by Melinda Pillsbury-Foster
Erastus “Deaf” Smith is remembered as the eyes and ears of the Texas Revolution. Smith, nearly deaf, also relieved the survivors of the Alamo and was the man who cried, “Remember the Alamo” at the The Battle of San Jacinto, which took place April 20, 1836, in the aftermath of the Alamo massacre.
The right words, heard at the right time, can change history.
History comes to us through time, carried in memory. Erastus Smith rests in an Episcopal cemetery in Richmond, Texas. His blood runs through the veins of W. Leon Smith.
It was the on-point words of Smith's 2004 editorial, endorsing John Kerry over then president George W. Bush, in Bush's hometown paper in Crawford, Texas, which became the framework for the Presidential Debates between Bush and Kerry in October.
The editorial, published September 29th, 2004, focused on violated promises made by Bush during his campaign in 2000. The reader was reminded of the promises as we lived the reality.
Among these were: The was in Iraq, carried out through deception. The assault on the Social Security trust fund; cuts in Medicare by 17 percent and reduction pf veterans’ benefits and military pay; 50% rise in oil prices; offshoring of American jobs, encouraged by Bush policies; billions spent on government contracts without competitive bids; Converting a budget surplus to the worst deficit in the history.
The editorial also cited elements of a hidden agenda which only surfaced after Bush took office, also citing the “dangerous shift away from the basic freedoms established by our founding fathers, and his continuous mistakes regarding terrorism and Iraq.”
The editorial changed the political roadmap. Over the next days the servers which hosted the Lone Star's website went down several times due to overloads caused by as many as 10,000,000 a day. Americans had been deceived by political rhetoric. Worse was coming.
The flagging Kerry Campaign received a surge of support. On election day, long lines of voters queued up, waiting for hours to cast their votes. Kerry was ahead until all polls has closed. Suddenly, the numbers mysteriously changed. Bush was re-elected.
An election will take place in November. The evidence indicates this election will change nothing about our present trajectory, being already decided.
As we remember the past, distant and recent, we see patterns which instruct, allowing us to change those patterns and so the future.