Border separation demonstration

About 40 people gathered on June 30 along White Mountain Boulevard in Pinetop near the Pinetop Post Office to protest the Trump Administration’s immigration policies that separated children from their families. The policy was rescinded by executive order on June 20.

Armed with signs and emotion, about 40 demonstrators gathered outside the Pinetop Post Office last Saturday to speak out against the separation of parents and children at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The group in Pinetop joined protestors in cities and towns across the country for “Families Belong Together” demonstrations against President Trump’s zero-tolerance immigration policies that resulted in the separation of children and parents.

Pressure from the public and political figures on the right and left led the President on June 20 to sign an executive order ending family separation for people detained for crossing the border illegally, but not until after emotional images and videos of crying children being held in cage-like structures caused an outcry among the public, and even internationally.

According to the Washington Post, 2,000 children were separated from their families during a six-week period in April and May.

For Elizabeth Webb, a Lakeside woman who says “I’m not a Democrat,” the issue hit close to her heart. She said she wanted to attend a protest, but there wasn’t one close by. So she decided to organize one herself.

Using the “Families Belong Together” page on Moveon.org, Webb put together the demonstration held June 30. She didn’t know if anyone would come.

“I thought last night there would be five or 10 (participants),” she said.

About 40 people had gathered by 9 a.m., the start of the event, and more trickled in as the morning wore on. To start off the event, volunteers registered those who attended, and handed out tagboard and markers for those who needed to make a sign. Individuals took to the microphone to speak out about their concerns with current immigration policy. They chanted and waved their signs at passing cars to elicit honks of support.

Webb sat down after the speakers finished. Visibly tired and emotional, she said her health conditions limit her, but she felt compelled to speak out on this issue. She said she wanted the event to be non-partisan.

“I don’t think you have to be a Democrat to have a heart. It’s a human rights tragedy and it’s happening in our state,” she said.

“Silence equals complicity,” she added.

Debe Campbell, who was formerly the director of the Nexus Coalition for Drug Prevention, also spoke at the demonstration. She said that she had been visiting with migrants living in temporary shelters who are waiting in Nogales, Mexico seeking asylum.

“If you talk with these people and understand what they are doing, they’re only looking for safety … these people are trying to do it legally,” she said.

Campbell said she has been working to help the people from Guatemala and Mexico who are seeking asylum. They must wait for days in shelters and camps run by non-profit groups in Mexico, waiting for their turn to interview with immigration officials.

According to the Arizona Republic, about 150 families were seeking entry at the port of Nogales between May and June 22. There is nothing for them to do but wait for U.S. Immigration officials to process them, but the local community does not have the resources to support them. Campbell urged people to donate to the Kino Border Initiative for the relief of the families.

Reach the editor at tbalcom@wmicentral.com

Editor

Trudy Balcom is editor of the White Mountain Independent.

(28) comments

Tired

I didn't realize that were that many stupid people on the mountain. How embarrassing.

piperg

I was just thinking the same thing. did they all migrate here from California?

MorTre

Just because an opinion does not agree with your opinion pinion does not make it stupid.

Well said.

Tired

In this case it does.

I hear your passion. If you would like to learn the law and policies regarding the legal right to seek asylum in the U.S. there are many resources available. But for now let's focus on reuniting children with their families.

johndoe

Every one of these bleeding hearts needs to talk to a border agent. This is not the horrible evil situation the media has made it out to be. Most of these children are not "ripped from the arms of their loving parent"...they are here with a smuggler who is going to sell them into the sex trade. The smuggler paid their "loving parents" for the child and in some cases has phony paperwork saying they are the parent. It's like the idiots in west Oakland who protested ICE agents as they were breaking up an illegal sex trafficking ring. The bleeding heart liberal sheep just assumed they were there arresting some "innocent illegals" . But as usual they have their heads so far up their back sides they were unaware of a sex ring in their own neighborhood! The sheep continue to be led to slaughter...you protest things that you know nothing about while your radical left wing nuts in office take away your rights one by one.

