window.dataLayer = window.dataLayer || []; function gtag(){dataLayer.push(arguments);} gtag('js', new Date()); gtag('config', 'UA-29484371-30');
Sunday , May 19 2019
JustLikeThat728
ORDT_728
Nobleza728
shark 728×90
Bordertown Undergroun Show 728
Soccer/Volleyball 728
Amy’s Ambassadorship
STEP 728
Home | Tag Archives: president trump

Tag Archives: president trump

Gallery+Story: O’Rourke Officially Launches ‘Grassroots Campaign’ for President

Presidential Candidate Beto O’Rourke officially kicked off his Grassroots Campaign in the heart of Downtown El Paso, on the corner of El Paso Street and Overland Drive.

O’Rourke arrived on stage around 10:45 a.m.; introduced by his wife Amy O’Rourke, walking onto the stage to the song, “We are looking for a clampdown,” by the Clash.

“It was really important for Amy and me to launch this campaign, it’s the city where I was born. It’s the same city where Amy and I are raising our three kids. And perhaps most important, El Paso to me represents America at it’s best,” O’Rourke said to the crowd.

More than 1,000 supporters turned out to his event on Saturday, and the streets of El Paso and Overland were filled with his supporters, who carried pro-Beto signs.

Throughout his speech supporters for President Donald Trump booed in the distance. But O’Rourke was undeterred and instead called for the divided America to put the business of the country before them.

“This is a campaign for America,” he said.

Immigration, quality universal healthcare, and mental health support for veterans were among the first topics that O’Rourke touched on in his speech.

“Let us come together by prioritizing a policy that begins by prioritizing affordability in prescription medications that brings down the cost of our premiums and our deductibles.”

O’Rourke added that everyone should have access to quality healthcare and mental healthcare. He added that providing that universal healthcare should also allow women to choose what they want to do with their own bodies.

“We can give every American, every business in this country the choice to enroll in medicare without  eliminated plans that many Americans like for their families because those plans work. No one left behind, no one priced out. We must get universal guaranteed high quality healthcare as soon as possible.”

O’Rourke continued laying out his platform by sharing that he supports unions, investment in hospitals and infrastructure for rural communities and supporting agriculture and providing them with incentives to capture the carbon emitted.

“Thanks to our own emissions and excess this planet has warmed to 1 degree Celsius, and the fires, droughts and floods and the man-made disasters will only get worse,” O’Rourke said. “This is our moment with little more than 10 years to spare – to free this economy for our dependence on fossil fuels and greenhouse gas emissions, to make investments in new and green technology.”

O’Rourke additionally pointed out his views that included:

* Equal Pay for Women
* Paid Family Leave
* Access to Capitol for Communities that have been actively shut out.
* Ending the federal prohibition of marijuana and expunging the records for those who had possession of it – something that is medically and recreationally legal in several states.
* Freeing Dreamers from any fear of deportation and create a comprehensive immigration reform.

Earlier this week, more than 500 Central Americans were detained at the border of the Paso Del Norte Bridge, where they are being temporarily housed underneath the bridge.

Other policies that O’Rourke disagreed with included Trump’s policy that enacted the separation of families in the Spring 2018, which sprung up the Tornillo Detention Center, where children were placed while they waited to be processed. Two children died while in the custody of ICE.

O’Rourke, made it a point to stress that not another child should be separated from their families while in custody.

“Let’s bring millions more out of the shadows and onto a path to their maximum potential to the success of this country,” O’Rourke said of the Dreamers. “Let’s make sure that we don’t take another child from another mother. Let us reunite every single of those families that are separated. Let’s remember that those that are detained under the international bridge behind chain fences and barbed wire – they are our fellow human beings and deserve to be treated like our fellow human beings.”

O’Rourke stressed that security for the border needs to focus on not building a wall, but rather focusing on securing the ports of entry and facilitating trade and travel; and supporting the Customs and Border Protection agents.

“For 20 years we have been one of the safest cities in America,” he said. “We are safe not despite the fact that we are a city of immigrants and asylum seekers. We are safe because we are a city of immigrants and asylum seekers. We understand that we are in the words of Dr. King caught in an inescapable network of mutuality – tied in a single garment of destiny. And that’s why i’ms o glad to be here with you today in my hometown and my hometown to let you know that I’m running to serve you as the next president in the United States of America.”

O’Rourke then switched up his speech and spoke in Spanish.

“El exito de este pais depende de cada persona entre los Estados Unidos,” O’Rourke said.

His speech was briefly interrupted by chants of, “Si se pude,” (Yes we can!)

O’Rourke did make one campaign promise clear.

“As president I will sign into law a new voting rights act. We will end gerrymandering, we will take money out of our politics. And all across this country we will have automatic and same day voter registration across this country.”

At the counter rally, held outside the Plaza Theater, Trump supporters held signs against O’Rourke’s policies including his stance on abortion and immigration.

Brenda Vigil held up her sign that read, Beto equals Liar.

“I was born here in El Paso but I’ve lived here all my adult life, and a friend told me that this is the new Juarez. And I thought – yea right. But this is the new Juarez. All these people that have been living in the shadows – Dreamers whatever you want to call them, we don’t reward people in the United States for committing crimes. If we incarcerate Americans for committing crimes, why do you object Beto to incarcerating illegal immigrants that commit crime. That doesn’t make sense.”

Vigil strongly believed that O’Rourke’s run for president was being done for attention.

“Beautiful family, beautiful rich family – they need to be on a reality show – not the presidency,” she said.

Carolyn, who didn’t want to give out her last name, said that she was embarrassed for O’Rourke and his family. She held up a sign that read, “The Russia Hoax is finally dead. The Collusion Delusion is over. Trump 2020.

“What has he done? He did nothing in the Senate,” Carolyn said. “And he was a crappy city councilman.”

Throughout the morning, the anti-Beto protest grew and passerby who had just completed the bike race down a few blocks away; and other O’Rourke Supporters who needed to get by to get to their rally, or who had just finished purchasing a Starbucks walked in front of the Trump supporters.

Many of them simply ignored the protesters. But in some instances, a couple of Trump supporters got in the faces of those who were walking toward the O’Rourke Kickoff.

“Stop killing our babies,” One woman said. “Beto supports abortion. Babies have a right to life – you’re here. Why are you here?”

Another Trump supporter, who held a sign that read, walked toward and shouted at those that were heading toward the kickoff.  “You’re going the wrong way!”

After O’Rourke’s kickoff in El Paso his next stop is Houston where he will speak at Texas Southern University at 5 p.m. Then, he’s heading to Austin where he is scheduled to speak at 9 p.m., at 9th and Congress.

Author: Alex Hinojosa | Photos: Andres Acosta – El Paso Herald Post

Donald Trump endorses U.S. Sen. John Cornyn for re-election

President Donald Trump endorsed the re-election bid Thursday of U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, who is seeking his fourth term in 2020.

“Senator John Cornyn has done an outstanding job for the people of Texas,” Trump tweeted. “He is strong on Crime, the Border, the Second Amendment and loves our Military and Vets. John has my complete and total endorsement. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”

Cornyn, speaking with reporters in Austin after the president tweeted, said he asked Trump for an endorsement.

“I did ask him for it, and I appreciate his support,” he said. “Obviously, we know that 2020 is gonna be another challenging election.”

The endorsement, 21 months before Election Day, marks the latest move that shows Republicans are taking Cornyn’s re-election bid seriously — something the senator quickly acknowledged to reporters Thursday afternoon. 

After a closer-than-expected U.S. Senate race in November between Ted Cruz and Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke, the state’s minority party has eyed Cornyn’s seat as a potential pickup in 2020. Last month, Steve Munisteri, a former Texas GOP chairman and longtime Republican fixture in the state, announced he was leaving the White House to join Cornyn’s campaign as a senior adviser.

Cornyn said Thursday that his team is “staffing up” and “trying to learn the lessons of 2018 [and] listening to what the voters are telling us.”

Still, it’s unclear who on the Democratic side may end up challenging Cornyn. O’Rourke, who has said he plans to make a decision about a potential presidential bid by the end of the month, has also been in talks with senior Democrats about challenging Cornyn, according to Politico. Cornyn quickly responded to such reports by sending a fundraising email earlier this week announcing a “STOP BETO FUND,” telling supporters “we need to be ready for anything.”

Beyond O’Rourke, Democrat MJ Hegar, a military veteran who unsuccessfully challenged U.S. Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, last year, told The Texas Tribune that she’s considering a run.

Author: CASSANDRA POLLOCK – The Texas Tribune

Video+Info: Trump declares national emergency to build border wall

President Donald Trump made the national emergency announcement from the Rose Garden of the White House on Friday.

Watch the president’s remarks in the player above, video stream courtesy PBS News Hour.

