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    Re: Leader Pro - BP Insert

    Mr. Wilson,

    Best case scenario- elected officials, public agencies, & a free and independent press work together to keep people informed.

    This concept has completely broken down Re: the US Border Patrol at Port Angeles.

    I just read the following article about local US Border Patrol operations: http://issuu.com/SGazette/docs/lopspring2012small/27

    Living on the Peninsula, Spring 2012 was included with The Leader this week. This article was like something produced by USBP public relations.

    I was surprised with the questions that weren't asked.

    If I was a reporter, I would have brought up the following with the local US Border Patrol spokesperson:

    We’re just weeks away from the grand opening of a new, $5.7 million 50 Agent US Border Patrol station at Port Angeles- an area sharing no land border with Canada.

    Why has no justification been provided by elected officials or the US Border Patrol for an upgrade in staff requiring the 50 agent facility- due to open in the spring of 2012?

    Do two total arrests involving cross-border traffic justify a new 50 agent US Border Patrol station at Port Angeles?

    Arrest statistics are secret, yet- the secret arrest policy is instantly lifted if something to brag about takes place- this is how we learned about the two amphibious Canadian marijuana smugglers who were captured on a remote Olympic Peninsula beach by the US Border Patrol on May 31st, 2010.

    Any other law enforcement agencies observing the do not report arrest numbers due to security reasons protocol?

    Imagine a school district wanting to expand staff and facilities and, at the same time- suppressing public information Re: the number of students enrolled, teachers on staff and number of students graduated in the past 36 months.

    "..the Border Patrol has refused to divulge the number of agents in Port Angeles.."

    Local law enforcement agencies set the example in sharing public information with the public.

    Compare the Port Angeles Police Dept. to the US Border Patrol.

    March 2011- Local paper submits FOIA request for USBP arrest numbers to justify new 50 agent station. FOIA request denied. FOIA appeal denied.

    The people of Erie, PA did not have to submit a FOIA request to find out what justified the expansion of their local Border Patrol station-

    No public information/security conflict at the U.S. Border Patrol station (not sector) in Erie, PA.

    Erie Station- similar to Port Angeles in that it is separated from Canada by water.

    Note: reports of the expansion at Erie include numbers of arrests out of that station:

    "The Border Patrol operations in Erie, nearly six years old, include more than 30 agents who apprehended 588 illegal immigrants in fiscal year 2008-09."

    "The Border Patrol's apprehensions in the Erie area have grown steadily, from 332 in fiscal 2006-2007 to 588 in 2008-09 to 305 so far in 2009-10. Of those apprehended so far this fiscal year, 136 were individuals found by other law enforcement agencies and turned over to the Border Patrol."

    Suspicionless checkpoints ended on the Olympic Peninsula in 2008. Suspicionless bus boardings ended in November, 2011.

    If Olympic Peninsula USBP operations are being downsized, why have local USBP personnel numbers been upsized?

    The US Border Patrol has had success in capturing Central American immigrants in Forks- 1500 miles north of where they likely crossed into the US.

    These arrests often involve mysterious traffic stops conducted by Border Patrol agents.

    Local reporters never ask why the vehicle was stopped.

    When folks head out to cut their Christmas tree in the Olympic National Forest- do they get stopped by federal agents on U.S. Highway 101 for a quick check & inspection to validate permits, vehicle contents & cargo, immigration status, etc.?

    What are the results of the investigation Re: fraudulent overtime claims at the Port Angeles USBP station?

    Aug 2011- "..Sanchez’s claims had been referred to the federal Joint Intake Center, which will refer it to an investigating agency, possibly the U.S. Office of Special Counsel."

    Plenty of time has passed since August 2, 2011- What are the results of the investigation? No follow up?

    News links & documentation here: http://oakbaystarfish.com/2012/03/02/old-news-us-border-patrol-port-angeles-wa

    Thank you,

    Alex Hepler
    Port Hadlock, WA 98339

    Leader Editor, Scott Wilson, says Alex's letter will run in next week's Leader.

