_After public outcry, the San Diego Border Patrol agreed to allow a 13-year-old binational garden it razed to be replanted after destroying it with heavy machinery, saying the native plants posed a national security threat.
_SBCC steering committee member Michael Seifert of the ACLU of Texas, describes the grave injustices that are happening at the U.S.-Mexico border as the result of Trump’s cruel Remain in Mexico program (aka, so-called Migrant Protection Protocols).
_In Texas, join Lower Rio Grande Valley community members in an “I Have A Dream … No Border Wall” march and rally in Laredo,Texas, Monday, Jan. 20, starting at 9:30 a.m. with a rally at St. Peter’s Plaza followed by a march to San Agustin Plaza starting at 10 a.m. (there will be shuttles back) to push back against the wildlife and environmental damage that will be caused by Trump’s wall.
_In Arizona, join Cochise County and other Arizona residents in a protest titled “Hands Across the River: Protect Our San Pedro River,” Sunday, Jan. 26, at 2 pm, at the Hereford Bridge spanning the San Pedro River on Hereford Road (easily found on Google Maps), to demand a halt to border wall construction across the last free-flowing river in the Southwest; this section of Trump’s wall will cross the protected San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area (SPRNCA), causing ecological devastation by obstructing the free flow of water, causing debris buildup and flooding, and preventing wildlife from crossing. For more information, click here.
_We were disturbed, but not surprised, to hear that only three Border Patrol agents were fired after posting offensive comments on a Facebook group that had almost 9,500 former or current Border Patrol members, including outgoing Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost; we’ve seen already how these agents seem to get away with just about anything, including_so far_multiple cross-border homicides.
_“Rata”-in-Chief. The Washington Post reported that the Trump administration plans to ignore Congress yet again by being a “rata” (which means “thief” in colloquial Spanish) and stealing another $7.2 billion that Congress just appropriated for military construction and drug interdiction to build more harmful, deadly and useless border wall. Working with the ACLU and the Sierra Club, the Southern Border Communities Coalition sued the Trump administration last year for acting beyond his authority and unlawfully bypassing Congress to fund the wall. The Constitution gives Congress alone the “power of the purse.” Even though the case is still in litigation, no court has ruled that Trump’s diversion of funds is lawful. In fact, the transfer of funds has been ruled illegal in district court. Democratic Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer announced that he would bring up for a third time, a resolution against the emergency declaration, probably in March because, under the 1976 National Emergencies Act, Congress can do so every six months, and the last time they successfully voted against it 54-41 was in September 2019 (unfortunately, it was not a veto-proof majority). Sen. Schumer noted during a floor speech (starting at around 17:15), “Our Republican friends hopefully will join us in that vote. President Trump is once again subverting the will of Congress, once again thumbing his nose at the Constitution...He seems to view the Constitution as merely a nuisance, some inconvenient obstacle in the way of his personal and political interests. It’s time for Democrats and Republicans to say enough.” Take that, Mr. Trumptator. #Word.
_Rust and bust wall. Private contractors only seem to care about a fast buck and not one bit about community members, international treaties, and environmental considerations when they step in to build Trump’s vanity border wall_and now a judge has given them a green light to do this with impunity. This article about a “rust and bust” wall clearly shows how the community members who neighbor the private wall will be at higher risk for flooding_and other damages_on their property. The contractor aims to sell the three-mile wall to the U.S. government for $14 to $16.5 million, so he can turn around and use the profits to build more miles of it. But, let’s not forget, the money comes from hard-earned taxpayer dollars. Is this how Congress or the White House should be spending our money?
_Friendly ruling. In a new court victory, a U.S. District Judge temporarily blocked President Trump’s executive order allowing states and local jurisdictions to refuse refugees for resettlement. The ruling came one week after Texas Governor Greg Abbott declared Texas wouldn’t take any more refugees. Silly governor. He should have paid attention to the recent Public Opinion Poll About the Border, at the Border, conducted by the Immigration Policy Center at the University of California in San Diego, of almost 3,000 voters in the Southwestern states of California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. Nearly 60% of voters across these Southwestern states said those fleeing persecution and seeking refuge in the U.S., including women and children, should be allowed to enter the U.S. in order to ensure their safety while their asylum case is pending. Even in Texas, that number was at 54%. Hmmmmn...We need a #NewBorderVision, especially from our elected officials.
border_lines is published every Friday for your reading pleasure. If you’d like to submit an item for inclusion, please email Vicki B. Gaubeca at Vicki@alliancesd.org, by Wednesday COB. The Southern Border Communities Coalition is a program of Alliance San Diego.