fbpx
Connect with us

Texas News

Texas pecan farmers on the front lines of border crisis | Texas

Published

on

www.thecentersquare.com – By Bethany Blankley | contributor – 2023-06-25 07:45:00

(The Center Square) – Depending on how one says, “pea-can” or “puh-cahn,” it's easy for natives to tell if the person speaking is a Texan or not. The little nut packed with nutrients and properly pronounced “puh-cahn,” as natives will tell you, bears great significance to the Lone Star State.

The pecan tree was first discovered in what is now the southernmost part of El Paso County, Texas. The only tree nut native to the United States, it's the state tree of Texas. Pecans are also the Texas health nut and pecan pie is the official state pie.

A multi-generational group of families in the El Paso Valley who've committed their whole lives to growing the state nut say their lives, livelihood and way of life are in jeopardy because of heavy foot traffic and crime coming from the border since the administration of President Joe Biden began.

Advertisement

“The only reason I sleep at night is the Trump wall and the Second Amendment,” Jennifer Ivey, the wife of a pecan farmer and Republican Party precinct chair, told The Center Square in an exclusive interview during a visit to one of the family groves.

The pecan orchards in the El Paso Valley thrive in one of the most unique geographic regions of the state. The valley produces over 50% of all pecans grown in Texas. Fifteen states produce pecans; Georgia, New Mexico and Texas produce the most.

Many of the El Paso County pecan orchards are located roughly a mile from where the Trump wall was erected in 2020. The wall was built to replace a 2009-era steel fence built after Congress passed the 2006 Secure Fence Act, which received significant Democratic support. Through it, funds were allocated to construct “two layers of reinforced fencing” and “additional physical barriers” along a 700-mile stretch in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. In a 2011 speech in El Paso, then President Barack Obama said construction was “basically complete.” Critics at the time, however, argued only 5% was complete.

And it wasn't enough to act as a deterrent to drug and human trafficking, which locals say was heavy during the Obama administration and dropped under the Trump administration. Now, under the Biden administration, residents say they're being overrun.

In January 2021, 131 miles of Trump's new border wall was completed, including in southern El Paso County. It's much taller and thicker than the 2009-era fence and cemented in concrete below the surface. When completed, former Customs and Border Protection Chief Mark Morgan published photos comparing the two.

Advertisement

In the historic border town of San Elizario, The Center Square observed where farmers' fields come right up to the wall and a few hundred yards away are residential neighborhoods.

Multigenerational families, descendants of legal immigrants from several countries, began farming this region more than 100 years ago. But as foreign nationals began cutting through the 2009-era fence or used rebar and ladders to climb over it, their way of life was forever altered.

Ivey described what it was like living in this region prior to the Trump wall being built. “Imagine feeling like your living on the street and people are walking by all night long and you have a bunch of little children to protect,” she said. “Every morning you have to look around your shoulder, around your surroundings to protect your children. Because you never know where illegal aliens will be.”

Advertisement

Now, over a decade later, nearly every night, people are trespassing on private property, walking right up to and past their homes, residents told The Center Square. At a recent meeting at a home in Fabens, one resident said as illegal foreign nationals move north, they're “defecating in the fields, leaving their passports on the ground, all night long, it's like that.”

On one property, farmers found 1,000 pounds of marijuana buried in a ditch in their pecan orchard. They called a sheriff's deputy who came and arrested the alleged traffickers, who were all in the U.S. illegally.

At another, a farmer found several hundred pounds of drugs and called the sheriff, who confiscated it. The next day, an abandoned vehicle was left in front of the farmer's house filled with low quality marijuana. On the dashboard was a note that said, “By the time you read this, we've already moved 10 times the amount of drugs through your farm. Do not try to stop us.”

Those involved with drug trafficking and smuggling often hide large volumes of drugs on farmland near the border. One group brings and hides the stash; a second group comes to retrieve and deliver it, the farmers explained. They said, they're “being invaded by people who don't want to do with our way of life.”

“This is still America,” Ivey said. “I still want to believe that things will get better. I'm going to keep standing for our constitutional rights and defend our freedoms and not stay afraid.

Advertisement

“If Trump's wall wasn't there we would be completely overrun.”







El Paso border wall border crisis

Border wall in southern El Paso County in San Elizario, Texas, where a 2009-era fence built by the Obama administration was replaced in 2020 with a wall built by the Trump administration.

Advertisement




Read More

The post Texas pecan farmers on the front lines of border crisis | Texas appeared first on www.thecentersquare.com

Advertisement

Texas News

The town that changed its name for free cable TV

Published

on

www.kxan.com – Russell Falcon – 2024-02-24 15:08:00

SUMMARY: In 2005, the small town of Clark in Texas changed its name to DISH in exchange for free cable TV service for ten years from Dish Network. However, the deal only provided basic service for free, with premium channels costing extra. The city hoped the offer would attract more residents and businesses, but the influx was not as expected. The deal expired in 2015, and discussions have been held about changing the name back to Clark or something else, but no action has been taken. Texas is known for its odd town names, including Bug Tussle, Cut and Shoot, Jot ‘Em Down, and Nameless.

Read the full article

The post The town that changed its name for free cable TV appeared first on www.kxan.com

Continue Reading

Texas News

Big 12 men’s basketball matchup: No. 2 Houston Cougars beat No. 11 Baylor Bears in overtime at Foster Pavilion

Published

on

abc13.com – KTRK – 2024-02-24 14:58:44

SUMMARY: The University of Houston men’s basketball team defeated Baylor 82-76 in their first visit to Waco in 28 years. The Cougars shot 58% in the first half and led 41-25 at halftime. UH guard Emanuel Sharp scored 18 points, with teammate Jamal Shead adding a double-double. Houston forward J’Wan Roberts scored 17 points. Baylor guard Ja’Kobe Walter scored 23 points and RayJ Dennis added 21 points. Despite a close finish, Houston secured the win and improved to a 24-3 overall record. They are now at the top of the Big 12 conference standings and will face Cincinnati next before finishing out their schedule in March.

Read the full article

The post Big 12 men’s basketball matchup: No. 2 Houston Cougars beat No. 11 Baylor Bears in overtime at Foster Pavilion appeared first on abc13.com

Continue Reading

Texas News

Oscars red carpet: Top 10 most iconic fashion moments for women in recent years

Published

on

abc13.com – OTRC – 2024-02-24 13:00:25

SUMMARY: The Oscars red carpet inspires a fashion fantasy world, with supermodel Roshumba Williams listing her top 10 best-dressed women in recent years. Nicole Kidman stunned in Dior in 2018, Janelle Monae shined in 2020, Gemma Chan made an impact in hot pink Valentino in 2019, and Zendaya stood out in yellow in 2021. Gwyneth Paltrow impressed in a cape dress in 2012, Charlize Theron turned heads in classic black in 2020, and Jennifer Lopez was breathtaking in blush in 2015. Lupita Nyong’o, Julia Roberts, and Halle Berry also made the list with their timeless and memorable fashion choices. The 2024 Oscars will air on March 10.

Read the full article

The post Oscars red carpet: Top 10 most iconic fashion moments for women in recent years appeared first on abc13.com

Continue Reading

News from the South

Trending