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    Letter From Forks

    From: lesley hoare
    FHR letter sent to Napolitano, Aguilar, Gutierrez, DOJ

    Dear Allies,

    Friday we sent a letter to Secretary Napolitano and Commissioner Aguilar asking that they take direct action and look into the activities of the Port Angeles Border Patrol office. You will find the letter to DHS and CBP attached as well as two new documents that we have worked up: an analysis of the past 15 months of Border Patrol activity (it covers the time since our first analysis in Oct 2010 until the present) and a list of media that has come out on our area. I believe that the other information sent with this letter, you already have. But please don't hesitate to ask for any of the documents or clarifications.

    We have also sent an email notifying the senators and representatives' office of this letter and new documents and requesting that they contact DHS and CBP to support our request.

    Saturday, the same packets went out to the Department of Justice (Thomas Bates and Thomas Perez) and Representative Luis Guitierrez, also asking for their support.

    If there is some way that your organization can contact these offices in support, that would be great. Regardless, we want to let you know how our work is progressing out here.

    Hope you are all well.

    En solidaridad,
    Lesley (for Forks Human Rights Group)

    - There should be something coming out in the Seattle Weekly blog tomorrow and some time in the near future (maybe next weekend?) and article in the local Port Angeles paper.

    Analysis of Border Patrol Activity in/around Forks
    Media Coverage
    Letter to Napolitano & Aguilar

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    Our responses to Maria Cantwell's Form Letter

    Maria Cantwell's Form Letter

    Dear Judy,

    Thank you for contacting me about northern border security. I appreciate hearing from you about this important issue.

    The safety and security of our northern border is one of my highest priorities. The safe and efficient movement of people, goods and services between the U.S. and Canada is vitally important to Washington State.

    After the September 11, 2001 attacks, I organized a coalition of northern border Senators to pass legislation that authorized the tripling of staff along the northern border in order to strengthen its security. As a result of this legislation, the number of border patrol agents stationed along the northern border has increased by more than 550 percent: from 340 agents in 2001 to 2,213 agents as of June 2011.

    I understand you have concerns about possible discriminatory activity by Customs and Border Patrol agents along our borders. It is imperative that Border Patrol agents carry out their duties in a way that is respectful to all individuals, while still protecting our borders from terrorists, drug traffickers, and other possible criminals.

    With that in mind, I am committed to protecting the fundamental civil liberties of all Americans. In 2009, I helped organize roundtable discussions in Washington State between Department of Homeland Security officials and local governments, law enforcement, business leaders, tribes, ethnic communities, and civil liberties organizations. Local stakeholders were able share their concerns and insights. Effective and respectful border security requires cooperation at all levels of government and these meetings were an important step in that process.

    Racial profiling is a violation of the constitutional guarantee of equal protection under the law. Law enforcement officers need to be trained not to act upon stereotypes or beliefs that people's race or ethnicity makes them more likely to act unlawfully. No individual should have to live in fear of being stopped without just cause. Profiling not only jeopardizes individual freedom, it leads to a lack of confidence and willingness by citizens to trust law enforcement officers, report crimes, or be called upon as witnesses.

    I believe we can protect both our national security and our civil liberties. To do that, there must be strict oversight of government agencies and border security programs to ensure that civil liberties are indeed protected.

    Thank you again for contacting me to share your thoughts on this matter. You may also be interested in signing up for periodic updates for Washington State residents. If you are interested in subscribing to this update, please visit my website at http://cantwell.senate.gov. Please do not hesitate to contact me in the future if I can be of further assistance.

    Maria Cantwell
    United States Senator


      I received exactly the same form letter from Maria Cantwell's office. I hope they are at least counting us as concerned about racial profiling and civil liberties. I said I was most concerned about secrecy and lack of accountability to which her passing mention of "strict oversight" was, to me, insufficient. - Jim


      This response isn't really addressing anything except touting her work over 2 years ago and making her look shiny and wonderful.

      Any response from the bulk letters that were sent?

