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Identity defines or distinguishes each and every individual. In contemporary society, people often strive to create an identity that separates them from others. Race, on the other hand, is a word that characterizes humans not only by their physical aspects but also through socially constructed terms (e.g. Scots-Irish), shared beliefs (e.g. Muslim Americans), political ideologies (e.g. republicans versus democrats) and so forth. Racial identities in many occasions have led to intractable conflicts, which have shaped the course of history.
In the19th century, the Southern United States was dominated by the Scots-Irish. The Scots-Irish were customarily pastoralists and originated from the most ferocious territories in Europe. In addition, they practiced cultures of honor, which relied profoundly on hostility, high respect for manhood, and stock theft. Gun violence was viewed as a means of building a reputation and preventing stock theft. In addition, the culture of honor helped the Scots-Irish in combating the external enemy and protecting their property. This brings us to the question of whether the culture of honor played a significant role in their survival during the Texas Revolution. We will find out in the next chapter.
The Texas Revolution in 1836
In 1836, a war broke out between the centralists and federalists in Mexico. The main people who took part in this war were Anglo-Americans, Mexican-Texans (also known as Tejanos), Scots-Irish, and Mexicans. The war started when the 5000-strong Mexican army marched in and attacked Alamo from all corners using canons and handguns. The locals tried to fight back but they were overwhelmed. The military base in Texas was destroyed and almost 450 prisoners of war were executed. Many of them were Scots-Irish.
The Scots-Irish joined the war following the wanton destruction of their properties and loss of lives. To be precise, they were the greatest casualties of the war. Their properties were destroyed, their cattle were driven away, and their families were displaced. It is not clear how many of them died during the war. As a result, they joined the military and fought the enemy ferociously. It is alleged that nearly one-third of the army was made up of Scots-Irish.
The aim was to recover their lost land and properties. In April 1836, they took part in the battle of San Jacinto. The San Jacinto ambush was brilliantly and speedily executed. The ambush claimed more than 650 Mexican lives and wounded thousands of them, which led to a victory. The majority died of gun wounds. It was until 1837 when they decided to rebuild their communities. Even though they continued to suffer from numerous attacks, they fought tooth and nail to protect their families and properties. The new government of Texas rewarded their loyalty with more parcels of land.
From the war, it is very clear that Scots-Irish never gave up even after they were defeated in Alamo. This is largely attributed to their culture of honor, which places a high value on individual status and protection of property. In spite of the defeat, they continued to engage in the battle so as to reclaim their land and property. Numerous studies have described Scots-Irish as unchallengeable due to their culture of honor. However, during the Texas Revolution, they were the main casualty. They lost many lives, properties, and animals. However, it is clear that the Scots-Irish will do anything to restore their honor and protect their families and properties.
The Texas Revolution in 1836 is a clear indication that Scots-Irish is ready to defend their lives and properties at whatever cost. Regardless of defeat in the early stages of the war, they never gave up. They fought very hard to reclaim their land and other properties. Their culture of honor played a huge part in their survival. In the end, they were rewarded with large parcels of land for their loyalty.
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