To read about the announcement, click here; to read about the lawsuit opposing the declaration, click here.

To read the actual “Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2019” click here.

For in-depth coverage/streaming visit:   CNN   |   Fox News   |   cSpan

***

Congresswoman Escobar Statement on President Trump’s Unlawful National Emergency Declaration

Today, Congresswoman Veronica Escobar (TX-16) issued the following statement on President Donald Trump’s unlawful national emergency declaration:

“President Trump’s national emergency declaration is a political stunt in order to further his administrations’ anti-immigrant agenda and deliver on a campaign promise to build a wasteful and hateful border wall.

“This attack on our democracy not only undermines Congressional and constitutional authority, it hurts the training, readiness, and quality of life of our service members and their families by potentially taking away more than $275 million from our Ft. Bliss Army Base. Furthermore, this promotes an erroneous narrative that portrays all border communities, including El Paso – a safe and vibrant border community – as a problem.

“El Pasoans and fronterizos across the country know that there is no national emergency. Instead, this administration has manufactured a crisis that has used their communities as ground-zero to implement President Trump’s cruel policies towards immigrants and asylum-seeking children and families.

“President Trump’s abuse of power and lies against our southern border will be challenged in Congress and in the courts. I urge my Republican colleagues to end this complicity, stand for what is right, and work towards understanding and addressing the root causes of our nation’s challenges.”

***

Texas Border Caucus Chair Rep. Blanco Responds to Trump’s National Emergency Declaration

“Trump’s national emergency declaration for his border wall is dangerous and radical. There is no national security crisis on the border. The only crisis we have is a humanitarian crisis.

“Trump and the Republicans had control of the Presidency, the House, and the Senate for two years and could not get his border wall funded.  This declaration is a dangerous step into dark territory for a president that acts on his worst political impulses. He has trampled on the rule of law and disregarded accepted facts, even from military Generals, the F.B.I., and the U.S. intelligence community. This declaration is purely political.”

Facts:

  • According to Customs and Border Protection, arrests along the southwest border — the standard metric used to calculate illegal border crossings — numbered 396,579 in fiscal year 2018, which ended Oct. 1. That’s lower than the average over the previous decade (400,751). It’s also lower than the number of border arrests in fiscal 2016, 2014 and 2013.
  • Violent crime has been dropping in El Paso since its modern-day peak in 1993 and was at historic lows before a fence was authorized by Congress in 2006. Violent crime actually ticked up during the border fence’s construction and after its completion, according to police data collected by the FBI.
  • For the third straight year, the city of El Paso was ranked as the safest of its size in the country…Congressional Quarterly ranks the border town as the safest of cities with a population greater than 500,000.

***

Senator Rodriguez statement in response to the President’s false declaration of a national emergency

State Sen. José Rodríguez, released the following statement after the President declared a false state of national emergency:

It is difficult to fathom an emergency declaration after having had two years to work with a compliant Congress to get done what the President thinks ought to be done. The fact that he was not able to convince his own party of the need when they had control and has openly stated that this is the issue upon which he is staking his re-election campaign should be enough for any self-proclaimed constitutionalist to look askance at his proposed actions.  

More importantly, in my opinion, is that the entire premise is a lie. There is no definition of “border security,” any more than there is “open borders.” Those are simply buzzwords meant to trigger people who know little to nothing about the realities of border enforcement and have unwarranted fears about immigrants.

El Pasoans know the reality of the border first-hand. While I, and frankly, the government’s own security agencies, categorically reject the notion that the border poses an unmet national security threat, we also all recognize the very real issue of smuggling of people and contraband that must be met with smart, focused law enforcement and adequate judiciary.  El Paso meets this challenge every day without demonizing immigrants or border communities.  

The last thing the country needs is an out-of-control president who cannot work with Congress or be trusted to honor an agreement – as happened when he shut down the government for 35 days, hurting millions of people – then attempts unilateral actions in response to criticism from talk show hosts who know or care little for the facts.  

El Paso ISD Announces Early Release for Some Schools Due to Trump Visit, Crowds & Traffic

Several El Paso Independent School District campuses near the site of a planned rally by President Donald Trump will have early release on Monday in anticipation of large crowds and potential traffic issues.

The schools, all of which are near the El Paso County Coliseum, will release students at noon on Monday. Classes at all campuses will resume as normal on Tuesday.

The impacted schools are:

  • Aoy, Beall, Burleson, Clardy, Cooley, Douglass, Hart and Zavala elementary schools. The afternoon pre-kindergarten and Head Start sessions will be moved to the morning.
  • Guillen and Henderson middle schools.
  • Bowie, Jefferson and Silva Health Magnet high schools.

All after-school activities for the impacted campuses are cancelled on Monday.

EPISD officials worked with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to determine an appropriate plan of action for the presidential visit. EPISD Police said there are is indication of road closures that may have impacted the operation and release time of schools outside the vicinity of the Coliseum.

The rest of the district’s schools, including Central Office, will operate on a normal schedule on Monday.

President Trump to Visit El Paso Monday

White House officials announced Wednesday morning that President Donald Trump will hold an event at the El Paso County Coliseum in El Paso on Monday, February 11th.

The event will be held at the El Paso County Coliseum, located at  4100 East Paisano Drive at 7 pm.  This is the President’s seventh trip to Texas since announcing his bid and winning the White House, but his first to El Paso.

Tickets for the event are available online at the President’s re-election website.

The announcement of the trip comes less than twelve hours after the President made false statements about El Paso during the State of the Union Address, saying that at one time the city was the ‘most dangerous’ in the country until the border wall was built.

Our partners at the Texas Tribune report that President Trump’s Campaign Manager, Michael Glassner said “As the President continues his fight to secure our border, there’s no better place to demonstrate that walls work than in El Paso,”   To read the complete article, click here.

More on this as the story develops throughout the day.

President Trump Proposes Compromise to End Government Shutdown over Border Wall Standoff

In a rare Saturday afternoon address to the nation, President Donald Trump announced a possible deal to end the stalemate that’s resulted in the longest government shutdown in the country’s history.

As part of his speech, the President offered temporary and partial DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival) or Dreamer’s protection in exchange for funding for his wall.  President Trump bluntly stated, “I will fix this crisis, one way or the other.’

During the speech, President Trump referenced the ‘crisis on the border,’ noting the perilous journey migrants undertake from their home countries to the US border.  He also mention the border as being a ‘wide-open gateway’ allowing drugs and criminals into the country.

President Trump added,  “the Radical Left will never control our borders.”

According to the Washington Post, the president’s proposal offers “a reprieve on his attempts to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and temporary protected status (TPS) for immigrants from some Latin American and African nations.”

Via the White House website, the President’s proposal includes:

  • Administration has requested $5.7 billion for construction of approximately 234 miles of new steel barrier on the Southern Border, a $4.1 billion increase over the Senate bill.
  • To protect our communities, the Administration requested $675 million to deter and detect narcotics, weapons, and other materials crossing our borders.
  • Among the Administration’s requests for more resources are:
    • $211 million to hire 750 additional Border Patrol agents
    • $571 million for 2,000 additional ICE personnel
    • $4.2 billion for 52,000 detention beds, personnel, transportation, and detention alternatives
    • $563 million for 75 additional immigration judges and support staff

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi responded to President Trump’s proposal as a “Non-Starter” and a rehashing of previously presented ideas.

To review the President’s plan, click here.

Women’s March Take to the Streets Saturday; Rep. Escobar Featured Keynote Speaker

Women’s March El Paso will be hosting a march and gathering in the heart of Downtown El Paso, capped off by a keynote speech by newly-elected Congresswoman Veronica Escobar.

“I am a proud third generation fronteriza and represent a community that is tired of being portrayed in a way that is not factually accurate,” Escobar said. “It is an honor to serve in a way that represents all residents, regardless of race, religion or status. Women’s March El Paso has helped to amplify all voices in our community.”

Officials with Women’s March El Paso announced Congresswoman Escobar as their 2019 Keynote Speaker earlier this week.  Escobar is a native El Pasoan who made history this year by becoming one of Texas’ first Latina Congresswomen.

Congresswoman Escobar was just named to the House Judiciary Committee and House Armed Services Committee and has already served as Speaker Pro-Tempore in her short tenure in the House of Representatives.  Escobar previously served as a County Commissioner and County Judge of El Paso County from 2010-2017.

Escobar is known in El Paso for her lifelong commitment to service, through non-profit and government work and has been a longtime ally of Women’s March El Paso and other women’s service organizations in the Borderland.

Entertainment will begin at 9:30 am with Danza Azteca Omecoatl. Felipa Solis will serve as this year’s emcee as the program officially kicks off at 10 a.m.

