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Will Texas Be the Center of the Next Civil War?

Will Texas Be the Center of the Next Civil War?

Jan 24, 2024

Will Texas Be the Center of the Next Civil War?

Texas Governor Greg Abbott is facing a difficult decision that will impact the future of the United States.

The US is facing an unprecedented wave of illegal migration from the southern border, with up to 10,000 migrants entering the country every day. Texas is facing much of the brunt, most especially poor border towns.

a brick wall with barbed wire on top of it
Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash

The migration crisis is nothing new, but it’s quickly developing into a constitutional crisis and a physical confrontation between state and federal forces. It’s a fight that could tear an already fractured country apart.

The New War Between the States

With the Federal Government largely uninterested in curbing the flow of migration, Governor Abbott has had to get creative. One of his more innovative measures has been to send migrants—over 75,000 of them so far—from Texas to cities that once proudly proclaimed themselves “sanctuary cities,” like Chicago and New York City.

Despite being sent only a fraction of what Texas receives, Chicago is literally beginning Texas to stop. New York City mayor Eric Adams is at a breaking point, recently claiming that the migrant crisis will destroy New York City. In an act of desperation, he’s now suing the bus companies bringing migrants into the city.

All that is to say that there is already a new war between the states. It just isn’t violent, at least at the moment. But the stakes and tensions are already high.

Biden vs. Texas

It’s easy to chalk up Abbott’s migrating of the migrants as a political stunt, but he’s also taken more traditional measures, such as spending the past three years unfurling razor wire along the border in the small town of Eagle Pass, Texas.

Measuring at 9.49 square miles and with a population just under 30,000, Eagle Pass has quickly become the scene of a showdown between the State of Texas and the Federal Government.

In September, the US Border Patrol started to cut the razor wire put in place by Texas. Attorney General Ken Paxton sued the feds for damaging Texas property.

Meanwhile, as things worked through the court system, tensions have grown between Texas and the feds, especially in Shelby Park. Just days ago, the Texas National Guard seized control of the park and kicked out the Border Patrol.

What was once merely a legal battle is quickly growing physical. From the Texas Tribute:

“It’s become common for the federal government to have a political standoff with states over immigration policy, but what we’re seeing in Eagle Pass is out of the ordinary,” said César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández, an immigration attorney and law professor at Ohio State University. “I don’t know of any instances in which federal law enforcement officers have faced off against state police or troops because of a disagreement over immigration policy.”

Local residents describe the park as a “war zone,” patrolled by armed Texas soldiers and completely surrounded by razor wire.

And now, after months of court battles, the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the Biden administration cutting the razor wire, in a 5-4 ruling with no explanation.

The Biden administration claims that only the Federal Government has the right to secure the border. Texas says that the Federal Government is completely uninterested in securing the border so it must take matters into its own hands. It’s an interesting conundrum, and one I doubt the Founding Fathers envisioned.

Additionally, states and cities have been thumbing their nose at federal authority for years. Many states legalized marijuana despite the federal government (absurdly) classifying it as a Schedule I narcotic. The aforementioned “sanctuary cities” declared themselves as such in an act of rebellion against President Trump and in open defiance of federal law.

So now Greg Abbott has a decision to make. Or maybe he’s already made it? Shortly after the Supreme Court announced its decision, he tweeted:

This is not over. Texas' razor wire is an effective deterrent to the illegal crossings Biden encourages. I will continue to defend Texas' constitutional authority to secure the border and prevent the Biden Admin from destroying our property.

The only question is how serious he is. Given that he soon followed up by sharing the following from Texas Department of Safety spokesman Chris Olivarez, I’d say he’s pretty damn serious (emphasis mine):

The State of Texas, under Gov. @GregAbbott_TX’s Operation Lone Star, will maintain its current posture in deterring illegal border crossings by utilizing effective border security measures - reinforced concertina wire & anti-climb barriers along the Rio Grande. The logical concern should be why the Federal Government continues to hinder Texas’ ability to protect its border, all while allowing for the exploitation, dangerous, & inhumane methods of permitting illegal immigrants, including children, to illegally cross a dangerous river where many have lost their lives. Texas is the only state using every strategy & resource to protect its sovereignty, combat criminal activity, & discourage illegal immigration.

#Texas will continue to hold the line.

Translation: John Robertson has made his decision, now let him enforce it.

Time for TEXIT?

Texas has long been considered “The State Most Likely to Secede After 1865.” Having once existed as an independent republic, Texas has always had one foot near the exit since it was annexed by the US in 1845. It even has its own independent power grid (which is why Texas is so prone to calamitous blackouts).

Over the years, various groups have promoted a TEXIT movement for Texas to secede from the United States, though it’s never been taken very seriously. However, a 2022 survey found that 60% of Texans now support separating from the US.

Of course, talk is cheap. While it’s long been acknowledged that the US is in a “cold” civil war, there’s never been a mechanism by which it would make any sort of sense.

For one, what would a modern Mason-Dixon line even look like? Unlike the somewhat neat North/South divide of the 1860s, red and blue America is all mixed up. Much of the land mass is red, while heavily populated coastal areas are blue.

Also, there’s the sheer factor of economic comfort. Deep red Tennesseans and solid blue New Yorkers might be tired of each other, but is it really worth a messy divorce?

But now with the tensions in Eagle Pass, Texas, we have a scenario that could quickly spiral out of control. You have armed Texas soldiers facing off with armed federal agents and a defiant and desperate governor facing off with the federal government.

If someone loses their cool, things could quickly get hairy. After all, the American Revolution began with a snowball fight. If things get hot in Eagle Pass, it could pour gasoline on the existing political tensions in the US during an already tense political season.

Originally published on Unprepared


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