Paul Haeder, Author

writing, interviews, editing, blogging

Image result for strange fruit

Southern trees bear strange fruit

Blood on the leaves and blood at the root

Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze

Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees

Pastoral scene of the gallant south

The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth

Scent of magnolias, sweet and fresh

Then the sudden smell of burning flesh

Here is fruit for the crows to pluck

For the rain to gather, for the wind to suck

For the sun to rot, for the trees to drop

Here is a strange and bitter crop

“Immigration along with nonwhite birthrates will make white people a minority totally vulnerable to the political, social, and economic will of blacks, Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, and Orientals. A social upheaval is now beginning to occur that will be the funeral dirge of the America we love. I shudder to contemplate the future under nonwhite occupation; rapes, murders, robberies multiplied a hundred fold, illiteracy such as in Haiti, medicine such as in Mexico, and tyranny such as in Togoland.”

David Duke

David Duke, the former KKK grand wizard, is unambiguous about what Saturday’s alt-right and neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, means to him: “It’s the fulfillment of President Donald Trump’s vision for America.”

“We are determined to take our country back,” Duke said from the rally, calling it a “turning point.” “We are going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump. That’s what we believed in. That’s why we voted for Donald Trump, because he said he’s going to take our country back.”

–David Felon Duke

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The man and his 23-month-old daughter lay face down in shallow water along the bank of the Rio Grande, his black shirt hiked up to his chest with the girl tucked inside. Her arm was draped around his neck suggesting she clung to him in her final moments.

The searing photograph of the sad discovery of their bodies on Monday, captured by journalist Julia Le Duc and published by Mexican newspaper La Jornada, highlights the perils faced by mostly Central American migrants fleeing violence and poverty and hoping for asylum in the United States.

According to Le Duc’s reporting for La Jornada, Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez, frustrated because the family from El Salvador was unable to present themselves to U.S. authorities and request asylum, swam across the river on Sunday with his daughter, Valeria.

Rosa Ramirez cries when shown a photograph printed from social media of her son Oscar Alberto Martinez Ramírez, 25, granddaughter Valeria, nearly 2, and her daughter-in-law Tania Vanessa Avalos, 21, while speaking to journalists at her home in San Martin, El Salvador, Tuesday, June 25, 2019. The drowned bodies of her son and granddaughter were located Monday morning on the banks of the Rio Grande, a day after the pair were swept away by the current when the young family tried to cross the river to Brownsville, Texas. Her daughter-in-law survived. (AP Photo/Antonio Valladares)

This is the new image of America, from Reagan through to the Bushes, Clinton, Obama and Trump. Not one moment of silence in the minds of those pathetic boring people in the 2020 Demon-crat debates. Smirks and snickers from Trump and Company, and laughs from Tea Party goons all the way through the elite Evangelical class. The strange fruit of a new era of killing people seeking justice, humanity, love and peace.

For Americans — the brown-red-yellow-back people are not even people, less than a bunch of dogs.

The New Colossus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,

With conquering limbs astride from land to land;

Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand

A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame

Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name

Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand

Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command

The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she

With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

Statue of Liberty poem New Colossus
See the source image
Julia Le Duc’s reports for La Jornada

This is it, really, the death image of America — 2019 and beyond, forever. This strikes at the soul of caring people: people coming here to find something better, in the lands occupied by the first illegal aliens. Those Puritans, Those Trappers, Those Vikings, Those Conquistadors, Those Plantation Owners, Those Colonists, Those Hudson Bay Companymen, Those Thieves and Witch Burners and Those Blanket Seeders.

I wrote this article below, years ago, when I was working in El Paso, in Mexico, and doing what any real journalist might do: reporting on the death campaign of militarized borders, guns for drugs, despots for-by-with-because of North America . . . and then at night, helping refugees get into the USA without papers and without Border Agency legitimacy and into Canada (then, a “safe” harbor of sorts for refugees from Central America, like Salvador and Guatemala). When my editors found out, I was sacked! Fellow reporters called it crossing lines.

Nothing has changed, and the killers of capitalism and leaders of racism and war mongers and structural violence perps and the human-killing sanctions adherents and the taxing-fining-bail bonding-tolling-interest rate-mortgaging Little Eichmanns will continue to maximize profits through deaths, destruction, despair! Media are the Monsters, now, was, always has been in Yellow Journalism America. Trump is Eisenhower is Teddy is Woodward Wilson is Reagan is Andrew Jackson is Bill Clinton is Deporter in Chief Obama. The very idea of a US presidency in a white supremacist USA society is that person is the bidder for Wall Street and Banks and Militarists, all racists through and through. We are what we say, think, do, eat, believe, pray for, hope for, drink, consume, read, watch, follow, purport. We are what we pay taxes for. We are what we don’t know. We are what we turn to when we see-hear-speak no evil!

