mcloudy.png
Friday December 6th, 2019 1:48PM

Border Patrol head condemns agents' offensive Facebook posts

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

CLINT, Texas (AP) — The head of the U.S. Border Patrol on Monday slammed as "completely inappropriate" sexually explicit posts about U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and comments questioning the authenticity of a photo of a drowned man and his young daughter in a secret Facebook group for agents.

The existence of the group was reported by ProPublica as roughly a dozen members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, including Democrats Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Veronica Escobar of Texas, toured border facilities where attorneys said they had found migrant children living in fetid, filthy conditions.

Some of the posts were graphic, doctored images of Ocasio-Cortez, including one that shows a smiling President Donald Trump forcing her head toward his crotch. Other comments refer to Ocasio-Cortez and Escobar as "hoes," and one member encouraged agents to throw a "burrito at these bitches."

Ocasio-Cortez said she wasn't surprised by the posts, especially after the treatment of migrants she said she witnessed at the facility.

"It's just indicative of the violent culture that we saw," she said.

The revelation about the Facebook posts only added to the vitriolic atmosphere surrounding immigration and the treatment of tens of thousands of migrants who have crossed the border, vastly straining the system that has been struggling to keep up amid Trump's hardline rhetoric.

The Democrats delivered an emotional denunciation of what they saw inside the border facilities as protesters shouted that they didn't believe them.

"When we went into the cell, it was clear that the water was not running ... in fact, one of the women said that she was told by an agent to drink from the toilet," said Rep. Joaquin Castro, a Democrat from Texas and twin brother of presidential candidate Julian Castro.

The Texas visit came the same day as Trump signed a $4.6 billion emergency aid package that Congress passed on Friday. The Democratic-led House had pushed for more restrictions on how the money could be used and stricter oversight, but ultimately lost the battle.

Trump said he hadn't seen the postings, but claimed Border Patrol agents were not happy with Congress.

"So the Border Patrol, they're patriots, they're great people. They love our country. They know who's coming in," said Trump.

Lawmakers who toured the facilities shared their experiences widely on social media. Rep. Joe Kennedy of Massachusetts called them "jail-like. No way to keep a child or innocent human being." The head of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, California Rep. Judy Chu said "what we saw was appalling and disgusting."

Castro said there would likely be a Congressional investigation into the Facebook posts.

Billed as "fun, serious and just work related," the group of about 9,500 members of current and former Border Patrol employees states: "We are family, first and foremost," according to ProPublica.

Another thread involved the image published last week by The Associated Press of a migrant father and his toddler, drowned on the banks of the Rio Grande. One commenter suggested the image was doctored because the bodies were too clean.

"We've all seen the dems and liberal parties do some pretty sick things," the comment read.

They marked a sharp contrast to accounts of Border Patrol officers spending their own money on food for migrants in their care, or rescuing migrants from the Rio Grande , or from a bombing range in Arizona. U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the parent agency of Border Patrol, said an investigation into "disturbing social media activity" was underway.

"These posts are completely inappropriate and contrary to the honor and integrity I see — and expect — from our agents day in and day out," Border Patrol chief Carla Provost said. "Any employees found to have violated our standards of conduct will be held accountable."

Ocasio-Cortez raised hackles last month when she tweeted: "This administration has established concentration camps on the southern border of the United States for immigrants, where they are being brutalized with dehumanizing conditions and dying."

Her tweet set off a firestorm of criticism from GOP lawmakers and others over her use of "concentration camps," with some saying she was unfairly comparing the southern border to the Holocaust. The Border Patrol's union, while condemning the Facebook posts, also took a swipe at her.

"Whether one agrees with the politics of Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Escobar, they both must be treated with dignity and respect," according to a statement from the union. "Similarly, when Rep. Ocasio-Cortez refers to CBP facilities as concentration camps ... she does nothing to improve the political discourse."

___

Long reported from Washington. Associated Press Writer Lisa Mascaro contributed to this report from Washington.