JUne 30th in front of the Pinetop Post Office was a great day of Republicans, Democrats and "Independents" rallying together for reunification of the "under 3000" separated children. (Per HHS Secretary Alex Azar)

I grew up in a city not far from the border. As a young adult I lived even closer with my family. I've have had many conversations with CBP. Crimes are crimes and should be dealt with as set forth in the law. But for now let us focus on the children who were separated from their families. #familiesbelongtogether

Tired

[thumbup]

tzane24

What part of entering the United States illegally are you people not grasping. As a taxpayer for over 40 years, I am sick of paying for and supporting illegals.

I hear your passion. If you would like to learn the law and policies regarding the legal right to seek asylum they are many resources available. But for now, let us focus on the "under 3000" (per HHS Secretary Alex Azar) separated children. #familiesbelongtogether

piperg

wow. just wow. so they are a little late to protest something they don't really know what they are protesting, like 10 days late? Oh well, liberals are always up for a reason to "resist" something, anything.

Republicans, Democrats and "Independents" rallied together against the immoral, unlawful and unconstitutional actions taking place against families at our border. It was a terrific day for America!

19JKS49

It is everyone's legal right to seek asylum. The US vetting process is, and has been, rigorous; most claims are denied, as they have been for years. Regardless of who you think these people are or what their motivations might be, surely no humane person can believe that innocent children deserve to be warehoused in cages, made to represent themselves in court, or mistreated in so many ways. Thank you, WMI, for your straight-forward coverage of this important event which allowed folks the chance to voice their concerns.

longtimeresident

Well said!

ArizAl

Glad to see that there are many millions of Americans of different religions;different political affiliations, different races who are intelligent,compassionate, that recognize the inhumane immorality of ripping children away from their mothers just because they asked for sanctuary of us Americans. Kudos to the news media, religious leaders of all faiths, politicans from both parties, the U.N. Human Rights Organization,other countries and especially women/ mothers , who forced Trump to back down and issue his executive order that mothers and their children seeking asylum will not be separated. Thank you WMI for covering the Pinetop protest and showing their caring, selfless, actions. Sadly, your coverage also brought out from under the rocks low information individuals who have so much hatred in their hearts and in their deranged, delusional brains.

infringed

Over 2,500,000 kids have been separated from their parents because they committed a crime and are in prison. Over 400,000 kids are in foster care in the US. About the same or more are separated in military families. These people expected to be released into our country. If you follow the laws concerning children most would fail the support test and have their kids taken by CPS. I just don't get the beef when they know they were violating our laws

Great day for humanity on the Mountain on June 30th.Republicans, Democrats and Independents rallied together. Final count 60-70 attendees plus the hundreds of vehicles that drove by and honked, waved and cheered, For those who want to help , text FAMILY to 668366. "Migrant families that lawfully entered the United States at a port of entry seeking asylum were separated." For those who want legal facts search Ms. L v. ICE - Order Granting Plaintiffs’ Motion For Classwide Preliminary . Injunction. Another good annotated source of information is Key Health Implications of Separation of Families at the Border (as of June 27, 2018) #familiesbelongtogether

CH

MorTre, If you knew the facts, A lot of the children are being sent BY THEM SELVES. So, who's separating the children? Then, when you do something illegal, do you get to take your kids to jail with you? And finally, NO ONE has explained to me how our immigration process is broken. The money that has given to the "mules" could be used toward the immigration process LEGALLY! It happens all of the time.
Yes, these protesters are stupid!!

pxllr

It is fascinating reading the same old BS from certain people here on the mountain. Tired is one of the most vocal to immediately put out a one line rant about how stupid liberals are. Tired is one of these people who says they want smaller government. But then they turn around and want their government to lock children up in cages. They want smaller government, but they want the government to control who uses what bathroom. They want smaller government, but then they want the government to control who a person loves.
Interesting dichotomy Another term is hypocrisy.

pxllr

A person comes from hundreds or thousands of miles to escape certain death in their home. They are not permitted to apply for asylum except in person at the USA border. They put in their application and then are put into processing. There is no illegal action except that committed by the US Government. These people are doing things legally! I know many of you want to not call them "people" because they are brown and do not fit your view of true Americans. That dehumanization allows you to place them in cages and send them to certain death. You people call yourselves Christian, sorry, Christ would not recognize your philosophy.

