History of Texas Part II: The Battle for Independence

The battle for Texas independence spanned many years and famous battles, including the Battle of the Alamo and Goliad Massacre. The final showdown --- the Battle of San Jancinto --- took only 18 minutes and saw only six Texans killed compared to 600 Mexican soldiers. Another 700 were captured.

An hour after the carnage, Santa Anna himself was captured and brought before General Sam Houston. The general's men called for execution, but Houston had something else in mind: Victory and independence for the Republic of Texas, with Santa Anna signing a treaty to end hostilities.

The 18-minute battle remains one of the greatest military victories in world history. With it, the proud Republic of Texas was born.

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GLENN: Mexico encouraged white settlers from the United States to populate the huge desolate area known as Texas. There were very few Mexicans there. No one knew how to deal with the natives, and they wanted the area settled to discourage the United States from annexing it.

So when Stephen F. Austin petitioned the New Mexican government, freshly independent from Spain to abide by his grant his father Moses had obtained from the Spaniards about bringing 300 American families in to colonize Texas, Mexico was initially excited about the idea. It was kind of like a job that Mexicans just wouldn't do.

However, the success of the movement overwhelmed the Mexicans, and they became concerned about losing the area entirely.

By 1829, tens of thousands of Americans had settled in Texas, with just a handful of Mexicans remaining there. They sent their trusted Mexican general to assess the problem.

The general reported back that Mexico had better stop the immigration from the United States. Does any of this sound familiar? Or they'd lose Texas forever. Anglo-Texans outnumbered the Mexicans there by a 10:1 margin.

Mexico responded by passing laws that ended immigration to Texas and imposed new taxes and new tariffs. The Texans, or Texians as they were called, widely resented the new laws. And in 1832 and '33, held conventions to draw up a new Texas constitution, modeled after the Constitution of the United States.

After the convention in 1833, Stephen F. Austin decided he was going to set off for Mexico City. And he was going to present the Constitution and the proposal for Texas independence to the Mexican government, and they're going to love this.

They didn't love this.

VOICE: In Mexico City, Austin had first seemed to think that things were going very well. He had met with Santa Anna. With General Antonio López de Santa Anna and had the sense that Texas would be granted more autonomy. Then he wrote an indiscreet letter from Mexico City, suggesting that whatever happened, Texas ought to take initiative and secure its own autonomy.

VOICE: Austin's letter was intercepted, and he was put in jail in Mexico City. He would be kept there for nearly two years. Upon his return, he had formed strong opinions of Santa Anna and the Mexican government.

VOICE: Santa Anna is a base, unprincipled bloody monster. War is our only recourse.

No halfway measures, but war in full. Stephen Austin, 1835.

GLENN: By 1835 relations had hit a fevered pitch.

Years earlier, Mexico had given a six-pound cannon to the residents of the city of Gonzalez, Texas, to help them deal with the attacks from the Comanche Indians.

Now, in retrospect, giving that cannon to fired-up Texans kind of seemed like a bad idea. So they asked for that cannon back. The residents of Gonzalez said, "I don't think so."

The Mexicans demanded the cannon back. Their defiant answer was, "Come and take it."

While Santa Anna's troops tried to do just that, and they were soundly beaten back by the militia in Gonzalez who used the cannon against them.

Now, because of his prior experience under Andrew Jackson in the war of 1812, the Texians appointed former Tennessee governor Sam Houston as their commander-in-chief of their forces. But there was only one problem: They didn't have any forces.

But like Texans usually do: They just pressed on.

VOICE: On March 2nd, 1836, delegates finally met at Washington on the Brazos and declared independence from Mexico. Sam Houston was instrumental in helping draft the new republic of Texas Constitution. And finally, it seemed that a workable government might actually be constructed.

GLENN: That's when Santa Anna gathered an army of 4,000 had to 5,000 troops and headed north to put down the rebellion. The war was on.

A small contingent, many from Gonzalez stayed in San Antonio, against the better judgment of Sam Houston to defend the Alamo. Houston thought it was indefensible and thought it was really foolhardy to stay. But the contingent had been joined by two American frontier heroes, one of them was Jim Bowie who had moved to Texas in 1830 and joined by the legendary Davy Crockett.

Crockett had recently been defeated in an attempt for another term in the United States Congress and left Congress and then Tennessee. And he said just before he left, "I told the people of my district that I would serve them as faithfully as I had done. But if not, they might go to hell. And I would go to Texas."

There were only 183 men defending the mission at the Alamo. Still, they kept that Mexican army at bay, of 5,000 troops for 13 days.

Then...

VOICE: At dawn of March 6th, 1836, 4,000 of Santa Anna's Mexican troops besieged the Alamo and killed all 183 Texans defending it. The battle was over in 90 minutes.

