Texas is facing a dark and grim future.
Several months ago, corrupt Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas stated his intentions to overturn Lawrence v. Texas. Immediately following, Ken Paxton said that Republicans would reinstate sodomy laws in Texas. When Republicans start jailing members of the LGBTQ community for who they love, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Over the last year, Republicans have shouted from the rooftops about how they plan to re-segregate Texas public schools and strip away funding from low-income areas. When millions of Texas children go to dilapidated schools without books and extracurricular programs, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Over the last two decades, our property taxes under Republican rule have skyrocketed. Republicans are incapable of lowering taxes, which is why Texas pays America’s 6th highest property taxes. When Republicans continue to raise taxes until Texas is the highest-taxed state, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
As bleak as things look right now, we can’t give up. We have to do better.
Uvalde’s massacre directly resulted from Republicans’ sick gun fetish and desire to arm every criminal and mentally unstable person in Texas. The next time dozens of children are murdered in their classrooms, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
In Texas, poverty is rampant, and one in every five children lives in a food-insecure household. Yet, Republicans have fought tirelessly against food assistance and school. When millions of Texas children are starving and suffering from malnutrition, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Texas has the highest maternal mortality rate in the developed world, disproportionately affecting Black women. When hundreds of Black women die in childbirth over the next few years, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
It’s up to all of us to be the change and to help wake up our friends and family.
There are 26,000 homeless people in Texas. Instead of implementing programs to help these people, Republicans criminalized homelessness. When you see people sleeping on the sidewalks of your hometown, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Medical debt is the leading cause of bankruptcy in America. Six million Texans are uninsured, and Republicans have fought tooth and nail to keep it that way. When the bankruptcy rates in Texas continue to rise, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Texas is the worst state in the nation for access to mental healthcare. There are still substantial waiting lists for community-based mental health services. Yet, the GOP has vowed to do away with access to mental health care, especially for children. When we see high rates of depression and suicide among our youth, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
The Senate has to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Act to give us a better chance.
We have one of the highest teen birth rates in the nation. Texas teens are more sexually active than teens in other states. 92% of sexually active teens reported not using birth control or contraception. Additionally, 90% of sexually active teens have never had an STD test. When we see outbreaks in our communities of STDs and soaring teen pregnancy rates, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
In Texas, Black students are four times more likely to be suspended or expelled than white students, and Hispanic students are twice as likely. Because of the disproportional number of discipline referrals black students receive in school, they are often excluded from learning opportunities. When the school-to-prison pipeline continues to thrive, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
According to one study, Houston, El Paso, and Dallas are among the 25 U.S. cities with the highest levels of ozone pollution. And Austin isn’t far behind. Seventeen million Texans breathe unhealthy air all of the time. When the cancer clusters continue to grow, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Don’t give up. Fight harder.
Over 1,400 miles of streams and rivers in Texas are so polluted that they are considered unsafe for basic uses like swimming and fishing. Corporations in Texas have been dumping millions of pounds of waste in our waterways for years, and the state has looked the other way. When we no longer have safe drinking water, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
Texas is the 15th most dangerous state for rape and sexual assault and has the 17th highest rate for violence and murder. When violent crime comes to your neighborhood, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
We hear Republicans tout the free market all of the time. The February 2021 freeze is a catastrophe for the free market. As energy deregulation worsened, it put all Texans at risk for a disaster, the same way that Enron ended in disaster after deregulation. When your energy bill skyrockets and hundreds of Texans die without electricity in a weather disaster, remember that 12 million Texans didn’t vote.
When the pendulum swings back, we’ll fix everything.
Until then, don’t give up, don’t surrender. We may have lost this battle, but we still can win the war.
You can now read an ad-free version of Living Blue in Texas and help support our mission to turn Texas blue. Sign up now.
Sign up for our weekly blog roundup: