Disorder at the Border – HUMAN EVENTS. We all pay attention somewhat to what goes on at the Mexican/American border about drug trafficking and illegal crossings. But who knew that a big part of the funding of the Customs and Border Patrol goes to mitigation and habitat restoration? The CBP has trouble protecting our Border Patrol and getting funding, and they are having to spend some of that money to protect the Pupfish, the Chiricahua leopard frog, Mexican spotted owl, lesser long-nosed bat, Pima pineapple cactus, Sonoran Pronghorn antelope, and the ocelot that some critics say hasn’t even been seen in the area for 15 years.
“Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) has committed or spent more than $9.8 million for environmental mitigation and the price tag could go as high as $50 million, according to a document obtained by Human Events. CBP has expended considerable funding directly on mitigation and related activities, such as surveys and habitat restoration,” according to the Homeland Security document responding to a congressional inquiry. Fiscal year 2008 is listed as one example. “ CBP expended more than $8 million on surveys and mitigation efforts to benefit 33 species listed as threatened or endangered,” the document said. Included in the price tag: $2.1 million for the cats, $980,000 for the bats and $811,000 for the pronghorn.”
The article talks about restrictions of the use of helicopters or vehicles in protected wilderness areas. Do you think drug traffickers care about the environment? Our agents are hampered by excessive rules. There are concerns about “disturbance from nighttime lights and noise associated with construction of towers and border fences, generators and helicopter landings.THese might affect habitats negatively. Are you kidding me? Homeland Security is forking over money to protect the pupfish and the ocelot that hasn’t been seen in 15 years instead of protecting American citizens?
“The enviros want the Border Patrol to scrap plans to mow vegetation four times a year along 91 miles of the Rio Grande, because of this and hundreds of other bird species. The Border Patrol wants to keep the vegetation below two feet so agents can actually see illegal aliens crossing through the area. Also along the Rio Grande in South Texas, the GAO said that border patrols, portable and permanent lights, along with clearing of vegetation, have “reduced the amount of habitat suitable for the endangered ocelot.”
Lawmakers are frustrated at the regulations that block the Border Patrol from accessing protected portions within 21 million acres on the Southern border and 1,000 miles along the Canadian border. There is now an increase of violence through the areas prohibited to Border Patrol. Criminals, drug smugglers, human traffickers and potential terrorists as well as illegal aliens know exactly where the Border Patrol are not allowed to use their vehicles.
“National parks and forests have become some of the most dangerous and violent areas along the border, where shootings, robberies, rapes, murders, kidnappings and carjackings frequently occur,” according to a report by the House Committee on Natural Resources.
Is this the flip side to political correctness? How backward and convoluted this is! No wonder our Border Patrol are frustrated and seemingly ineffective. They are supposed to protect us with their hands tied while patrolling on foot. Interesting!