MJ

As soon as I read that the organizer used moveon.org to get the word out, I stopped reading the article and caring for that matter. Does she not know that this organization is a shell company for George Soros who is trying to destroy this country, along with Michael Moore and his ilk? She is playing right into his hands as well as the other folks who believe the trash coming from the left!! Good luck with future protests if I were her I would take care of myself and pray for better guidance.

ronzim

As is often the case, we have persistent simple-minded and unsubstantiated claims concerning immigration into the U.S. In point of fact, however, immigration is an excruciatingly complex matter which involves the U.S. fallout from ever-increasing mass migrations taking place throughout the world. One of the deepest insults to informed policies is the asserted falsehood which characterizes broad swaths of the migrant population as a monolithic criminal enterprise. There are however several distinct elements to be considered.

One of the most odious realities of human conduct is the global crime of human trafficking wherein about one million persons, mostly women and children, are forced into sexual or other forms of slavery by criminal traffickers each year--a handful involve family complicity. Of this number, data from our Customs and Border Patrol and SMU's major study, reveal that about 15,000 are trafficked into the U.S. each year.

Second, we know there is a steady flow of banned drugs into the U.S., over that same border, each year. It is a multi-billion dollar business and entails widespread violence which is entirely of our own making. The legalization of all drugs for adults would end this criminal enterprise and generate ample funds for drug treatment.

Third we come to the flow of legal entrants into the USA who subsequently overstay their visas and remain in the population at large. This flow constitutes about 40% of all undocumented persons in the U.S. This problem is best addressed by better tracking and reporting systems in order that we can know who and where they are at all times.

Next, we come to the economic migrants who enter illegally for the purpose of finding work and, often, remitting money to their poverty-stricken families back home. We can handle this problem by a system of work permits which allows such persons to move back and forth in order to fill persistent labor shortages in the mostly menial work they seek.

Fifth, we are faced with the looming human disaster of climate refugees whose number is estimated to grow to over one billion by mid-century. That problem is also of our own making and can be ameliorated only by de-carbonizing global energy consumption.

Finally, we come to the conflict refugees who are fleeing violent persecution at home and seeking asylum in the U.S. This group is comprised of legitimate refugees who present themselves to our officials as asylum petitioners. They are not associated with any of the above groups. It is this group who are being subjected to extra-judicial(illegal) punishment by the administration, in the form of brutalizing child seizures as an instrument of deterrence, even though that group is entirely legitimate and should not be deterred at all.

There is also the problem of hypocrisy and rank exaggeration in these matters. What the propagandists, fear mongers and ignorant overlook is the massive existence of home-grown enterprises in drugs, human trafficking(including child "marriages" as young as ten years) and gang violence which dwarf similar crimes arising from migrations.

Kahuna

You can really tell from these comments who has their TV tuned to Faux Noose 14 hours/day.

ArizAl

Interesting that Melania Trump immigrated from communist Slovenia on an HB1 "Einstein" visa for modeling. Now that she is a citizen, her parents are being brought into the country by the process of "chain migration." Everything they did was legal however they were not detained in cages nor were the now Trump family separated as are the poor people who are legally going through the process seeking asylum in our southern border. That smells of a big hypocrisy. Moreover, the national news outlets report that Trump's Mar a Lago resort is applying to bring in 60-70 foreign workers on HB2 visas to work in the resort. What's wrong with American workers? Hypocrisy again.

Tired

How does someone coming here LEGALLY have anything to do with illegals trying to just walk right in? You are brain dead.

ArizAl

Just plain amazing how republicans extremist racists can be so easily confused with facts. There is a U.S. LEGAL process by which asylum seeking individuals can go through. It makes no difference whether they cross the fence or through a port of entry. Of course,since republican extremists brains are mercifully free of the ravages of intelligence, they are unable to extrapolate that there is a difference that exists between the treatment of an asylum seeking immigrant and an immigrant seeking to be employed by american businesses. Sheeech, how stupid can they get?

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