On Wednesday, April 5th, Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina — a life-long IB resident and avid surfer — went on KUSI News to expose another sewage spill from Mexico into the Tijuana River after a resident complained of a renewed fetid smell.
Only days before, the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC) published “Report of Transboundary Bypass Flows into the Tijuana River,” a subdued 56-page explanation of events with no immediate relief for residents on either side of the border.
The Mexican Repatriation and hard times
Editor Note: “Build a wall” and “Send them all back” have become the mantra of the Trump campaign and Republican party. This is not the first time in our history that racism and xenophobia have threatened our democracy and the lives of our citizenry.
Between 1929 and 1944, over two million people of Mexican descent were repatriated to Mexico. Sixty percent of these individuals, 1.1 million, were American citizens. This encore presentation of Maria Garcia’s article originally published in 2015 provides insight into how this policy affected the lives of people living in San Diego at the time.
As William Faulkner observed “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”
Cost, impossible logistics, political opposition, and community resistance could spell the end of the president-elect’s anti-immigrant scheme
By Lauren McCauley / Common Dreams
President-elect Donald Trump built his campaign on a pledge to build a wall and deport two to three million undocumented immigrants, but the likelihood that his promises will be kept are looking increasingly slim, as reality takes hold and lawmakers and community leaders begin to build their resistance.
The failure to execute Trump’s oft-repeated deportation plans could “be one of the first reality checks on his administration,” Politico reported Friday.
According to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the average cost for each deportation is $12,213, excluding personnel salaries. So, to deport two million people, would add up to more than $24.4 billion over four years.
By Robert Terrell
Two of the largest mural collections in the world are on the remnants of the Berlin Wall and the architecture that encompasses San Diego’s Chicano Park.
One adorns a wall that for decades stood for the division of Europe and Cold War animosity, and has since come to symbolize the enduring spirit of freedom and peaceful revolution. The other is a memorial to another history of power, exploitation, and marginalization. It is a space that remains contested in the city of San Diego just as our president-elect promises to build a new wall to keep Mexicans out.
Twenty-seven years to the day after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Donald Trump began his transition to power, his long effort to deliver on many divisive promises. Border wall included.
By Stefan Falke
I have chosen an appropriate location for my newest photography exhibition titled LA FRONTERA: Artists along the US Mexican Border the San Ysidro Port of Entry.
I display eighteen large-scale images from my ongoing project. You can find the photographs along the left hand fence that leads to border control on the Mexican side in Tijuana.
In this photography project, I focus on artists who live and work along the U.S.-Mexico border, documenting their individual stories and their arts’ positive influence on their communities. To date I have photographed over 200 artists on both sides and along the entire length of the border, from Tijuana to Matamoros, from Brownsville to San Diego.
The government has been using the border as a dragnet to pressure people into becoming informants
By Hugh Handeyside, Staff Attorney / ACLU National Security Project
Recently leaked documents published by The Intercept show that the FBI and Customs and Border Protection have been using CBP’s authority to search travelers at the border — along with the troves of information collected as a result — to troll for potential sources and pressure people into becoming informants. We’ve gone through the documents, and they heighten our concerns that these agencies are exceeding their authority, targeting minority communities and vulnerable people, and trying to evade accountability for doing so.
These documents also highlight a broader problem with the government’s official guidance on the use of race by federal law enforcement agencies. That guidance purports to ban racial profiling, but it includes exemptions for border screening and national security — exemptions that the leaked documents demonstrate are dangerous and unwise.
Molière is smiling. The multi-talented actor and playwright, Herbert Siguenza, has breathed new life into his play, The Imaginary Invalid. Manifest Destinitis is set two centuries later in 19th century “old or Alta California”. This high energy play is also brimming with clever and scathing 21st century social commentary on the upcoming election, Trump and his ‘wall’, and the present day health care system.
Siguenza is becoming a San Diego treasure in the theater world with his plays, Steal Heaven, An Evening with Pablo Picasso, El Henry (a favorite of mine), and now Manifest Destinitis.
Hector now lives in Tijuana while he awaits citizenship papers. In the meantime, he fills his time as director and founder of the Deported Veterans Support House, a shelter located in Otay, Mexico. He created the shelter in 2012 and currently six people live there, including one female who is not a veteran, but is staying at what he called ‘the bunker.’
“We try to do what we can. We try to help each other out. We live by the motto leave no man behind,” Hector says. “We have veterans deported from 24 different countries, from the Vietnam War to Iraq and Afghanistan. They served honorably, but after their service they got into some kind of trouble with the law. It could be a $300 check to something like a discharge of a firearm, like myself. I did three years in prison. I had my legal residence. I was not undocumented.”
One of the issues Hector is working on is to allow deported veterans to still get their medical benefits. Just because they are deported, doesn’t mean they lose their health care. However, since they can’t come across into the United States, they can’t be physically present for their appointments. Hector is working to get the VA to outsource those programs. That way, all these men who fought in Iraq and Vietnam and have PTSD can, at the very least, receive treatment.
After two years and more than five thousand proposed laws, resolutions, and constitutional amendments, the current version of the California Legislature wrapped up its session in frenzied fashion. Wednesday, August 31st saw more than one hundred bills up for consideration. Now it’s up to the Governor to say yea or nay on legislation affecting all aspects of life in California.
Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-80), who successfully shepherded 19 of 20 bills through the legislature this year, is leaving nothing up to chance with her hard-fought victory on AB 1066, gradually phasing in standards for farmerworker overtime.
She’s started a petition drive for voters to let the Governor know they want this bill signed.
By Beryl Flom
The League of Women Voters of San Diego recently took a tour with Customs and Border Patrol. The August 2 tour was arranged by the League’s Immigration and Deportation Committee as an opportunity to educate members about various border and immigration issues.
Those issues include the wait time crossing the border, regulations by the U.S. which can slow down a smooth transition between the two countries and the court backlog for people without documentation seeking asylum. Another issue that concerns us is the deportation of non-citizen veterans who have served our country and then commit some minor legal infraction and are deported without consideration of their readjustment back to civilian life.
Serge Dedina says, “…before any U.S. government agency or any U.S. water agency gets a permit to suck desal water from the most polluted coast in North America and sell it back to U.S. consumers, they need to prioritize cleaning up this coastline.”
In Mexico, when sewage is collected, much of it is sent to a place called San Antonio de Las Buenos or Punto Banderas just 6 miles South of the Border.
WildCoast and Surfrider estimate that the sewage being discharged in the ocean each day “could be anywhere from 30 to 50 million gallons a day depending. No one’s really counting. We think it’s grown exponentially because of the increase in development that’s, in theory it’s a primary plant, but they don’t actually treat the sewage, they just put it through some ponds and then dump it in the ocean right on the beach,” Dedina says.