It was 174 years ago, on Oct. 2, 1835, that the first battle in Texas’ war of independence was fought in Gonzales, appropriately over the possession of a cannon.

The people had been given the cannon to protect themselves from Indian invasions, but the Mexican military commander of Texas didn’t like the people being armed in such a fashion. So he sent orders that it be surrendered to the government. The people correctly refused.

In a gesture of defiance, the citizens flew a flag depicting their cannon and emblazoned with the words “Come And Take It.” A brief skirmish on Oct. 2, 1835, was decided in the Texans’ favor, with the Mexican forces in retreat.

But let’s be honest, it wasn’t really about a cannon, it was about the ability of those Texans to provide for their future, free from the shackles of oppressive government.

I wonder if those men and women could have imagined all the fiscal shackles we’ve allowed ourselves to take on?

Things are far from perfect in Texas, but apparently a great many people still agree with former congressman and Alamo defender David Crockett, who said, “I must say as to what I have seen of Texas, it is the garden spot of the world, the best land and the best prospects for health I ever saw, and I do believe it is a fortune to any man to come here.”

People and businesses have bene flocking to Texas in this opening decade of the 21st Century, looking to make their mark in the world.

However, if we are to continue to be successful as a people, to be all we can, we have to fight hard to preserve what is good and work harder for those things still to be improved.

What we don’t need is more government solutions and protection; Texans are most empowered when we have more liberty. Whether good times or bad, that’s the one thing we must never allow anyone to take from us.

Michael Quinn Sullivan

A graduate of Texas A&M, former newspaper reporter, one-time Capitol Hill staffer, think tank vice president, and an Eagle Scout, Michael Quinn Sullivan and his wife have three children. He is the publisher of Texas Scorecard. Check out his podcast, “Reflections on Life and Liberty.”

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