Posted on July 24, 2019

Can Hispanic Border Patrol Agents Stand the Pressure?

Gregory Hood, American Renaissance, July 24, 2019

A star was born.

Kiara Cervantes, a Hispanic U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officer, was part of Vice President Mike Pence’s security detail when he visited a border facility. Former Daily Caller editor and author of No Campus for White Men Scott Greer tweeted a picture of her with the caption, “Nothing but respect for our Latina concentration camp guards.” (“Concentration camp” was obviously ironic.)

Online personality “Hotep Jesus” also promoted her on Twitter, where fans christened her #ICEBae (“bae” is a black term of endearment), even though she technically does not work for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). She became a viral sensation; RT called her “sizzling hot.”

Many Twitter users were angry.

Miss Cervantes brushed off people who called her a “Nazi” and “scum:”

She sees no contradiction between being “Latina” and protecting the border, no conflict between race and country. Much depends on whether other Hispanics share her opinion.

The Pew Research Center recently reported that the Hispanic population “reached a record 59.9 million in 2018.” Hispanics are almost 20 percent of the total American population and accounted for more than half of population growth between 2008 and 2018. Pew also reported in 2017 that 93 percent of foreign-born Hispanics identify as “Hispanic/Latino” or as being from their country of origin. Just over a third of second-generation Hispanics call themselves “American,” and only 56 percent of third-generation Hispanics do so.

Hispanics can be of any race—some are white—and Hispanics intermarry at relatively high rates. Academics often argue that Hispanics may eventually “become white.” They mean this in a sociological sense, because they think race is a social construct.

However, the descendants of some Hispanics, because of intermarriage with whites, will become essentially white or consider themselves white. Pew reports about five million Americans with Hispanic heritage do not consider themselves Hispanic. A plurality of this group says their background is “mixed” or that their Hispanic ancestry is “too far back” to matter.

Civic nationalists see an opportunity. Former National Review editor John O’Sullivan, who published Peter Brimelow’s 1992 “Time To Rethink Immigration?” cover story, suggests that by promoting “quiet patriotism” instead of “angry multiculturalism,” conservatives can win them over. He might be right—but this would require specific policies.

  • An immigration pause would encourage assimilation.
  • Affirmative action must go if there is to be “quiet patriotism.” Affirmative action and favorable media coverage for minority activism encourage even white Hispanics not to assimilate. Steve Sailer calls white Hispanics “Conquistador-Americans;” they are white but pretend they are oppressed mestizos. (No one actually wants “white privilege.”)
  • English should be the official language.

America’s president and his party won’t act on these issues. Even if they did, some “Hispanics” will never assimilate, particularly Indians from Latin America who aren’t “Hispanics” anyway. They speak tribal languages practically unknown in North America, which creates tremendous problems for public schools, hospitals, and police. They haven’t “assimilated” even in Mexico.

If there is no patriotic assimilation policy, more Hispanics will choose race over their new country. In a healthy society, there’s no conflict; there is in ours, and the Border Patrol is majority Hispanic. The media are urging officers to betray their country out of racial loyalty.

University of Notre Dame professor David Cortez wrote in USA Today: “I asked Latinos why they joined immigration law enforcement. Now I’m urging them to leave.” He suggested “self-hatred” or a “denial of ethnic identity” could be reasons for joining the Border Patrol. He also inadvertently confirmed the view that America is a white country: “[D]o they think that being party to the state’s exclusionary machinery cements, in a way, their own individual claims to belonging as Americans—to whiteness?” Dr. Cortez thinks most joined for money.

Agents admit there is a conflict. One explained there is an “inherent contradiction between who he was as a Latino and what he did as an immigration agent.” (If a white advocate suggested that, it would be “racist.”) Professor Cortez ends his article by asking agents to refuse to obey orders.

Another professor reported that one agent said that when she works on a case, “I’m asked [by immigrants] to look the other way, asked to be more compassionate because I’m a Hispanic.” The University of California, Santa Barbara’s paper, The Bottom Line, ran an editorial declaring, “Latinos in Border Patrol Betray Other Latinos and Themselves.”

The Los Angeles Times, profiling Hispanic Border Patrol agents in April 2018, quoted several who said there were “complicated moments” when they had to arrest co-ethnics. One man said friends accuse him of wanting to arrest “his own people,” to which he responds, “my people are here.”

