Am I A Real Texan? What Makes Someone A Texan?
In addition to this blog you’re reading, I’m also a featured politics reader-blogger at the Houston Chronicle. At that space, I’ve often been criticized by readers for not being a native Texan. They say I’m a carpetbagging Yankee.
Here’s how the subject was addressed by a Chronicle blog reader who goes by the name typical_white_man——-“TexasLiberal=Yankee nit-wit! The whole piece is worthless because as 5genTexas so aptly provided the definition for treason, which the YankeeLiberal (there is nothing Texan about this idiot!) was clueless.”
This reader was writing in response to my post that Texas Republicans are talking treason.
Am I a real Texan? What makes a real Texan?
I was born in 1967 in Worcester, Massachusetts. I did not live there long.
Between 1968 and 1980 I lived in Providence, Rhode Island. Below you see a picture I took last year of the Providence hurricane dam. Just as I could tell you about Hurricane Ike, my father could tell you about the 1938 New England Hurricane.
While living in Rhode Island, I was a Rhode Islander.
Between 1980 and 1998 I lived in Cincinnati, Ohio. Below you see a picture of Cincinnati I took from a city park maybe two years ago. (Here is a story on the damage Hurricane Ike did in Cincinnati last year. My parents were without power for a time.)
While living in Ohio, I was an Ohioan.
What am I while living in Texas?
You got it!— I’m a Texan!
It does not matter that I spent 13 years in New England or that I lived for 18 years in the Midwest.
All that I need to be a Texan is to live in Texas. I’ve been a Texan for 11 years.
Texas has 24 million people. No one thing defines all these people except the fact that they live in Texas. Definitions of what makes someone a “real Texan” or a “true Texan” are sure to leave many people out.
All I’ve got to do to be a Texan is live in Texas.
A better way to identify people would be to see them as individuals. This is better than creating a definition based on one’s own inevitably limited and erroneous assumptions of what defines a certain place. (Here is my autobiography in 220 words.)
If what you see below is your image of a Texan, you are free to have that thought. But when you try to impose that notion on others, I’m afraid I’m going to have to ask you to ride off into the sunset.