  • Associated Categories: Local/State News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News
  • Associated Tags: immigration, Border
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Border Patrol head condemns agents' offensive Facebook posts
The head of the U.S. Border Patrol says sexist and insensitive posts in a closed Facebook group are "completely inappropriate."
9:08PM ( 12 minutes ago )
Recorder found in Texas plane crash; some victims identified
Officials working to determine what caused a small plane to crash at a suburban Dallas airport, killing 10 people, say they have recovered the cockpit voice recorder
9:06PM ( 14 minutes ago )
Trump isn't taking 'no tanks' for an answer for July Fourth
President Donald Trump says military tanks will be part of Washington's Fourth of July celebration later this week
8:53PM ( 26 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Baptism by fire: Stephanie Grisham's eventful first days
Baptism by fire: Stephanie Grisham, the president's new press secretary and top communications aide, threw her body into a fracas with North Korea security officials over the weekend as she began her new job early
8:09PM ( 1 hour ago )
Father of 2, deported to El Salvador, allowed return to US
A 33-year-old father of two American-born children has been allowed to return to the US two years after being deported to El Salvador
8:06PM ( 1 hour ago )
Border Patrol Chief: sexist Facebook posts 'inappropriate'
The head of the U.S. Border Patrol says sexist and insensitive posts in a closed Facebook group are "completely inappropriate."
8:05PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
Gauff, just 15, shocks 5-time champ Venus, 39, at Wimbledon
15-year-old Coco Gauff stuns Venus Williams at Wimbledon
5:57PM ( 3 hours ago )
Family: Woman dies from flesh-eating disease in Florida
A Pennsylvania man says his 77-year-old mother was infected by flesh-eating bacteria and died nearly two weeks after she fell and scraped her leg while walking on a Florida beach
4:57PM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: Hong Kong leader condemns protest in legislature
Hong Kong's leader has condemned protesters who broke into the city's legislature and vandalized the building
4:36PM ( 4 hours ago )
Top General short headlines
Trump signs humanitarian aid package to bolster migrant care
President Donald Trump has signed a bill to help the federal government cope with the surge of Central American immigrants at the U.S.-Mexico border
6:48PM ( 2 hours ago )
Mexico conference highlights Ducey's border balancing act
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has fostered strong ties with leaders in Mexico, and he's an ardent supporter of free trade
6:20PM ( 2 hours ago )
Group say conditions dire for asylum seekers stuck in Mexico
A new report from Human Rights Watch says the Trump administration should end its practice of making asylum seekers wait in Mexico because families have been stranded with no means to survive and are facing physical violence
6:01PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Protesters in Hong Kong break into legislature, paint logos
A group of protesters in Hong Kong has taken over the legislature's main building, tearing down portraits of legislative leaders and spray-painting pro-democracy slogans on the walls of the main chamber
12:39PM ( 8 hours ago )
Administration moves to ease drive-time rules for truckers
The Trump administration is moving to ease the federal regulations that dictate how much time truckers are allowed to drive their rigs each day
11:33AM ( 9 hours ago )
Kim Kardashian West finds solution to Kimono backlash
Social media has spoken about Kim Kardashian West's Kimono clothing line, and she has listened
11:25AM ( 9 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Trump isn't taking 'no tanks' for an answer for July Fourth
President Donald Trump says military tanks will be part of Washington's Fourth of July celebration later this week
8:53PM ( 26 minutes ago )
Judge: Rep. Duncan Hunter's trial can detail alleged affairs
A judge says jurors can hear evidence of U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter's alleged extramarital affairs when they consider charges the California Republican used campaign cash for trips and other personal expenses
8:40PM ( 39 minutes ago )
Japanese whalers bring home 1st commercial catch in 31 years
Japanese whalers have returned to port with two minke whales that are the nation's first commercial catch in 31 years
8:38PM ( 41 minutes ago )
Iran breaches uranium stockpile limit set by nuclear deal
Iran has broken the limit set on its stockpile of low-enriched uranium by its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers
8:34PM ( 46 minutes ago )
Trump, California governor spar over immigrant health care
California's Democratic governor has vowed to continue expanding taxpayer-funded health benefits to people living in the country illegally
8:33PM ( 46 minutes ago )