See the source image
See the source image

This Land is Their Land, and We Are the Illegal Aliens 

April 7, 2006

“We are all illegal aliens.” It’s a bumper sticker many of us on the front lines of the fight against the United States’ government’s assault on Central Americans plastered on our car bumpers down El Paso way.

That was in the 1980s.

You know, when Reagan was running amok ordering his captains Ollie North, McFarland, Casper Weinberger, the whole lot of them, to send bombs, CIA-torture manuals and US agents in order to aid terrorist contras and other despotic sorts in killing hundreds of thousands of innocents in civil wars in Salvador and Guatemala and El Salvador.

We worked with women and children who had witnessed fathers, uncles and husbands eviscerated by US-backed military monsters. Victims of torture, in Texas illegally. You know, what those brave Smith and Wesson-brandishing, chaise lounge Minutemen of today would call aliens.

We worked with people in faith-based communities, mainstream churches, and non-profits throughout El Paso, Juarez and the general area known as La Frontera. Everyone I met working with in this refugee assistance stint had humanitarian blood coursing through their veins. We were proud of our law-breaking work — we gave refuge to terrorized and sometimes half-dead civilians.

We were called lawbreakers by the Reaganites and the Minutemen of that time. Communists. Pinko-fags. Those were the good old days of low-tech surveillance and simple FBI lists.

But what we did was human and humane, in the tradition of that very universal (with roots in Quakerism) belief in bearing witness and acting upon that which has been judged as unjust and inhumane.

Of course, we were up against the laws of this land and coarse politically driven judges who denied victim after victim permanent or temporary status while seeking asylum in the US.

We have so many stories of people sent back who were at best imprisoned, and in the worse cases, mutilated, disappeared, and murdered.

Guatemalan and Salvadorans, that is. Your readers don’t want to hear the narratives and visualize the descriptions of photos of those victims of torture. Ghastly things happened to teachers, nuns, medical workers and farmers, more heinous than what we’ve heard happened in the cells of Abu Ghraib.

We were there to assist, but more importantly to bear witness to our country’s terror campaign. Some of us got so riled up that later in our lives — me included — we hoofed it to Central America. Kicked around. Wrote articles for the few newspapers in this country that even cared about poor, misbegotten, displaced people of Latin America.

But no matter how hard-nosed we became, or how much we could withstand the photographs of women’s sliced backs and beheaded fetuses, we couldn’t shake the images of the children of torture at this two-story refugee house, Annunciation House. It was full of scruffy looking East Coast volunteers who had hooked up with Ruben Garcia, the House’s director, through Catholic services organizations. It was their stint with public service, their spiritual duty calling. Part of their degree plans. But most were converted and slammed hard by the violence their charges had suffered under.

Those PTSD-induced cartoons those children drew sucked the air out of even the hard-ass border patrol guys who used to “dump” the Central Americans at Ruben’s door at all hours of the night. Who can believe it now, that once upon a time official INS and border patrol officers knowingly let their perps go — knew that Ruben and his volunteers could salve emotional and physical wounds  of these tortured crossers.

Their chance at freedom. Except for the piss-ant judges. And the memories of pregnant aunties being raped, their fetuses cut out alive, speared, and the laughing Reagan-loved military punks in the highlands and jungle.

Annunciation House was bulging at 100 people — disheveled lives jammed in. Beans always cooking. Songs. Mattresses and piles of donated clothes. Guitars strumming.  “We are all illegal aliens.” It’s a bumper sticker many of us on the front lines of the fight against the United States’ government’s assault on Central Americans plastered on our car bumpers down El Paso way. , the white ones, and the Chicanos would help with in-takes — asylum transcripts, translation, dotting all the i’s and t’s. Help with getting jobs. Odd jobs in the community. Help with making sure the refugees didn’t get caught again.

But it was always those by-the-letter-of-the-law jurists helping confound the torture. More than 70 percent of our brothers and sisters seeking asylum in the US were denied entry by some fat cat, cocaine-sniffing immigration judge who usually had a friend in the back pocket of some Bush or buddy of Bush somewhere.

Then it was trying to get the denied victims off to Canada without being caught. You remember, the Canada back then which used to open its borders to refugees.

The judges and politicians and Minutemen all professed, “Send them back. Those aliens broke our immigration laws.”

