Despite the burdensome Texas heat, the pro-life movement journeyed to the border to deliver supplies and thousands of dollars worth of aid to respite centers at the United States and Mexico border. Launched by the New Wave Feminists and Abby Johnson’s And Then There Were None pro-life ministry, the #BottlestotheBorder campaign succeeded in collecting $120,000 worth of supplies and $70,000 worth of aid to the centers where migrants are temporarily housed. Combining their philanthropic efforts, the groups were able to deliver 121,072 diapers, 30,700 pairs of shoelaces, 13,230 bottles of water, 6,660 pull-ups, 3,100 backpacks, 16,172 ounces of formula, 9,720 maxi pads, and 750 rosaries to the border. But when the groups arrived to unload the supplies from a generously donated 18-wheeler, they encountered a press conference being held by Democratic congress members who were there for a photo-op.
The delegation of Democrats had put up a roadblock in order to hold their press conference, which meant the 18-wheeler full of humanitarian aid could not get through. New Wave Feminists founder Herndon-De La Rosa and her volunteers were forced to remove the roadblock themselves because the delegation left it up after leaving at the conclusion of the press conference. But even when the congress people were at the border, they did very little to help the people there.
The media took photos as Congressional aides passed out plastic toys to the children. Johnson recalls how they were all dressed in “starched suits and pressed dresses,” and their shoes were neatly polished. During their press conference, the delegation revealed that they had combined their efforts to donate a whole one thousand dollars as part of the relief effort for people at the border.
Volunteers from pro-life groups had arrived at the border to unload supplies that are so desperately needed such as diapers, formula, and water. Attempting to reach out, Johnnson walked right up to the Democrats and asked the delegates if they wanted to assist with unpacking supplies meant to help those at the border.
“Excuse me: I need your attention. We’re going to have an 18-wheeler full of supplies here in 20 minutes. If you want to actually do something for these people that doesn’t involve giving them a dollar store toy and doesn’t involve getting a photo op but actually does something for them to help then you can help us unload this 18-wheeler….”
Unfortunately, Johnson’s attempts to persuade them to step away from their opportunity for a photo-op were unsuccessful, as the members of Congress claimed they only had 10 more minutes. They then proceeded to move to the other side of the room and continue their press conference for another 30 minutes. For Johnson, the site of this was heartbreaking.
“This trip to the border wasn’t about politics; it was about people. But seeing those Congressional representatives blatantly use those immigrants for their own political purposes was sickening, especially since there was a legitimate opportunity to do something to actually help them right at the center.”
Still, Johnson was determined to not give up, and as they began to unload, Rep. Vincente Gonzalez of Texas walked by, and the group once again asked for his help. Dismissively, he waved his hand and said he would send someone as he climbed back into his air-conditioned car and left. Johnson was disappointed but not surprised when no one from his office came to help.
Working for over three hours in the 102-degree heat, men and women from the pro-life movement emptied the truck in a small back alley next to half a dozen dumpsters. Johnson recalled how they were “sore and tired and thirsty and probably smelled horrible,” but it was worth the effort, as the volunteers were able to connect with those at the border as they smiled and passed out supplies.
This was not an opportunity for them to have their pictures taken in front of a camera to gain credit for their philanthropic deeds, but a chance to offer compassion to those in need just for the sake of goodness itself. These are real people in need of aid at the border, not props to be used for political purposes, and it is going to take a lot more than a photo-op to bring humanitarian aid to the border.
Luckily, the pro-life movement has dutifully risen to the task of easing the suffering of those in need. Johnson said of her experience helping those at the border:
“…We did something the government couldn’t do–we used whatever resources we had to make something happen for the good of vulnerable human beings. And the offer still stands for elected officials to help us out next time.”
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.