This year’s speakers feature a variety of speakers and artists in our community who aim for gender, racial, economic and social justice within our communities and political system.

An approximately 1-mile march will begin at San Jacinto Plaza and make its way back to the Plaza before Congresswoman Escobar’s speech.

For more information, visit Women’s March El Paso’s Facebook page

Videos+Story: Border Rights Advocates Push Back on Presidential Address

Before the first words of President Trump’s prime time Oval Office address Tuesday night, border human rights advocates already had a rebuttal ready.

“What we have seen at the border over the past two years are the impacts and chaos caused by a cruel and racist President who has no respect for the rule of law,” Fernando Garcia with the Border Network for Human Rights said just moments after the Presidential Address was over.

The first Presidential prime time address was meant to convince Americans that the government shutdown, now in its 17th day, is needed in order to hold out for funding for a steel fence along the nation’s southern border.

Many immigration advocates at Tuesday night’s event at BNHR say the address did little to provide concrete evidence of a sincere crisis at our southern border.

“Why, even if there was something urgent at the border right now, why this administration would choose to respond with a wall that will take years or decades to build,” said Garcia.

Former Congressman Beto O’Rourke, who now has a massive online following, decided to take a direct approach to the assertion by President Trump that there is a national emergency at the border.

O’Rourke took to Facebook live to walk viewers around his Sunset Heights neighborhood, discuss the proximity of El Paso to Ciudad Juarez and our dependence on each other for economic and social prosperity. Former City Council member Steve Ortega and Joel Guzman, both fellow Sunset Heights residents joined in on the discussion.

While Trump was quick to bring up two recent murders in the U.S. allegedly committed by undocumented immigrants, he also failed to mention the deaths of Guatemalan migrant children Jakelin Caal or Felipe Alonso-Gomez, who both became ill and died while in custody of the U.S. Border Patrol.

Father Arturo Bañuelos with the Catholic Diocese argued that the lack of the President’s compassion for the true humanitarian crisis happening across the border was part of a larger problem.

“We need real, lasting, humane, and permanent solutions ro our immigration system that provide a path to citizenship for the 11 million unauthorized immigrants living in the U.S. and that builds a legal system that comforts with reality moving forward. With a President unable and unwilling to act, Congress must lead,” said Garcia.

During Christmas week, El Paso saw a massive surge of migrants being released by ICE from detention facilities, which sent organizations in the Sun City to scramble to house and feed the massive release of families.

On December 26, ICE released a record 522 migrants from detention in a single day. By Wednesday, January 9, all three of the emergency shelters that were opened by Annunciation House during Christmas to house the unexpected surge of migrants will be closed. The closures are representative of a return to ‘normal’ release numbers by ICE since New Year’s Day.

The overall flow of migrant families into the U.S. is still far more than it has been in recent memory according to Annunciation House Executive Director Ruben Garcia in a previous interview.

President Trump is expected to make a trip to McAllen on Thursday to survey the southern border for himself. While he has previously indicated he would consider declaring a national emergency in order to fund the construction of the Border Wall, he stopped short of any declaration on Tuesday during his address.

In a response via Twitter Tuesday night, Congresswoman Veronica Escobar said “Tonight’s speech offered nothing new, just another glimpse at a POTUS w/ no understanding of how to cope w/ challenges of changing migration patterns. When he goes to south TX on Thurs, he’ll do the usual photo ops w/ federal agents. Maybe he’ll wear cowboy boots and ride a horse.”

The El Paso Herald Post will continue to offer coverage of the proposed Border Wall and the Government Shutdown.

Watch Full Border Network for Human Rights Press Conference Below

President Trump’s Address to the Nation on Border Security (Courtesy CSpan)

 

 

 

UPDATE: Donald Trump’s Houston Rally with Ted Cruz Moved to Bigger Venue

President Donald Trump’s rally Monday in Houston with U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz has been moved to a bigger venue.

Originally set to take place at the NRG Arena, the event will now be held at the Toyota Center, Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale announced in a tweet Thursday afternoon, describing the demand for tickets as “HUGE and unprecedented.” The Toyota Center can hold about twice as many people as NRG Arena — roughly 10,000 versus 19,000.

Trump set expectations high set two months ago, when he announced he would come to Texas in October to hold a rally with Cruz at the “biggest stadium we can find.” Neither NRG Arena nor the Toyota Center are among the state’s largest venues.

The rally is set to begin at 6:30 p.m., and is set to also feature remarks from Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.

Author: PATRICK SVITEK – The Texas Tribune

Governor Greg Abbott to Speak at Donald Trump’s Campaign Event with Ted Cruz

Gov. Greg Abbott said Wednesday that he will be speaking at President Donald Trump’s campaign event with U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz in Houston on Monday.

Trump’s campaign announced Monday evening that the rally would take place at the NRG Arena on the first day of early voting for the November 6 election.

The competitive U.S. Senate race pits Cruz against U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-El Paso.

The rally is set to begin at 6:30 p.m.

The governor announced his attendance while speaking at an event to accept the Governor’s Trophy following the University of Texas Longhorns’ recent win over the University of Oklahoma Sooners in the Red River Showdown Game.

Author: MATT ZDUN – The Texas Tribune

Arguments, Confusion, Second-Guessing: Inside Trump’s Reversal on Separating Migrant Families

The White House’s hastily crafted executive order to end child separations spurred confusion and fights within the federal government, and second-guessing from the president who had demanded the order in the first place.

Amid continuing fallout from the Trump administration’s family separation policy, and a disjointed retreat earlier this week, senior officials met Friday to craft a plan for reuniting immigrant children with their parents or guardians, though it remained unclear how long that work will take.

The midday meeting was designed for officials to hash out exactly how they would reunite the more than 2,500 migrant children who have been separated from their parents since the practice went into effect in early May, according to officials involved in the discussions, who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to offer candid insights into internal deliberations. Roughly 500 children have already been reunited with a parent or guardian, officials have said.

The Friday meeting capped a tumultuous week in which administration officials rushed through an executive order that relieved the political pressure on President Trump but intensified friction between the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security.

By Wednesday morning, the president had become convinced that he needed a way to calm the criticism, according to people familiar with the discussions, and he felt confident that Republicans in Congress would push through immigration legislation ending the family separation practice — so he might as well get ahead of it. A vote on the measure was eventually postponed until next week, but it does not appear to have enough votes to pass.

In private conversations with aides, Trump said he wanted to sign a full immigration bill as part of an executive order, which one administration official described as “a pretty insane idea.” The president was told by government lawyers that he could not change immigration law by fiat, said a person familiar with the discussions.

Trump then demanded that an executive order be written that would end child detentions in cages, and said he wanted it on his desk for signing by that afternoon, according to people involved in the discussions.

Given hours to produce a complex legal document, government lawyers crafted one that met the moment’s political demands but only added to confusion within the agencies tasked with implementing it.

The order has quieted much, but not all, of the public anger over the family separation issue. On Friday outside the Justice Department, about 100 protesters gathered in the rain chanting “Keep Families Together!”

Even that admonition, with which the administration now agrees, has provoked fights inside the government.

Thursday, the first day of enforcing the order, was marked by confusion.

At Customs and Border Protection (CBP), officials viewed Trump’s order as instructing them to no longer refer to the Justice Department for prosecution the cases of adults illegally entering the United States with children, according to people familiar with the discussions.

That interpretation was relayed to CBP personnel along the southern border, and dozens of people who had been apprehended and sent to federal court for processing were suddenly removed from courthouses without criminal charges being filed against them.

Within the Justice Department, which prosecutes such cases, officials believed the executive order paved the way for parents to be held with their children for as long as necessary to resolve their cases, these people said.

White House officials gave little guidance in the early hours of the order, with Trump and his coterie of senior aides in Minnesota for a rally.

After CBP officials said there would be no referrals to the Justice Department of adults with children caught crossing the border, Justice Department officials became irate because that was not how they understood the policy, according to people familiar with the matter.

In many ways, the confusion echoed one of the administration’s most chaotic moments — when Trump signed an executive order in early 2017 banning visitors from majority Muslimcountries, leading to mass protests outside U.S. airports and much confusion for travelers.

In both instances, CBP personnel were left scrambling to quickly interpret and implement how the president’s command would be applied on the ground, with contradictory instructions and public statements in the immediate aftermath coming from multiple federal agencies.

On Thursday evening, officials from Homeland Security and the Justice Department gathered at the White House to discuss the issues, and over the course of the 90-minute meeting it became clear that CBP and Justice had wildly different understandings of what they were supposed to be doing, according to people familiar with the talks.

Senior White House adviser Stephen Miller, an outspoken proponent of tougher immigration policy, was unhappy that CBP had decided to halt referrals for prosecution of parents illegally crossing the border with children, according to people familiar with the meeting. Homeland Security officials complained they had been given no guidance and had done the best they could with vague language.

