What Richard Told Me about border guards: Investigating its Truth

Back in 2007-2009, Richard told me many hair-raising stories about his time in the southern Border Patrol.  He was there while Clinton was president.  Here’s what he told me:

  1. Clinton told them to shoot the illegal immigrants on sight, through a secret Executive Order that drove many border guards to emotional distress, drinking, etc.
  2. Many border guards were corrupt, taking their own piece of the drug smuggling and human trafficking going on there.
  3. He shot somebody.  I won’t go into more detail.  But the guilt drove him to leave the job.
  4. He left before Bush came into office.  Other border guards told him that Bush saw the EO, was horrified, and rescinded it.

For many years–including when we were still friends–I have searched the web for answers, trying to find out if the “shoot on sight” EO was for real.  I have never found anything–though I have dug up lots of confirmation of corrupt border guards.  I’ve found plenty of people saying that Bush should implement “shoot on sight” (I think one was Richard’s own wife).  I’ve found plenty of confirmation that Clinton’s border policies were just as harmful as Trump’s, causing deaths by forcing people to take dangerous routes, militarizing the border.  I’ve found confirmation that some guards have indeed killed people–but zero confirmation that such an EO ever existed to cover their actions.

Of course, Richard told me confirmation didn’t exist because the government wouldn’t allow anybody to talk about it.  If he posted about it online, he said, he would get a Visit….

But if anybody would talk about such an order, it would be the human rights groups who report on deaths caused by border guards and whether or not they lead to justice.  I found reports of such deaths caused during the Clinton era, but Richard was nowhere listed.  If he really had killed somebody, wouldn’t they have mentioned him on one of their lists?  They don’t care if governments don’t like what they say, and don’t give Clinton a pass for being a Democrat–wouldn’t they have mentioned the EO as one of Clinton’s harmful policies?

Recently, I posted about it on Facebook, wondering if anybody knew anything about this.  One friend said Richard is so full of sh** that his eyes are brown (making me wonder if this person knew him).  Another friend said that she knew somebody who’s been a guard for years, and that such an EO never existed.  But this person was not a guard during Clinton’s era, so I didn’t know what to think, especially as confirmation of border guard abuses back to the 1920s keeps coming out.

Well, finally I found somebody who WAS a guard on the southern border during the same time Richard was (she was in from 1995-2001), and here is what she, Jenn Budd, writes about it:

It’s been some time since you left the force, what are some of the things that have changed? What are some of the things that have remained the same since you left?

When I became an agent, there were just under 5,000 agents and 1.3 million apprehensions. Today there are about 20,000 agents for just over 300,000 apprehensions. Judging by those statistics, I honestly don’t know what today’s agents do all day. When I was an agent, I played soccer with the kids in the flat fields of Tecate. Today they shoot them for getting too close to the fence. The Patrol is far more militarized and has greater extraordinary powers than in my day, yet there is little accountability.

After 9/11, agents told me they had the authority to do whatever in the name of “national security.” For example: before 9/11, we had a no pursuit policy if it endangered lives; no high speed chases that could result in the loss of life. After 9/11, agents stated they could justify it because it was a national security issue. This is the same excuse given when they pull over vehicles without cause, when they shoot children playing too close to the fence, to justify caging infants. The Patrol has also become aligned with anti-immigrant hate groups and promotes their websites to their agents through the union. This did not exist when I was an agent.

Some things have not changed though. The agency still refuses to admit they have a serious issue with sexual harassment and assault perpetrated by its male agents on its female agents.  That helps explain why there are so few female agents. Agents are routinely found to be taking bribes and engaged in corruption, smuggling drugs, and people. They are also often charged with murder. Yet the Border Patrol prefers to defend their agents even when there is clear video evidence they have committed crimes. The agency is more concerned with bad press than it is about enforcing laws and holding their agents accountable.

So yes, the corruption stories were true.  Yes, guards sometimes commit murder, then as now.  But this contradicts Richard’s claim about Clinton’s EO.  This would suggest that if anybody made such an order, it would’ve been Bush, not Clinton.

And that makes me wonder why the heck Richard would make such a claim.  Why would he say he murdered somebody if I can find no proof that he ever did?  Wouldn’t he have gone to jail for this?  Even if the EO had kept him out of jail, wouldn’t the human rights groups have mentioned him someplace in their long lists of guards accused of murder?  Why would guards even be accused of murder in the Clinton era, if they were acting under orders?  Jenn Budd now blogs about border issues and has an open letter telling border guards to either quit or fight back against human rights abuses; wouldn’t she say if such an EO ever existed when she was a guard?