They face a tragic dilemma.

In 2016, The Guardian profiled Agent Vicente Paco, originally from Mexico. He says he’s a “Border Patrol agent before anything else,” and is a professional. “Heritage is not to be confused with patriotism,” he says. The article notes that deported migrants “resent the lack of Latino solidarity,” and that Agent Paco explains diplomatically that he “cheers for the winner” when the US and Mexican soccer teams face each other.

I don’t doubt the patriotism of Agent Paco, a veteran, nor of many other Hispanic agents. However, Hispanics are commonly said to join the Border Patrol because a government job comes with good pay and benefits. If those were taken away, would Hispanics continue to join and do their duty? Already, hostile journalists and elected officials are pouring contempt on immigration enforcement, making it a less attractive job.

Even without demonization, the job comes with plenty of opportunities for corruption. There are no comprehensive statistics on corruption at the border or how many bad agents are Hispanic, but in his book White Identity, Jared Taylor reported the following cases just for the year 2005:

Operation Lively Green was a 2005 FBI drug smuggling sting that led to 33 guilty pleas. Twenty-four of the guilty were Hispanic and most of the rest were black. All were police officers, port inspectors, prison guards, or soldiers. They waved drug shipments through ports, prevented seizures by the Border Patrol, and sold fake citizenship documents.[i]

Also in 2005, Juan L. Sanchez, a Border Patrol agent in Nogales, Arizona, was indicted for smuggling two tons of marijuana into the US in his official Border Patrol vehicle.[ii] Another Border Patrol agent, Luis Higareda, who worked near Calexico, California, pleaded guilty to picking up 750 lbs. of marijuana at a border area in his official vehicle and trying to drive it inland for sale.[iii] In October, Border Patrol agent Robert Espino was sentenced to eight years for taking a $5,000 bribe to let a shipment of cocaine pass through a Texas checkpoint. He also let smugglers sneak 750 illegals through his checkpoint. Three more Border Patrol agents, David Garcia, Jesus Delgado, and Aldo Erives, were charged in the case.[iv]

US soldiers Daniel Rosas, Victor Portales, and Kevin G. Irizarry-Melendez, who were sent to Colombia to fight drug smuggling, became smugglers themselves, loading cocaine along with their equipment onto army planes back to Texas.[v] In October 2005, Lizandro Martinez, a senior customs inspector, pleaded guilty to letting a Hispanic smuggling ring repeatedly drive shipments of marijuana past his inspection lane on the Texas border.[vi]

In August 2005, Border Patrol agent Oscar Antonio Ortiz and two confederates were indicted for smuggling in 30 to 50 immigrants at a time at $2,000 per head. Mr. Ortiz proved to be an illegal himself. The Border Patrol hired him on the strength of a fake birth certificate.[vii] In April 2005, Customs and Border Protection official Fabian Solis pleaded guilty to letting smugglers pay him $300 per person to allow trucks filled with aliens through the border at Rio Grande, Texas.[viii]

In August 2005, El Paso Border Patrol agent Noe Aleman got six months in jail for smuggling three of his teenage nieces from Mexico.[ix] Also in 2005, three more Hispanic Border Patrol agents—Pablo Sergio Berry, Ramon Sanchez, Jr., and Jesus de Jose Ruiz—were caught harboring illegal aliens in their homes.[x]

The media are now yelling about a Facebook group where Border Patrol agents told offensive jokes about illegals. The real problem is that the majority-minority force is plagued by corruption and infiltrated by cartel members. As Mr. Taylor notes further in his book, 2005 does not appear to have just been a bad year for the agency:

From 2006 to 2010, the number of corruption investigations in Customs and Border Patrol more than tripled from 245 to 775.[xi] James Tomsheck, assistant commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said the situation is so bad that agents require continuous monitoring, “the never-ending background investigation, if you will.”[xii]

A white force would be more resistant—and it’s not just the Border Patrol. Under the headline, “Bribe Culture Seeps into South Texas,” the Houston Chronicle described how payoffs have become common everywhere from school districts to building inspections to municipal courts. The bribe—la mordida—as a way of life is moving north. Anthony Knopp, who teaches border history at the University of Texas at Brownsville, said that as America becomes more Hispanic, “corruption will show up here, naturally.”[xiii]

