Words by Kokayi Nosakhere
Grassroots organizations serve American citizens by providing practical ways to remain engaged in the political process. Most the time, grassroots organizations are working against the hustle and bustle of regular life to gain the neighborhood’s attention. When the mainstream media broadcasts clear moral problems, it helps grassroots organizations gain the attention of the average American. The media is able to communicate sufficient facts about an issue or event to inspire the citizen to act.
Unite Oregon is serving the Rogue Valley. The current Action Alert reads, “On Tuesday, November 27, 2018 the Presidential administration fired tear gas on over 2,000 asylum seekers near the U.S.-Mexico border, after reports of confusion and protests among those seeking protection.”
Yes, the resulting outrage was felt and communicated throughout social media. The focus by the media on the event was such, many on the Left thought it would soften the conservative heart and inspire a joint-venture collaboration to address this human rights crisis.
On this blog and in columns published in Anchorage, Alaska, I have consistently argued shock imagery is not the way to change the mass American consciousness. My position doesn’t mean I agree with what happened on the border. It means, I don’t agree with the internalization and reaction to the event.
“Let’s be crystal clear,” the alert continues, “Firing tear gas on children and families who are here seeking asylum is both legally and morally WRONG.
Rather than firing on asylum seekers, we should be allowing people to make their legally protected claims for protection. If they win, they get to stay in the U.S. If they do not win their claim, they cannot pass. It’s that simple, and it doesn’t require thousands of active-duty military troops, tear gas, or rubber bullets.”
Please note, just because the mainstream media is not splashing images of the Southern border on the screen doesn’t mean the action has ceased.
October saw the highest number of crossings to date. 50,000 persons were processed at the Southern border.
Last weekend, the Rio Grande Valley, where the troops are stationed, processed 680 persons per day. The very thing that Unite Oregon is asking for is not just possible, it is already happening. This is why the drama at the border comes across as contrived.
“The current U.S. administration is doing everything in its power to try and stop a few thousand children and families fleeing unspeakable violence from seeking asylum in the U.S. . . .On the one hand, President Trump repeatedly has said that those seeking asylum must present themselves at a port of entry to seek protection—in direct violation of U.S. immigration law, which states clearly that a person can request asylum no matter how they enter the U.S.
But even for those who do come to a port of entry, the current administration has created artificial barriers, closing down ports of entry, and—even when they are open—only letting a trickle of migrants enter to seek asylum each day. This has led to weeks of waiting as people are trapped in places like Tijuana and Mexicali.
On top of that, Wednesday morning (November 28) the President threatened to shut the southern border down entirely. Given that Mexico is the U.S.’s third largest trading partner, such an unprecedented—and almost certainly illegal—action would only harm the U.S., while wreaking havoc on residents of border communities.
One thing is clear: as Congress debates next week the appropriations package that will fund the government, it must NOT provide additional funding for the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or U.S. Customs and Border Protection to take these illegal actions, or for the building of an unnecessary and wasteful border wall. It should, however, use all of its oversight powers to investigate these border abuses and instead fund for case-workers to process these asylum claims.
Please sign this statement – follow the hyperlink.”
What does signing the petition do? It is a low-risk communication with Congress to fund the border crisis in a manner which resolves the crisis, not inflame it further. A decision on what to fund is scheduled for December 11, 2018.