The only reason I can think of for Richard’s claim of murdering somebody, is political, to suit his usual narrative that Democratic presidents are evil and only conservative presidents can be trusted to do the right thing.  Or maybe it was from some narcissistic desire to paint an image of himself as bigger and badder than he really was, in order to impress people.

A mutual friend has confirmed some of the other stories Richard told which are just as hard to believe, such as the Mafia gem smuggling–but this particular story keeps falling apart no matter how many times I try to confirm it.

 

 

We made it onto Colbert!

My city’s public high school made it onto the local news last week.  I hoped it would go viral (and did my best to help it along on social media).  My hopes were finally fulfilled when Stephen Colbert did this segment last night:

Don’t worry: Kai the snake is (according to social media and the principal) very friendly and perfectly harmless.  He’s also been found and returned to his home, where he’s going to stay.

(By the way, that is NOT how to pronounce Fond du Lac.)

This is how the school year began for Fond du Lac high school students: with the principal sending out hilarious e-mails/phone messages about a missing snake.  He didn’t mean them to be funny, but we couldn’t help giggling and sharing them on social media.

For more information:

Missing: Ball python flees Fond du Lac classroom

Fond du Lac High School Snake: Reptile found Friday

My favorite tweet:

 

 

 

Trolls, stalkers and threats: ten years of my blogging experiences

I’ve had this blog since January 2009, and it has seen a lot in that time.  I’ve also had a website since around 2005.  So for the tenth anniversary of the blog and fourteenth of the website (merged in 2014), let’s do a little summary of what has happened:

For 3 years, I mostly wrote book reviews; not much happened.  Around 2012, it started to get a bit of traffic because I started writing about narcissism, which was just getting popular as a blog subject.

  1. In May 2012, two of my abusers came to my blog after not looking at it for a couple of years.  They discovered I’d been writing about their abuses, accused me of lying, threatened me with a lawsuit–and also threatened to stalk me at church.  I knew I was telling the truth, and zero lies.  So I stood my ground, kept the blog up, and continued telling friends/family/church friends/priest what was happening, as I had been doing for two years already.  It has now been 7 years, and no lawsuit.  The statute of limitations has also long since run out.  These two abusers still read my blog, but none of their many threats ever came to pass.  I count this as a victory.  I’m not sure why they check my blog anymore, because these days they often spend maybe a minute on it, and that’s not enough time to read anything.
  2. In August 2016, after I had supported a particular blogger for four years–comments, sympathy, reading her novel, reblogging her–she threatened me with a lawsuit for *quoting* her with full attribution (well within my rights under copyright law regarding Fair Use).  I took the quotes down, but after this, I wanted nothing to do with her anyway, or with promoting her blog.  But the fear and trepidation over this had to succumb to real-life trouble because a couple of days later, I got the call that my dad was dying in a few days.  That was a very difficult month–but I got through it, and I warn others about this blogger.  She is very popular online, and has had many other victims as well.  Or rather, she was–I’m very relieved to see that her blog is now offline and apparently has been for a while now.  Maybe people can still find good things in her book to help them understand narcissists, but she encouraged people to stay “stuck” in the anger stage–even yelled at people who said we should try to heal eventually–and blamed people for being victims of narcissists if they didn’t fit a certain category.  This is all very harmful, so I’m glad to see her no longer running a blog where she victimizes people who come to her for help.  Meanwhile, my own blog and website are still up, and I encourage you to try to heal and move on after your anger has run its course.  You’ll be much happier than if you endlessly try to find ways to “get even.”
  3. In early 2017 and again in early 2018, this blog was inundated with hits from malicious and obsessive trolls who had been stalking another blogger for a couple of years.  He’d attracted a whole mob of them, who now started checking me out for talking to him.  I had only just gotten a Twitter account, which they used to find my blog, where they began leaving snarky comments and combing through my archives looking for who knew what.  I used the blog for therapy and wrote all sorts of things about my past, so I feared what these people planned to do with it.  Even when the mob abated, I was told they still stalked my blog and Twitter and talked about me in their little circle.  I occasionally saw evidence of that, myself.  But for many months now, they still stalk the blog and Twitter account of their original target but seem to be leaving me alone.

 

Meanwhile, I have learned a lot about blogging and running a website.  I have learned things that have helped in healing from the past.  I’ve been working on a new novel for nearly four years now, a new passion, along with defeating Trump and what has become of the GOP in the last several decades.  I have learned a lot about and/or changed my mind about a lot of things, from politics to religion to abuse to history…. This has all happened over the fourteen years of this blog/website, and you can find it all in the archives.

I have also been very active on Twitter, here.  I don’t write as much on the blog as I used to because Twitter is a good way to share retweets and keep my followers up-to-date without having to go through the trouble of writing a blog post for everything that’s on my mind.  I encourage you to follow it (unless you’re a troll).

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: