Checking into Border Signs in Chinese
Before David Dewhurst lost the republican senate runoff, interesting signs in the Texas border region caught his attention. KUT’s Nathan Bernier spoke with Gardner Selby of the Austin American-Statesman’s PolitiFact Texas research team about the signs.
Dewhurst said during a debate:
I’ve been down there to the same area, down to Brooks County. I’ve seen the tsunami of people that are crossing over into our Texas counties. I’ve seen the Border Patrol signs that are now in English, Spanish and Chinese.
A border patrol spokesman confirmed that such signs exist “rescue beacon towers” that are arrayed in the rough brush country along the border region. Spokesman Daniel Milian said that the towers are 50 feet tall and are intended to be visible from great distances. The signs read, “If you need help, push the red button. Help will arrive. Do not leave the area.”
Milian told us that Chinese was chosen to join English and Spanish because immigrants from China are second to immigrants from Spanish speaking countries among border crossers who have been apprehended by the border patrol. … We went and looked up the figures, and they indicate that Chinese speakers are indeed a very distant second to Spanish speakers who have been apprehended by the border patrol. But keep this in mind — they make up less than one half of one percent of all border patrol apprehensions over the last few years.
Hear more about the rescue beacons by listening to the interview or check out PolitiFact’s story.