HARLINGEN — Joyce Hamilton and several others planned to bend the ear of the City Commission with a protest earlier this week.
The locals intended to make it clear to the city that more than 300 residents are against the border wall, and they want the city to take their side on the matter.
For them, forming a critical mass was their way of getting their message across.
One by one, Harlingen and area residents walked into City Hall ready to protest. They were holding their signs and wearing T-shirts that read “no border wall” and “Save Santa Ana.”
It was their impression the city had been dodging their request to place a resolution on the agenda to ban the border wall.
But Mayor Chris Boswell assured them it was not the case.
“The mayor said they were going to put our resolution on the next city agenda two weeks from now,” said Hamilton, a Harlingen resident. “We have been working very hard to get this resolution on one of the agendas soon.”
Boswell said prior to the start of the meeting that just because an item does not appear on the agenda does not mean it won’t appear later.
Boswell said the city had many items commissioners needed to deal with prior to addressing a resolution against the border wall.
Hamilton said the group had tried for more than three weeks to get the resolution on the agenda.
She said more than 300 Harlingen residents had signed a petition requesting the city adopt a resolution against the wall.
According to Hamilton, 17 cities and counties have passed resolutions against the border wall.
Harlingen would become the 18th city to pass a resolution against the president’s campaign promise to build a wall that would start at the Santa Ana Refuge.
“Ecotourism is a big part of this concern,” Hamilton said.
“Harlingen is on the national and international map as a city that cares about wildlife,” Hamilton said, referencing Harlingen’s Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival.
The festival is going on its 24th year and takes bird watches who come from around the world throughout the Valley’s state parks and wildlife refuges.
“The most important message we have in this resolution is the wall would cause irreversible destruction not just to the Santa Ana wildlife refuge, but state parks and ecotourism,” Hamilton said.