Trump, for his part, has ruminated to aides that he should not have signed the order in the first place, according to people familiar with the conversations. The president seemed to be fed up with the topic Friday, as he publicly discouraged Republican lawmakers from trying to pass any new immigration laws before the midterm elections in November.

“Republicans should stop wasting their time on Immigration until after we elect more Senators and Congressmen/women in November,” Trump tweeted. “Dems are just playing games, have no intention of doing anything to solves this decades old problem. We can pass great legislation after the Red Wave!”

[Trump answers critics of family separation policy with Americans ‘permanently separated’ from family by illegal immigrants]

In the meantime, federal agencies continue to wrestle with how to deal with those families that have been detained or are likely to be detained soon.

A significant challenge for Homeland Security, in particular, is that its detention facilities are already near maximum capacity, according to officials.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) currently has three “family residential centers” where migrant families can remain in custody together, but their combined capacity is only about 3,000 beds. According to the latest ICE statistics, the three facilities are nearly full.

On Friday, ICE requested information from government contractors about expanding its family detention capacity fivefold, “to accommodate up to 15,000 beds.” Its notice said the agency is seeking market information about the cost and logistics of adding new family-appropriate facilities, preferably in states along the Mexico border.

“The housing and other structures must appear residential and child-friendly rather than penal in nature,” the notice stated. “Facilities should not incorporate characteristics on the interior or exterior typically associated with secure detention facilities, such as high security fences, razor wire fencing, or heavy steel doors.”

Trump’s order also calls on the Defense Department to find space for migrant families, leaving military officials crafting plans on the fly to set up tent camps on bases with available land.

Pentagon officials on Friday said the department was drawing up plans for housing migrants. The officials stressed that the plans were not finalized and had been drafted in case they were needed.

“At this time there has been no request from DHS for DOD support to house illegal migrants,” Lt. Col. Jamie Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, said in an email.

One draft memo prepared for the secretary of the Navy called for “temporary and austere” detention camps for up to 25,000 migrants on abandoned airfields in Alabama, according to Time, which obtained a copy of the document.

The proposal also identifies a former naval weapons station near San Francisco and another facility at Camp Pendleton in southern California, each of which could house up to 47,000 people, Time reported.

White House officials were publicly silent on the executive order Friday, not taking questions as senior government officials huddled behind the scenes. Trump appeared with families of people killed by illegal immigrants and said the media should instead focus on those separations, which he called “permanent.”

Missy Ryan contributed to this report.

Read related Tribune coverage:

Authors: 

Op-Ed: Fear, Credible Fear and Damned Fear

Before you dive into this one, fair warning, it’s got a couple of seemingly odd asides, and a good old movie reference, since we as Americans love to compare everything to the big screen.

Over a hundred years ago, the great American writer, humorist and speaker Mark Twain popularized a very British saying.

Twain in his Chapters from My Autobiography, wrote: “Figures often beguile me…particularly when I have the arranging of them myself…there are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.”

The phrase illustrates the idea that statistics can be used to bolster weak – or untruthful – positions.  It’s an interesting proposal, especially here in the ‘post-truth’ era that we find ourselves in, where any point of view can be substituted as fact and backed up by any number of statistics (or websites, or network) depending on one’s particular slant.

With that in mind, I began to think of the ‘reality’ we all share, here in the second decade of the 21st Century.  A reality where where truth is fluid, where things previously proven true – without challenge – are subjected to the most outrageous interpretations, conspiracies and alternate facts; where lies, damned lies and statistics are now held on high, diminishing the truth daily.

And that’s when it struck me. The only thing that can possibly top the truth may be the most powerful tool of all.  An old tool of politics, and of the mob mentality: Fear.

But not just one type, as its offspring have mutated and taken root.  So let’s take a look at the three types of fear that now exist.

*

Fear, which one of our greatest Presidents – Franklin D Roosevelt – warned us about, is easy to understand.  It’s the feeling of dread that something, or someone, may cause harm.

The monster under the bed, crowds, speaking in public; and the darker ones: loss of a job or status, loneliness, death.  Each one of us knows this level of fear, even wrapped in our seemingly safe cocoon of first-world America, this is an across the board, shared feeling.

Then there’s credible fear.  The phrase that’s been tossed around like a political frisbee of late.  This is where there is a threat, and it isn’t the cucuy.  On one level its the meth-soaked abandoned home next door, with drug-addled zombies stumbling in and out at all hours of the night. On the opposite end, it’s slums populated with roving gangs, bribed officials, daily shootouts and death – all with no arrests.

It’s a level of fear most Americans will never know- while at the same time – some fellow humans in far away places live in daily.  It’s the fear that makes the headlines – from Long Island to Chicago to Los Angeles – and scares the average resident of our country, even if they’ve never been a victim.  More on this in a bit.

And now there’s damned fear.

Damned fear is taking credible fear, injecting it with steroids and nitro, dusting it off, selling it to millions of Americans who’s regular fear has been gnawing at them.

In the face of the numbers that violent crime is at the lowest level in years, damned fear tells Americans that MS-13 is right down the street, sharpening their machetes and coming for you.

While research shows the clear advantages of speaking more than one language – be it French, German or Spanish – damned fear tells Americans that the other groups are discussing, plotting and most likely ridiculing them by not speaking English in this country.

And while for over 200 years, we’ve respected the rights of others to peacefully assemble and pray to the deity of their choice, damned fear confirms to those Americans that Sharia Law is now in effect in several cities and towns and will be the end of America.

Damned fear propagates the myth that America is lost, and the best way to rescue her lies in her past.  A return to law and order.  The way things used to be in the ‘good ol’ days.’

It also posits that America is some sort of ‘zero-sum’ game, and the arrival of any immigrants – illegal or otherwise – will somehow damage existing resident’s lives or livelihood. As if the immigrant’s quest for a safer life and security actually removes the same for the believers in the damned fear.

The damned fear directly leads to ugliness, coarseness and decidedly un-American behavior.  Behavior that’s been visited upon different versions of the ‘fear-bringers’ across our history: Native Americans, Irish, LDS, Chinese, Sikh, Muslims, Italians, Japanese, Mexicans.

We’ve seen it first hand now, out in public – captured by cell phones or social media feeds.  Damned fear is rolling across the country.

And about those immigrants coming here for asylum, under credible fear for their lives.

The purveyors of the damned fear – those who rail and rage that we need to get tougher on criminal immigrants – such as members of MS-13 who are roaming the streets, threatening our safety, they are the very same who deny the credible fear that leads scores of women and children to escape their countries where those gangs actually run rampant.

Worse yet, those who repeat the damned fear, revel in it and egg it on, and those who voted because of the damned fear, have now set the machinery of government in motion.

Like a ponderous boulder pushed off a ledge, the actions of the government are now picking up speed; and like a boulder are crushing lives and sending people scurrying for safety.  All the while, those who set it in motion gleefully peer over the edge, yelling “good riddance and you deserve what’s coming to you!”  The damned fear, lording over the credible fear.

**

There’s a scene in Steven Speilberg’s much-overlooked movie from 2001 – A.I.  It’s a film he completed after his friend – and movie legend in his own right – Stanley Kubrick passed away.

In my viewing of Kubrick’s films, it seems that he had this idea that man, either in space or in an authoritarian future, was this creature who lived in and among various stages of fear, and reacted accordingly.

From A Clockwork Orange, to 2001, to Full Metal Jacket and The Shining, fear and credible fear are the uncredited stars of the films.

But in A.I., a story of a machine-boy built to fill the void left when a family must place their son in stasis until his disease can be cured, Kubrick/Speilberg tapped into this damned fear.

Set in an America where global warming has submerged scores of cities, where wealth can buy a permanent respite from the troubles of the world, and where androids now handle most jobs, leaving regular citizens lost between poverty and escapism.

The family, well-off, but not wealthy by any means decides that the boy is the most logical replacement for their quazi-dead son.  And they activate his bonding program, basically allowing the boy to love his new parents unconditionally.  That is, until a cure for the stasis-set real son is found and used.

Now the family, freed from the credible fear of their son’s death, has to deal with the damned fear of what to do with this robot that loves them unconditionally, but will never age.  The son turns on the robot, begins torturing it, prodding it, making it look like the robot wants to do harm to the family.

In a final, desperate scene, the mother drives out to the country and dumps the robot boy the wilderness, like a pet that’s been outgrown.  He can’t fathom why the person and family he loved so much would now want him gone.

He quickly falls in with another outcast android, an escaped gigolo, who is running not only from his past, but groups of hunters who seek retribution on all androids.  Hunters who have been told, just like the population of the movie America, that all their ills were visited upon them by these robots.

