The Return

Immigration issues seem a lot more in flux on the Arizona border than they do from here. After spending five days in the campsite of No More Deaths, about ten miles north of the border, I can report a constant shifting of forces -- changing migration patterns due to and causing changes in Border Patrol activity and humanitarian aid work.

Once out there, experiencing a watered-down version of the border-crossing experience, politics takes on a feel both more urgent and more removed. Adding Border Patrol means forcing people out into more remote areas of the desert where blisters can kill, and people end up so desperate for water that they drink from cattle tanks where they contract things like amoebic dysentery. (Cattle tanks are small man-made puddles used by ranchers' cattle for drinking and, of course, defecating.) Prosecuting people for "harboring" or "transporting" undocumented migrants means arresting two 23-year-olds for attempting to drive two dying men and a 14-year-old boy to the hospital.

More details to come. Also, check this out; it's something worth tracking.


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