming itself. TSU was established to assist, help, guide and prosper the Black community, but it has failed miserably in its half-hearted efforts, due to selfish leadership mentalities at the Student Body Level, Faculty Level, College Deans, Provost’s Office, Presidential Office, and Board of Regents oversight level. There is an ole adage: “if the tail is confused, what about the head”. Therefore, if the tail is confused, we know that the head is supercharged with confusion to the nth degree.
We all know: “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein, for the time is at hand” (Revelation 1:3). HISD must prayerfully teach our children how to Read by Five, because if they do not, they just might become the ultimate causal reason (s) for the demise of TSU, academically! Additionally, TSU’s College of Education must get right with its student body by developing new teaching techniques and strategies for how best to educate urban children!
In 1973, Texas Southern University was granted a special purpose legislative designation for urban programming. To this day, TSU has not been able to maximize institutionally that special purpose designation, because of the lack of visionary academic leadership. Hence, must develop a consistent and viable vision for student recruitment and educational development. Again, it appears as though TSU is in a perpetual state of devilish confusion, because of inept administrative leadership mentalities at every level. We all know that confusion leads to turmoil, and turmoil can lead to extinction, if not creatively corrected and remedied. Question: why can’t TSU create a Godly inclusive vision for the future, student development, and community development? TSU is not a viable functional educational entity. To assist in improving TSU, the Governor must appoint a blue-ribbon commissioner to assess functionality and dysfunctionality at TSU, and recommend positive solutions to ensure that TSU will creatively live-up to its Special Purpose Designation, and survive into the future. Universities exist primarily for student development (teaching and learning), community institutional development, and holistic societal development and enhancement.
TSU is a land-locked higher education institution. Educational development and creative institutional growth require access to land which TSU does not currently possess. No doubt about it, educational growth requires land for programmatic development. The most available land that is currently adjacent to TSU is Cuney Homes. State and City government officials must provide a positive answer to this pressing academic developmental growth issue both for TSU as well as the residents of Cuney Homes. TSU was initially designed to be patterned academically and professionally after the University of Texas.
Thus, TSU should concentrate its intellectual and moral energies, capacities, and efforts on academic programming capabilities, not on racial identity. It is a well-known historical fact that TSU is Black and was created specifically to serve the educational needs of the Black community. Why then waste precious time, resources and energy addressing known empirical legislative facts? Let’s talk about unrealized potentials, capabilities, possibilities and how to address systemic historic problems! Know this, city and state governments get out of institutions what they invest in them. Investments traditionally in TSU have not been comparable to investments in other major state universities because of institutional racism. Again, you get out of any institution invariably according to the investments. Therefore, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that he also reap” (Galatians 6: 7).
The Governor and other state officials should step-up to the plate regarding adequate funding for TSU, as well as provide Board of Regents accountability and oversight qualifications. The citizens of Texas need a viable functioning check-balance-accountability system at all state universities, especially TSU. Houston, God gave the word (TRUTH), and great was the company of those who published it. Houston, the Afro-American News and Issues will always publish the TRUTH, in and out, of season. Amen!