To Experience Texas History, Look Beyond The Alamo To Goliad

“It isn’t what you expect,” people told me. “You’ll be disappointed.”

A lot of people had the same reaction about my upcoming visit to the Alamo. After a year in Texas, we decided to take our family to visit the famous shrine to the Texas Revolution in San Antonio. When we got there, even my children sensed what our native Texan friends had been telling us.

I have visited many different battlefields from the Revolution and the Civil War, but the Alamo was different. Most battlefields are national parks that have preserved the tranquility and dignity of the historic sites. The fact that the Alamo was located just outside the town of Bexar in Mexican Tejas and, after Texas independence, the city of San Antonio grew up around it probably accounts for much of why the Alamo battlefield is different.

When we arrived at the Alamo, we found that, unlike the Gettysburg battlefield, for instance, the Alamo was surrounded by a carnival atmosphere akin to that of a boardwalk. While the actual remnants of the Mission San Antonio de Valero, the old Spanish mission that became the Alamo fortress, were a solemn place, across the street was a Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museum, The Amazing Mirror Maze and Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks. To us, the festive atmosphere seemed out of place on the site where hundreds of soldiers on both sides had died.

A few years later, we made a brief detour through Goliad, the south Texas town most known to outsiders as the town that didn’t send reinforcements to the Alamo. Goliad is home to two old Spanish missions that have been restored. The two missions, Espíritu Santo at Goliad State Park and Presidio La Bahia just down the road, are much better representations of the history of the Texas revolution.

In particular, the Presidio La Bahia, which has been completely restored, stands in contrast to the Alamo, most of which was destroyed in the battle. The building commonly referred to as the Alamo was the mission’s chapel, only one small part of entire complex. The Presidio La Bahia gives visitors a feel for what the Alamo would have been like in 1836.

While there was no major battle at Goliad, La Bahia was the site of a lesser known massacre of Texas soldiers by the Mexican army. Shortly after the fall of the Alamo, Col. James Fannin’s men surrendered to the Mexicans and were imprisoned at Goliad. Santa Ana ordered the execution of the prisoners a short time later. More Texans were killed in the Goliad Massacre than at the Alamo. Their common grave and memorial is just outside the presidio walls.

Today, Goliad State Park and the Presidio La Bahia, privately owned by the Catholic Diocese of Victoria, Texas, both provide good museums with that describe the area’s history in context and showcase period artifacts. La Bahia also features a short video that recounts the Texas Revolution.

Whether you’re a Texan or visitor to the Lone Star State, if you are in San Antonio, by all means, visit the Alamo. From the bar of the historic Menger Hotel, where Teddy Roosevelt enlisted the Rough Riders, to the Riverwalk and Six Flags Fiesta Texas, San Antonio has a lot to offer as a vacation destination.

But don’t be afraid to get off the beaten path. If you’re interested in the Texas Revolution, a side trip to Goliad may be even more enlightening and rewarding.

Greg Abbott Is No Governor To Mess With

The Republican Governors Association certainly has its hands full in the upcoming election cycle.  Counting the off-year elections this November and the 2018 midterms, 38 gubernatorial seats are up for grabs – 27 of those seats are currently held by Republicans. GOP governors will be mostly playing defense while Democrats will try to use the gubernatorial races as a stepping stone to rebuilding their party.

But there is one Republican governor who has nothing to sweat about.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has amassed a nearly $41 million campaign war chest – a record setting number. Even for the behemoth Lone Star State, this is a jaw-dropping amount. The governor raised $10 million in the last 12 days of June alone. While promising to keep Texas in conservative hands, Abbott officially announced his intention to seek re-election Friday in San Antonio.

The state’s top executive apparently has no real competition in sight. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, the only possible candidate to mount a formidable primary challenge, has repeatedly denied any interest in doing so. The lieutenant governor instead has opted to run for re-election. As for a general election, no serious Democrats have stepped up to the plate. Jeffrey Payne, a small business owner in Dallas, threw his hat in the ring and pledged to loan his campaign $2.5 million. However, Payne comes with zero political experience and is in a same-sex marriage – something that likely won’t help with the traditional voters of Texas.

Another daunting fact to consider as liberals look to recruit candidates across the state: Texas hasn’t elected a Democrat to any statewide office since 1994.

With no real threat facing him at the ballot box, Abbott is directing his campaign’s mammoth infrastructure towards his legislative agenda. A special session in Austin is fast underway and the governor has an ambitious 20-item agenda he plans to push through. Abbott is making it well known that lawmakers who support his bills will get a hand up during election time – and those who oppose his legislative agenda will come to regret it. Major agenda items include a $1,000 pay raise for teachers, property tax reform and a contentious “bathroom bill” that has national progressives fuming.