Loss of status, loss of jobs, loss of their way of life.  And the androids must be punished for it all to go away, to feel better and to rid the land of them so that real people can again take their rightful place in America. All the while, they partake of the android’s benefits both social and carnal.

The damned lie.

Common Americans, taking out their frustrations on their one-time assistants, waiters, janitors, and even doctors with glee. Degrading comments and jeers served with hooting and hollering in unison. All the time, ignoring the real crumbling going on around them.

But at least they felt good about ridding the country of their ‘problems.’

It was a difficult movie for me to watch, and by the time they reach the point where the androids are ‘punished’ in a country-fair-meets-monster-truck-rally-meets-lynching (only halfway through the movie, by the way) it’s nearly unbearable.  A disturbing scene to watch unfold.

One I thought  ‘can’t happen here.’

***

Then 9/11.  Then the Wars.  Then Homeland Security.  And now, ICE raids in neighborhoods and businesses. Agents stalking courthouses and front lawns after church.  Texas DPS Agents sharing Traffic Stop information with Immigration officials. Customs agents turning away asylum seekers at the bridge. “We’re full…”

All the while believers of the damned lie, common Americans, taking out their frustrations; degrading comments and jeers served with hooting and hollering in unison…either in person or via their on-line personas.

It’s for the good of America.  The Damned Lie.

Now we have tent camps going up on military bases and near ports of entry to house the children we’ve removed from those seeking a better life; abandoned Walmarts converted into ‘holding areas’ with chain-link fences; flat screens with Spongebob playing above their heads.

Do not give us your tired, your poor, or your huddled masses.  They will be turned back, families ripped asunder and shipped back to their teeming shore.  They are now ‘our’ credible fear – the ones responsible for our situation.  Our damned fear.

****

It speaks volumes that a mother and her child, or father and his family would need to make a journey of thousands of miles to escape a life that most Americans can hardly fathom.  That their first action to get to a better place would have to break a law and risk everything.

Credible Fear.

It speaks volumes that this administration has chosen to flout, and pick and choose the laws that they so vehemently wrap themselves in at every chance, for the good of the republic.

Damned Fear.

This country now finds itself at a very dangerous point.  Damned fear reigns, and true believers applaud.  Credible fear is ignored or perverted to make a political point. And sides are being chosen – either by free will or by the push of the crowd.

Fear.

Man is a very dangerous creature when pushed by fear. Decisions made under that duress rarely turn out for the good of anyone.

It’s time to stand up to the fear.  To remove the tarnish that covers our golden door and relight the torch.  Not just for the good of those immigrants we’re abusing, but for the good of the abusers who are ‘following orders,’ their cheerleaders, and our children as well.

And for the good of our shared American soul.

Op-Ed: Dear Sarah…

Dear Sarah,

You recently asked the country to inquire about El Paso’s feelings of the worthiness of a wall between us and our sister city, Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. As you know, a stronger, taller and longer fence (not wall) was erected in the place of the existing border fencing in the past decade, of which FBI statistics corroborate drops in property crime, drug trafficking and even some violent crimes.

It’s very easy to say the wall is a direct result of being a safe city, especially when you can pick from ‘safest city in the country’ headlines year after year, given safety and ‘America First’ standards are among some of President Trump’s priorities.

After all, “Mexico is not our friend” because they’re “bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” And yes, some are “good people,” assumptively. But a wall would be the perfect solution to protecting America from one of our “enemies” who are continually “ripping off the U.S.” and whose cartels use the border like a “vacuum cleaner, sucking drugs and death right into the U.S.”

This is all agreeable, Ms. Sarah, completely true in the Trump World. That Trump World you’re in, where most, if not all media exposure is “fake news”, or grabbing women by the pussy is laughable locker room talk that “never happened” and everyone is out for the administration’s blood.

Trump World may be your world, and that’s your American right to choose, but please remember that there are over 7.4 billion others living in what we call, the real world.

Thankfully, you were kind enough to inquire about our opinions, and perhaps some real-world insight can better balance the alternative facts weighing into the decision of further dividing us from our beloved neighbor.

It seems that even your own Chief of Staff John Kelly may have peeked his head out of the Trump delusion. During his Wednesday meeting with Congressional Hispanic Caucus he said President Trump was “uninformed” in his promises for a huge Mexico-funded wall across the entire border.

Based on your reliance on a New York Post article conveniently summing up the need for this wall on the sole weight of a 3-year statistical comparison, as a native El Pasoan, I must say that you too, are uninformed. Let me kindly explain why.

Judging from this week’s 1st Annual Fake News Awards, it’s clear that fake news is a problematic strain for Trump devotees and the administration. I could not agree more, that smearing the integrity of an institution founded on truth is beyond foul, even dangerous to the American democracy.

Who dare publish –or even endorse– any information dripping with deception and even worse, the manipulative cheapening of the core context that makes a story valuable! Holes in a story collapse the argument on which it’s founded, though cunning language can still sway the reader toward the writer’s favored position and agenda.

As you well know, Sarah, non-objectivity in straight news is cancer to it’s foundation. If anyone is going to present the truth, particularly influential leaders, only the full truth can hold any value of integrity and reliability. I hope that with this letter, you can better understand the holes that drain credibility and reason from the claims that a $20 billion security symbol would help us El Pasoans sleep better at night.

It’s true, that perhaps the latest addition of the fence did reduce property crime significantly and there’s even been a slight drop in violent crime since construction completed. As your New York Post reference states, drug trafficking seizures have gone down, and illegal entry has significantly dropped. But that’s just the FOX News Channel of the big picture.

The border’s fence upgrades are not the reason El Paso ranks so safe, as much of the current propaganda suggests.

My hometown proudly holds the title among cities having the lowest crime rankings in the country for its size, even leading as the lowest ranked in some years, according to FBI Uniform Crime Reporting numbers. I must make you aware that this representation has been a decades-long status existent long before any additional fencing was added to the border, so it cannot and should not be fully attributed to our city’s safety.

When contemplating this heavy price tag, perhaps it makes some sense to consider alternative factors of effectiveness that may be more worthy of such a large investment? Even a tiny fraction of $20 billion for our border community would generate of tsunami of improvements that go even beyond your safety and security priority.

The Wall Won’t Create Any Drug Traffic Jams

I’m not convinced, and I can bet the Drug Enforcement Agency is iffy, that throwing billions at a southern border wall would reduce the instances of drug smugglers coming in from Mexico. Smugglers prefer deep (like, hundreds of feet deep) underground tunnels, not running across miles of fenceless open desert, infested with La Migra.

And unless your wall reaches cloud-like levels, it will do little to deter the drones and small aircraft these smugglers are using to deliver their goods. You also have those pesky bridge-crossing mules, stuffing their tires, shoes, gas tanks, fajas, tamales, semi-trucks and anything under the Sun City sunshine worthy of unsuspicious secret compartments, making their way across and into the faces of our very own law enforcement.

Some get caught. Many don’t. But a border wall isn’t their challenge – they’re more worried about acting cool with heroin duct-taped to their thighs as they hide in the swarms of thousands legally crossing the bridge daily.

And yes, some of them are actually American-born, not Mexican immigrants.

If drugs are what you’re worried about, there’s more we can do as a country with the demand side of it rather than the resistance by way of the wall. A proactive vs. reactive approach to addiction would be more sustainable and beneficial to the American quality of life than a multibillion dollar heap of metal. Say, isn’t there an opioid crisis your administration is trying to tackle?

I wonder how much of the cartel business –and border smuggling– would cripple if the Trump era managed to gain control of the deadliest drug crisis in American history? One could only wonder how the legalization of marijuana has depleted the dollar signs of the black market weed trade, one American state at a time.

Maybe you can explain to Don, that the ball is in our court –er, green, within a 5-foot radius to the hole, and there’s a good chance at an eagle when it comes to securing our border while single-handedly wiping out an epidemic and injecting more green to the successful multi-billion dollar marijuana industry.

El Paso has several potential drug treatment centers that would prosper from a financial boost to achieve their mission for addict recovery. A social disease is cured not by covering up the symptoms, rather healing the origin of the damage.

A stronger focus on the internal health of our community manifests a more sustainable solution than any size wall could attain in its attempts to block the transportation of the infective catalysts.

Pull the plug on recidivism costs.

Given your stance on safety, your team has (hopefully) pored over criminal statistics in border towns, with a close eye on patterns and demographics within each community.

In your research, you may have learned that the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition aims to increase public safety through the reduction on recidivism, as repeat offenders are expensive. They emphasize the need to create stronger families, less tax-payer waste and safer communities.

Seemingly, that aligns well with your Make America Great Again mantra and more specifically, the President’s platform for building this wall.

