I received the following e-mail from a Texas state official who recently toured the border area where the mass crossings are taking place. This is an excerpt from his note (he asked that his name be withheld):
What we saw and heard was maddening, frightening, and pathetic.
The pictures shown in the media of the conditions at the BP [Border Patrol] facilities is accurate. We saw several hundred youths crammed into holding cells, with the spillover out in the loading dock area. While we did see some infants and small children. the vast majority were teenage males. Although the [redacted] facility was terribly overcrowded, sanitation seemed adequate at the time, but BP officers were concerned about the spread of disease.
BP officials and line officers were clearly demoralized by what is going on. BP folks were very candid in saying there was nothing they could do about the kids pouring across the border unless there was a change in policy in DC. BP officials almost begged us (us being state officials and staff) to help get the policy changed. They readily admitted that none of these kids were ever going to be sent back and that our border is wide open for unaccompanied minors. BP also said that the drug cartels are certainly taking advantage of the situation. The BP personnel, including senior officials, we talked to were very demoralized. In contrast, the Texas Department of Public Safety is doing a great job of trying to pick up the slack ... in fact I was told by one BP official that if it wasn't for DPS there wouldn't be any security on the Texas border. That is sad and pathetic.