“We are and will continue to aggressively and robustly support members of the Legislature who support us,” Dave Carney, Abbott’s chief strategist, stated in an interview with the Texas Tribune. “Those who are on our team — we’ll have their back.”

Unlike the last election cycle, Abbott will be getting much more involved in the upcoming state legislative races. His campaign has installed a satellite office within its headquarters and will be using it to communicate to the public extensively during the special session. Aides claim Abbott will conduct over 20 radio interviews and over 30 TV interviews during the first two weeks of the session. He wants to convey the message to state lawmakers that the public supports his agenda.

Not impressed yet? The Texas governor has also promised to keep a list of all lawmakers who oppose him during the special session. Any legislator hoping Abbott will forget a past transgression should not feel so lucky. “I’m going to be establishing a list,” he warned to the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think tank. “We all need to establish lists that we publish on a daily basis to call people out — who is for this, who is against this, who has not taken a position yet. No one gets to hide.”

A few bill authors (of legislation the governor is pushing) are already attracting primary challengers in their home districts. These state legislators can count on Abbott’s massive network for assistance. His operation already touts seven regional directors and 37 field organizers – a team that has already knocked on 10,000 doors.

State Rep. Travis Clardy (R) has a primary challenger attempting to unseat him, but the Abbott ally doesn’t appear scared. “When it comes to election season, I’m sure Gov. Abbott is going to be there for me,” Clardy stated, “just like I’m going to be there for Gov. Abbott.”

Senator Cruz: If We Can’t Fix Obamacare, Repeal It

Sometimes the simple answers really are the best.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz held a town hall event on Thursday night, sponsored by the Concerned Veterans for America, with the initial topic of discussion to be the Department of Veterans Affairs and ongoing concerns for the nation’s veterans.

Apparently, many of those in the audience felt the ongoing struggle to replace Obamacare was equally relevant to their concerns, and they pressed Cruz on it.

Cruz’s endorsement of repealing and then later replacing ObamaCare comes after Trump tweeted his support for such a plan last week.

Trump’s tweet came after the Republican Senate leadership delayed a vote on the Obamacare overhaul due to lack of support.

GOP leadership had hoped for a vote before leaving for their July 4 recess, but they did not have the votes to make it a reality. The new goal is to have a bill ready to sign before going on their August recess.

Does it seem as if people in Washington take a lot of vacations?

Cruz offered an amendment to the GOP bill, which would retain the current system’s provision that allows people who purchase insurance plans in the market to keep the plan of their choice.

Part of Cruz’s amendment to the bill also allows for insurers to sell cheaper plans that wouldn’t necessarily follow the regulations for Obamacare, as long as that insurer also sold at least one plan that followed the Obamacare regulations.

The window for coming to an agreement on the bill is closing quickly, with many saying that if it doesn’t make it through the next recess, it’s dead in the water.

Republicans ran on repealing Obamacare, not “tweaking” it. Now they’re faced with the reality that if they can’t move this forward, many of them will be dealing with a bleak 2018.

Texas and Tennessee Mock Meddlesome California’s Quixotic Travel Bans

California’s tolerance knows no bounds, except when traveling to conservative states like Texas and Tennessee, where the left-coast brand of virtue signaling doesn’t fly so high.

The Golden State banned state-funded travel to the two states, along with Alabama, South Dakota and Kentucky for supporting such things as Texas’ protecting religious adoption agencies against being forced to provide same-sex families adoption services. When faced with that choice in Massachusetts, Catholic adoption organizations closed down versus violating their own conscience.

The moral busybodies on the left coast seem to believe that they’re somehow superior to all the other states, and therefore get to dictate what is and isn’t acceptable. It’s laughable and worthy of being mocked without shame or mercy.

For his part, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott didn’t hold back pointing out that many businesses and individuals are fleeing California for such places as Texas, where the business climate is measurably friendlier.

“California might be able to stop their state employees, but they can’t stop all the businesses that are fleeing over taxation and regulation, and relocating to Texas,” said Gov. Greg Abbott‘s press secretary, John Wittman.

But we all realize that California’s little tirade has no teeth at all. It’s just political grandstanding and moral preening.

Several Texas political leaders saw right through the stunt, citing the hypocrisy of Gov. Jerry Brown’s visit to China, where LGBT rights are practically non-existent. California doesn’t ban travel to China…but they do oppose another kind of travel ban.

It’s funny how the very state that is so adamantly against keeping terrorists out of our country — they oppose the President’s travel ban — now wants to keep Californians out of Texas,” said Marc Rylander, communications director for Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. “I guess that’s California logic.”