      Perhaps another round letters? I'm up for gathering more signatures. - Jen


      I have not seen any response from the bulk letters. I agree that it would be good to write another letter, knowing that she is a politician. Stronger language in the next letter...?

      Maybe we could quote her: "It is imperative that Border Patrol agents carry out their duties in a way that is respectful to all individuals, while still protecting our borders from terrorists, drug traffickers, and other possible criminals."

      And then say: that is just our point...the personnel are NOT respectful to all individuals... They are intrusive to the point of shooting them!

      Or some such...I don't know...I am new at this. Could use some pointers. - Jane


      I agree with Jen and Jane. Time for another round of letters - or maybe one letter from all of us making it obvious that we all got the same form letter indicating that some staff member probably just picked one of several form letters according to some general category of interest.

      Let's ask if the Senator saw or read our letters or even reviewed the number of letters received and categories of interest. Maybe we should ask for a meeting so we know whether or not there will be any follow up.

      These form letters are not what I had in mind about holding our elected officials accountable. But I will say that the choice of topics on Cantwell's website (I picked "immigration") has expanded and the fact that there is a paragraph about racial profiling (maybe because of the recent ACLU "Alert", although that was not my main concern) must mean they're at least a little responsive to the growing issue.

      Then we should finish with Jane's to the point comment.

      At least Cantwell sent us form letters. Have we heard from Norm Dicks and Patty Murray?


      Nope, I got only Cantwell's reply, nothing from Dicks or Murray yet.

      I want to write something like - how can I support a Democratic candidate who (Obama) announces one day that they'll only focus on picking up and deporting people with a criminal conviction and then one or two weeks afterwards, they pick up a mother and father in Forks? If that's not lying, then it's total inefficiency and poor communication within the govt with NO apologies and re-examination of what they did. I'm first going to try to get more details about that couple - just in case they have been released.

      Someone else can focus on the ridiculous waste of money in these economic times. And anything else. - Libby


      I think both you and I still have too much HOPE.... most people just don't care.... I did write again to Sen Cantwell, and, again, almost within seconds received the very same form letter again.... just blah blah, all they ever care is to get re-elected.... Carlos


    9/25/11 - So I wrote to Maria Cantwell again. -
    Thank you for the form letter you sent in response to our concern about the Border Patrol and our appreciation of your meeting with the Border patrol last Wednesday. The form letter, however, was less than satisfactory. We were hoping for a report on the meeting, some promise of more accountability and how your office will follow up. If you would like to see some of the reaction to your form letters to several of our neighbors, I put them on line at http://www.bpfree.org/comments.html - Jim

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    Letter to Leader

    Hello, Scott -

    BP actions reported - in Canadian newspaper

    I've always admired your strong consistent views on open government. If ever there was an issue that required your strong editorial on the subject, it's the Border Patrol refusal to release information that should be made public.

    After seeing a BP car cruising down San Juan Avenue at 6:25 AM last Thursday, I found myself wondering, just as BP Officer Sanchez, the whistleblower, wonders - what on earth are they doing here? More importantly, how can we find out? I'm confident that only exposure and public information will keep their activities in check - and hopefully curtail their most unconstitutional activities. Around the country, more and more localities are finding good reasons to stand up to BP - for the sake of our democracy and civil rights.

    This Canadian article appeared because one reporter checked our local bpfree website, picked up the story about Sanchez, and then came to the Olympic Peninsula to interview those involved. I encourage you to assign a reporter to do an even better article, in depth, that focusses on the issue of open government.


    Libby Palmer

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    Illegal Immigration Declining
    Leaving many undocumented victims and a huge federal police force.

    Overall illegal immigration is declining according to a new study reported in the New York Times. Exuberant enforcement has caused havoc in agricultural states and engendered a backlash against Border Patrol secret police tactics here on the Olympic Peninsula and elsewhere. At the same time fewer people seem to want to come to the US. It seems just a matter of time before a more rational US Immigration Law is passed - no matter what we do.

