By Rick Oltman, March 28, 2019
The headline reads: “Legless man rescued by U.S. Border Patrol (BP) agents.” BP agents rescued a 37-year-old double amputee from Guatemala sitting in a wheelchair on an island in the middle of the Rio Grande River last week. He said that he got there on his own, but that’s not believable.
This story reminded me of a trip I made to the border in 1993, 26-years ago, when a few dozen concerned citizens, along with a California state legislator and a staff member from the local congressman’s office, visited the U.S.-Mexico border crossing at San Ysidro, south of San Diego.
I was the host of a local weekly television talk show in northern California at the time, and illegal immigration was a frequent subject. I was accompanied with a camera crew who had two huge three-quarter inch video cameras as big as two suitcases.
At one point, I was talking to two border patrol agents who were describing their experiences. Both had a bunch of plastic zip ties in their belts that I asked about. They explained that when the illegals cut through the chain link fence, the only way they had to repair the cuts in the fence were to use plastic zip ties.
We were shooting “B-roll” footage while panning part of the fence where an old WWII landing mat stood on its edge to use on the show while the guests and I were discussing the border. There were hundreds of people behind the fence and many were at the top of the fence. I asked the agents what they were doing there. One responded that they were just waiting for him and his partner to be called to another part of the border and when they left, this group would surge in.
Several days later, I was back at the station in the edit bay looking over the extensive footage to decide what to use for the next show. To my shock, I saw a man with crutches at the top of the fence. I hadn’t seen him when I was filming. It was then that I developed the theory of “an encouraging message or a discouraging message.”
How confident was this fellow on crutches to make it in the next “Banzai Charge” (as they were called)? He was very confident, obviously.
But the legless man in the river trumps my story of the man on crutches, and brings us back to the number-one deterrent for illegal immigration, the discouraging message.
For years through successive presidential administrations, we hardly heard a discouraging message, even after the 9/11 terror attack.
There have been voluminous encouraging messages, especially over the last 10 years, which are amplified and instantaneous with modern social media and cell phones: from government representatives talking about “our need for foreign guest workers,” to a push for amnesty for illegal aliens, to abolishing U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Very possibly this legless man was placed on the island in the middle of the river by coyotes as a diversion. The agents would be busy dealing with him, and during that time, hundreds of illegals would cross the river upstream or downstream … probably both.
While I admire the grit and determination of these disabled people making the long journey, I do not want them here illegally.
It is now time to repeatedly send loud, clear messages discouraging illegal immigration. This can be done verbally and in writing. Increased BP manpower on the border would be even better.
Oh yeah, and … the wall.
You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life. [Winston Churchill.]
Please visit our Facebook page, leave a comment and share with friends and family.