In Tennessee, a group of lawmakers made their response official, with a joint resolution noting, among other things, “Tennessee is pleasantly surprised that California will not be sending its economic development teams to Tennessee to recruit our businesses, but we can still send our teams to recruit their businesses…”

It was, indeed, a marvelous trolling.

But being trolled is the least of California’s problems. Its economy, while large, is being eroded by the state’s draconian regulatory environment and toxic need for social conformity. The state’s signature industry: Hollywood, was bested by Georgia in 2016.

Seventeen features filmed in Georgia in 2016, meaning the state has outpaced the previous frontrunner, California, as the top location for feature film production.

California’s epicenter of leftist intolerance, San Francisco, is losing people like East Germany after the wall fell. Only the rich, the liberal, and the trapped will remain as everyone who can load up and drive away will do so.

Indeed, since 2010, the Golden State has seen an overall net outflow of $36 billion from these migrants (and that counts only the first year of income). The biggest gainers from this exchange are where Californians are moving, to such places as Texas, Arizona and Nevada. That some California employers are joining them in the same places should be something of a two-minute warning for state officials.

So, let California have its Quixotic travel ban. As long as America remains a free country (anathema to the dogmatic statist radicals), people in California will continue to pack up and move to greener pastures, like they have in Texas and Tennessee.

It’s Come To Death Threats Between Lawmakers

On the last day of the Texas legislative session, hundreds of protesters swarmed the House chamber to oppose the state’s new sanctuary city law.

State Rep. Matt Rinaldi, R-Irving, said he called U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement while hundreds of people dressed in red T-shirts unfurled banners and chanted in opposition to the state’s new sanctuary cities law. His action enraged Hispanic legislators nearby, leading to a tussle in which each side accused the other of threats and violence.

Rep. Rinaldi posted a statement on social media. “Representative Ramon Romero physically assaulted me, and other Democrats were held back by colleagues,” Rinaldi wrote. “He later approached me and reiterated that ‘I had to leave a some point, and he would get me.’ I made it clear that if he attempted to, in his words, ‘get me,’ I would shoot him in self defense.”

I am not even going to try to fully unpack this. Texas legislative sessions are known for their drama. Remember Abortion Barbie and “Hail Satan?” Calling ICE on illegal alien protesters is, frankly, a jackass move when the legislature passed the law already, and the Gov. Greg Abbott, along with his Attorney General Ken Paxton are eager to enforce it.

The Democrats took the bait and went full Gianforte on Rinaldi, who is now “currently under DPS protection,” according to his statement.

Several Democrats paint the story much differently, that Rinaldi was screaming obscenities and generally in everyone’s faces.

“He came up to us and said, ‘I’m glad I just called ICE to have all these people deported,’” said state Rep. César Blanco, D-El Paso, whose account was echoed by state Reps. Armando Walle, D-Houston, and Ramon Romero, D-Fort Worth.

“He said, ‘I called ICE — f**k them,'” Romero added. Rinaldi also turned to the Democratic lawmakers and yelled, “F**k you,” to the “point where spit was hitting” their faces, Romero said.

It’s sad that legislators have come to this kind of drunken barroom behavior when there are real issues to solve and real people those issues affect. We’re pulling at the frayed threads of our own Republic.

Watch the fray below (courtesy of the Texas Tribune)

WIN: Uber and Lyft Have Returned to Austin, Texas

Ridesharing companies Uber and Lyft are resuming operation in Austin, Texas, today. This comes after Texas lawmakers voted to override regulations placed on the two companies last year. Governor Greg Abbott (R-TX) is expected to sign this important piece of legislation–House Bill 100— into law this afternoon.

Here’s more on this development:

The bill supersedes Austin’s fingerprinting requirement for ride-hailing companies. Uber and Lyft stopped operating in the city more than a year ago, after Austinites voted to require fingerprinting as part of background checks for drivers. The new statewide law requires annual background checks, but not fingerprinting.

Uber issued the following “apology” ahead of their return to the Texas capital:

We’re sorry, Austin—for leaving the way we did; for letting an honest disagreement about regulations and consumer choice turn into a public fight; and most of all, for not being able to serve you for the last year. It was never our intention, but we let down drivers, riders, and the broader Austin community. We’ve spent the last year listening carefully and learning from the mistakes we made. While we can’t change how we got here, we can and will commit to getting it right this time around.

Before we get to work, we want to thank all of the drivers who make ridesharing a reality in Austin: Tens of thousands of people rely on you to get around safely every week, and this city isn’t the same without your hard work and kindness. Earning back your trust is our number one priority. Whether you plan to drive with Uber in the future or not, thank you for everything you do for this amazing city.

