Political events of these past days have been relentless, vile, ominous, and most disturbing of all, typical. Every day of the last 18 months is more despicable than the previous. The gravity of what Trump is doing with his ill-begotten position does not phase the masses, because we have been groomed to accept these events as normal.
Donald Trump has requested more funds for his “border crisis.” Taxpayers are already paying $750 daily for each person detained. Last week we learned children in the facilities were not provided soap, toothbrushes or toothpaste. Where is that money going?
Countless politicians have tried to gain access to these centers to see the conditions for themselves, only to be denied access. Why have these facilities been allowed to refuse inspections? Monday, members of Congress were finally granted a tour of the facilities, with the stipulation that no cameras were allowed inside.
The latest Customs and Border Patrol news has nothing to do with the misappropriation of funds. Prior to the scheduled visit, ProPublica reported the existence of a secret Facebook group for CBP Agents. The group was established three years ago and is comprised of approximately 9,500 members, almost half of the 20,000 CBP officers. Three years passed without a leak of the vile nature of the group from even one of the 9,500 members. Now a sampling of the group’s posts, in which they mock the dead has been published.
The announcement of the upcoming visit by members of Congress inspired some members of the Facebook group to post sexually explicit memes and doctored photos of Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has called the facilities “concentration camps,” which by definition, they are.
The focus of attack by the CBP group was Hispanic female representatives.
Protesters met representatives, entering the facilities. Some wore Trump’s MAGA hats; some held megaphones, all shouted derogatory comments directed primarily at Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
In advance of the tours, the internment camps were cleaned, and some migrants held were allowed to shower.
Detainees told representatives that when they asked for water, officers told them to drink out of toilets.
Brian Hastings, Chief of Operations at U.S. Border Patrol, responded to questions on CNN, regarding the secret Facebook group. ”So, we take all of the posts that were put out today very seriously. These do not represent the thoughts of the men and women of the U.S. Border Patrol. Each one of these allegations will be thoroughly investigated. We have already turned this into the office of the Inspector General, and our own internal office of CBP internal affairs, to begin the investigation.”
Again, almost HALF of the CBP agents voluntarily belong to this Facebook forum, and for three years, no one reported the nature of the posts. Nine thousand five hundred members are, without a doubt, a fair representation of what the US border patrol stands for. These are not the actions of a few.
Even without the existence of the Facebook group, the culture of the CBP is evident in their treatment of these human beings. Racism, cruelty, and violence should have no place in any government agency.
“Now I’ve seen the inside of these facilities. It’s not just the kids. It’s everyone. People drinking out of toilets, officers laughing in front of members of Congress. I brought it up to their superiors. They said, ‘officers are under stress and act out sometimes.’ No accountability.” ~Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
“Under stress” is not a free pass to abusive behavior. Imagine how these officers, who treat members of Congress with sexual taunts and threats, in front of witnesses, treat migrants when no one is watching. Was retaliation taken against those detainees who spoke to representatives?
Senior Democrats on Monday called for the immediate firing of Customs and Border Patrol agents involved. Is that enough to motivate change?