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Our Fascist Government Agency

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Dara Lind with a very disturbing story about CBP, our fascist agency putting people in concentration camps:

An unofficial commemorative coin has been circulating among Border Patrol agents at the U.S./Mexico border, mocking the task of caring for migrant children and other duties that have fallen to agents as families cross into the U.S.

On the front, the coin declares “KEEP THE CARAVANS COMING” under an image of a massive parade of people carrying a Honduran flag — a caricature of the “caravan” from last fall, which started in Honduras and attracted thousands of people as it moved north. (While the caravan included many women and children, the only visible figures on the coin appear to be adult men.)

The coin’s reverse side features the Border Patrol logo and three illustrations: a Border Patrol agent bottle-feeding an infant; an agent fingerprinting a teen boy wearing a backwards baseball cap; and a U.S. Border Patrol van. The text along the edge reads “FEEDING ** PROCESSING ** HOSPITAL ** TRANSPORT.”

The coin appears to poke fun at the fact that many border agents are no longer out patrolling and instead are now caring for and processing migrants — including families and children.

Government officials told ProPublica the coin was not approved or paid for by the government, unlike official “challenge coins” that go through an agency approval process. One Customs and Border Protection official, who was not authorized to give his name, characterized the coin as “something that somebody’s doing on their free time” — comparing it to woodworking. “A lot of the agents have little hobbies on the side, they build little wooden figures that they have at their homes,” the official said.

It’s not clear who created the coin or how widely it’s been circulated among border agents. But Border Patrol agents in California and Texas — on opposite ends of the U.S./Mexico border — had seen the coin circulated at their workplaces. One of the agents received a coin in April when a colleague brought several to pass around at the office; the other was shown an online order form for the coins by a colleague at work.

Both said the coins were promoted via the secret Facebook group for current and former Border Patrol officials that, as ProPublica recently detailed, included racist and violent posts.

As I’ve said before, if you ever wanted to know how you would have responded to the rise of the Nazis in Germany if you lived at time, the answer is whatever you are doing now. These are outright concentration camps and we have a security agency ready to brutalize these people while laughing about it.

This is also not unheard of in American history, as the historian Tim Lacy notes:

These are analogous to blackface and confederate memorabilia and keepsakes. They, and other tidbits, will fill a future museum of our present-day nativism and white supremacy. https://t.co/cLTujmrkIr— Tim Lacy 🌹 (@t_lacy) July 14, 2019

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