Hundreds of Mexican Immigrants spent Tuesday evening celebrating Mexico's Independence from Spain 205 years ago.
The night started with the national anthem, and ended with a re--enactment of El Grito de Delores, the speech that would set the wheels in motion for that Independence. In between there were flamenco dancers, a mariachi band, and singers.
"Our heritage and our roots, we want to keep it alive and hopefully our kids will pick it up," says Benny Jasso. His great-grand parents immigrated to Texas. He was among the revelers who packed the lawn of the South steps of the State Capitol.
Jasso's sentiment pulsed through the crowd during the four hours long event. But there was another speech on the minds of many of those at the Fiesta del Grito.
It's the one Donald Trump delivered in Dallas on Monday. "We need to stop illegal immigration," Trump said to a rousing crowd of 20,000. "We have to build a wall," he continued to applause.
"I think he's a bigot and a racist and a glorified red-neck because this country was built on immigrants especially here in Texas which was part of mexico at one time," Jasso says, adding, "It's very insulting and degrading to speak that way."
Even though the G.O.P. presidential hopeful is focused on people who come to the U.S. Illegally, Benny Jasso believes those comments are too easily misinterpreted. "Still being of Mexican descent we are classified as Mexican, even though we're not. I consider myself Tejano not Mexican but my roots are Mexican but," he adds proudly, "I am an American born and bred."