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Willisms

« What Are You Reading These Days? | WILLisms.com | Associated Press: Bush Does Something Right »

Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 284 -- Texas Independence Day.

Texas Exports-

Today is Texas Independence Day. On this day in 1836, Texans declared that they had had enough Mexican rule:

When a government has ceased to protect the lives, liberty and property of the people, from whom its legitimate powers are derived, and for the advancement of whose happiness it was instituted, and so far from being a guarantee for the enjoyment of those inestimable and inalienable rights, becomes an instrument in the hands of evil rulers for their oppression.

When the Federal Republican Constitution of their country, which they have sworn to support, no longer has a substantial existence, and the whole nature of their government has been forcibly changed, without their consent, from a restricted federative republic, composed of sovereign states, to a consolidated central military despotism, in which every interest is disregarded but that of the army and the priesthood, both the eternal enemies of civil liberty, the everready minions of power, and the usual instruments of tyrants.

When, long after the spirit of the constitution has departed, moderation is at length so far lost by those in power, that even the semblance of freedom is removed, and the forms themselves of the constitution discontinued, and so far from their petitions and remonstrances being regarded, the agents who bear them are thrown into dungeons, and mercenary armies sent forth to force a new government upon them at the point of the bayonet.

When, in consequence of such acts of malfeasance and abdication on the part of the government, anarchy prevails, and civil society is dissolved into its original elements. In such a crisis, the first law of nature, the right of self-preservation, the inherent and inalienable rights of the people to appeal to first principles, and take their political affairs into their own hands in extreme cases, enjoins it as a right towards themselves, and a sacred obligation to their posterity, to abolish such government, and create another in its stead, calculated to rescue them from impending dangers, and to secure their future welfare and happiness.

Nations, as well as individuals, are amenable for their acts to the public opinion of mankind. A statement of a part of our grievances is therefore submitted to an impartial world, in justification of the hazardous but unavoidable step now taken, of severing our political connection with the Mexican people, and assuming an independent attitude among the nations of the earth.

The Mexican government, by its colonization laws, invited and induced the Anglo-American population of Texas to colonize its wilderness under the pledged faith of a written constitution, that they should continue to enjoy that constitutional liberty and republican government to which they had been habituated in the land of their birth, the United States of America.

In this expectation they have been cruelly disappointed, inasmuch as the Mexican nation has acquiesced in the late changes made in the government by General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, who having overturned the constitution of his country, now offers us the cruel alternative, either to abandon our homes, acquired by so many privations, or submit to the most intolerable of all tyranny, the combined despotism of the sword and the priesthood.

It has sacrificed our welfare to the state of Coahuila, by which our interests have been continually depressed through a jealous and partial course of legislation, carried on at a far distant seat of government, by a hostile majority, in an unknown tongue, and this too, notwithstanding we have petitioned in the humblest terms for the establishment of a separate state government, and have, in accordance with the provisions of the national constitution, presented to the general Congress a republican constitution, which was, without just cause, contemptuously rejected.

It incarcerated in a dungeon, for a long time, one of our citizens, for no other cause but a zealous endeavor to procure the acceptance of our constitution, and the establishment of a state government.

It has failed and refused to secure, on a firm basis, the right of trial by jury, that palladium of civil liberty, and only safe guarantee for the life, liberty, and property of the citizen.

It has failed to establish any public system of education, although possessed of almost boundless resources, (the public domain,) and although it is an axiom in political science, that unless a people are educated and enlightened, it is idle to expect the continuance of civil liberty, or the capacity for self government.

It has suffered the military commandants, stationed among us, to exercise arbitrary acts of oppression and tyrrany, thus trampling upon the most sacred rights of the citizens, and rendering the military superior to the civil power.

It has dissolved, by force of arms, the state Congress of Coahuila and Texas, and obliged our representatives to fly for their lives from the seat of government, thus depriving us of the fundamental political right of representation.

