Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Life on a Border Ranch: Cut Water Lines, Downed Fences, Stolen Property, Dead Bodies


BISBEE, Arizona—John Ladd, whose family has ranched at the U.S.-Mexico border for more than 125 years, says illegal immigrants tell him that President Joe Biden invited them to come. 

“The biggest difference with the people coming now is, when Border Patrol catches them, they tell them, they say, ‘We’re going to stay here, no matter what you do to us, because your President Biden wants us,’” Ladd tells The Daily Signal in an interview on his ranch near Bisbee, Arizona. 

Ladd, 66, says he and his family are on constant alert for theft by illegal immigrants who cross the border onto his ranch. 

The ranchers also must make sure that cattle haven’t escaped and wandered onto the highway because illegal immigrants cut fences, Ladd says.

Ladd ranches the same land his parents did, about 16,000 acres that includes 10-and-a-half miles along the border. But times have changed since his parents worked the ranch. His great-grandparents came to the area in 1894. 

...Unlawful crossings from Mexico into the United States continue to skyrocket, with 178,622 arrests in April and 180,034 in May, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. 

The agency released the June numbers Friday, showing 188,829 arrests—the highest yet under Biden. 

Ladd says he has seen a huge influx of illegal immigrants since Biden took office Jan. 20. 

“During Trump’s administration, we didn’t have that,” Ladd says. “It was tolerable. But now all of a sudden it’s back to the way it used to be overnight.”

When Biden ended construction of the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border on Inauguration Day, he says, the flow really picked up.

“Biden signed the executive order,” Ladd says, adding:

Overnight, it started back up again. And now they’re catching at least 50 a day on the ranch. …

That’s what bothers me more than any of this. It’s a deliberate invitation for these people to come into the U.S. And Biden is behind it, and his administration.

When illegal immigrants cross onto his ranch, he says, they often cut water lines and fences, which becomes both a safety issue and financial liability for him. 

“The worst thing on cut fences is at the highway,” Ladd says. “And you get a cow on the highway, and black cows and black night aren’t conducive to people seeing them.”


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