PLEASE NOTE: Because of the Labor Day holiday, we will not be issuing Border_Lines next week.
_Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) co-chair and chair of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium Lilian Serrano describes how continued immigration raids have escalated the stress and fear felt by border and immigrant communities in the midst of a global pandemic.
_This timely report produced by colleagues at the University of Texas in El Paso and the University of Arizona provides a history of border enforcement since 1993 and policy recommendations on how to correct long-standing abusive patterns and practices at CBP.
_Border Patrol’s claims of having the lowest number of individuals in custody testing positive for COVID-19 is directly tied to their failure to test people in their custody.
_Yours Truly recently took a family member to an outpatient procedure at the Banner – University Medical Center in Tucson, AZ, and was alarmed to see several Border Patrol vehicles in the parking lot near the hospital’s front entrance, which was a reminder of this recent and excellent blog by SBCC ally Cynthia Pompa of the ACLU Border Rights Center that reminds us that everyone needs safe access to care.
_Poppycock! This was the word a federal district judge used when the Trump administration argued in court that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials, including Border Patrol agents, were qualified to conduct credible fear interviews for people seeking asylum at U.S. borders. The judge issued a preliminary injunction that prohibits Border Patrol agents from screening asylum seekers while the lawsuit remains pending. We couldn’t agree more! Allowing CBP officials_whose prescribed job is to apprehend unauthorized border crossers or to screen people entering the U.S. through ports of entry_to also screen individuals who are seeking protections under U.S. and international asylum laws is akin to putting the proverbial Wolf in the chicken coop. Oh, wait. Isn’t that the last name of someone who recently was determined to be in his post inappropriately, but who Trump just nominated for that post? Moving on.
_Balderdash! That’s what we think of the privately built wall in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas after learning about a new engineering report that predicts the wall will come crashing down. We predicted that would happen in our Nov. 22, 2019 issue! Four members of We Build the Wall, the group that built this perverse wall, are now facing fraud charges, including former presidential advisor Steve Bannon, who’s trial date has been set for May 2021. Back in December of 2019, the ACLU of Texas filed a public records request asking for all communications between the Department of Homeland Security and We Build the Wall and have gotten zero documents in response, so they filed an appeal for the information. The public has the right to know. Enough of this baloney.
_Flapdoodle! It’s flapdoodle that some of the military construction funding raided by Trump’s administration via a fake national emergency declaration to build his vanity wall has been restored to construction projects in mostly states where GOP elected officials are facing tough re-election campaigns. Not politically driven, you say? Meanwhile, private landowners in the Rio Grande Valley are increasingly having their homes and lands ripped away from them for Trump’s border wall monstrosity. SBCC steering committee member Ricky Garza of the Texas Civil Rights Project explains how the filing of nine land condemnation suits this week_that’s more than one a day_shows the administration’s intent to build even more miles of lethal wall at break-neck speed, with border wall construction activity surging ahead even as communities grapple keeping safe during a global pandemic. And, in Arizona, conservation specialists set up cameras that clearly show the suffering created by new wall construction on our region’s treasured and irreplaceable wildlife. Billions of taxpayer dollars spent on hate, pain and destruction. We need a New Border Vision, where our dollars are spent instead on things the community needs, like schools, health care and infrastructure. #RevitalizeNotMilitarize
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.