LONG LIVE THE REPUBLIC OF TEXAS!

“A decade after Republic of Texas separatist Richard McLaren drew the attention of the nation to a far West Texas mountainside — not to mention about 300 state troopers — the prospect of growing old behind bars hasn’t altered his beliefs in the least.

In fact, the man who calls himself “Hostage No. 802782” at a Panhandle state prison unit is surer than ever that Texas remains a sovereign nation.

“We didn’t start it,” McLaren said of the weeklong standoff that ended May 3, 1997, and left one of his followers dead. “We’re just the (keepers) of the 1836 constitution.””

With all this immigration talk going around and La Raza trying to claim Texas as part of Mexico it’s hard to filter everything out and take a step back to study history. I can already predict a lot of people talking sh** about this but just keep in mind that because “the books” these days say otherwise it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the law. Omissions are obviously present and we should all be hearing this guy out. I don’t know how everyone else feels but I would be damn proud to support Texas Sovereignty. This would immediately free us from all the federal government restrictions and controls we currently live under. I’m still undecided and not sure what to believe here but rest assured that I will continue to investigate.

If you are interested, please take the time to read the following article…

May 3, 2007, 1:07AM
Texas separatist still believes cause will succeed

By MARK BABINECK
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle

AMARILLO — A decade after Republic of Texas separatist Richard McLaren drew the attention of the nation to a far West Texas mountainside — not to mention about 300 state troopers — the prospect of growing old behind bars hasn’t altered his beliefs in the least.

In fact, the man who calls himself “Hostage No. 802782” at a Panhandle state prison unit is surer than ever that Texas remains a sovereign nation.

“We didn’t start it,” McLaren said of the weeklong standoff that ended May 3, 1997, and left one of his followers dead. “We’re just the (keepers) of the 1836 constitution.”

Now 53 and missing his once flowing curly gray locks, McLaren still enthusiastically invokes a series of laws, treaties, books, manuals, conventions and constitutions that he uses to illustrate a simple point: Texas never properly joined the United States.

Undeterred by a projected 2090 release date, McLaren instead believes a two-page “cease-fire” agreement he struck with a Texas Rangers captain to end the siege duped authorities into opening the door for Texas freedom. Eventually.

“It’s a done deal. It’s over with,” said McLaren, who was convicted of engaging in organized crime and is serving a 99-year sentence.

To Albert Valadez, the former district attorney who vividly recalls McLaren evolving from a courthouse pest in the late 1980s to a heavily armed threat who frightened his neighbors into the 1990s, the document is as worthless as the myriad liens McLaren notoriously used to file against anyone in his path.

“His mind was so scattered that day, we could have given him a banana peel and he’d have signed the back of it,” said Valadez, now in private practice in Fort Stockton. “It was just nonsense, but it was a way of appeasing him.”

McLaren, a Missouri native drawn to Texas in 1977, moved to Davis Mountains Resort outside Fort Davis two years later to start a vineyard. But it failed, and as the 1980s wore on he became an increasingly contentious figure in the community of mostly retirees.

He began by refusing to pay subdivision maintenance fees, then started flooding the sleepy Jeff Davis County Courthouse with court filings, sans attorney. By 1989, friends said, he had become convinced of Texas’ independence and eventually transformed his mountain encampment into its “embassy.”

Ignored at first
The filings and other separatist activities drew attention, and state and federal arrest warrants were filed in 1996. But in the aftermath of the violence at Waco and Ruby Ridge in Idaho, however, authorities chose to ignore him.

That strategy ended April 27, 1997, when three “embassy guards” marched down the road and demanded that Joe and Margaret Ann Rowe cede their home. One of them fired three shots through the door, injuring Joe Rowe.

“They said, ‘We’re the militia of the Republic of Texas, and we’ve come to take you prisoner and seize your house,’ ” recalled Rowe, 61, who lives in the same place. “Well, how do you respond to that on a Sunday morning?”

McLaren claimed it was a justified military maneuver, and that he and his followers were enemy combatants and should have been treated as such under the Geneva Convention. For instance, McLaren says he should be in custody at Fort Hood rather than in a state prison and that having his picture taken while he is in custody would violate the treaty.

Nearly 300 Department of Public Safety troopers descended on the area while McLaren, his wife and five followers holed up at his mountain home. They released the Rowes after 13 hours, but the siege persisted until all but two separatists gave up.

Richard Keyes III — one of the Rowes’ assailants — escaped but was captured four months later north of Houston. Mike Matson was shot dead shortly after the surrender when he pointed his weapon at approaching authorities.

“This guy (Matson) took it to his grave. He really believed they were doing the right thing,” Valadez said. The other separatists were convicted of various crimes, and McLaren was found guilty of directing the Rowes’ kidnapping.

But he presses on. Though no court has certified his independence assertion despite continuous attempts, he’s confident it’ll happen some day.

“All revolutions have aspects that aren’t pleasant,” he said of the siege and resulting convictions.

In a nutshell, McLaren contends the 1845 annexation of Texas, overwhelmingly approved by the republic’s voters, is null because it was approved by a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress after a decade of failed treaty attempts between the two nations.

Norman Brown, a University of Texas at Austin Texas history professor, acknowledges that President John Tyler and his supporters probably pulled “a little hanky panky” in rushing the annexation of Texas. But, then again, he said the same could be said for the Louisiana Purchase, for which the U.S. Constitution similarly didn’t provide.

“But I don’t think anyone really questions the legitimacy of annexation,” he said.

Separatist groups
That’s not quite true. McLaren still has some support outside prison walls, and at least two other Republic of Texas groups maintain self-styled presidents and government structures. One has a capitol in the East Texas town of Overton, and the other has slated a May 19 election at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Park, according to its Web site.

McLaren, who still considers himself a chief ambassador, contends that not if, but when Texas is able to loosen its U.S. shackles, the state government will morph into a national one.

Valadez has heard it all before, starting way back when McLaren sought his advice on the legality of filing blizzards of liens, first against neighbors, and eventually a $93 trillion claim against the U.S. government.

The logic is always the same, Valadez said.

“He starts with an idea, then finds different statutes, some so old they’re not on the books anymore, and he’ll pull together these phrases and sentences and words and bring them all together so it sounds intelligent for some people, especially those following him,” Valadez said. “To the rest of us, it was just babble.”

Valadez laughed when told of McLaren’s claim that the 1997 cease-fire agreement opened the door to nationhood.

“Yeah, he pulled a fast one on us, and he’s in prison,” Valadez said. “Smart guy.”

Source: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/4770542.html

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