Cruelty is NOT an American value.
Here is a warning before you read this; if you are a fan of today’s MAGA dominated GOP, especially in my home state of Texas,’ you will not want to read the following. It will be a full-throated, well-deserved lambasting of the un-American, anti-patriotic and brutal policies of the Texas GOP. This has nothing to do with my political opinions. It is exclusively, a detailed and honest refutation of the useless cruelty, of Greg Abbott’s political stunts at the Texas border with Mexico. The sole basis for my opinions that most people call, “political,” is whether they adhere to actual American values, not the fake patriotism of the TX and national GOP, currently dominated by MAGA, violent extremists.
Here is the latest.
Greg Abbott’s failed political stunt called, Operation Lonestar recently added another brutal tactic along the US/ Mexican border in Texas. They have placed a few hundred meters of floating buoys in the Rio Grande and more concertina wire along the US side of the border, some invisible beneath the water’s surface. Yes, you read this correctly, a few hundred meters of floating buoys along the TX/ Mexico border that is 1254 miles and includes 28 international bridges. It would be laughable if it were not so damn inhumane.
Today’s immigrants, just like our forefathers, arrive here seeking the ability to freely worship, to express themselves without fear of government retribution, and to chart their own economic destiny.
-George W. Bush Institute
Abbott and henchmen’s disgrace, comes against the backdrop of significant success by the administration’s DHS strategy to reduce illegal immigration. With all the utterly dishonest whining by Texas Republicans in congress and our state legislature about the border, the post Title 42 strategy by DHS and deployment of an asylum app to schedule asylum appointments, border crossings are down 30%. Still, the dishonesty is rampant. The current disgrace is so bad that even my congressman in TX 23, Tony Gonzales, who began as a Trump sycophant, and a previously incessant liar about the border, condemned the cruelty.
Reality Check: Seven Times Texas Leaders Misled the Public About Operation Lone Star
As they investigated Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s border initiative, reporters repeatedly found situations where Abbott and DPS officials cited accomplishments that lacked crucial context or did not match reality. Here are a few examples.
The past couple of months, Tony has faced extraordinary pushback, in our grotesquely gerrymandered district and to his credit, now occasionally rebukes his party’s cruelty and dishonesty. Still given to partisan talking points, Tony tried unsuccessfully to blame the administration but, Gonzalez was no match for Margaret Brennan’s tough questions on yesterday’s Face the Nation. He was forced to admit that the administration’s policies are having serious success.
“Ahead of the buoy installation in Eagle Pass, the number of migrant encounters with U.S. Customs and Border Protection along the Southwest border was trending down. More than 144,000 were either stopped or made it to scheduled appointments at Ports of Entry. That’s a decrease of about 30% from the month before. It Is also the lowest since President Biden’s first full month in office in February 2021.”
If you believe anything coming out of the State of Texas, especially the Governor’s office, the TX Legislature or the DPS (Tx Department of Public Safety) State law enforcement, I have the proverbial “beachfront property to to sell you,” here in drought stricken, central Texas. The list of villains in the capital include but are not limited to Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (Danny Goeb of Maryland) Speaker of the House, Dade Phelan and let us not forget the Texas Supreme Court, that rubberstamps, some the most disgraceful laws in the United States. Those above, including both Senators Cruz and Cornyn, my Congressman Tony Gonzalez and pretty much every single GOP elected rep in TX, consistently lies about the border. During Op Lonestar, even the DPS and some of the local Sheriffs have been just as dishonest, if not more so.
Even for the group of cruel bullies above, the cruelty, waste of money and utter destruction of the reputation of Texas is a new low. The injuries, deaths, and illegality of this pathetic attempt to become Trumpier than Trump, is now part of the legacy for our once proud state. Now, everywhere I go in the country, I hear disgust from Americans on both sides of the aisle. Abbott and DeSantis are competing not to be the most conservative, but the most extreme. There is nothing conservative about the actions of a party controlled by MAGA. The current GOP is in a whirlpool of their own making, sinking ever deeper into the abyss.
I will summarize a bit differently today with a few specific points, accompanied by embedded links, but also a few words after the points below.
2. If you are not a verifiable descendant of two native Americans, you are either an immigrant or descended from immigrants.
6. As my congressman lied yesterday on Face the Nation, immigrants crossing our southern border are not 90% seeking economic opportunity, there are a variety of verified reasons, often to do with threats of violence or death in their home nations.
7. Any party that insists on cruelty is not a political party, they are violent extremists. That is it, that’s the bottom line.
8. The overwhelming majority of immigrants typically are better citizens and more law-abiding citizens than the rest of us. They are grateful for their security, freedom, and opportunity. Believing otherwise would indicate a break from reality, knowledge, and facts. You will not hear, read or see the facts below from the MAGA crowd. Here are some excellent charts from the prestigious Pew Research folks:
Now, those few words that I promised at the beginning of the summary. If you wish to be a patriot and honorable citizen, cruelty, breaking the law and outrageous, dishonest narratives deprive you of your patriot card. If you vote for those who behave as the Texas GOP does now, you are also risking your worthiness, of the title patriot. Truth matters, whether you are a Democrat, Republican or otherwise. If you cannot support your opinions with truthful facts from credible sources and presented in context with all known, credible facts, you had better rethink your opinions, if you still wish to be the patriotic American you claim to be.
Abbott’s follies have even been a disaster for the Texas National Guard, incompetently mobilized as a political stunt. The Military Times even did a series of articles detailing the cruelty, incompetence and ineffectiveness of Op Lonestar, more accurately called the Operation Lonestar Follies.
Democracy is a team sport and can only survive when individual citizens understand and are grateful for and support the morality our founders built into our constitution. Over the centuries we have often failed at some of the most moral of our declared values, but we have never stopped chasing their vision. Both the Civil War and the Trump/ MAGA era have been the biggest threats to sustaining our republic. If we wish to avoid the catastrophic suffering of the Civil War, we need responsible citizens to begin acting on our stated values, not party ideology.
Anyone that sees Abbott and henchmen’s threat accurately and wishes to be a good citizen, must have the courage that Americans had from 1861 though 1865. Democracy and freedom are not sustainable without moral courage. The only question that matters in today’s Texas is, “Do you have moral courage or not?