LETTERS: Family separations, imposing sanctions and border wall

Family separation opponents should rail against US sanctions with same fervor

While the American public has shown impressive courage and compassion in opposing family separations at the border, few seem to be concerned by the killing of children by U.S. sanctions in countries where the U.S. is maneuvering for regime change.

Demonstrations against ICE, DHS and the DOJ cite a universal moral injunction against using children as pawns in political struggles. Yet paradoxically most Americans still avoid blaming the U.S. government sanctions causing terrible tragedies.

If the public demonstrated with signs and banners and petitions to Congress as it did in the case of the separated families, we could possibly avert this terrible tragedy in Iran before we have more on our collective conscience.

It is heartening to read a letter like Eugene Novogrodsky’s US-imposed sanctions letter. Wish there were hundreds more.

Terry Church, McAllen

Remember: imposing sanctions is common for US presidents

Letter writer Eugene Novogrodsky must have lived in a cave for the past 60 years.

Every U.S. president for the past six decades has placed sanctions on foreign adversaries. JFK placed sanctions on Cuba for allowing Russian missiles to be placed on its land, to Barack Obama placing sanctions on Iran for nuclear arms development. And every U.S. president in between has done the same for similar reasons — to create regime change or economic instability in those countries.

Mr. Novogrodsky, you live in a fantasy land. This is the real world. Nobody plays nice, not the Russians, Chinese, Iranians, North Koreans or any other country that violates the laws of the United States and the sanctions voted in place by the countries of the United Nations.

And finally, you criticize the media for calling Iran evil. I guess you are OK with a regime whose leaders frequently say, “death to America,” and, “death to Israel.” And you are OK with that Mr. Novogrodsky, shame on you!

Jake Longoria, Mission

Residents should consider border wall’s local impact

Comments on the additional border wall construction have been reopened by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and are now being accepted. The comments can be made to: [email protected]

As an educator and a biologist who has lived in the RGV for over 25 years, this wall is not needed and will be a drain to the local economy and degrade our environment long after the current politicians have left office.

Here are a few of the issues as residents of the RGV we should be concerned about.

A physical barrier like a wall can change topography of the area closest to areas of river flooding, which could cause catastrophic problems for the local area for decades to come

The cost of the wall is not realistic and underestimated, according to a recent report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

The wall will be a physical barrier, which can prevent wildlife from migrating, which is essential for species’ continued health and reproduction

The wall can result in U.S. private land being abandoned and local people being displaced through eminent domain.

Established environmental laws are being disregarded or changed in order for a wall to be built.

Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park and the National Butterfly Center land will be behind the wall to a large extent, which may cause the parks to close or have severe security issues. Bentsen might have to revert to the original landowners and be closed due to inactivity or non-use.

The wall may destroy the ecotourism business in the RGV, which is an economic driver for the region

With the billions of dollars to be spent on this wall, how much of it will it be for its upkeep, and is this included in the estimate?

Diane Teter, Edinburg