Migrants leave Ulapa, Chiapas state, late Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021. The migrant caravan heading north in southern Mexico has so far been allowed to walk unimpeded, a change from the Mexican government’s reaction to other attempted mass migrations. (AP Photo/Isabel Mateos)

by: Associated Press

Posted: Nov 9, 2021 / 10:50 AM CST / Updated: Nov 9, 2021 / 10:50 AM CST

TAPACHULA, Mexico (AP) — The leader of an effort by Central American migrants to walk across southern Mexico said Monday the group will now head to the U.S. border, rather than Mexico City as originally planned.

Leader and immigration activist Irineo Mujica said in a video that he will try to organize another caravan of thousands of migrants to reach the Gulf coast state of Veracruz, where both groups will join up and set out for the border.

The apparent change in plans comes after Mujica said the group has been pursued and harassed by Mexican government officials. Relations deteriorated after a group of migrants pelted officers of Mexico’s National Guard with a hail of rocks Thursday, injuring five guard officers.

The change of plans may be an act of desperation: the group is dwindling after more than two weeks of walking through punishing heat, and now may number as little as 1,300 people. It had once been as large as 4,000.

The group of mainly Central American migrants got a cold welcome Monday when they entered the state of Oaxaca; the town of Chahuites initially refused to let them enter for fear of spreading COVID-19.

Adrián Aguirre, a migrant from Nicaragua, said when they arrived in Chahuites, “There were municipal police cars blocking the way, and then later we entered.” But many of the town’s stores closed when they saw the migrants coming, meaning they couldn’t buy food or drink. They settled in a park to spend the night.

The Mexican government has been attempting to discourage the march, saying the poor conditions are putting the migrants’ lives at risk. The National Immigration Institute said six cases of the tropical fever dengue had been detected among members of the migrant march, but had not previously mentioned cases of coronavirus.

The National Guard officers were tailing the march Thursday and had apparently tried to detain some of the mainly Central American migrants, when a group of 100 to 150 males started throwing rocks at two truckloads of guard officers equipped with plastic shields and helmets.

The Guard said in a statement that four male officers and one female officer suffered “considerable” injuries, and were hospitalized. It said that “at no time did the officers respond to the attack.”

National Guard officers have been wary of confronting migrants since a shooting incident the previous Sunday left one migrant dead.

Confrontations between law enforcement and migrants had been relatively rare in Mexico, but National Guard officers opened fire on a pickup truck carrying migrants Sunday when the vehicle tried to avoid an immigration checkpoint; the Guard said it had tried to ram a patrol vehicle.

A Cuban migrant was killed and four other migrants were wounded.

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador later said the shooting was unjustified, and that the pickup — apparently driven by a suspected migrant trafficker — had simply tried to run past the checkpoint, not ram the Guard vehicle. The guard officers involved are now subject to a federal criminal investigation.

An estimated 4,000 migrants set out from the city of Tapachula, near the Guatemalan border, on foot on Oct. 23. They have made slow progress trudging along highways amid the brutal heat of the region, advancing only about 95 miles (150 kilometers) in almost two weeks.

Much larger caravans crossed Mexico in 2018 and 2019, but those migrants never tried to walk the whole distance. They usually caught rides aboard passing trucks.

But Mexico has told truckers not to pick up migrants, saying they could face charges of migrant trafficking.

A National Guard officer was killed by suspected immigrant traffickers in September. And a dozen members of an elite police force in the northern border state of Tamaulipas are on trial for allegedly killing 14 Guatemalan migrants and five other people, whose bodies were found shot and burned near the U.S. border in late January.

Frustration has been growing for months among the thousands of migrants waiting in Tapachula near the Guatemala border. Mexico’s strategy had been to contain migrants in the south, far from the U.S. border, while allowing them to apply for asylum in Mexico.

But Mexico’s asylum system has been overwhelmed and the slow process led many to decide it was not worth waiting.

Investment Firm Abandons Plans to Build a Mega Slaughterhouse in Wisconsin! – Free From Harm



The head of an investment firm planning to build a mega slaughterhouse in Wisconsin (worth an estimated 74M) has informed us that they have changed their strategy and are no longer building it, there or anywhere else for that matter. This news comes 15 days after our protest at the home of a key decision maker of the company and 10 days after a productive discussion with the same person.

But our efforts to defeat the mega slaughterhouse have been playing out for over a year and it’s been a roller coaster ride of twists and turns for the many people and groups working on this, including Slaughter Free Milwaukee, Franklin Community Advocates, Slaughter Free Dallas, and Texas Animal Freedom Fighters. We are deeply grateful and inspired for this coordinated effort and all who collaborated with us to play key roles to get where we are today.