    Immigrants who are already here illegally, however, need help. Immigrants without papers are much more likely to be victims or political refugees than criminals, as some of the stories below, especially the NPR series, illustrate.

    So what should we do?

    We might tell their stories and learn how to be advocates and paralegals to help immigrants without legal papers find a way to become legal. Jose Antonio Vargas, the journalist who outed himself is not likely to get deported according to a Mother Earth article and a story in the New York Times indicates that waivers and fast track routes to legality for students, military personel and maybe anyone with connections are possible.

    So what will the Border Patrol do if there are not many undocumented immigrants left in the US because we will have helped them become legal, a new immigration law provides a path to legality or they have been deported? What will the fifty or so Border Patrol officers on the Olympic Peninsula do? Who will fill the new private jails? We probably don't need fifty Border Patrol officers to protect us from real terrorists. And, if we do, wouldn't the Coast Guard or Customs be better more appropriate choices? The Border Patrol probably won't disband on it's own. So we should demand accountability - insist that the Border Patrol be more transparent, object to the building of more private prisons, question the construction and/or rental of more offices and impound lots to the Border Patrol, insist that our police and sheriff departments not buy into the Border Patrol's intimidation, racial profiling and abridgment of fourth Amendment rights, advocate that our elected officials opt out of programs like the Secure Communities program and work toward de-funding the Border Patrol.

    I guess there is plenty to do. - Jim Buckley

    The stories below make for interesting reading. We invite your comments. Click here to participate. Comments just below the links.

    Atop A Train, Migrants Begin Dangerous Trek To U.S. - First in a three-part series on NPR

    Will the Feds Deport Jose Antonio Vargas? - Probably not.

    Better Lives for Mexicans Cut Allure of Going North - Illegal immigration from Mexico to the US is declining. The killing in Guatemala has subsided, life is better and families are smaller in Mexico while the border drug wars and increased immigration enforcement in the US make the US less attractive. And it's a little easier to get a visa or a green card than it was.


      I think this is a bit of a fantasy (the idea that will not be many undocumented immigrants in the US). People will always be here illegally. Overstaying visas, if nothing else, but as long as there are countries poorer than ours and from where people need to flee, they will keep coming. Helping them become legal? Too many obstacles for that to really happen in a big way. Think back to when so many got amnesty and some believed this would solve some of the problems, and it didn't help all that much.

      But we should try to achieve accountability no matter how many there are, no matter what they are doing.

      Kate Franco, 7/6/11


      What can we in Port Townsend do to be more effective. Here are some ideas that probably won't work:

      1) Maybe the Makah or Salish (or any other Indian nation) will grant or sell Indian citizenship and identity papers to their "undocumented" brothers and sisters from Mexico and Central America who in many cases are ethnically related indigenous people.

      2) If the "Dream Act" ever passes (the act that would provide a fast track to legality for undocumented immigrant college students and military personnel) maybe we could help undocumented immigrants get jobs with the Border Patrol. Especially if they are Native American citizens, they should be qualified. As some Native Americans proclaim: "We have been fighting terrorism since 1492".

      Jim Buckley, 7/7/11

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    Excessive Enforcement Unfair and UnAmerican

    The AP story about Benjamin Roldan Salinas' death in Forks is pretty balanced and accurately, quoting Forks Mayor Brian Monohon saying "It really is an atmosphere of fear." and Border Patrol agent Chris Dyer saying, "Basically we feel we did our job".

    The disconnect for me is the severity of the penalties - jail and deportation never to be able to return - making it seem worth risking your life to escape. For what offense? A lapsed visa or over stayed visit? Inability to get a Green Card?

    These non-violent bureaucratic violations by hard-working immigrant people don't seem like offenses that deserve such excessive punishments, especially when the punishment is meted out without due process, without the presumption of innocence and without any real possibility that poor immigrant people have the means to hire lawyers to defend themselves.

    And it's all done in secret while the accused are incarcerated in private jails for profit at government expense.

