Arizona vigilantes support harassing asylum seekers at border under benign border patrol guard

Arizona vigilantes support harassing asylum seekers at border under benign border patrol guard


Harrison questions the immigrants in the videos, “Why are you here?” she is demanding to be heard in several. She is also seen demanding passports and other papers and asking the immigrants where they are from. She also demands that they remove their face masks. One video shows a family from Chile clambering down a slope with a child in the father’s arms. She says, “Well, we’re going to support this baby for the next 20 years.”

It is clear from the videos posted on the AZ Patriots YouTube channel that the flow of migrants recorded by Harrison and her cohorts crossing this crossing is almost entirely made up of asylum seekers, mainly because they come to extremely remote places: Chile, India, Venezuela, Colombia. These are, in fact, countries undergoing the kind of violent internal turmoil that breeds asylum seekers.

A woman from Colombia tells her between sobs that her husband has been murdered, although it is unclear whether that is why she fled. But the fact that these immigrants are seeking asylum — which is, in fact, perfectly legal under international and US law — doesn’t matter to Harrison. She describes them in the video titles as “illegal aliens” and claims they are all “entering illegally.”

At the end of one, Harrison brags, “I’m back, bitches. You might think you can cancel, delete, ban, block, shadow me. I’m going nowhere. I’ll be down here, boots on the ground, bitches.”

Harrison has a long history of notoriously ugly far-right activism. AZ Patriots (aka Arizona’s Patriot Movement) won fame in 2018 for: a Facebook video posted by a leading member of the group showing her entering a Muslim mosque and deleting articles, ultimately leading to: a felony conviction for the woman. Harrison, who? was sued by several churches for harassing immigrant children by posting videos of them arriving by bus, which she herself is currently dealing with a felony identity theft charge in Maricopa Province.

Most recently, in the wake of the November 2020 presidential election — which Democrat Joe Biden surprisingly won in Arizona — Harrison was one of the leading figures to protest outside election counting centers. Harrison also led a small delegation into the building in the early moments of a protest, where video showed her demands permission to observe the count, and is refused.

AZ Patriots claims it is in Yuma County to assist the CBP, but if New times notes that it is not clear whether the Dutch DPA actually wants them there. The agents appearing in Harrison’s video only seem to give her a cursory glance. However, it is also clear that the agents have no interest in stopping her from harassing border crossings.

CBP spokesman John Mennell told: New times the agency “does not endorse or support any private group or organization that takes matters into their own hands, as doing so could have disastrous consequences for personal and public safety.”

Mennell noted that detention of migrants can be a problem: “Enforced detention may also be considered a criminal offense and offenders will be referred to local, state or federal prosecutors for possible legal action,” he said.

Previous “Patriot” groups on the border have run into serious trouble with the law for similar behavior and harassment of immigrants at the border. A group called the United Constitutional Patriots, which harassed border crossings in New Mexico in 2019, clashed with authorities by posing as border patrol officers. After the local community carried out their operation outside the city, federal authorities accused their leader, Jim Benvie, of posing as a federal agent, and was sentenced to 21 months in prison.

There is a long, deep tradition of sociopathic behavior within the Border Guard movement, dating back to its origins 20 years ago. That’s a product of his fundamentally anti-empathic politics, which revolve around the gross demonization of immigrant ‘others’. Harrison and her cohorts are upholding the tradition, and then some.





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Rachel Meadows

Rachel Meadows

Trending topics news writer who enjoys cooking, walking her dog and travel.

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