I must repeat: crime in El Paso existed before the latest fence, and continued to exist after the fence. Sure, we saw a drop in property crime, but violent crime is still a bigger threat to our safety, and murder rates actually went up in 2014.

Of note, it’s not illegal immigrants shooting up those numbers. Putting away the bad guys is one mission in the disciplining of our society, but should we not consider a stronger push for the rehabilitation of those with potential to contribute back to society when given the chance?

Slashing prison occupancy and processing costs by investing in the reintegration of inmates surely goes beyond the effectiveness of crime reduction via wall erection by dealing with the source directly. Addressing the border crimes committed by Americans with the concept of restorative justice and proper guidance can promote a potential generational impact in reversing a costly drain on the community.

Drain the… desert.

I am confident the administration is performing its due diligence to wholly understand the needs of border security, assessing technology and the workforce, and conducting the necessary visits and tours to get a true grip on the topic. My question is, will there be (or has there been) an in-depth federal evaluation on internal corruption?

Because not even a billion-dollar wall would effectively withstand the cracks of immorality amongst American government employees. Protection from bad hombres would be obsolete if there are English-speaking ones in uniform crossing the line with bribes.

Your war against the crimes you intend to protect us from has occasionally been propelled by your own soldiers. In no way am I suggesting or attempting to discredit the honorable dedication of our border force majority, but the revelations in corruption exist, and it’s a threat, albeit minor, that needs to be examined in the name of billions.

The Big Picture

I don’t claim expertise in any of the subjects mentioned above because my tax dollars pay for my leaders to be the experts on all fronts when making multi-billion dollar decisions.

Whether it’s us or Mexico that pays for hundreds of miles of fencing on the southern border, the impact will be felt where I live, amongst my family, friends and neighbors. As citizens we deserve to be confident that our government is dissecting all aspects of this initiative.

This isn’t a weight to be solely slammed on the immigration debate. This isn’t just an eyesore to save the tax dollars wasted on illegal immigrants through law enforcement, welfare, healthcare, education and whatnot.

If there is illness on the border, a $20-billion dollar band-aid idea born on an impulsive campaign whim is not the path to community health. We must run tests, undergo thorough assessments and dissect all symptoms before diagnosing or providing any remedy involving several populations.

Sarah, I applaud your public inquiry to ask El Paso. Who better to educate in the reality of border living than the natives themselves. Immerse the real-life insight of the people with true expert analysis as a working democracy would, before making permanent, costly decisions that risk standing as a symbol of bad leadership in American history.

It’s important to understand that El Paso, historically Paso Del Norte, translates to “The Pass” in which Spanish explorers traveled north from Mexico. For those of us whose bare feet have walked the El Paso earth since birth, it’s a community known and felt to be an international embrace more than the political divide portrayed in recent news.

When we think of the sense of safety we feel in our home, we don’t think of a wall. We immerse ourselves in the bond that makes El Paso-Juarez border what it is: Family.

I won’t be the only one you’ll be receiving letters from in the near future. I am just one voice in millions of the border with native insight worth listening to.

I invite El Pasoans and anyone living on the border to begin the #DearSarah dialogue you’ve publicly requested. Optimistically, you’ll hear from experts, primos, professors, economists and countless others to weigh in on a subject in desperate need of a border voice.

With Respect,

Bianca Delilah Cervantes

***

To submit your ‘Letter to the Editor’ or similar #DearSarah op-ed piece for consideration, email us at news@epheraldpost.com

Op-Ed: When Sports, Politics, Race and Protest Collide

The last few days have been some of the most interesting, polarizing, and controversial the country, let alone the sports world has seen in a long time.

President Donald Trump stole the limelight when he was involved in a Twitter war vs. seemingly everyone, even some of his former supporters.

Friday, at their media day, members of the Golden State Warriors made mention of their decision to not visit the White House in what has become a tradition of champions in the United States for decades.

When asked, Steph Curry reiterated his stance on not wanting to visit the White House if invited because of his disagreements with the President over a multitude of issues, most stemming from Trump’s lack of distancing himself from known white supremacist groups that many believe helped his rise to the highest position in the free world.

The fire only grew, as various members of the NBA community were as equally appalled by the incendiary tweets that Trump spewed following Curry’s opinion on the matter. The feelings of anger and angst turned into an inferno as the President even called the NFL players “Sons of Bitches” if they protested along with Colin Keapernick, in an effort to bring an end to police brutality and shine a light on inequality faced throughout the country by people of color.

Sunday NFL Players voiced their opinions by standing arm in arm, kneeling, embracing one another or standing in the tunnel out of view of everyone while the National Anthem played. Alejandro Villanueva, Army Veteran and West Point Graduate, was the lone Pittsburgh Steeler to be seen during the National Anthem.

This show of unity throughout the NFL led former Trump Supporter Rex Ryan to explain why he is no longer and has not been for a while, a Trump supporter.

The NFL player protests, the Warriors decision to skip the White House and the current state of Colin Keapernick’s NFL career all made me to ask some of my most respected friends, former co-workers and members of the media their opinions on the matter.

 “It’s ironic that so many players are kneeling, and the man who started it all is still being blackballed.” One source close to me said. 

The sad truth is that Colin Keapernick is still without a job while a player like Brock Osweiler, who is being paid $15 Million to not play for the Cleveland Browns, but is a backup in Denver, can somehow have a career, is befuddling to some… myself included. Keapernick’s numbers on the football field are not staggering by any means, but they are more than respectable, and better than 10-15 of the current starters in the NFL today.

“As a bi-racial American citizen, I feel the need to join this protest to fight for my rights. If our president sees our athletes as ‘sons of bitches’, what more does this country have to offer?”“(We) both pledged to give our life for that flag, have had fallen brothers caskets with that flag draped on it. Those same brothers gave their lives and would do it again so those disgraceful punks can disrespect it? The flag is NOT the police force.”

The divide has grown wider as the current state of our nation, and the sports world, are put to the test with the President’s comments and those who are fighting for equality, while seemingly offending others. As was put to me in a private conversation. I myself am a veteran of the US Air Force. I love and respect everything that the Flag stands for and I, at time tear up when I hear the anthem played, remembering how grateful I am to be in this country.

I asked a friend, a successful African American man, who is also a veteran.

“…It is both courageous and inspiring. The fact that even in 2017 equality does not exist. What players want is simply, equality. To be able to live their life without being threatened because of the color of their skin… you use the only platform you have, SPORTS!”

Sports have been an outlet for many. We applauded Muhammad Ali when he protested the Vietnam War. We begged for Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James to stand up and voice their opinions. Now we have someone standing up for the little guy, shining a light on the subject, and he is shunned. Plenty of people have questions when it comes to the protests.

“I would support the protests, but I don’t know what it is about. Is it about racial inequality? Is it about the President calling the NFL players “SOB’s”? Todays protests weren’t about racial inequality, that’s what needs to be remembered, they were about the words President Trump said about the NFL protesters being fired, regardless of skin color.”

It is in fact the reality. The NFL player protests were not fully about racial inequality and that is where the confusion is. Yes the protests initially started off that way and the underlying tone is there, but that original message was lost Sunday.

“They felt the need to rise up against a racist President that called white supremacists ‘fine people’ but called them ‘sons of bitches… it blew up today because of what he said”

The highest position in the world, the one with the most power, respect and eyes on it has long been that of President of the United States. The President has long been respected, but this time it seems like the man in office is more polarizing than John Cena or Tony Romo. The words of hate or truth, however you see it, have driven a divide in the country, but if you support the president are you a white supremacist? Is the President, in fact, a white supremacist?

“Trump’s daughter married an Orthodox Jew and converted to Orthodox herself. As much as he’s enabled White Supremacists and hasn’t really distanced himself, a true White Supremacist would NEVER allow their daughter to marry someone like that.”

There is some truth in that, but the President has in fact not distanced himself from the shadow of White Supremacy. We can say he is not a Nazi, but is he a racist? Does he truly speak for those who are too scared to speak for themselves when it comes to the issue of race? I think of this as a Smoke and Mirrors tactic of his to distract from the issue that is North Korea.

Is it the fact that he had a long-standing fight with the NFL?

“… He’s had it out for the NFL since the USFL days.”

Ah, the USFL, the ill-fated business venture of one Donald Trump that failed, a common theme of his. Something that made people respect him was his ability to bounce back, build himself back up after a failure, but now the steaks are larger than what they were for Trump back then, it’s the fate of an entire country.

I am like most people, I respect the NFL Players for their protest, but I for one don’t know where the end goal is. How can we stop it? Are we destined to protest forever? What is the goal in mind, every protest needs to have a goal or it falls flat. When I asked 20 different people the answers were eerily similar.

