March 2023

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

December 23, 2007

Censored: Texas border columnist Jay Johnson-Castro

By Brenda Norrell

DEL RIO, Texas -- Jay Johnson-Castro, who recently wrote "Gang Rape of the Borderlands," and has been a leader in exposing the imprisoned infants and children at Hutto prison in Texas, has been terminated as a columnist by the Rio Grande Guardian in Texas.

The termination Jay received today, by way of e-mail, is the clearest indication that Jay has not only been reporting the truth, but has done such incredible work that the newspaper publisher feels she must terminate and attempt to censor him.

What they don't know is that this effort to silence him will only increase his opportunity for truth-telling. Around the world now, more people will know that migrant and refugee infants and children are imprisoned at the T. Don Hutto prison in Taylor, Texas. It is the same prison that denied entrance to the United Nations Rapporteur on migrants, Jorge Bustamante, in May 2007.

Because of this termination, more people will now know that migrant women were sexually assaulted at the prison and chained to their beds during medical examinations.

This attempt at censorship will now lead to more people around the world knowing that the Bush administration has engaged in a media campaign of racism and xenophobia at the border, resulting in huge contracts for private prisons. Private prisons in Texas are receiving a huge chunk of those migrant prison dollars. Now every migrant has a price on his head.

Just this week, Johnson-Castro was celebrated as one of the Censored blog's outstanding uncensored media voices of 2007.

Today is Jay Johnson-Castro Day at the Censored Blog! Let's celebrate one more attempt at censorship giving us all a reason to shout the truth: "Free the children of Hutto Prison!"

Good luck to Jay on his border walks as a Border Ambassador. Thank you for joining the Indigenous Peoples' Border Summit of the Americas 2007 on Tohono O'odham land.

We look forward to more of Jay's coverage from the Texas border, as Homeland Security prepares to seize private lands using the law of eminent domain, including lands of the Lipan Apache, whose women and elderly are calling for support from around the world.

Now, without the constraints of newspaper censorship, Jay can tell more of the truth at the Texas border.

Cheer Jay on at:
Juan Reza's comment published with permission:
Hi Jay! I just finished reading about your firing at the Rio Grande Guardian through Brenda Norrell’s site. With sincere and humble respect I render to you my Congratulations! I read several of your articles within the last few months, and I commend you for your steadfast, courageous reporting of critical information that the sell-out media owners and their accomplices are refusing to disseminate. I will be sending my prayers your way, that you may be strengthened even further in your resolve to provide truthful, highly ethical services to the people you really serve: God’s Children, your relatives, the poorest and most vulnerable ones. Where one is intelligently courageous for a noble purpose, others will be too. Wishing you the greatest of blessings possible, that according to the great Lakota Holy Man, Frank Fools Crow, are inner peace and Love. Juan Reza
Photo: Jay Johnson-Castro at the Indigenous Border Summit of the Americas, center, with Lakota, Oneida and delegation of Mohawks. The delegation was expressing the distress of watching fellow Indigenous Peoples being arrested on Tohono O'odham land, Mayans walking to a better life, near the border wall now under construction. Border wall on Tohono O'odham is in projected photo behind those seated. Photo Brenda Norrell

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