It has demanded the surrender of a number of our citizens, and ordered military detachments to seize and carry them into the Interior for trial, in contempt of the civil authorities, and in defiance of the laws and the constitution.

It has made piratical attacks upon our commerce, by commissioning foreign desperadoes, and authorizing them to seize our vessels, and convey the property of our citizens to far distant ports for confiscation.

It denies us the right of worshipping the Almighty according to the dictates of our own conscience, by the support of a national religion, calculated to promote the temporal interest of its human functionaries, rather than the glory of the true and living God.

It has demanded us to deliver up our arms, which are essential to our defence, the rightful property of freemen, and formidable only to tyrannical governments.

It has invaded our country both by sea and by land, with intent to lay waste our territory, and drive us from our homes; and has now a large mercenary army advancing, to carry on against us a war of extermination.

It has, through its emissaries, incited the merciless savage, with the tomahawk and scalping knife, to massacre the inhabitants of our defenseless frontiers.

It hath been, during the whole time of our connection with it, the contemptible sport and victim of successive military revolutions, and hath continually exhibited every characteristic of a weak, corrupt, and tyrranical government.

These, and other grievances, were patiently borne by the people of Texas, untill they reached that point at which forbearance ceases to be a virtue. We then took up arms in defence of the national constitution. We appealed to our Mexican brethren for assistance. Our appeal has been made in vain. Though months have elapsed, no sympathetic response has yet been heard from the Interior.

We are, therefore, forced to the melancholy conclusion, that the Mexican people have acquiesced in the destruction of their liberty, and the substitution therfor of a military government; that they are unfit to be free, and incapable of self government.

The necessity of self-preservation, therefore, now decrees our eternal political separation.

We, therefore, the delegates with plenary powers of the people of Texas, in solemn convention assembled, appealing to a candid world for the necessities of our condition, do hereby resolve and declare, that our political connection with the Mexican nation has forever ended, and that the people of Texas do now constitute a free, Sovereign, and independent republic, and are fully invested with all the rights and attributes which properly belong to independent nations; and, conscious of the rectitude of our intentions, we fearlessly and confidently commit the issue to the decision of the Supreme arbiter of the destinies of nations.

Many Texas still celebrate Texas Independence Day. It's a reminder that Texas was indeed its own independent nation for about a decade; it's one of those "Texas things" Texans just do to exalt their state.

It's also ought to be a reminder that Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna was a brutal, if inept, dictator, and the struggle for Texas Independence was glorious, positive, and entirely justified. It was also no lily white Anglo power grab, either. Tejanos fought and died in every major battle, including at the Alamo, on behalf of a free and independent Texas. A Tejano, Lorenzo de Zavala, was even the first VP of the Republic of Texas.

At a certain March 2 Celebration at The University of Texas some years back, members of MEChA (The Moviemento Estudiantil Chicana/o de Aztlan) took some of the celebratory cake, ate it, then immediately vomited it all over the place to spoil the fun-- and send a message.

MEChA is a radical (and occasionally violent) Marxist organization with hundreds of chapters on college campuses mostly across the Southwest. Its message: 1) the liberation of Texas from Mexican tyranny was racist; 2) Texas and other American lands must return to Mexican rule; 3) no Mexican immigrant is ever "illegal."

And so on.

MEChA, unfortunately, has been mainstreamed by much of the establishment media. Antonio Villaraigosa, a proud Mechista at UCLA, never denounced the organization, but still wound up as Mayor of Los Angeles, for example.

In Houston, the Major League Soccer (MLS) club, Houston 1836, is changing its name after mild outcry from certain Hispanic groups.

Weak.

Texas Independence Day was not about white versus brown. It was a fight for life, liberty, and property. For everyone. And history has vindicated the Texas Independence movement. Texas, with no income tax, is now one of the fastest growing economies in the country, with legal and illegal immigrants from outside the United States flowing in to get a piece of the pie. But Texas is also gaining substantial population via domestic migration from all over the United States. It's just the place to be.

