The MJM is promoting an effort by members of Mexicans Without Borders to cross into the United States without inspection by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, which would be a federal felony under 8 U.S.C § 1325 if the person doing so is not a U.S. citizen or someone in possession of a valid visa or other authorization to be in the United States. This is all supposed to somehow be a demonstration of the effects of NAFTA, rather than the much clearer demonstration of the federal government’s utter failure to secure our borders. Should there be a valid basis to charge these individuals with a violation of the law, I’d hope these people are prosecuted to the maximum extent that the law allows.
The group’s decision to make the crossing just west of Nogales, Mexico, along immigrant trails, in an unpopulated area of the desert was influenced by the Prince William County illegal immigration resolution, said Leavell, who grew up on a farm outside of Charlottesville.
These kinds of bizarre shenanigans demonstrate just how much Mexicans Without Borders is out of touch with reality. Complaining about NAFTA is part-and-parcel of the struggle by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation’s “Other Campaign” against “neo-liberalism”, although you’d never find that connection between the “Other Campaign” in the mainstream media that seems so enamored of this radical group. This protest against the existence of borders, well-sprinkled with rhetoric of the “Other Campaign” of the EZLN should be a slow pitch right down the middle for the mainstream media to learn about not only the rhetoric of Mexicans Without Borders, but the radical Communist/Anarchist philosophy that underpins it. Here’s Mexicans Without Borders are willing to talk about what they believe in, and instead we get more drive-by reporting, including this quote regarding the Rule of Law Resolution:
“We don’t want hate politics and racist legislation to get passed in other parts of the state,” [Virginia Leavell] said.
You’d think that when a group is talking about willfully violating immigration laws by crossing the border without inspection while spouting the rhetoric of an armed foreign revolutionary group, it might merit just a little digging by journalists to establish whether any quotes such as this should be taken at face value, or dismissed as the nonsensical rantings that they actually are. Readers are sure to have a difficult time understanding why these folks are doing this if they don’t understand the motivations and history of our local Zapatista group, which was originally named “Zapatista Committee of the Ski Mask” not coincidentally. If they’re looking for understanding, the MJM is clearly not the place they’re going to find it.
Still, this will most likely backfire on Mexicans Without Borders, just as their billboard on Prince William Street in Manassas has become a huge political liability rather than the effective protest they hoped it would be. The more these folks try their crazy stunts, the more the public comes to despise them.
UPDATE: The umbrella organization “People United” has some information on this event that’s just fascinating:
The meeting started in the fellowship room of the church with representatives from organized immigrant communities in Charlottesville, Harrisonburg, Richmond, and Northern Virginia, and allies from the Virginia Anarchist Federation, The [Richmond Defender], and the Occoneechee-Saponi Village in Mecklenburg County. Inspired by our trip to the Highlander Center’s training for Social Justice Interpreting, Aaron Samsel and Rachel Mehl built a radio transmitter and brought headsets for simultaneous interpretation, which brought our gathering to a new level. The conversations were entirely accessible, and we were able to share organizing successes and challenges from across the state with ease across languages.
These folks are just nuts.
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