    It's as if the government decided it was time to really enforce state tax laws so they hire fifty special police officers to set up random searches and jail anyone caught with a book or song they bought on the Internet without proof of paying the state sales tax. It's as if a burned out tail light or an out of date license tab resulted in jail time and they confiscate your car unless you spend thousands of dollars to hire a lawyer.

    Only it's worse for immigrants. I can pay the state taxes or make sure my tags are current but there is really no way to "get legal" for many people who are here illegally, even those who have been adopted as children and have lived in this country most or all of their lives, whose children are Americans and who may not even speak any language except English. They must go back to their country of origin, says the law, and wait for fifteen or twenty years to be able to immigrate legally. If you are hard-working and law-abiding and have an American family or were encouraged to come here to work when the rules were not so strictly enforced, that's simply unacceptable. None of us would accept such a sentence - never to see our families again - for forgetting to renew our license tags or not paying all the state sales tax we might owe.

    I agree with agent Chris Dyer. He and his fellow agents are just doing their jobs. It's the policy and the priorities, the draconian selective enforcement of confusing rules that are out of kilter with due process, civil rights - and mostly out of kilter with our American sense of fairness.

    Do we need thirty or fifty secret police "just doing their jobs"? Would the money be better spent on schools, health care, or, if terrorism is really an issue (rather than salal harvesters), wouldn't the money be better spent on the Coast Guard or Customs?

    We need to rationalize our immigration laws. And we need to curb the building of a secret federal police force that terrorizes our neighbors of color and will soon terrorize us all if left to develop.

    Jim Buckley

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    by Judy Tough

    "Secure Communities" is a Border Patrol controversial program whose stated goals are to focus on both serious criminals and threats to the community. However, three state governors have noted that there “was a lack of clarity” inherent in Secure Communities program and that its implementation has not been consistent with the program’s stated goals. As of June 8, 2011, Governor Quinn of Illinois and Governor Cuomo of New York have backed out of their agreement with the Border Patrol and most recently, Governor Patrick of Massachusetts has refused Homeland Security’s offer for their program. Governor Patrick said that Secure Communities could make immigrants reluctant to cooperate with police and "deteriorate relationships with communities that have been carefully cultivated with years of hard work".

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    Letter to the US Forest Service
    by Libby Palmer


    I am a concerned citizen from Port Townsend and have been following Border Patrol issues on the Olympic Peninsula for the past three years. The unhappy result of the recent incident in Forks could have been avoided - and future such incidents can be avoided - by the US Forest Service implementing a policy that has worked well in Port Townsend and Jefferson County.

    For the police and sheriff's deputies of both jurisdictions, a group of local Spanish-speaking citizens has agreed to make themselves available for translation services by phone or text message should the need arise. We are not court-certified translators - just ordinary citizens who wish to help out and are willing to assist in translation via phone or even show up at a site if convenient at the time.

    I strongly suggest that the US Forest Service implement such a policy of using only community translators AND AGREE TO NOT CALLING IN BORDER PATROL OFFICERS FOR TRANSLATION PURPOSES. Please forward this suggestion to the appropriate Forest Service personnel. I would also appreciate receiving a reply to this letter and would be happy to follow up on any suggestions you may have to improve this situation.

    Thank you.

    Libby Palmer
    Port Townsend, WA 98368

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    Where Do We Go From Here?
    by Jim Buckley

    Besides being witnesses and documenting the heavy handed activities of the Border Patrol, what can we do that would really be effective? Like defunding the Border Patrol and/or transferring the money to Customs or the Coast Guard? Like changing US immigration policy?

    Lately our Border Patrol Free group has done little more than be a news service, highlighting and linking to the various storys about the issue of the Border Patrol secret police activities in the Leader, the Peninsula Daily News, other newspapers or our sister organizations in Forks and Sequim. We were not even successful in our effort in Port Townsend to influence our own Port Commission to slow down and debate publicly the lease of space at the Port to the GSA for Customs - and, probably, the Border Patrol.

    Here are some ideas to ramp up the issue, gain support and try to influence a change in both national and local policy.

