This article comes to you in response from a challenge from our friends at NBCLA.com and was inspired by an article in the obscenely overpriced Trends Magazine (you can read part of the article -- a full subscription will cost $195).
Trends asks the question: Which big state is better: Texas or California. Well, when it comes to big states, there can only be one king (sorry, New York). The real competition comes down to us -- a battle between red and blue; good and evil; surfers and cowboys; Texas gastronomy (chili, BBQ and Tex-Mex) and sprouts or avocados ... and yes, so much more.
Texas is king. California sucks. Here are just 10 reasons that prove why you won't miss the Golden State when it falls into the Pacific Ocean.
No. 10 - Our sports teams and heroes are better. With simple names like the Dallas Cowboys and the Houston Astros ... Texas teams are honest, simple and a real representation of our people. We don't have pretentious names such as The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Also, how does the nation's second-largest city lose not one, but two NFL franchises? In college, The Heisman Trophy was named after John William Heisman, the first coach of Houston's Rice University. Greatness personified. (submitted by NBC staff Bridget Lewis and Eric Kreindler)
No. 9 - Geographically, Texas has it all. In one state you can find mountains, canyons, thick, piney forests, beautiful desert landscapes, the great plains, gorgeous coastal plains, and even swamps if that's your thing.
No. 8 - Readers Pat Sisk and Kala Batts commented about a Texan's ability to help their fellow neighbor with their natural, friendly way. This includes the roadway where, while we both have a lot of traffic, it's less than what can be found in California.
No. 7 - We have better songs about our state. "California Dreamin'" and the The Gatlin Brothers' "All the Gold in California" (Sorry about the error before where I said the Oak Ridge Boys sang this song) just can't compare to classical athems such as "The Yellow Rose of Texas," "Texas, Our Texas," "Deep in the Heart of Texas" or even more campfire-friendly cuts like Jerry Jeff Walker's "What I Like About Texas" or Waylon Jennings' "Luckenbach, Texas." Additionally, our music doesn't fall prey to East Coast/West Coast rivalries ... there are no worries about turf wars in country music. (submitted in part by NBCDFW readers Jerry Walker and Ryan Cox)
No. 6 - The cost of living is remarkably lower. The price of land and residences are exponentially lower. The difference in what you can buy here for $250,000 vs. California is shameful. We have no state income tax and no taxes on capital gains. No further words about this are necessary. (submitted by various readers)
No. 5 - Our elected leaders, while often not perfect, are not former actors, wannabe actors, widows of actors, formerly engaged to actors or want to work part-time as actors while they "serve" the people as politicians. By and large, Texas politicians are people who care about making Texas better through making things better for Texans. Seems to be working.
No. 4 - Texas women. Again, no further words about this are necessary. (submitted by NBCDFW reader Laurie Sawyer)
No. 3 - It's safer in Texas. Whether the calamity be weather- or crime-related, Texas fares better than California. Your wildfires cannot be topped and no amount of Earth-rattling will dump us into the ocean. As far as crime goes, we both have the death penalty ... Texas just isn't afraid to use it.
No. 2 - Our economy is stronger. The Lone Star State has more Fortune 500 companies than any other state in the Union. Texas has 64 compared to California's 51 -- including three major airlines, AT&T, Dell, Texas Instruments, ExxonMobil ... just to name a few. According to the article in Trends magazine, Texas also created 70 percent of all new jobs in 2008 and enjoys a robust surplus. California is adding roughly $25 million per day to its $26 billion in debt. Ouch.
No. 1 - We are Texans. We are a proud people. While we never claim to be perfect, we are real and we strive to make the Union a better one through a better Texas. What matters here isn't how plastic you are or how tan you are ... it's about who you are.
So, which state do you think is the blueprint for America's future? Want to see what NBCLA.com lists as the reasons California is better than Texas ... click here to read their article. Did we forget to list what you think makes Texas so great? List them in the comments below ... California expats are welcome to debate if you're up to the challenge.