Here’s a timeline of major milestones in this campaign:

  • September 10, 2020: Strauss announces plans to build new mega slaughterhouse in Milwaukee’s Century Center.
  • October 10, 2020: Milwaukee Common Council votes to suspend vote on Strauss mega slaughterhouse, responding to intense media attention and pressure from community activists.
  • October 21, 2020: Strauss announces it is no longer pursuing Milwaukee as a location for its new mega slaughterhouse due to pressure from community activists.
  • December 1, 2020: Franklin Community Advocates (and other plaintiffs) file lawsuit against Strauss and City of Franklin over mega slaughterhouse plans.
  • February 19, 2020: Strauss announces plans to build an even more expansive mega slaughterhouse in its hometown of Franklin, just outside of Milwaukee.
  • October 13, 2020 to October 20, 2021: Slaughter Free Cities launches pressure campaigns targeting the investment firm that has become the majority owner of Strauss Brands.
  • October 17, 2021: Slaughter Free Cities organizes protest at the home of one of the founders of this investment firm.
  • November 1, 2021: We are informed by the head of the firm that plans have changed and the mega slaughterhouse plans are off the table.

To get involved with Slaughter Free Chicago and stay up to date, please sign up for our mailing list.

Robert Grillo is an activist, author and speaker for all species. He is also the founder and director of Free from Harm, a  non profit dedicated to helping end animal exploitation.

As a communications professional for over 20 years, Grillo once worked on large food industry accounts where he acquired a behind-the-scenes perspective on food branding and marketing. His book, Farm to Fable: The Fictions of Our Animal-Consuming Culture explores the powerful narratives driving our culture of mass animal consumption.

Other published works include contributions to Caged: Top Activists Share Their Wisdom on Effective Animal Advocacy and Circles of Compassion: Connecting Issues of Justice. In addition Grillo writes articles for Free from Harm and curates work from other leading authors.

Conditions were not golden for polar bears in the 1980s despite what activist expert claims

Iowa Climate Science Education

Does the following statement stand up to scrutiny – i.e. a fact check – of the scientific literature on polar bear ecology?

In the 1980s, “the males were huge, females were reproducing regularly and cubs were surviving well,” Amstrup said. “The population looked good.”

[Steven Amstrup, Anchorage Daily News (Borenstein and colleagues), 5 November 2021: ‘How warming affects Arctic sea ice and polar bears’]

Steven Amstrup

In short, it does not.

In 2007, polar bear specialist Steven Amstrup was almost single-handedly responsible for the failed survival model that got polar bears classified as ‘Threatened’ under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in the US. He has admitted that he retired from the US Geological Survey and sought employment with activist organization Polar Bears International (PBI) in 2012 because he wanted a bigger bullhorn for his predictions of polar bear catastrophe than was permitted under his role as a government…

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Piping Plover

Piping Plover map, NatureServe

The small, sand-colored Piping Plover, named for its melodic, plaintive whistle, is a bird of beaches and barrier islands, sharing this habitat with Least Terns, Black Skimmers, and Wilson’s Plovers.

Beaches are also popular with people, and their impacts have caused serious declines in Piping Plover populations. Shoreline development and stabilization projects, free-roaming cats and other predators, poorly sited wind turbines, gas/oil industry operations, and global warming are some of the biggest threats to this species.

Beach Sprites

Piping Plovers resemble wind-up toys as they dart along the beach in search of food, taking a wide variety of insects, marine worms, and crustaceans. They nest in small depressions in the sand called scrapes and often nest in the same area with Least Terns.

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Like many other plover species, adult Piping Plovers employ a “broken wing display” when threatened to draw attention to themselves and away from their chicks and nest.

Piping Plover chick, Venu Challa

Piping Plover chick by Venu Challa

Saving the Piping Plover

The Piping Plover is federally listed as Endangered in the Great Lakes region and Threatened in the remainder of its U.S. breeding range; it’s also listed as Endangered in Canada. The Great Lakes population is on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List.

Critical Piping Plover nesting habitats are now protected to help the species during its breeding season. Populations have seen significant increases since the protection programs began, but the species remains in danger. For example, at popular Jones Beach near New York City, nesting Piping Plovers are threatened by a colony of feral cats. ABC is urging authorities to remove the cats for the safety of this federally protected species.

ABC is also leading a Gulf Coast conservation effort that is working to identify and implement protective measures for vulnerable beach-nesting birds and other birds, such as the Piping Plover, that winter there. Strategies include preservation of plover habitats; public education; limiting off-road vehicle (ORV) traffic; and limiting predation of free-roaming cats and dogs.

Donate to support ABC’s conservation mission!

“Texas begins building makeshift border wall with surprising material”