'Whipping' Story is Attempt to Divert Public Opinion From Biden's Political Failures, Observers Say
Photos and video footage of Border Patrol agents allegedly "whipping" illegal migrants have cast a shadow not on law enforcement but on the Biden administration's incapability of handling the border crisis, according to political observers Rory McShane and Michael Shannon.
Joe Biden subjected Border Patrol agents to harsh criticism on 23 September for what he called "strapping" and "running over" migrants on the southern border. The president promised that the agents "will pay" for this. The scandal erupted as over 10,000 illegal aliens, mostly Haitians, flooded Del Rio, Texas, this past week prompting a backlash from law enforcement. Videos and photos allegedly depicting Border Patrol personnel on horseback "whipping" migrants made their way to the press last weekend triggering ire from the Democratic Party.
Viral 'Whipping' Story
"First of all, they weren't whipping migrants", says Michael Shannon, a political commentator and Newsmax columnist. "I've looked at a number of those photos, and at no time do the Border Patrol agents have a whip in their hands. Border Patrol agents are not issued whips. They're not trained on whips".
It turned out later that what appeared to be "whips" were reins used by agents to control their horses. For his part, Paul Ratje, a photographer who snapped the photos of law enforcement officers trying to apprehend Haitians, told the local media that he had not seen anyone from the Border Patrol actually strapping the illegals.
What law enforcement agents were really doing was keeping illegal migrants out of the United States, Shannon stressed, adding that it was their job.
"They are Border Patrol agents and they patrol the border", he remarks. "They are not concierges that escort people across the border and welcome them to the wonders of all the freebees that Uncle Sugar gives people here in the US".
Nevertheless, "none of the fact-checkers at The Washington Post, CNN, NBC News, The Associated Press, USA Today and Snopes addressed the 'whipping' claims", according
to Fox News. On the contrary, the "whipping" story has been widely circulated in the media, with left-leaning anchors and politicians invoking slavery parallels.
Eventually, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki announced on 23 September that the Biden administration was taking horses away from Border Patrol agents in Del Rio.
Border Patrol Agents: Overwhelmed & Unsupported
While the liberal media is continuing to focus on the "whipping" narrative, the bigger picture of the present border crisis remains beyond their scope, according to Rory McShane, a Texas-based Republican political consultant and strategist.
He does not rule out that some Border Patrol agents were overreacting while trying to prevent illegal border crossings. Still, they have some reasons for that, the strategist believes.
"When you have this massive surge, this massive encampment of illegal immigrants crossing our border, the agents are so overwhelmed, so under-resourced, so unsupported, they're resorting to tactics that would not be resorted to otherwise", McShane notes.
Border Patrol agents have found themselves completely abandoned by the US president and the Department of Homeland Security, according to the political consultant. As a result, Texas Governor Greg Abbott had to dispatch the Texas Rangers and the Department of Public Safety to the southern border to give aid, the consultant notes, adding that otherwise "it would be a complete free-throw across our southern border".
During his first days in office President Biden reversed most of Donald Trump's migration policies which, according to American conservatives, helped reduce the tide of illegal migration. Biden's border strategy was criticised by both Republicans and Mexican authorities
who warned that the president's open-border approach would reinvigorate illegal immigration and lead to a spike in organised crime.
Meanwhile, the number of asylum seekers trying to enter the US at the southern border remains high, according
to US Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Although the number of unique encounters in August 2021 amounted to 156,641, there were 208,887 encounters in total as migrants are now making multiple border crossing attempts. For comparison's sake, in February 2021 the CBP caught 100,441 people at the southwest border, which represented a 28 percent increase from January 2021
To complicate matters further, many asylum seekers allowed into the US are potential COVID carriers. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas admitted
on 24 September that about 15,000 illegal immigrants who camped out under a bridge in Del Rio had not been tested for COVID-19.
MSM & Dems Diverting Public Opinion from Biden's Failures
The whipping narrative serves as a distraction from a whole series of bad political decisions by the Biden administration, the observers presume.
"Afghanistan was a failure", McShane says. "The COVID mandates that crushed businesses? Total failure. The stimulus, the rampant stimulus that resulted in - what we're seeing now is hyper-inflation? Total failure. So I think everything that you're seeing coming out of the mainstream media is an attempt to divert focus from the policy failures of the Biden administration".
At the same time, Biden's White House and the Democratic Party appear to be interested in the soaring numbers of newcomers, according to Shannon. On the one hand they say it helps Dems' allies in Big Business keep wages low
; on the other hand, the majority of Latino migrants historically vote for Democrats
"It's 'come one, come all' under the Biden administration", he says. "So if you understand, they want all this unskilled labour that will be dependent upon the government and in return will give Democrats their votes when they receive amnesty, which is another goal of the Democrats".
For its part, the Democrat-allied mainstream media is distorting the narrative of what's going on at the border to make law enforcement look bad, according to the political commentator.
"The vast majority of people in the opposition media are 'global citizens' and they don't like borders", Shannon notes. "They don't like nationalism. I can assure you, if the people crossing the border were non-profit executives, lawyers, newspaper reporters, and political operatives that it would be shut down tomorrow. But they don't compete with the people making the policy, so they don't care".