Another deadly siege for the Texans would ensue. This time at the mission of Goliad under the command of Colonel James Fannin.

VOICE: Fannin makes an attempt to withdraw. It's too slow. He's caught out on the open prairies, forced to surrender. The Mexicans marched them back. And a week later, under Santana's orders, the entire Goliad command is executed at the so-called Goliad Massacre.

GLENN: The defenders of the Alamo fought ferociously, with reports that they took 600 to 1500 Mexican soldiers to the grave with them. However, 400 more Texan militia men were slaughtered execution-style at Goliad, enflaming and enraging every man, woman, and child who heard the story.

Independence for Texas seemed nearly impossible now. Two massacres, and General Sam Houston in full retreat. For weeks, he continued to allude Santa Anna, waiting for the right time. Starting with an army of 300, but by late April, there were so many enraged Texans that were joining his army which had now grown to just over 900 men.

Houston managed to avoid battle with Santa Anna's large army for over a month, until finally both armies wound up near what is present day Houston, Texas. The date, April 21st, 1836.

Two armies camped at San Jacinto. Yes, that's the right way to say it in Texas. They were on the bayou about a mile away from each other, about to make military history. 3:30 that afternoon, the angry Texans were in a frenzy.

VOICE: The rebels advanced (phonetic) on the Mexican barricades, screaming like banshees their battle cry: Remember the Alamo! Remember Goliad!

Flustered, disoriented, the Mexicans began to fall back. First as individuals, but then as entire squads.

VOICE: For 18 minutes, blood and carnage ruled the battlefield at San Jacinto.

VOICE: I sat there on my horse, and I shot them until my ammunition gave out. Then I turned the butt end of my musket and started knocking them in the head. Private William Young.

VOICE: Mexicans fired one volley most of which went over the heads of the Texans. That's when Houston was hit. And his horse was hit. The Texans then advanced to maybe 20 yards away. They fired and then charged and broke through.

VOICE: All discipline was at an end. We fired as rapidly as we could. As soon as we fired, each man reloaded, and he who got his gun ready first moved on without waiting for orders. Private Alfonso Steele, 1836.

GLENN: The ragtag independence-minded Texas militia wouldn't be denied their chance to crush the Mexican Army.

VOICE: The Texans are in an absolute killing frenzy of revenge and fall upon any of the Mexican soldatos, some of whom begged for their lives, yelling, me no Alamo, me no Goliad. That finds them little mercy.

Most of the Mexicans actually fall back into a marsh area, into a lake. By the end of the day, Peggy Lake is completely crammed full of Mexican bodies, and the waters of Peggy Lake are thoroughly red.

VOICE: They had plunged into the mire and water with horses and mules. Everyone who seemed to escape, soon received a ball from the murderous aim of a practiced riflemen. And the bayou was literally bridged over with carcasses of dead mules, horses, and men.

Sam Houston, 1836.

GLENN: Meanwhile, there were just six Texan casualties compared to 600 Mexican soldiers dead, 700 more captured.

An hour after the carnage, Santa Anna himself was captured and brought before General Houston. Houston's men called out for execution. But Houston had something else in mind. Victory.

Victory and independence for the Republic of Texas, which the battle forced Santa Anna to sign.

The 18-minute battle still today one of the greatest and most incredible military victories in world history. And with it, the proud Republic of Texas was born.

Next time, the larger-than-life figures in the fight for Texas independence.

Critical Race Theory: A special brand of evil

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Part of what makes it hard for us to challenge the left is that their beliefs are complicated. We don't mean complicated in a positive way. They aren't complicated the way love is complicated. They're complicated because there's no good explanation for them, no basis in reality.

The left cannot pull their heads out of the clouds. They are stuck on romantic ideas, abstract ideas, universal ideas. They talk in theories. They see the world through ideologies. They cannot divorce themselves from their own academic fixations. And — contrary to what they believe and how they act — it's not because leftists are smarter than the rest of us. And studies have repeatedly shown that leftists are the least happy people in the country. Marx was no different. The Communist Manifesto talks about how the rise of cities "rescued a considerable part of the population from the idiocy of rural life."

Studies have repeatedly shown that leftists are the least happy people in the country.

Instead of admitting that they're pathological hypocrites, they tell us that we're dumb and tell us to educate ourselves. Okay, so we educate ourselves; we return with a coherent argument. Then they say, "Well, you can't actually understand what you just said unless you understand the work of this other obscure Marxist writer. So educate yourselves more."

It's basically the "No True Scotsman" fallacy, the idea that when you point out a flaw in someone's argument, they say, "Well, that's a bad example."

After a while, it becomes obvious that there is no final destination for their bread-crumb trail. Everything they say is based on something that somebody else said, which is based on something somebody else said.

