_The Hill published our op ed (authored by yours truly) that explains why CBP and ICE should adopt the use of body-worn cameras.
_SBCC steering committee member Lilian Serrano, chair of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium, talks about the consortium’s new Borderlands Get Free Bond Fund that raises money to bond out people from immigration detention centers in San Diego and Imperial counties.
_This article_which quotes SBCC steering committee members Johana Bencomo of Comunidades en Acción y de Fé (CAFé) and Kevin Bixby of Southwest Environmental Center_notes how social justice groups and environmental groups are joining forces to challenge the administration.
_SBCC steering committee member Joanna Williams of Kino Border Initiative talks about how families are waiting for days to apply for asylum at Arizona’s Nogales port of entry.
_Three of the men who were part of the group crossing the border when Claudia Patricia Gómez González was shot and killed by a Border Patrol agent may be deported soon back to Guatemala.
_Well, that didn’t take long. Shortly after the federal budget for fiscal year 2019 was put to bed, House Speaker Paul Ryan said there would be a big fight over border wall funding and that he would be willing to shutdown the government over it. Two days later, Rep. Kevin McCarthy said he plans to soon introduce a bill that fully funds Trump’s vanity wall and includes other hardline, anti-immigrant provisions. Well, guess what? We’ll be fighting this fight from now until Dec. 7, when a continuing resolution for the Department of Homeland Security expires. Longer, if we have to. Them’s fighting words.
_By the numbers. Polls show that most border communities oppose border walls. This recent poll shows two-thirds of New Mexicans opposing the wall, joining 60 percent of Californians and Texans who also oppose the wall, especially those who live closer to the border. And in Arizona, members of the Tohono O’odham nation do not want to see their tribal lands divided by a wall. There are many other ways to spend taxpayer money than on a wall, like improving the infrastructure of our decaying ports of entry or our roads. Read here how Trump’s wall could kill a border town. Do you get now why we’re against it?
_Death by a thousand cuts. For an administration that claims to follow the rule of law, it’s impressive how many laws DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen thinks she can ignore to build Trump’s vanity wall. In October, DHS posted in the federal register their intent to waive 28 laws to build more walls in Cameron County, Texas and another notice to waive a dozen more laws in Hidalgo County, Texas, to build a wall that will cut through the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge, National Butterfly Center, Bentsen-Rio Grande State Park, and the grounds of the historic La Lomita Chapel, as well as hundreds of family farms and other private property. Unfortunately, this is a popular tactic used by DHS to build the harmful and senseless wall, little by little. In August, the Center for Biological Diversity, the Animal Legal Defense Fund and the Defenders of Wildlife asked the Supreme Court to review a federal court ruling that allowed the Trump administration to waive dozens of environmental, health and safety laws to build border walls near San Diego, CA. And, in January, the Trump administration waived protections to convert a 20-mile stretch of vehicle barriers to an 18-foot wall. Makes one wonder why we bother to pass laws that protect us from government overreach.
_Not just a border wall. It’s not just a border wall that is harmful to our public lands, communities, and wildlife. Borderlanders face a constant erosion of our dignity, rights and safety thanks to the hyper-militarization of our communities, including having to deal with a checkpoint nation, which restricts our freedom of movement and thrusts us into the sights of racial and religious profiling. Basta, already.
_Get your boxing gloves on. Things might seem quiet now that congressional members have left DC and are focusing on midterm elections. But we fully expect the fight to be on the day after elections. In a sense, it won’t matter what the election outcome is, there will still be many elected officials_including from our border states_who will still support border policies that assault our community. Please stand strong with us to #HoldCBPaccountable and #RevitalizeNotMilitarize our communities.
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 [email protected], by Wednesday COB.