I grew up with a romanticized version of Texas, then I moved here.

I love Texas and there is so much to love here. There is also a lot of smoke and mirrors especially when it comes to steppin' up for each other. Texans seem to be more about themselves than about our community or our state.

This started out as an article about the lack of blood donors. Right now tough choices are being made by doctors because the current blood supply is running low. I just don't see how people, as humans, can't take twenty minutes every three months or so to make sure that other people survive car wrecks or have life-changing surgery. It's absolutely embarrassing.

As I researched this topic, I found it to be much worse than I thought. It seems that Texans are tight with all donations beyond blood as well. Texas ranks 49th (out of 50) in charitable giving. Imagine that, the state that is supposedly such an economic miracle, home to billionaires, the oil and gas industry, and unlimited opportunity, is as tight as a fish's rear end.

It's not that we sold such an illusion either, although that's a big part of it, Texas is actually the second richest state. That's right, there's money to give, people just aren't giving it.

I don't have the ability to look at all of this historically, and I guess what happened in the past really doesn't matter, but it sure seems like Texas took a turn for the worse during my 45 years in the state. We used to be the "big hat" state that welcomed and took care of everyone. Now it's "every Texan for himself" and we are much poorer for that.

I encourage you to not be overwhelmed by all of this. Pick a cause or two, and devote just a little time to it each month. As a friend of mine says, "be a good human".

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