UTSA screening Beyond Borders

beyond borders

The UTSA Institute for Law and Public Affairs, Honors College and Camborne Productions are sponsoring a special screening of the documentary film Beyond Borders: The Debate Over Human Migration on Wednesday, April 23 at 5:30pm in the MB 0.106.

Dave Szamet, the film’s producer and UTSA Immigration Law professor Daniel Serna will be in attendance to introduce the film and talk about their views on immigration. The UTSA will join Yale Law School, Emory, the University of Southern California, and Georgetown in the screening of this film.

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Peer. Review.

With the three Border Wall features now having run, I am rediscovering the pace of a city that went on living in my absence. Thankfully, many of you have been circulating not only my stories but the international media’s coverage of Chertoff’s wall-building efforts, as well as the press releases and videos of those still marching on the ground contra al muro.

As I hit pause on Muro for now, I want to share just a few images from the road: Some rust, some light, some real and recreated “history.” Let me know if you recognize any of these sites.

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Separation Sorrows

along the watchtower

It was about ten years ago and my first trip to Marfa. I wasn’t there for Judd’s concrete boxes, likely hadn’t been tipped to Judd’s genius at the time. I was down for some Border Patrol meeting, the substance of which has long escaped me, distanced as I am by thousands of news items and feature assignments.

Fences were going up in a nearby border state at the time and I couldn’t help but ask: Were there any plans to build a fence here in Big Bend? The room erupted in laughter.

Considering the terrain, it seemed unthinkable — ridiculous.

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Omni-directional Eye

port of entry cameras

I guess I should have titled this entry “Security II.” During my travels I met more than a few river residents who expressed concern about the Wall not for the unpalatable signal it sends to our neighbors in Mexico, or for the eco impacts, or simply the waste of taxpayer dough. The concern of these few was over which way the fence was really leaning. Is it to keep Mexicans out or the rest of us in?

Several I met with, including growers in Presidio, the brave folks at Fronteras Unlimited, and Mayor Chad Foster in Eagle Pass, talked about the impact increased security effort had already had in their communities: Farms left fallow for want of labor, Mexican communities without resources locked out, and guest and undocumented workers fenced in.

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On Security

mug and rearviewThere is an absurdity about driving into a vast openness to inspect three- and four-mile sections of river and believing it has anything to do with Security with that big S. Is this fence — really a wall, up to 18 feet high and 150 feet fat with “tactical infrastructure” of roads, floodlights, radar, and who-knows-what — really a matter of the much-bandied-about National Security? Could we be witnessing a phenomenal moment of discussion that is more about our national identity? Could we be experiencing a moment of panicked transference, while so little seems under our national control?

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