But “we are all illegal aliens” as a rejoinder went much further than USA’s mayhem in Mesoamerica. We worked in solidarity with the housekeepers, bricklayers, agricultural workers and so many other worthy Mexicans who worked their butts off in the US for little pay and much less respect.

These were workers who crossed the Rio Grande to find low-paying jobs with American families and businesses — working for mayors, bigwigs, even on government contracts. In Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, elsewhere. With a wink and a smile by the American exploiters.

Mojado — wetback. Squatter. Beaner. Illegal alien. These were the more tame epithets.

But let’s not kid ourselves about the genesis of this new round of empowered Latinos fighting against racist laws put forward by the dispassionate conservatives running the ship of fools in DC.

This is not a country of legal immigrants. It’s a country based on colonialists, undocumented white people who helped displace native tribes through broken laws and genocide.

It’s a country based on illegal occupation of native lands and on Mexico’s lands, pure and simple. Colonialists protected by Federal laws that deemed free white people as the only ones who had the right to be fully-fledged citizens.

Manifest destiny was a violent racist act to seize lands illegally. Everything this country’s current anti-Mexican and pro-Apartheid border war proponents stand upon — all that doctrine and those so-called laws — is based on illegally seizing lands of Native tribes.

And worse — laws that “removed” natives. Laws that starved natives. Laws that approved of eradicating native families, entire tribes.

The current massive turnout of students and workers alike in this country’s major cities is a testament to these Americans’ backbone to fight this new exclusionary law — HR4377 — a Washington, DC-inspired racist act that has its roots in the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882.

Many Americans do express a certain humanity and dignity for the people many deem aliens, but it’s not awe-inspiring that some citizens of Denmark or Limerick, Ireland, obey the so-called immigration laws of this country during their initial years as landed immigrants.

Let’s make no bones about the motives of Jim Sensenbrenner, the author of this racist House bill: He sees those brown-skinned south-of-the-border lettuce pickers, linen washers, house framers, and their US-borne children as, what? “Alien gang members terrorizing communities.”

Anyone spouting that we are a nation of immigrants and laws has a disease, what George Orwell called the illness of double-think.

And until those many white Americans stop spewing that this is their land, a land of their laws, and a land made for Christians, the racist Minutemen will ramp up their gun brandishing on the southern and northern borders. And racist politicians will continue to play on the fears of uniformed constituents and try and pass the 21st Century’s racist exclusionary laws.

I wonder what these modern-day Nazis would say about those children’s cartoons — images of bodies floating in rivers. Blood-soaked church walls. Military men with their M-16s trained on men while others were in their rape hunch. Beautiful jungle birds flying in the sky next to US-paid-for helicopter gun ships spraying the corn fields below. Dead mommies cradling dead babies.

Yeah, I’m an illegal alien. We all are illegal aliens, under the laws of these creeps in high office. Humanity and caring and simple benedictions for suffering so much, those are alien traits only held by a minority in this country of exclusion. Yeah, those creeps on hate-radio and in the newspaper columns and on Capitol Hill, sure, they recognize all of us who see the lies and fight the injustice as aliens.

And the children whose post-traumatic cartoons brought tears to men and women who had been in Vietnam. Simple Crayola colorings brought tears to a county sheriff who had survived drug runners shooting up his town and unearthed bodies.

Yeah, we are all illegal aliens. Except them.

Paul Haeder worked in Central America and Mexico writing for newspapers during the 1980s and early 1990s. He’s currently in Spokane, Washington, as an instructor of writing at Spokane Falls Community College and writes sustainability-energy-environmental pieces for the towns weekly, Pacific Northwest Inlander.  

Image result for childrens drawings of murders in Central America by death squads

Over the weekend, Trump’s [white supremacist for decades] purported indifference to support from white supremacists and fascists became an inescapable problem. He had retweeted a Mussolini quote from @ilduce2016 (which, it turned out, was an account created by Gawker to trap Trump)— “It is better to live one day as a lion than 100 years as a sheep”—and, when asked, on NBC, if he wanted to associate himself with Mussolini, he said that he wanted “to be associated with interesting quotes.”

He added, “Mussolini was Mussolini. . . . What difference does it make?”

On CNN, Jake Tapper pressed him about David Duke, and Trump, seeming to forget that he had given a one-line disavowal, reverted to a position of theatrical incomprehension: “Just so you understand, I don’t know anything about David Duke, O.K.?”

Tapper asked three times if Trump would denounce the Klan’s support, and each time Trump declined. “I don’t know anything about what you’re even talking about with white supremacy or white supremacists,” he said. “So I don’t know. I don’t know—did he endorse me, or what’s going on? Because I know nothing about David Duke; I know nothing about white supremacists.”

