Boycott the Eyes of Texas

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For over a century, “The Eyes of Texas” has been the alma mater of The University of Texas at Austin. Sung at sporting events, graduation ceremonies and more, the song has been a staple of the UT experience. But in doing this, UT has upheld a song with an undeniably racist history. “The Eyes of Texas” premiered at a minstrel show on UT’s campus in 1903. The lyrics are tied to the white supremacist beliefs of Robert E. Lee. Even the melody has racist connections.* 

Student-athletes, Student Government, IFC and many other UT organizations demanded the song be institutionally removed this summer. But, UT Administration announced the song will remain, and that we could “reclaim and redefine” it by simply acknowledging the racist history. Is this possible?

This video and petition presents the views of campus leaders, student-athletes and band members across campus. The overarching theme - times have changed. Current students don’t feel pride when singing a song that is meant to bolster school spirit. It is our responsibility to listen to the voices of students. They are the life and culture of the university. 

Together, we can restart the conversation about the racist origins of “The Eyes of Texas.” Together, we can rewrite a song that unifies and represents all of us. Together, we can begin a movement that lives up to our school’s promise - what starts here changes the world.

#RewriteNotReclaim #WeAreStillOne #KnowTheTruth

Instagram: @rewritenotreclaim
Twitter: @rewriteeot
Facebook: Rewrite Not Reclaim

Credits:
Rebecca Chen - Project Director/Creative Strategist/Art Director
Peyton Young - Creative Director/Editor/Animator
José A. Castillo - Producer/Composer/Audio Editor
Camille Johnson- PR/Communications 
Connor O’Neill - PR/Communications
Faith Castle - Producer/Assistant Editor

Special Thanks To:
Joanne Allen-Taylor
Jade Fabello
Judson Hayden
Ethan Jones
Brianna McBride
Ally Morales
Marilyn Nwora
Jacey Rosengren
Caden Sterns

*Additional resources and history about “The Eyes of Texas”: http://bit.ly/rnrresources

**Correction: A previous version of this video misstated the name of the minstrel show where “The Eyes of Texas” premiered. The song premiered at the Varsity Minstrel Show in 1903, not a Texas Cowboys minstrel show. The Texas Cowboys were not formed until 1922.