Don't Mess With Texas

Don't Mess With Texas

The phrase Don’t Mess with Texas is a trademark of the Texas Department of Transportation, which began as part of a statewide advertising campaign started in 1986. The intention behind the Don't Mess with Texas campaign was to reduce littering on Texas roadways and has garnered statewide attention.

The phrase "Don't Mess with Texas" was prominently shown on road signs on major highways, television, radio and in print advertisements. The campaign is credited with reducing litter on Texas highways roughly 72% between 1986 and 1990. The campaign's target market was 18-35 year old males, which was statistically shown to be the most likely to litter. While the slogan was originally not intended to become a statewide cultural icon, it did.

Beyond its immediate role in reducing litter, the slogan became a Texas cultural phenomenon and the slogan has been popularly appropriated by Texans. Though the origin of the slogan is not well known outside of Texas, it appears on countless items of tourist souvenirs, the phrase is actually a federally registered trademark; the department has tried at times to enforce its trademark rights with cease and desist letters, but has had very limited success. The phrase "Don't Mess with Texas" is a frequently cited example of pride in Texas culture.

"Don’t Mess with Texas" has been awarded a plaque on the Madison Avenue Walk of Fame and a place in the Advertising Hall of Fame, a distinction given to only two slogans annually.

"Don’t Mess with Texas" is also the official motto of the Virginia-class submarine USS Texas.

Read more about Don't Mess With Texas:  History, Unauthorized Use of The Trademark, References in Popular Culture

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Don't Mess With Texas - References in Popular Culture
... Homer waves the American flag while yelling "Don't mess with Texas" at the luggage arrival in the Italian airport, contrasting Lisa's choice of hiding her ... After the Texas Rangers lost the 2010 World Series to the San Francisco Giants, Gary Thomas, President and Executive Director of Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) lost his bet and ... as saying, "You know there's a saying that goes, 'Don't mess with Texas ...

Famous quotes containing the words texas and/or mess:

    The pleasure of jogging and running is rather like that of wearing a fur coat in Texas in August: the true joy comes in being able to take the damn thing off.
    Joseph Epstein (b. 1937)

    The chuck wagon carries the food and utensils for the range kitchen. Man-at-the-pot is the first buckaroo to pick up the coffee pot when out with the chuck wagons. It becomes his duty to pour the coffee for the outfit. “Come and get her before I throw her out” is the time honored mess call.
    —Administration in the State of Neva, U.S. public relief program (1935-1943)