Construction equipment is arriving in the Rio Grande Valley for the border wall. Several activists, including a Texas indigenous tribe, have setup camp in San Juan to take a stand against the wall.
Juan Mancias, Carrizo Comecrudo Tribal Chairman says, “We’ve had enough. They are digging up our people. Anytime that you dig somebody up and you put them somewhere else that’s just ethnic cleansing all over again, genocide.”
For the past two weeks Tribal Chairman Juan Mancias of the Carrizo Comecrudo Tribe of Texas and his clan have setup camp in San Juan. They have set up camp at the Eli Jackson-Brewster Cemetery to take a stand against the border wall, something the tribe has been fighting since 2005.
“We’re the only native tribe that has been recorded in history that has fought against this border [wall]. We’re still here saying, we don’t want you to put this up because your giving up from this point right here you’re giving up almost three miles of U.S. Territory.” Says Mancias.
The Carrizo tribe is joined by several other groups and activists. Their current campsite sits along the levee where the border wall is expected to be built. Mancias says 150 feet on both sides of the levee will be bulldozed over which will include several gravesites near the area.
“You see they are going to have to exhume all these people. There are veterans that are buried here at the other cemetery, over there is a Texas Ranger.”
What will happen if this peaceful stance does not work and they start to exhume the bodies?
“We’ve got some of the relatives here that are willing to take a stand. They are not going to let them, they are ready to get in front of the machineries.”
Mancias adds he will stand with those relatives and says many more protestors are on the way. The stance against the wall will be expanding to several other campsites along the border. Mancias says they will be prepared when the bulldozers roll in.
“The rent is due. That’s all I got to say. You can’t continue to do this without asking us and we don’t need to have federal recognition to do it. There is a certain thing called Aboriginal Inherent Rights and we are the original people of this land.”