Saturday, February 24, 2007

Aid, not crime

Blue is not a color found naturally in the dessert. That’s why members of Humane Borders paint their water stations blue. Each station, a 55 gal. barrel of water, is announced with a 30 ft. high blue flag. They are designed to save the lives of immigrants attempting to cross the U.S./Mexico border into Arizona. So says Paul, a resident of the co-housing community that has taken us in (thanks David, Chris, and Griff!). With a 350 gal water tank trailer, Paul and other volunteer members make periodic trips into the dessert to refill the water stations.

Crossing the border illegally into Arizona is an extremely dangerous operation. While illegal border crossing remains a misdemeanor, summer ground temperatures here can reach 140 deg. In the past three years, some 900 people died while trying to cross the desert. If caught, most would-be immigrants are released on the Mexican side of the border the next day, often with no money, food, or place to stay. It is likely they will try again. Humane Borders mission is not in helping Mexicans cross the border, but ensuring those choosing to cross don’t die in the desert. “Humanitarian aid is never a crime.” Their message is repeated from yards and windows across the city.


dawn mudbutt hc said...

Have you met Lucy yet? Eaten at the Casbah? Brooklyn Pizza? Converted to cactus worship? I'm glad you went out to the Santa Catalinas, so awesome. Have you visited BICAS? I'm jones-ing for Tucson right now. Yesterday, I rode the Chilly Hilly. It must rank in the top five of the worlds' dumbest bike rides. First, it's cold, and sometimes-like yesterday-it rains. Second, you pay to ride. Third, you don't get a complimentary pair of dry socks or dry t-shirt to change into, instead you pay some more money for a bowl of warmish chili. Why why why?

owlhouse said...

No bikus. yet.

Yes Lucy and millet bread. And there was a picture of you on the wall, sitting at a table with six bottles of wine, a half-gallon of vodka and a bag of Doritos. Shouldn't there be a story there?!?

Yes Casbah. Interesting. Details later.

No Pizza. yet.

Hope you've unthawed from the no-frilly, big-billy Chilly Hilly. Maybe we could partner on a new ride, "Easy as Pie." A flat ride ending with blackberry pie a la mode. Think about it.

Brad said...

Hi Dawn! Yes, we had coffee/treats in the front cafe part of the casbah. The back didn't open 'till later. We peeked in on our way out. Very cool. Nice people too. To eat at Brooklyn pizza you have to wade through a sea of stinky, dreadlock, hippy kids. Yes, I do worship cacti now.