If Texas were part of Mexico today, it's hard to imagine the labor standards being as high as they are today, it's hard to imagine the environment being as clean as it is today, it's hard to imagine the educational opportunities being as elite and as accessible as they are today, it's hard to imagine the political system being as transparent and as free of corruption as it is today, and it's hard to imagine business and commerce flourishing the way they are today.

It's difficult to imagine the kind of upward mobility or social services or justice system or women's rights in "Aztlan" (MEChA's dream world) that now exist in Texas. And this difficulty has very little to do with race or nationality and everything to do with ideas, principles, and policies.

America is superior to Mexico not because we control this river or that natural resource, nor because we have more white people here, but because we have superior founding principles, a superior Constitution, and superior policies. Plenty of countries have plenty of resources. It's only the ones that value liberty, economically, politically, and socially, that ultimately succeed. A rich and powerful Texas was not inevitable under any governmental system-- just this one.

Indeed, on this Texas Independence Day, let's remember that this day ought to be a day for all Texans (and all Americans), including (and in many ways, especially) the now-plurality of Latinos, to celebrate what a great place Texas (and the U.S.) is to live, work, and play. And to celebrate the not at all arbitrary reason it's such a great place.

And on this Texas Independence Day, chest-beat a little bit now that Texas has surpassed California in both college football and foreign exports:

texasexportssurpasscali.gif
Texas and California are the United States’ export powerhouses, generating more than a quarter of the nation’s overseas sales. In third quarter 2005, 14.5 percent of U.S. exports originated in Texas. Just under 13 percent originated in California. The next largest exporting state is New York, at 5.5 percent.

Long live Texas.

-------------------------------------

Previous Trivia Tidbit: Economic Downtime.

Posted by Will Franklin · 2 March 2006 08:45 AM

Comments

A rich and powerful Texas was not inevitable under any governmental system-- just this one.

This is true for all societies, everywhere throughout the world.

American Exceptionalism is not due to race, but to democratic ideas and principles, and having the freedom to succeed.

Posted by: Ken McCracken at March 2, 2006 10:42 AM

It also helps that we allow for anyone who wants to work hard and be free to come here whereas other countries shed their best workers to us due to substandard freedom of opportunity.

Posted by: Rob B. at March 2, 2006 11:26 AM

"Texas Independence Day was not about white versus brown." Everything in the U.S. seems to be about race, everything is "racialized". Saying something isn't about race doesn't make it so for the "others." I suspect that's why so many of us "Anglos" no longer think about, much less celebrate "Texas Independence". Not to mention the fact that Texas is no longer "Independent" having been thoroughly Federalized since the 1980's Savings and Loan debacle.

Interesting thing that, since everything has been racialized, "Place" loses any meaning. As one "Race" displaces another, everything becomes so liquid and change so pervasive that the only permanent is the need to stay on the move to remain somewhat comfortable.

"And this difficulty has very little to do with race or nationality and everything to do with ideas, principles, and policies." Funny you should use that line. I've found most people and many of their Politicians lack any ideas or priniciples and the Gov't, as a result, has little control over much in the way of policies that make any sense. I mean, a gov't that can't respond in a sensible manner to a Hurricane is one with ineffective policies. Actually, it's beginning to fade in relevance as it's borders fade in relevance.

Enjoy your life.

Posted by: Tony at March 2, 2006 12:24 PM

You are cynical about the world. I am not.

Posted by: Will Franklin at March 2, 2006 12:40 PM

And the ability to sneer does not make one intelligent.

Posted by: Ken McCracken at March 2, 2006 12:44 PM

Everything in the USA is most certainly NOT about race. That is the most racist statement I have ever heard. I feel sorry for you if you really believe that. If you see people only as a color or a race? You are missing out on the individuality of a person. That is really sad and hopefully you can embrace the individual as a person rather than as a race someday. Saying what you said does not make it so! Sorry about you...

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at March 2, 2006 01:25 PM