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VIDEO: Protesting students confront Border Patrol speakers at U. Arizona

Early last week a pair of Border Patrol employees speaking to a campus club at the University of Arizona faced an impromptu demonstration led, naturally, by a “studies” major.

Mexican-American studies major “Denisse” saw the BP personnel addressing the Criminal Justice Organization and began questioning their presence, interrupting their talk. She was miffed at a story of a family that had been detained by the BP just four miles from campus.

It appears Denisse had taken video of her confronting not just the Border Patrol agents, but disrupting the Criminal Justice Organization discussion to make her displeasure known. In the first clip, she refers to the BP as the “Murder Patrol” and complains the university permits “murderers” on campus, a place for which she’s paid to study at:

In typical “studies” fashion, Denisse whines (with the usual upward inflection in her voice) that the school is supposed to be a “safe space” yet allows the “KKK” (the Border Patrol) on campus, and then lists the alleged crimes for which the BP is culpable (such as taking off the shoes of “migrants” and forcing them to walk in the desert … ?).

When finally confronted by a member of the CJO who invites her to sit in on the discussion, Denisse says that she’ll just continue chanting what she’s been saying “the entire fucking time” because “it’s the truth” that the BP are “murderers.” When informed that campus security will be called if she doesn’t cease her antics, Denisse then invokes the “racial power dynamic” — yelling that a “white woman is calling the police!”

A second video shows Denisse following behind the now-departing agents shouting “Murder Patrol! Murder Patrol!” where she’s eventually joined by others. At the end of the segment, a crowd of protesters are shown shouting “Police! And ICE! The same shit twice!”

The Daily Wildcat’s Eddie Celaya has a rather interesting take on the situation, noting the story is a “complicated picture” and notes the videos of the confrontation were picked up by “right-wing and far-right-wing media websites.”

From the article:

Luisa Pinto, a major in criminal justice studies and president of the Criminal Justice Association, said that her club’s and the agents’ First Amendment rights were violated.

“I believe that it wasn’t her words, it was her actions,” Pinto said. “Her right to free speech only goes so far. She has every right to scream and yell all she wants outside the building, but the moment she’s inside a building and interfering with our education … our rights were violated.” …

Pinto said she understands the need for safe spaces for undocumented and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival students, however, she insisted her club has no political affiliation or bent and the meeting was little different from others the group has held.

“The Border Patrol was invited to attend our meeting to tell us their job and hiring process and basically what every other law enforcement agency we invite to come talk talks about,” Pinto said.

Pinto confirmed most of Denisse’s take on the situation but clarified that the two Border Patrol agents “did not engage with her in any sort of way; they did not say one word to her.” Both videos appear to confirm just that.

MORE: Presence of Border Patrol at U. Arizona job fair leads to student protest

MORE: College students demand safe spaces from border patrol agents

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 18 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.