Obama-appointed judge rules building fence on border could discriminate against minorities

Judge Beryl Howell
Judge Beryl Howell

Building a wall to deter illegal immigrants, drug smugglers, weapons dealers, and potential terrorists on the porous U.S.-Mexican border doesn’t carry much clout with Judge Beryl Howell. But the “human rights impact” for local landowners does, as she declared the fence could discriminate against minorities.

The 2010 Obama-appointed federal judge ruled in a complaint brought by taxpayer-funded University of Texas-Austin Professor Denise Gilman, that the Department of Homeland Security must reveal where exactly it intends to erect the reinforced fencing necessary to secure the border. Gilman fears that the Congressionally-mandated construction will have an adverse effect on minority communities near the construction area, Judicial Watch reports.

Sitting in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Howell agreed in her 37-page ruling that “revealing the identities of landowners in the wall’s planned construction site may shed light on the impact on indigenous communities, the disparate impact on lower-income communities, and the practices of private contractors.”

This is not the first controversial ruling by the former lobbyist for the Recording Industry Association of America, but its impact on national security and dismissal of a notoriously violent section of the Texas boundary lends credence to the president’s promise, “to fundamentally transform American society.”

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Richard Berkow

Former political news reporter Richard Berkow lost his idealism in the Kennedy years, and his innocence in Vietnam, Lebanon, and the Soviet Union. He hasn’t mellowed since, and can be harassed at [email protected]

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