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Thursday, July 10, 2014

What a different an election cycle makes

"We'll pretend to be the Brazilian World Cup team seeking asylum..."

As Texas Governor Rick Perry postures and whinges over his "undefended " border with Mexico, some are recalling he and other GOP scolds were singing a different tune about the photo op potential of a presidential visit there just a couple of years ago.

More telling, however, is a book that came our way today. In an comprehensive example of chest-pounding for their home state, Sam and Andrew Wylie's Texas Got It Right! (Melcher Media, 2012), appears a chapter titled "We like tearing down fences, not putting 'em up."

Profiling the state's 23rd congressional district, which includes "most of our state's border with Mexico," the book describes "skeins of kinship and economic ties that connect thousands of families and small businesses on both sides of the Rio Grande."

"Overwhelmingly," the chapter goes on, "these border towns, as well as most of Texans, including Governor Rick Perry, opposed the security wall proposed by the feds in 2008. Indeed, the border in this part of Texas is an illusory thing, an arbitrary line that plunges through the center of what the social historian Colin Woodward calls El Norte, one of the state's cultural "nations" that have long defined public life in North America...In this respect, the Twenty-Third, which seems to have less of everything than its neighbors except empty land, is the most richly Texan of places, because people who live there know what opportunity resides in what unites us and not what divides us." (emphasis added)

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