“I don’t think there will ever be a solution.” Said an up and coming Sports Journalist

“That’s the million dollar question.” Was the sentiment of a veteran.

“This will never end, as violence and injustice will always be a part of our society and nation. All we can do is fight for our beliefs and hope that our voices a heard loud and clear.” This was the answer from a well-known and respected sports radio host.

The answer is much more complex than an already volatile situation. What happens next? Where does this saga go from now? But most importantly where does this leave a nation divided?

***

 

 

Author – Mike Tipton (shootoutpodcast@google.com ) is a graduate of Socorro High School and current UTEP student. He spent 3 years in the US Air Force and love to travel. Mike currently works at ESPN as a production assistant for ESPN Radio. He hopes to one day have his own local radio show in El Paso. 

Local, State, National Leaders Speak Out on President Trump’s Decision to End DACA

President Donald Trump announced Tuesday the ending of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) first implemented by President Obama in 2012.

Below is the President’s statement, as provided by the White House.

President Donald J. Trump Restores Responsibility and the Rule of Law to Immigration

“I believe that real and positive immigration reform is possible, as long as we focus on the following goals: To improve jobs and wages for Americans; to strengthen our nation’s security; and to restore respect for our laws.” – President Donald J. Trump

RESPONSIBLY ENDING UNLAWFUL IMMIGRATION POLICY: Today, the Trump Administration is rescinding the previous Administration’s memorandum creating the unlawful Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and has begun to end the program responsibly.

  • Attorney General Jeff Sessions sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security explaining that DACA was not statutorily authorized and was therefore an unconstitutional exercise of discretion by the executive branch.
    • Attorney General Sessions found that DACA, given pending litigation, would likely face the same outcome as the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program, which was enjoined by the courts.
  • The Trump Administration is taking responsible action to wind down DACA in an orderly and minimally disruptive manner.
    • If President Trump allowed DACA to go to court, it is likely that the court would abruptly enjoin the program.
      • If President Trump had refused to act, many States were prepared to pursue litigation to end DACA by court order.
    • Under the change announced today, current DACA recipients generally will not be impacted until after March 5, 2018, six months from now. That period of time gives Congress the opportunity to consider appropriate legislative solutions.
  • DHS’s enforcement priorities remain in place. However, absent a law enforcement interest—which is largely the standard that has been in place since the inception of the program—the Department will generally not take actions to remove active DACA recipients.
    • DACA recipients range from ages 15 to 36, with the overwhelming majority being of adult age.
  • Initial requests for Employment Authorization Documents under DACA properly filed and accepted through today will be processed.
    • Additional DACA initial applications filed after today will not be accepted.
  • Renewal applications for DACA Employment Authorization Documents properly filed and accepted by October 5, 2017, for people whose current Employment Authorization Documents expire between today and March 5, 2018, will be processed.
    • Any such requests filed after October 5, 2017 will not be accepted.
  • Currently approved applications for advance parole for DACA recipients will generally be honored, but new applications will not be approved.
    • All pending applications for advance parole by DACA recipients will be closed and associated fees will be refunded.

RESTORING LAW AND ORDER TO OUR IMMIGRATION SYSTEM: The DACA program was never intended to be permanent—even President Obama admitted it was a temporary, extraordinary measure. And President Obama repeatedly recognized that such unilateral actions were in excess of the Executive’s appropriate role.

  • President Obama admitted publicly on at least a 22 occasions that creating a DACA-like program was beyond his authority. President Obama said:
    • In 2011, that “there are enough laws on the books by Congress that are very clear in terms of how we have to enforce our immigration system that for me to simply through Executive order ignore those congressional mandates would not conform with my appropriate role as President.”
    • In 2010, that providing people in America illegally with legal status and ignoring the laws on the books “would be both unwise and unfair.”
  • President Obama admitted in 2012 that DACA, implemented in an election year, was “a temporary stopgap measure.”
  • Partly because of DACA, the United States saw a surge in illegal immigration by minors in 2013-2014, because they hoped to take advantage of the program.
    • President Obama knew this would be a problem, admitting in 2010 that a DACA-like policy “could lead to a surge in illegal immigration.”
  • President Trump refuses to allow criminal activity to dominate our immigration system, taking action to restore the law and protect all Americans.
    • One of President Trump’s first Executive orders informed sanctuary jurisdictions that failure to fully abide by Federal immigration laws would jeopardize access to certain Federal grant money.
      • As a result, Miami-Dade County reversed its years-long sanctuary policy.
    • The DOJ issued new charging guidelines in April to bring to an end the previous Administration’s catch-and-release policies by prioritizing criminal immigration enforcement.
    • Since President Trump’s inauguration, illegal immigration on the southwest border is down by 47 percent compared to the same period last year.
    • Illegal alien removals resulting from to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrests have increased by over 32 percent.
    • So far in Fiscal Year 2017, ICE has arrested at least 3,641 criminal gang members compared to 2,057 criminal gang members in all of Fiscal Year 2016.

REFORMING IMMIGRATION TO MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN: DACA made it impossible for President Trump to pursue the reforms needed to restore fairness to our immigration system and protect American workers.

  • President Trump’s highest obligation is to uphold the laws of the United States. So long as the unlawful policies of the previous Administration remain—especially those that incentivize further illegal immigration—there is no realistic chance of achieving principled pro-worker immigration reform. His priorities include:
    • Controlling the Border: President Trump intends to secure the southwest border with a border wall and a robust law enforcement presence on the border.
    • Improving Vetting and Immigration Security: Our immigration system, including our asylum and refugee system, make the United States potentially exposed to terrorist and public safety threats. We need to improve vetting and set limits that allow for proper vetting.
    • Enforcing Our Laws: President Trump supports the swift removal of those who illegally enter the United States or violate the conditions of their visas.
    • Protecting Our Workers: President Trump is working to encourage companies to raise wages and recruit American workers. This means stopping the practice of hiring illegal workers who unlawfully deprive American workers of jobs and higher wages.
    • Establishing a Merit-Based System for Entry: President Trump supports efforts to prioritize immigrants based on skills and thereby prevent the displacement of American workers.

***

U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) Tuesday released the following statement after the Trump Administration announced their intention to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program put in place by the Obama Administration:

“This policy, while well-intentioned, was implemented without the approval of Congress by a President who exceeded his authority under the Constitution. This President now has the chance to work with Congress towards finding a solution to this issue where his predecessor failed. These children who were brought here illegally through no fault of their own continue to make positive contributions to Texas and the nation, and it’s important for us to achieve a long-term resolution.”

***

A Betrayal of Leadership: HOPE & Border Bishops Respond to Trump’s Rollback of Protections for Dreamers

HOPE BORDER INSTITUTE, BISHOP OSCAR CANTU, DIOCESE OF LAS CRUCES, BISHOP MARK J. SEITZ, DIOCESE OF EL PASO

Jesus taught that law should be at the service of human beings and communities (Mk. 2:27). Jesus showed that leadership is about transcending petty divides, defending the vulnerable, and guaranteeing human dignity.

The devastating news that the Trump administration has rolled back basic protections from deportation for young immigrants is a betrayal of the law’s greater purpose, a betrayal of leadership’s duty to protect the innocent, and a betrayal of the compassion the President Trump promised Dreamers. 

Our border communities know the contributions, hopes and character of our Dreamers, forged in a climate of endless anxiety, uncertainty and political turmoil. Nearly one million strong across the country, Dreamers are leaders in our parishes, graduates from our schools, veterans of our armed services, and first responders who have provided brave service in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Even in the absence of political leadership, we know their dreams will not be extinguished. Dreams can soar higher than the pharisaical abuse of the law and political brinksmanship. In the dedication of our Dreamers to our highest American ideals and in the coming together of our country behind them, we see the seeds of renewal in our country and the renewed possibility of immigration reform. The fate of Dreamers once again falls to Congress, who rather than pitting us against each other, must work to promote the good of all.

In the meantime, with the strength of Jesus’ “no” to those who would use the law to lay unfair burdens on the innocent, we will continue to say “no” to deportation, family separation and the militarization of our communities. While we wait on reform, we call for an immediate moratorium on the deportation and detention of those who would pose no danger to our communities. 

And let us all continue to say “yes” to a country that nurtures the hopes and aspirations of its young people. “Yes” to laws that correspond to our human and family values. “Yes” to those who soar high on the strength of their dreams.

***

Sen. Rodríguez: Trump fails on promise to treat DREAMers “with a heart”

Senator José Rodríguez, Chairman of the Senate Democratic Caucus, released the following statement following the president’s decision, announced this morning, to discontinue President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months:

DREAMers are part of the American future. These young people are Americans in every meaningful way, and this un-American action by the president works to deprive them of their dreams.

