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thus by this omission, continue the myth that there are separate—but equal—facilities for the two races." WATCH FOR THAT to change from now on, as travel executives begin to recognize that it is not only more expensive but shortsighted to support separate, if equal, advertising campaigns. "We are at last fully aware of our rights, and no longer can be flattered simply by being called 'Mister' when we board a plane," said Eastern's Plinton. "We want to see more black pilots sitting up front, as well as more black passengers in first class seats. "Some of the programs designed to attract black tourists are still an insult—as though we were some sort of special category of customer, when all we really want is to be treated simply and solely like anyone else. "So far, many airlines have been getting black business by default, just because they happen to be the best known carrier going to certain destinations. I suspect this is the last year for that, however. "Black tourists are now earning the kind of money which will allow them to go anywhere they want, and they are becoming increasingly discriminating in their choices of carriers and vacation sites." CARRUTHERS NOTED that the 25 million balck Americans had a total income of $45 billion last year, equal to the entire population of Italy. They spent more than $800 million of this on leisure travel and the 1973 figure should top $1 billion, he predicted. "A considerable black travel market has existed for many years," Carruthers said. "But in the past, it was largely limited to segregated hotels and restaurants in the big city ghettos. "Now, thanks largely to civil rights laws passed in the 1960's there is a rapidly growing awareness throughout the industry that this many people cannot be ignored any longer. "There can't be any doubt, when every state is seeking to restore or establish historic places which will appeal to black tourists, as are many foreign countries, in Africa notably. Keep in mind also that many black servicemen have been stationed around the world since world War II, and they want to go back with their wives just as white veterans do." Burns said the number of black-run travel agencies has doubled to about 120 in just five years, as new doors open to their clients. "IRONICALLY, many of us who struggled [[type cut off]] in the bad old days, waiting for our people to become affluent, now find ourselves competing with white agencies that are newly discovering this market," he remarked. "For in these modern times, it finally has begun to dawn on the industry that the only color which really counts is green—as in dollars." Even with a steadily mounting volume of business, however, Burns said he was not fully confident that the old days were over until he saw airline advertisements using black models in southern publications. "To see that happen down in Dixie was a certain sign to me that we have at long last arrived in the travel market," he asserted. Yes, it's a long way from the back of the bus. But there's a red carpet waiting now for the black traveler endowed with what Leonard Burns described as the only force which truly matters today: "Green power—as in money." [[image - black & white photograph of a football game]] [[image - black & white photograph of a man receiving an award at a banquet]] [[image - black & white photograph of dignitaries at the banquet]] [[caption]] Bishop Henry, Judge Ivan Warner, Attorney Cora Walker, Judge Samuel Pierce and James Plinton of Eastern Airlines. [[/caption]] 47
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