    1) Tell the stories: How long does it take to become a US citizen? Why are so many Hispanics and Asians here without legal papers and how did they get here? Is there a path toward legality, if not citizenship, for those who are here now illegally, having been adopted, invited by employers or came with family back in simpler times?

      I'll start with my immigration story. My English grandfather took a train from Toronto, Canada to Stoneboro, PA in 1918 and, when the 1920 census was taken he was counted as US citizen.

    2) Immigrants without papers seem to have a growing list of supporters. Let's explore joining the United Farm Workers and the various industries that depend on immigrant labor.

    3) Then there are the groups that care about people and civil rights - the ACLU, the Quakers, the Catholic Church, First Americans, local police and sheriffs. Let's get on their radar and ask for their support.

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    Imprison Undocumented Immigrants for Profit
    It's the new American Way

    HAVE YOU EVER TALKED TO PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN INCARCERATED AT THIS FOR PROFIT "CONCENTRATION CAMP" ?????? It is located at 1623 East "J" Street in Tacoma, WA, opened in 2004, same private FOR PROFIT corporation that runs the Guantanamo, Cuba operation. They get paid per inmate per day, THE MORE, the more $$$$$$$$$$. I have been told by several people familiar with this Moneymaker that many have been there over 3 YEARS....

    Is this REALLY the nation WE want to be?????? We have more and more people in JAIL and less and less JOBS.... Is INCARCERATION working????? We are IMPORTING more and more FOOD because Hispanics (even if BORN here !!!!) are soooooooooooooooooooooooooo SCARED, many no longer dare to apply for agricultural jobs.... All sooo SAD! You "look" Hispanic, YOU ARE A "SUSPECT"........... Welcome to America TODAY !!!!!!

    Carlos Jorge Heine, P.E.

    The Video Series Private Prisons Don't Want You To See
    Private prison using chemicals on detained migrants?
    Journey through Georgia: Victims of private prisons
    MSNBC's 'The Last Word' covers Cuéntame

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    Open Letter to the Editor of the Leader

    To the Editor:

    I commend the Leader for continuing to report about Homeland Security's Border Patrol (BP) in Port Townsend. Our community needs to be continually informed about an agency that refuses to be transparent!

    I am concerned with the increasing Border Patrol (BP) activities on the Peninsula and in Port Townsend. I have seen BP vehicles on the streets of our town, as well as in my home community of Cape George. The Sheriff recognizes the fact that the streets in Cape George are private and so comes only in an emergency. On May 18 (I think that was the date), a one-car accident in Cape George Colony brought out the Medics, the Sheriff, a tow-truck and the BP! Why the BP? Several residents have reported seeing BP vehicles in various places in Cape George and agents on the beaches. Why have I seen BP vehicles parked in Cape George Memorial Park - a place I see and pass on my way to and from my house?

    I am concerned that the Jefferson County Port Commissioners have signed a lease with the federal government for the one (1) Port Townsend Customs agent (also Homeland Security). He will have a good-sized meeting room (the Commissioners currently use it for their public meetings) as well as enough office space for many workers. They are renting the entire end of the Port Administration building at Point Hudson. It begs the question of why would one customs agent need all that space? Is this the way the BP will gain office space in Port Townsend? Is Customs need for office space a convenient excuse?

    I am concerned about the erosion of our civil liberties. I am concerned about disregard for worker and immigrant rights. I am concerned with reported harassment of those on the Peninsula who are of Hispanic ethnicity. I am concerned with the additional layers of enforcement and repetition of police work already done by our sheriff, P.T. police force, and the Coast Guard (also part of Homeland Security who guard our shorelines). Is there a 'manufactured need' for BP, especially since the BP (by their own data) average only 2 arrests per agent per year in all of Alaska, Oregon and western WA?

    Please keep us informed, Leader! We need you to help us by reporting about significant BP stories anywhere on the Peninsula in order to make informed decisions regarding constitutional issues.