This is no surprise, unfortunately. This president is a bully who kicked-off his campaign by calling immigrants rapists and pledged to build a border wall. He undermined the rule of law and the judiciary by criticizing the integrity of Judge Curiel, simply because of his Mexican heritage. He began his presidency by imposing an unconstitutional, discriminatory travel ban. Most recently, he pardoned the racist actions of Sheriff Arpaio. He has no respect for the U.S. Constitution or the rule of law. He is failing as president, and as he did during the campaign, when he is in trouble, he looks for a scapegoat. While he has many, his main target, over and over, has been immigrants.

Typical of bullies, he is passing the buck. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that Congress do its job and pass comprehensive legislation that will protect these young Americans from deportation and provide them with a legal pathway to citizenship. DREAMers, more than 124,000 in Texas who by one estimate produce $6 billion in annual economic output, are students, teachers, doctors, workers, and small business professionals, who are integral to our communities and provide tremendous benefits to our economy. They are not bargaining chips for a border wall.

***

Senate Democratic Caucus statement on shameful DACA decision

Austin – Tuesday, President Trump went back on his word and discontinued President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The Senate Democratic Caucus’ statement is as follows:

Since its inception five years ago, DACA has helped nearly 800,000 young people, many in Texas, come out of the shadows. These DREAMers are successful students and professionals who are contributing members of society. They have proven their allegiance to this country, which is the only home they know.

To take that away is not only cruel and morally repugnant, it is shortsighted and works against America’s future success.

We stand with these DREAMers and their families, and against the anti-immigrant hardliners, many of whom are driven by fear of change. 

Congress must pass comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship for those already here, and we must stop scapegoating immigrants, whether because of national origin, religion, or any other reason.

Congress can start by finally passing the DREAM Act, which has bipartisan support. The vast majority of Americans support allowing DREAMERs to stay, but the president is playing to his political base rather than ensuring the best possible future for our country.

It is up to responsible leaders in both parties to reject this divisive, politically-driven action and seek common ground. Passing the DREAM Act would be a great first step. 

***

U.S. Representative Will Hurd Statement on DACA

U.S. Representative Will Hurd released the following statement regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, known as DACA.

“There is no doubt that our immigration system is broken. Congress must provide a permanent, legislative solution for children brought here through no fault of their own.  We should create immigration policies that strengthen our economy and keep Americans safe, which is why I look forward to working with my colleagues to make a permanent, legislative solution that allows people who have only known America as their home, to stay and continue contributing to our Nation’s culture, economy and history.”

***

Former President Barack Obama via Facebook

Immigration can be a controversial topic. We all want safe, secure borders and a dynamic economy, and people of goodwill can have legitimate disagreements about how to fix our immigration system so that everybody plays by the rules.

But that’s not what the action that the White House took today is about. This is about young people who grew up in America – kids who study in our schools, young adults who are starting careers, patriots who pledge allegiance to our flag. These Dreamers are Americans in their hearts, in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper. They were brought to this country by their parents, sometimes even as infants. They may not know a country besides ours. They may not even know a language besides English. They often have no idea they’re undocumented until they apply for a job, or college, or a driver’s license.

Over the years, politicians of both parties have worked together to write legislation that would have told these young people – our young people – that if your parents brought you here as a child, if you’ve been here a certain number of years, and if you’re willing to go to college or serve in our military, then you’ll get a chance to stay and earn your citizenship. And for years while I was President, I asked Congress to send me such a bill.

That bill never came. And because it made no sense to expel talented, driven, patriotic young people from the only country they know solely because of the actions of their parents, my administration acted to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people, so that they could continue to contribute to our communities and our country. We did so based on the well-established legal principle of prosecutorial discretion, deployed by Democratic and Republican presidents alike, because our immigration enforcement agencies have limited resources, and it makes sense to focus those resources on those who come illegally to this country to do us harm. Deportations of criminals went up. Some 800,000 young people stepped forward, met rigorous requirements, and went through background checks. And America grew stronger as a result.

But today, that shadow has been cast over some of our best and brightest young people once again. To target these young people is wrong – because they have done nothing wrong. It is self-defeating – because they want to start new businesses, staff our labs, serve in our military, and otherwise contribute to the country we love. And it is cruel. What if our kid’s science teacher, or our friendly neighbor turns out to be a Dreamer? Where are we supposed to send her? To a country she doesn’t know or remember, with a language she may not even speak?

Let’s be clear: the action taken today isn’t required legally. It’s a political decision, and a moral question. Whatever concerns or complaints Americans may have about immigration in general, we shouldn’t threaten the future of this group of young people who are here through no fault of their own, who pose no threat, who are not taking away anything from the rest of us. They are that pitcher on our kid’s softball team, that first responder who helps out his community after a disaster, that cadet in ROTC who wants nothing more than to wear the uniform of the country that gave him a chance. Kicking them out won’t lower the unemployment rate, or lighten anyone’s taxes, or raise anybody’s wages.

It is precisely because this action is contrary to our spirit, and to common sense, that business leaders, faith leaders, economists, and Americans of all political stripes called on the administration not to do what it did today. And now that the White House has shifted its responsibility for these young people to Congress, it’s up to Members of Congress to protect these young people and our future. I’m heartened by those who’ve suggested that they should. And I join my voice with the majority of Americans who hope they step up and do it with a sense of moral urgency that matches the urgency these young people feel.

Ultimately, this is about basic decency. This is about whether we are a people who kick hopeful young strivers out of America, or whether we treat them the way we’d want our own kids to be treated. It’s about who we are as a people – and who we want to be.

What makes us American is not a question of what we look like, or where our names come from, or the way we pray. What makes us American is our fidelity to a set of ideals – that all of us are created equal; that all of us deserve the chance to make of our lives what we will; that all of us share an obligation to stand up, speak out, and secure our most cherished values for the next generation. That’s how America has traveled this far. That’s how, if we keep at it, we will ultimately reach that more perfect union.

***

EPISD Board of Trustees and Administration in February adopted a resolution declaring its schools as safe environments to help students learn and succeed.  Superintendent Juan Cabrera on Tuesday reaffirmed the District’s commitment to all of it students.

“It is not the responsibility or within the authority of school districts to enforce immigration law. It is our duty and obligation to educate all children who come through our doors. Today’s announcement will not detract us from our mission to protect the rights of our students to receive a quality education in a safe environment. We want to encourage students to continue coming to school. While we will always comply with the law, our priority will always be to help every child thrive and reach his or her greatest potential. Every child that is in our classrooms is part of the EPISD family and we will care for each and every child as our own.”

***

A message from UTEP President Diana Natalicio to our DACA students (from Facebook)

“I join your UTEP family in expressing support for you and the achievement of your educational aspirations. We understand and very much regret that, with every breaking news story or rumor, the visa uncertainties that surround you gain new intensity and cause enormous stress and apprehension for you and your loved ones.

“What we want to be sure you know is that UTEP stands fully behind you and your dreams of a successful future through the attainment of your UTEP degree. Please know, too, that we will do all within our power to ensure that you have the opportunity to achieve your educational goals on our campus.

“I trust that you know about the support services that are available to you at UTEP, and that you won’t hesitate to reach out to them. Dean of Students, Dr. Catie McCorry-Andalis (cmandalis@utep.edu or 747-5648), is prepared to provide you with additional information about these services and any other support that you may need.

“Your abundant talents, high aspirations and diligence have enabled you to become successful UTEP students and esteemed members of our UTEP family. We look very much forward to our opportunity to celebrate with each and every one of you when you cross the Don Haskins Center stage to receive the UTEP degree that you will earn through your hard work and determination to succeed.

“With our most heartfelt good wishes……Go Miners!”

***

Statement from President Bill Clinton (via Facebook)

DACA has brought hundreds of thousands of young people out of the shadows – allowing them to live without fear, go to school, work, and contribute to America in countless other ways. These young people’s dreams are part of the American Dream. And they make it more real for all of us. Today’s decision by the White House to terminate DACA – and that is effectively what it attempts to do – will crush their dreams and weaken the American Dream for the rest of us.

It’s wrong because it’s bad policy that solves no pressing problem and raises new ones. It’s wrong because it’s irresponsible, passing the buck instead of offering sensible solutions for immigration reform. Most of all, it’s wrong because it’s cruel to send these young people to places many of them have never lived and do not know. For them this is home. The United States is their home.

Instead of punishing them, we should find ways to openly embrace them and to empower them to make their own contributions, as previous generations of immigrants have done.

Congress should act immediately to protect their status and pave the way for their future and America’s future.

ORDT_728
Soccer/Volleyball 728
STEP 728
Nobleza728
JustLikeThat728
Bordertown Undergroun Show 728
shark 728×90
Amy’s Ambassadorship