Tamika Mallory delivered a veritable sermon Tuesday morning responding to the devastating images of Border Patrol agents appearing to use whips from horseback in order to corral Haitian migrants attempting to cross into the U.S. from Mexico.
Going live on her Instagram, the activist and organizer railed against the Biden administration and questioned the apparent hypocrisy of the Democratic Party’s leadership responding to the humanitarian crisis in Texas along the nation’s southern border. Mallory’s words came days after the Department of Homeland Security began expelling Haitian migrants from the border town of Del Rio, where an estimated 14,000 people had been gathering in anticipation of seeking legal asylum in the U.S.
During what was at times an emotional appeal for a stronger condemnation of the brutality at the border that evoked images of slavery, Mallory wondered why Democrats weren’t making a bigger deal out of it like she said they would if it happened on Donald Trump’s watch.
“They would be having a press conference,” Mallory said of Democrats.
Noting how Biden was fresh off his first United Nations address as president on Tuesday morning, Mallory pointed out how he didn’t use the opportunity to address the most recent update to the U.S.’ ongoing immigration crisis.
“I didn’t hear anything about whips” Mallory said in response to watching Biden’s UN speech.
Mallory then turned her attention to Democratic leadership in Congress, specifically asking why House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer had not publicized the issue more — something she suggested would have happened automatically had the atrocities to Haitian migrants happened on Trump’s watch.
“Have they have a press conference this morning?” Mallory asked rhetorically?
The answer is no. But Schumer did quietly express some of the same grievances that Mallory expressed, according to a single tweet from PBS correspondent Lisa Desjardins. Schumer reportedly called for the Department of Homeland Security to stop deporting the migrants from Texas and compared the “xenophobic” treatment to something from Trump’s administration.
Pelosi issued a brief three-sentence statement on Monday referencing “the inappropriate use of what appear to be whips by Border Patrol officers on horseback to intimidate migrants.”
But Mallory’s larger point remained relevant: why is there not more of an outcry from Congress and the White House?
“They are responsible,” Mallory said of Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, using their names. “There’s nobody else.”
Mallory said that yes, the Department of Homeland Security bears the blame, as well — especially the main Border Patrol agent who was seen in a viral video cursing at a Haitian migrant using rhetoric associated with Trump’s position on “shithole countries” — but Biden and Harris are “the ones that have a responsibility to deal with this. It should have never happened under their watch.”
She said this is much bigger than just one group of Border Patrol agents.
“His boss needs to be fired, and their bosses,” Mallory said, “not the man with the whip.”
She doubled down on this point.
“So there’s no way to get around the fact that under this administration, they are responsible,” Mallory reiterated, “and the president and vice president need to be on TV today saying they take full responsibility.”
Harris, for her part, said Tuesday during a brief interview that she was “troubled” by the imagery she saw.
Mallory used the immigration crisis at the border to point out the unfulfilled campaign promises Biden made to the Black community when he was a candidate.
“My vote went to people who said they were gonna do something,” Mallory said. “They lied.”
Mallory added: “We want to see Black people protected. That’s it. This is not hard, it’s not difficult to understand.”
Speaking in no uncertain terms, Mallory said Biden and Harris are directly to blame.
“Y’all are responsible,” she said. “The buck stops with them.”
Mallory drew a contrast between Vice President Harris and Sen. Harris, the latter of whom Mallory said was outspoken on such issues.
If Harris was still a U.S. Senator, “she, along with the rest of them, would be at a press conference this morning,” Mallory said.
Toward the end, Mallory suggested that a boycott of sorts may be in order
“Boycotts are very necessary,” Mallory said.
“Protection of the border has a whole hell of a lot to do with corporate interests,” she added. “But they’re very much so connected. You’d be surprised who actually runs this country.”