Austin, we know that we have a lot of work to do, but we couldn’t be more excited for the road ahead. We hope you’ll come along for the ride.

As previously reported here at The Resurgent, the two companies were rooted out of the Texas capital after a ballot measure slated to embolden them failed at the ballot box. The contention over Uber and Lyft in Austin lied in the city’s interest in “creating a level playing field” at the expense of competition. Moreover, the contention with Proposition 1 went beyond a finger-printing system, ultimately as a scheme to coerce and collect data from the two ride-sharing companies.

The ridesharing bill–Proposition 1– failed by a 56-44 margin, with only 17 percent of registered voters in Travis County turning out to vote. Since the companies were forcibly removed from Austin in May 2016, drunk driving spiked 7.5 percent. Had this legislation not been signed into law, Uber and Lyft drivers would have been subjected to having their fingerprints scanned. The reversal of this bad policy should help curb drunk driving as it did before.

This is a small but positive step in the right direction. Local governments and their union acolytes need to get off the backs of these innovative companies once and for all. People depend on these services to make a living. Why continue to deprive all Americans–including Austinites– of their lifestyle and career choices?


Cruz 2018: Castro Bows Out

In a show of sound discernment, Texas Representative Joaquin Castro has decided not to challenge Senator Ted Cruz in 2018.

Castro cited his “duties in the House Foreign Affairs and Intelligence Committees” as the primary reason for passing on the Senate race, though no one could fault him for not wading in to water that would very likely be over his head. Though the Lone Star State has multiple Democratic representatives in Washington, no Texas Democrat has won a statewide election in more than two decades.

The fact that another House member – Rep. Beto O’Rourke – has already declared for the race probably made Castro’s decision much easier.

Though a recent poll showed Cruz and O’Rourke in a virtual tie, more than one-third of respondents indicated they hadn’t yet even thought about the contest. Given that the same poll found a 53% approval rate for Governor Greg Abbott – who recently endorsed Cruz for re-election – support for Cruz is likely to be considerably higher than reported.

The Texas Lyceum poll is also known to “portray a less conservative state than most political polls do”, according to a recent Austin American Statesman story.

Also from that story:

“While this early result may feel like good news for Texas Democrats,” the pollsters write, “among those who say that they haven’t thought about the race yet, only 19 percent identify themselves as liberal, compared to 33 percent who identify as conservative, and 36 percent who identify as moderate.”

Meaning any candidate with a serious shot at defeating Cruz would have to come at him from the right, not the left – a tall order even for a Republican, much less a Democrat.

My Campaign Coach Podcast Interview - How to Run for Office with Rick Green

Building a Political Legacy by Training Young Conservatives

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“How to Run For Office” is a weekly Podcast published at My Campaign Coach!

Creating a resurgent culture includes encouraging men and women of principle and faith to run for office. My Campaign Coach helps make that happen!

Rick Green’s Legacy is Going to Be Training Patriots and Equipping Future Candidates for Public Service.

Today’s interview is a special one for me because I’m talking with somebody who has had an enormous impact on my career. His recommendation shortly before I graduated opened the door to my first job and his mentorship has been of incalculable value to me both before and after that point.

Rick Green an attorney, author, former elected official, father, mentor, radio host, inspirational speaker, and soon he going to be a grandfather.

The work that Rick and his family have done to promote our nation’s founding principles has been a great source of energy within the conservative movement.

Beyond the incredible family that Rick and his beautiful bride Kara have raised, I believe his greatest legacy is going to be the organization that first cemented our friendship, Patriot Academy.

Over the 14 years that Patriot Academy has been training patriots, they’ve turned out hundreds of motivated, principled conservatives who are impacting policy and campaigns across the country.

Links from the Podcast:

Connect with Rick on Twitter and Facebook! Check out the Patriot Academy website as well as for more info about what Rick and his amazing family are up to.

Important Time Stamps and Descriptions:

00:00 Podcast Introduction

00:50 Rick Green Background

02:52 How Rick Green became involved in Politics

07:00 What was it like becoming a State Representative at 27 years old?

08:41 How do I know if I should wait before running for office?

17:40 What are some of the top lessons you learned during your time in the State House?

24:24 How did Patriot Academy come about and why did you start it?

29:58 How big is Patriot Academy at this point?

31:51 What can I learn at Patriot Academy?

37:42 Can people still apply to attend Patriot Academy this year?

45:28 How Patriot Academy can help you

52:19 Where can people connect with Rick Green online?

54:36 Final words of Wisdom from Rick Green

56:30 Adios and outro