It’s surprising to find an academic willing to speak so frankly, but America is becoming like Mexico. Small towns south of Los Angeles, such as South Gate, Lynwood, Bell Gardens, Maywood, Huntington Park, and Vernon, were once white suburbs but have become largely Hispanic. They have also become notorious for thieving, bribe-taking politicians. Mayors, city council members, and treasurers have been paraded off to jail. “When new groups come to power, and become entrenched . . . then they tend to rule it as a fiefdom,” explained Jaime Regalado, of California State University, Los Angeles.[xiv]

Maywood, which was 96 percent Hispanic by 2010, was so badly run it lost insurance coverage and had to lay off all its employees. The California Joint Powers Insurance Authority (JPIA), composed of more than 120 cities and other public agencies to share insurance costs, declared the Maywood government too risky to insure. It was the first time in its 32-year history that the JPIA had ever terminated a member.[xv]

In Mexico, national security institutions are rotting from within. In the United States, non-white gangs have infiltrated the American military.

Likewise, the FBI is probing the “Banditos,” a “group of deputies assigned to the Sheriff’s Department’s East L.A. station” that brand themselves with matching tattoos. They “recruit young Latino deputies” and retaliate “against those who rebuff them.” One officer claims the Banditos secretly emptied the bullets from a non-member’s gun, setting him up to be killed. Other gangs are also reportedly operating within the department. There could be similar gangs operating around the country.

Hispanic law enforcement officers thus face many pressures. Media and ethnic activists call them race traitors. Cartels and ethnic gangs use the carrot-and-stick of corruption and threats to control them. And they come from countries where everyone knows justice goes to the highest bidder.

Patriotism is the best guarantee of fidelity. Patriotic Hispanic law enforcement officers who withstand these pressures deserve our support. Yet when America becomes a majority-minority country, its institutions will fragment—and racial identity will prove stronger than professional obligations. They can’t all be #ICEBae.

Meanwhile, our government investigates patriotic groups whose members participated in an online chat or posted a sticker. This is slow-motion state collapse.

* * *

[i] Michael Marizco, “3½ year FBI Coke Sting Catches 21 in Uniform,” Arizona Daily Star (Tucson), May 13, 2005. “Current, Former US Soldiers and Law Enforcement Agree to Plead Guilty to Participating in Bribery and Extortion Conspiracy,” US Department of Justice, Press Release, May 12, 2005. “FBI Snares 16 in Drug Sting,” Tucson Citizen, Sept. 1, 2005.

[ii] Susan Carroll, “Border Agent Indicted in Drugs, Weapons, Bribery Case,” Arizona Republic (Phoenix), June 2, 2005.

[iii] Office of the US Attorney, Southern District of California, Press Release, Feb. 3, 2005.

[iv] “Former Border Patrol Agent Sentenced,” KFOX-TV.com (El Paso), Sept. 30, 2005.

[v] Kim Housego, “How Greed and Opportunity Turned US Soldiers into Drug Traffickers,” Associated Press, Sept. 3, 2005.

[vi] “Inspector Convicted of Money Laundering,” Associated Press, Oct. 5, 2005.

[vii] “Former Border Patrol Agent Indicted on Fraud, Smuggling Charges,” San Diego Union-Tribune, Aug. 18, 2005.

[viii] “Official Admits Letting Illegal Immigrants into Texas,” Associated Press, April 5, 2005.

[ix] “Fmr. Border Patrol Agent Sentenced to Prison for Immigration Fraud,” KVIA-TV (El Paso), Aug. 22, 2005.

[x] “U.S. Border Agent Indicted,” Arizona Daily Star (Tucson), March 11, 2005.

[xi] Ceci Connolly, “The Inside Woman,” Washington Post, Sept. 12, 2010, p. A1.

[xii] Christopher Sherman, “US Customs: Mexican Cartels Corrupt Border Agents,”
Google News, March 11, 2010.

[xiii] James Pinkerton, “Bribe Culture Seeps Into South Texas,” Houston Chronicle, Dec. 16, 2006.

[xiv] Michael R. Blood, “Corruption Hits Cities In L.A.’s Shadows,” Associated Press, Dec. 2, 2006.

[xv] Ruben Vives, “Insurance Agency Pulls Maywood’s Coverage,” Los Angeles Times, June 6, 2010. Hector Tobar, “Maywood Council Can’t Duck the Blame or Shame,” Los Angeles Times, June 25, 2010.