    Judy Tough
    Cape George

      Subject: Letter to Leader Editor (for publication)
      Date: Thu, 2 Jun 2011

      Jane, Please forward the following "letter to the editor" to the Port Townsend list of those concerned about Border Patrol issues. Thanks. I would add my voice to the others, as well, who are suggesting writing a letter. Our speeches to the Port Commissioners did not influence their decision. We need the press to be constantly dogging them and to report, report, report to the community. The PDN is not read by everyone in Port Townsend, so the Leader is important.

      Someone might put forth the idea in a letter that the Leader might check in with our "enforcement agencies" (such as PT police, Sheriff, Coast Guard, State Park rangers, Forest Service) if 1) they are in partnership with the BP in anyway & if so, what are the ways; 2) what do these agencies see their enforcement role is and what the BP's role is - do they overlap or are enhanced or needed? 3) does BP add anything to the enforcement landscape - positive or negative?; 4) has BP offered $$ or services to enhance the capability of the police, sheriff, etc to do their job? (Note: the Seattle Weekly articles where BP is doing the 911 calls!) In other words, whose in-bed with whom and what is the nature of their "partnership"? (This is prompted from the story of Benjamin Salinas who is lost and probably dead after jumping in the Sol Duc to evade the BP after the Forest Service called the BP for interpretive services. The BP had "offered" that service to F.S. The BP has stirred up a lot of fear and apprehension in the Spanish speaking communities on the Peninsula because of documented harassment. Where does responsibility lie for this tragic event? Does the F.S. or B.P bear some responsibility?


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    To: All that VALUE Human Life

    How can a country that pretends to support Freedom around the world allow Fellow Human Beings be ARRESTED and DETAINED IN SECRET with Zero oversight from anybody ??? and nowhere we can find answers to WHERE are all of these people disappearing to....

    How can WE as a Nation sit on our hands while we allow Border Patrol to "sneak around" more and more in unmarked cars, no uniform, with dogs, cameras, etc mostly targeting the WEAK, the POOR, that are soo TERRIFIED because they have nowhere to go for any support whatsoever....

    With the present Lynch Mob Mentality in OUR Country, I want to thank Forks Mayor Bryon Monohon for being concerned about the LIFE of Mr Benjamin Roldan Salinas and his wife Crisanta and for treating both with RESPECT and not with the soo common contempt soo many are feeling these days about anybody that is somehow a bit "different".

    I have gone through a NIGHTMARE myself with Border Patrol in October 2008 simply because I speak with an "accent" - with the good help of my Congressman Norm Dicks this was stopped. I continue to see Border Patrol "working the parking lots" etc etc etc - don't DARE to say more...

    ANYBODY that promotes the TRUTH, TOLERANCE, DIALOG, COMPASSION to combat the racism, bigotry, prejudice and subtle racism in our country needs to be supported - for all of you that DO, my heartfelt THANK YOU!!!!

    MURDER is MURDER... I understand SHOTS WERE FIRED... did Mr Salinas really run? This needs to be investigated. Furthermore, this entire episode has lead to TERRIBLE PAIN to soo many of us that have received the "treatment" from Border Patrol over the years... MOST OF IT NEVER GETS REPORTED - WE SUFFER AND SUFFER QUIETLY.... a NIGHTMARE? YES!!!!!!

    Again, THANK YOU for all that RESPECT LIFE!

    Carlos Jorge Heine, P.E.
    302 Twin View Drive
    Sequim, WA 98382

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    Help the people in Forks

    Many of you know about the situation in Forks, where one young man is either lost or possibly dead as a result of running away from a Border Patrol stop last Saturday. Here are the only two articles that have been printed about the case:

    When I asked how we could help, Lesley Hoare, who's been coordinating the community response to BP, wrote:

      "We have thought one way that people may be able to help in the current situation. Please don't feel any pressure though. There have been many bills arriving to Crisanta (the friend who was also in the car, was detained and is now in Tacoma Detention Center) and she is not able to pay them. Car insurance, water, etc. If people are able to make monetary donations, that would be very helpful. We hope we can get her back in the community with us, but even if that happens, she won't have resources to pay the bills on time. Any little bit helps, but please don't feel pressured."

