Monday, April 4, 2011

Border Patrol agent questions drug war, Loses job!

Drugs and the Border <----Click here for the podcast.

The Mexican ambassador is not the only one to lose his job for speaking the truth. U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agent Bryan Gonzalez had two years of experience and excellent performance reviews when the Border Patrol terminated his employment after learning that he had political opinions about drug legalization and immigration. He’s now a client of the ACLU-New Mexico, and he was featured today on “The Story” by American Public Media [Click link at the top of this post to listen to his very powerful story!]
Patrolling near Deming, New Mexico in April 2009, Gonzalez pulled his vehicle up next to a fellow CBP agent. In the course of a casual discussion concerning the drug-related violence in Mexico, Gonzales remarked that he believed that legalization of drugs would be the most effective way to end the violence. He also told the other agent that, as a former dual U.S.-Mexican citizen, he understood the economic factors that drive migrants to cross the border without documentation to seek work.
Word of Gonzalez's opinions quickly spread to his supervisor, who told the Joint Intake Command in Washington, D.C. Internal Affairs soon launched an investigation, and the Border Patrol terminated Gonzalez in October 2009, just weeks before his probationary period would end.
The termination letter stated that Gonzalez held "personal views that were contrary to the core characteristics of Border Patrol Agents, which are patriotism, dedication, and esprit de corps."
"I was terminated not because my service was inadequate, but because I hold certain opinions that are shared by millions of my fellow Americans," said Gonzalez. "I am no less patriotic or dedicated to excellence in my work because I respectfully disagree with some of our current border enforcement policies. It was wrong for the U.S. Border Patrol to retaliate against me for exercising my free speech rights guaranteed by the very Constitution I swore to uphold."
ACLU-NM seeks a declaration by the court that the Border Patrol violated Bryan Gonzalez's First Amendment right to free speech, as well as compensatory and punitive damages.
"Firing a public servant because of their political opinions is an egregious violation of the First Amendment," said ACLU-NM Executive Director Peter Simonson. "We cannot require nor should we expect uniformity of thought within our law enforcement institutions. Purging the ranks of government employees who fail "ideological purity" tests is about as un-American as it gets."


Information Source: ACLU press release

3 comments:

One Fly said...

bush still lives

Border Explorer said...

Head's up, One. The DHS in Washington DC is scoping out this post pretty carefully. Your tax dollar at work.

How do I get paid to read blogs?

One Fly said...

Really?? Tell us more.

If you figure out how to get paid please share.

Glad I saw this.