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Image result for old racist images of immigrants
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3 thoughts on “The Image Burning Our Hearts

  1. haederpaul says:

    Add-on — Stupid, conservative, absolutely Trump is My Papa President (sic) of El Salvador says this about these two humans, father and daughter, killed by USA policies, by the Border Patrol, by Trump and Company, et al:

    El Salvador’s president says his country is to blame for the drowning deaths last week of a migrant father and daughter trying to cross the Rio Grande River into the U.S.

    Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele made the statement in a press conference Sunday. The widely seen photo of Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez and his nearly two-year-old daughter brought worldwide attention to the perils many migrants face in their journeys to reach the U.S. for asylum.

    Bukele said many Salvadoran migrants feel they have to flee the country due to poor living conditions, lack of economic and educational opportunities, and gang violence. He said, “They feel safer crossing a desert, three frontiers, and all of the things that may happen in the road to the United States because they feel that’s more secure than living here.”

    Bukele, who was elected earlier this year, reiterated his promise to end corruption, create more jobs and reduce crime and gang violence. El Salvador has one of the world’s highest murder rates, and close to one-third of the country’s households live in poverty.


    This is what makes the male species so rotten to the core, that this conservative “businessman” would dare open his mouth about the US-Mexico border. Those two humans died because the USA’s policies of treating humans like dogs, whether it’s from Trump’s shit-hole El Salvador or Yemen. Yet, this Bukele, opens his rotten mouth. What in God’s name does the El Salvadoran government or people or nation have to do with the murderers in the USA who do this to human beings wanting to come into this country?


  2. haederpaul says:

    The perversity of the USA, coming up on the bloody nation’s stolen land anniversary, shows how schizophrenic this country is, beyond collective mental delusion. The entire nation as viewed through the Liberals-Conservative fog of stupidity is illustrated through the pedophile in chief’s dictum:

    In more immigration news, NPR is reporting the Department of Homeland Security has sent out fines to a number of immigrants for “failing to depart the U.S. as previously agreed.” The fines in some cases are as high as half a million dollars. Lizbeth Mateo, an attorney for one of the recipients of a DHS fine, told NPR the administration is issuing the fines to increase pressure on immigrant communities and may be laying the groundwork for further criminal penalties. She said, “I laughed, because there has to be someone in some basement in D.C. thinking, ‘Oh, what else can I do to mess with immigrants? What else can I do to hurt them?’” Earlier this week, Trump said that previously announced immigration raids will begin after the upcoming July 4 weekend if Congress fails to pass new restrictions on asylum seekers.


  3. haederpaul says:

    HERO — Federal prosecutors announced Tuesday they will retry humanitarian aid volunteer and immigration rights activist Scott Warren on two charges related to aiding migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border. This comes just a few weeks after a jury refused to convict Warren for providing water, food, clean clothes and beds to two undocumented migrants crossing the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona. Eight jurors found Warren not guilty; four said he was. Federal prosecutors will make their case against Warren again in an 8-day jury trial in November. They have dropped a conspiracy charge against him. If convicted on the two felony migrant harboring charges, Warren faces up to 10 years in prison.

    VILLAIN — A decorated Navy SEAL accused of several war crimes—including fatally stabbing a teenage Islamic State prisoner in 2017—was found not guilty of murder on Tuesday.

    Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, 39, was found not guilty of several charges, including premeditated murder and attempted murder. He was found guilty of wrongfully posing for an unofficial picture with a human casualty.

    The veteran, who served in eight overseas deployments, was charged in September with over a dozen offenses for allegedly shooting multiple Iraqi civilians in 2017—including a school-aged girl—and fatally stabbing an injured ISIS teen who was receiving medical treatment.

    After the stabbing, Gallagher held a “reenlistment ceremony” next to the body, prosecutors alleged.

    CHIEF MOB BOSS — The House Ways and Means Committee has sued the Treasury Department and the IRS over their refusal to hand over President Trump’s tax returns. Democrats issued subpoenas for Trump’s financial records in May. Trump’s legal counsel dubbed the lawsuit “presidential harassment” and said they would fight it in court.

    COLLECTIVE PIGS in USA — However, one vital difference should be underlined. Virtually everyone within a sniff of political power abandoned the Japanese-Americans, but resistance to the Trump administration is real — and embodied in prominent public figures like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

    Although the prospect of immigrant children being shipped off to former WWII internment camps doesn’t inspire much confidence about the future, this battle is not lost yet.


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