On June 11th, 2023, LUPE, along with members and allies, took a stand against the harmful and divisive policies passed and signed into law by the Texas Legislature and Gov. Abbott. Hundreds of people from all races and backgrounds, both within and outside of Texas, joined forces to actively oppose these policies.
Gov. Abbott has once again proven that he is not for the people of Texas, as evidenced by his actions taken on Thursday, June 8. He signed into law six border militarization bills, further demonstrating his lack of support for the people:
- SB 423: This bill authorizes the Texas Military Department to utilize drones as part of their mission to secure the southern border.
- SB 602: Under current law, federal border patrol agents are only allowed to detain certain individuals at established border checkpoints and points of entry pending transfer to a peace officer. This does not include the power to arrest or search and seizure.
- SB 1133: Related to property damages for border landowners
- SB 1403: This bill gives permissive authority to the Governor to coordinate and execute interstate compact for border security among interested states that does not require congressional approval.
- SB 1484: This bill allows DPS to train local Texans law enforcement officers to deal with cartel activity and related crimes
- SB 1900: Senate Bill 1900 will designate “drug cartels” and other similar groups as “foreign terrorist organizations” under state law.”
In addition, he continues to pursue ways to block LGBTQ+ Texans' access to life-saving medical care and their right to make choices about their own bodies. Despite these challenges, various organizations stood their ground and took to the streets of Austin, united in their goal to make Texas a better place for everyone, regardless of race, skin color, income, gender, or sexuality.
This march, organized by Never Again, hosted a coalition of organizations including the Texas Civil Rights Project, The Austin Youth Liberation Movement, and The San Marcos Abortion Activists. While these groups had different missions, they shared a common objective: to keep Gov. Abbott's hands off our families, loved ones, identities, bodies, and homes. Witnessing the presence of groups from outside Texas, as well as Texans themselves, and even individuals who flew in from New York for Sunday's March of Defiance, opened my eyes to the interconnectedness of our struggle. We all made significant efforts to be there that day, traveling long distances, such as the five-hour drive we had from the frontera.
During the march, which attracted hundreds of people, I heard the chant, “Whose streets? Our streets!” This made me reflect on how interconnected we truly are – through our actions, our concerns, and our shared goals of ensuring each other's safety. We believe that every voice matters, and by reaching out to your representatives, you can make a difference and contribute to building a stronger and more equitable future for our communities.
Si Se Puede!