We know plenty of stories, like Jones’ father convincing him not to buy the NFL’s San Diego franchise. We know he was on vacation in Cabo when he found out the cowboys were for sale. When it came time to part ways with Jimmie Johnson, we knew his story. We know why he spent nearly 10 years with Jason Garrett. We know the story of building AT&T Stadium. Jerry Jones lives a public life, and he seems to accept most of it.
However, given what he saw, there was one story he hadn’t told enough. That day, he stood on the steps of his schoolhouse in North Little Rock, Arkansas, watching six black teenagers be denied admission to his high school. The date is September 9, 1957. That was a different time in our country. The era when the Supreme Court ruled that schools could no longer be segregated by race. Now is the time for equality for people of color.
A black-and-white photo shows Jones, a month shy of his 15th birthday, wearing a striped shirt, standing with a group of white people while six black teenagers are jeered as they walk down the steps of Jones’ North Little Rock High School. superior. “Look, that was 65 years ago, and I don’t know what we were doing getting there,” Jones said after the Cowboys’ victory over the Giants on Thursday. “It just reminds me how to improve and do things right.”
Jones’ presence at a scandalous event in our nation’s history is now an issue, as images captured by the Associated Press were unearthed and published by The Washington Post this week as the paper explored the background of the NFL owners who supported it to understand why some chartered Operating rights, like the Cowboys and New York Giants, have never hired a black head coach.
“That was, gosh, the purest kid 65 years ago,” he said. “I didn’t know at the time how monumental [a] event really was, and I’m glad we’re nowhere near that. I am. It will remind me to keep doing what I can to prevent things like this from happening.” May 1954, In the historic Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka [Kansas] case, the Supreme Court ruled that school segregation was unconstitutional.
In 1957, the Little Rock School Board voted for modest desegregation of schools, expecting all schools to be open to all, regardless of race, by 1963.
The court ruling delayed the process until a federal court finally ordered the desegregation of schools. On September 4, 1957, nine black students were turned away from Little Rock Central High School.
Then, on Sept. 9, six black students tried to get into North Little Rock High School, where Jones attended. Jones wants to know what’s going on at his school. He told The Washington Post that his high school football coach told the players not to go to school. Jones went anyway. “Honestly, it was curiosity,” Jones said. “I get criticized because I’m more concerned about my coaches and how everybody’s going to punish me [in there]. Frankly, no one knows what’s going to happen. You don’t have all the 70 years of references we don’t have and all that’s going on Thing. You don’t have a point of reference there. Still, I have a habit of sticking my nose in the [wrong] place at the wrong time. I definitely have.
President Eisenhower addressed the nation from the White House on September 24, frustrated but determined to obey the law. “I would like the city and state authorities to get this localized situation under control,” Eisenhower said in his speech. “If the use of local police powers is sufficient, we’ll go with the traditional method that we put the problem in their hands.
“But when a large assembly of filibusters made it impossible to enforce the court’s order, the law and the national interest called for the president to act.” The next day, nine black teenagers were allowed into the center of Little Rock. President Eisenhower sent more than 1,000 soldiers from the Army’s 101st Airborne Division to secure teenagers into schools.