Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Happy Texas Independence Day, y'all!

175 years ago today, the Republic of Texas declared its independence from Mexico. A brief war followed, ending in the recognition of independence by Mexico, and for nine years afterward, Texas stood as a separate nation in the midst of the continent. Much of the attitude attendant upon that defiant stance remains in Texas even today, contributing to the unique character of the state.

As a Texan--and I am one, despite being born in Louisiana and having moved to New York--I honor the underlying idea of independence and throwing off a tyranny. As a thinking person, however, I lament both the hypocrisies attendant upon Texan independence (the Anglo settlers were the invaders, really, and they turned against their Hispanic fellow-Texans in short order) and the stupidity that lingers as a result of the idea.

Evidence of that stupidity comes in the repeated calls for a new secession by Texas. The state receives quite a bit of money from the United States, after all; aside from such things as, say, highway funding (how else does a state with no personal income tax pay for the very, very nice roads in it?), there are an awful lot of military bases in the state, whose service personnel spend a damned lot of money (and who would have to turn their many large guns upon the state in the event of secession).

It may happen that Texas will, in time, re-emerge as an independent nation. I am not an oracle, that I know what the future holds. But for now, and as far ahead as it is given me to see, Texas needs to remain part of the United States. And, frankly, the United States needs Texas just as much, despite the stupidity coming out of it at present.

It's not like the nation is particularly intelligent at the moment, itself.

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