UT-Austin history professor releases second report on “The Eyes of Texas,” details 100 problems with the song

Samantha Greyson

History professor Alberto Martínez outlined 100 problems with “The Eyes of Texas” and called for the song to be removed in his second report addressing the song and a faculty petition released Saturday.

“If Texas has eyes, they try not to see these problems,” the report says. “Such factors, and others, lead some people to say: ‘UT is racist.’”

The report, entitled “100 Problems in ‘The Eyes of Texas,’” outlines student, faculty and community dissent against the song as well as its racist origins. 

Martínez released his first report in March, also contradicting the University’s report, which found that while the song was written in a “racist setting,” it is “not overtly racist.”

“A world-class University should have a song that unites its students, community and alumni,” Martínez’s report says. “But this one very clearly does not. “

Martínez’s second report also publicly announced a UT faculty petition to remove the song, which started April 26 and has garnered over 100 signatures.

“Despite thousands of objections, UT’s President (Jay) Hartzell decided to keep the song in July 2020,” the report says. “That was a mistake, as the present article itemizes why thousands of students, athletes, faculty, staff, alumni, state legislators and prominent community members complain about UT’s official song.”

The school song was originally sung at a 1903 minstrel show where white performers dressed in blackface. UT athletes, UT Student Government and other campus organizations called for the removal of the song within a list of demands to the University released in June, according to previous The Daily Texan reporting.

“Obviously, it’s much easier not to list anything,” the report says. “It’s much easier to shut our eyes and ears. But what if we don’t?”