Take critical race theory. We're sure you've noticed by now that it is not evidence-based — at all. It is not, as academics say, a quantitative method. It doesn't use objective facts and data to arrive at conclusions. Probably because most of those conclusions don't have any basis in reality.

Critical race theory is based on feelings. These feelings are based on theories that are also based on feelings.

We wanted to trace the history of critical race theory back to the point where its special brand of evil began. What allowed it to become the toxic, racist monster that it is today?

Later, we'll tell you about some of the snobs who created critical theory, which laid the groundwork for CRT. But if you follow the bread-crumb trail from their ideas, you wind up with Marxism.

For years, the staff has devoted a lot of time to researching Marxism. We have read a lot of Marx and Marxist writing. It's part of our promise to you to be as informed as possible, so that you know where to go for answers; so that you know what to say when your back is up against the wall. What happens when we take the bread-crumb trail back farther, past Marxism? What is it based on?

This is the point where Marxism became Marxism and not just extra-angry socialism.

It's actually based on the work of one of the most important philosophers in human history, a 19th-century German philosopher named Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel.

This is the point where Marxism became Marxism and not just extra-angry socialism. And, as you'll see in just a bit, if we look at Hegel's actual ideas, it's obvious that Marx completely misrepresented them in order to confirm his own fantasies.

So, in a way, that's where the bread-crumb trail ends: With Marx's misrepresentation of an incredibly important, incredibly useful philosophy, a philosophy that's actually pretty conservative.

We've heard a lot about critical race theory lately, and for good reason: It's a racist ideology designed to corrupt our children and undermine our American values. But most of what we see are the results of a process that has been underway for decades. And that's not something the mainstream media, the Democrat Party, and even teachers unions want you to know. They're doing everything in their power to try and convince you that it's no big deal. They want to sweep everything under the rug and keep you in the dark. To fight it, we need to understand what fuels it.

On his Wednesday night special this week, Glenn Beck exposes the deep-seated Marxist origins of CRT and debunks the claims that it's just a harmless term for a school of legal scholarship. Newsweek opinion editor Josh Hammer joins to argue why we must ban critical race theory from our schools if we want to save a very divided nation.

Watch the full "Glenn TV" episode below:

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On the radio program Monday, Glenn Beck blasted the Democrats — and anyone else on the left — who have been so eager to open our southern U.S. border for the past several months, but also willing to turn a blind eye to the Cuban people in need of help today.

"While we are welcoming people from any country, all over the world, without any kind of information, and setting them into our country, putting them on American planes paid for by American taxpayers," Glenn began. "And our Coast Guard Cutters are turning these [Cuban] people away. Shame on you! Shame on you!"

Glenn said that he's "sick and tired" of hearing about "brave" leftist activists like Colin Kaepernick, who protest the America flag while wearing Che Guevara and Fidel Castro t-shirts. Meanwhile, the Cuban people are risking their lives by taking to the sea to escape their oppressive regime and come to America.

"Anybody who glorifies Che doesn't know their ass from their elbow. You can't call them a human rights activist. You're protesting the American flag, because you so deeply believe in the right to be free? And yet, you wear a Che T-shirt?" Glenn said.

Glenn went on to argue that, even though the left has "bastardized" the meaning of our country, he still believes America is the best nation on Earth. In fact, he'd give up his citizenship "in a heartbeat" if another country could prove to be better, more noble, and more free. But no other nation exists like ours, he said, which is why it's so imperative we fight for freedom here, in Cuba, and around the world.

Watch the video clip below to hear Glenn explain:

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There's a new "reality" spreading, and the mere act of questioning it has become incredibly dangerous, Wall Street Journal investigative journalist Abigail Shrier told Glenn on the most recent episode of "The Glenn Beck Podcast."

Shrier's book, "Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters," exposes the radical gender activism that — like critical race theory — has overtaken our children's schools and culture. But even worse, she warned, it could end your parental rights for good.

Shrier made it clear she is by no means "anti-trans," but simply speaking up against the extremes of this new "reality" has made her enemy No. 1 to many activists. Her book has been bashed so hard by the Left that Target has stopped selling it twice, Amazon once banned ads for it, and the American Booksellers Association even called sending it to others "a serious, violent incident."

In the clip below, Shrier explained why she believes "there may be no hope for the public school system."

"You have teachers behaving like activists across the country who have no interest in actually teaching. They believe their job is to remake your child," she asserted. "We're seeing so much evidence of that, I think it's fair to say that it may be too deeply rooted in the ideology being taught in public school. I'm not sure that the public school system is redeemable at this point."

Watch the video clip below for more or find the full podcast with Abigail Shrier here:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.