Getting to the Root of Border Violence Rhetoric

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Melissa del Bosque, whose phenomenal reports for The Texas Observer are always worth reading, spent some quality time with a couple of cantankerous lawmen for her latest assignment, “Boots on the Ground: A Day in the Life of a Border Sheriff.” She even traveled into the barren desert on an ATV with Arvin West, sheriff of Hudspeth County and chairman of the Texas Border Sheriff’s Coalition, in an effort to get to the root of the fear-mongering, sensationalist “battle zone” rhetoric that dominates cable news coverage of the Texas-Mexico border.

At times it’s like watching a game of telephone: Sheriff tells exaggerated story to Texas congressman, congressman appears on Sean Hannity’s show, Sean Hannity concludes that al-Qaeda terrorists are streaming unchecked across the border. Luckily, del Bosque also meets Lupe Treviño, also a Texas sheriff, who’s working to dispel some of the outrageous myths about border violence. “Treviño created an hour-long PowerPoint presentation called ‘Border Violence: Rhetoric vs. Reality,’ ” del Bosque writes. “He makes his case at luncheons and to any audience who will listen.”

Source: The Texas Observer

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