SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A controversial billboard has popped up in San Francisco and Los Angeles discouraging Californians from moving to Texas. The message behind the billboard is adding to the already existing rift between the two states.
The message is intended to be dark.
It reads, "The Texas Miracle Died in Uvalde."
The billboard showing a man in a hoody, also comes with a warning to anyone who stops to look, "Don't move to Texas."
"Get to look at it often, I don't think it's in particularly good taste," expressed Matt Donahue who lives nearby.
The billboard is meant to highlight the lax gun laws in Texas following one of the deadliest school shootings, in Uvalde on May 24 where 19 students and two teachers were killed.
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It's not known who's behind the billboard, but it's capturing the attention of many who go by the intersection of 7th and Folsom Street.
"I totally agree with it 100 percent. So many people are leaving here and going to Texas anyway, it's like don't go there. That is why," said Luke Gray who parked his car to take a picture of the billboard.
But are people from California really leaving the state to move to Texas?
This is what the US census told us about the past decade.
On average more than 68,000 Californians move to Texas each year.
Other data sources show that trend accelerated slightly during the pandemic. But with a total state population of over 39 million, the number of Californians moving to Texas is only a tiny percentage.
"When home prices go up in California, as they've been doing a lot in the last couple of years, more Californians move to Texas," explained Bill Fulton of the Kinder Institute for Urban Research. "When home prices level off or go down, fewer Californians move to Texas. For individual Californians, it's really about home prices."
Then there's the matter of the Texas Miracle.
"I think I've heard of it as a buzz word about Texas but I'm not exactly sure I can define it," said Andrew Burgess who stopped to look at the billboard.
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We knew what the term meant.
In 2008 and during the Great Recession, Texas weathered the economic storm better than most states. In fact, more job were even created, hence the term the Texas Miracle.
Claiming that the Texas Miracle is dead is adding to the rivalry between the two states.
"I think it's discouraging. We have to move on and we have to move on positively," expressed Marion Leslie who saw the billboard Thursday for the first time.
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