    If you can help, please send checks in any amount written to Rafael Salazar, who's coordinating the effort:

    Rafael Salazar
    370 Grant Rd.
    Beaver, WA 98305

    I'm sure it will help a great deal and will be appreciated by the family and community.


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    Good news - and yuk news

    From Libby Palmer

    The good news first

    1. See the PDN article today about the Port of PT's plan to rent space to the Border Patrol - and our protest against it


    2. More good news. The Forks meeting yesterday was excellent. Jim Buckley and I attended an AFSC "legal observer training" workshop. See http://www.bpfree.org/ American Friends Service Committee (Quakers) seems to be very effective in the San Diego area, according to Benjamin Prado, the AFSC organizer, because they are organized, persistent and have lawyers. We specifically asked about the PDN rejected FOIA request and Benjamin's answer was basically, "Well don't just give up. Contact Homeland Security administrators at the federal level, talk to state and national elected officials, take it to court if necessary." Prado showed extensive video documentation of BP incidents, made by local citizens and he had specific advice for people wanting to do such documentation.

    The local folks who came were great, with powerful stories to tell. Twenty or thirty people from all around the Peninsula relating stories about BP and ICE harassment of mostly Latino and Native American people. Rather than highway check points they seem to be isolating individuals and detaining them - in the woods, at homes and even at night.

    3. Cinco de Mayo Day at La Isla - please join a bunch of us at La Isla. Music by Pete McCracken, Marla Streater and others. This is not a meeting, just a coming together of friends who share similar concerns - and love of Mexican food and music. If you can join us at 6 PM, be sure to let me know pronto. La Isla agreed to take a reservation if there were 8 of us - they don't usually do it on Cinco de Mayo. Please pass this on to others but tell them to contact me for sure.

    Now the bad news:

    This is enough to make me sick - but it's important to know the background to the anti-immigrant furor that's sweeping the country.



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    Grandmother Worried about Adopted Granddaughter from Guatemala

    I am a senior citizen, but active, and have some organizing experience. I want to do something to contain this menace and end the racial profiling. My family was in the first auto checkpoint-stop on Rt 104 west of the Hood Canal bridge. We were flabbergasted, outraged, and felt intimidated. Since then the Border Patrol presence has increased dramatically, yet they refuse to give the press or the public, information making their increased presence and purpose in any way transparent.

    My granddaughter is a US citizen who was adopted from Guatemala. The idea that she would be questioned is frightening. She would be traumatized. The idea that my daughter (her mother) must carry her daughter's U.S. citizenship papers here is repugnant and to feel you must to do that to protect a child, is racism. This is what was experienced the months we lived in Guatemala during the adoption process, living in fear of the corrupt police who might take our child, hold her for ransom, or make her "disappear". These 'secret police' tactics in OUR area (!) have got to be stopped!

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    Disdain for Stupid Views
    On Sun, Apr 17, 2011 at 3:17 PM, Joe Nash wrote:

    Joe Nash, from Port Angeles, would like to express his disdain for you and your ilk. I disagree totally with your views, but I do think you have the right to express them, no matter how stupid they are.

    I wont bother you again.

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    "The idea that the government protects "privacy" by allowing people to be arrested and detained in secret is bizarre."
    - John Stark, The Bellingham Herald, 2/23/11

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    All of a sudden we have these random searches and seizures of everybody and this is happening within 100 miles of our borders. It just shocks me that this is legal, it strikes me that it’s immoral, and it violates our sense of community.
    — Scott Wilson, Publisher of The Leader

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    They target people of color, specifically.
    — Melisa Eyle, Native American

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    If you can explain to me why we should pay Border Patrol agents to strike fear into local families by staking out public buses, schools, grocery stores and Catholic churches when we don’t have money to provide drug and alcohol treatment to the families who cycle through the courts where I work every day, please justify this expenditure of money we don’t have.
    —Ruth Gordon, Jefferson County Clerk

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