I’m not much for these pointless pile-ons, but the latest batch of photos chronicling the life and times of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is just … beyond ridiculous.
A photographer who followed Ocasio-Cortez in 2018 to “visit” a migrant children’s holding facility in Tornillo, Texas posted the photos on Tuesday. The mere sight of them is enough to verify that they’re absurd. They purport to show Ocasio-Cortez reacting to the spectacle of – well, it isn’t actually clear, but the implication is that it’s children being held in detention.
Before @AOC hit the national stage & was just a fairly unknown House candidate frm NYC,she took time awy frm her campaign & came dwn to #Tornillo to protest the #tentcity housing migrant children.I made these previously unpublished fotos a yr ago today. #elpaso #aoc #onassignment pic.twitter.com/SWyyI1XVt9
— Ivan Pierre Aguirre (@i_p_a_1) June 25, 2019
AOC retweeted the photographer’s images:
I’ll never forget this, because it was the moment I saw with my own eyes that the America I love was becoming a nation that steals refugee children from their parents,& caged them.
More kids died after this. To date, no one has been held accountable.
We need to save these kids. https://t.co/HhdMqc5zML
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 25, 2019
She had also tweeted out a different set of images from the event on 26 June 2018, shortly after it occurred.
No justice – no peace.
We will fight, we will vote, and we will run until hate is dismantled.
Vote today and help us mobilize. AFTER VOTING, NYC #MuslimBan protests start at 6pm.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 26, 2018
One of the photos tweeted by the photographer shows Ocasio-Cortez with her hand to her face, seemingly doubled over in anguish. She should be a punter being rushed on fourth down. Rarely have we seen such an artistic flop.
Others researched the provenance of the images and unearthed an image gallery at the Getty site (e.g., Pamela Geller). Images from different angles show what’s on the other side of the chain-link fence. It’s a vast, mostly empty area with a few vehicles parked in it. A couple of officials in uniform are standing on the other side of the fence, watching the antics of the white-garbed Ocasio-Cortez group.
It’s obvious that – unless Ocasio-Cortez usually reacts with tremendous emotion to seeing parked Ford Explorers and laconic men in uniform shirts and trousers – she’s play-acting for the camera.
But wait! – there’s more. The photographer’s tweet (above) indicates the date on which he obtained the photos. It was on 24 June 2018. AOC that day tweeted video of her group’s approach to the site in a charter bus.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 24, 2018
She also tweeted a short video of their theatrical interlude at the fence.
The child detention camps are here – I confronted the border officers myself.
Using their names, I told them exactly what they are responsible for.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 24, 2018
But she was far from the main event that day. A gaggle of Hollywood visitors showed up on 24 June for a protest at the site, alongside activist groups and politicians. MSNBC’s Joy Ann Reid was there to cover it. So were TMZ, ET, and popular women’s magazines like Cosmopolitan and Glamour.
The Hollywood protest capped the end of an eventful week, in fact. Beto O’Rourke headlined a Father’s Day protest at the same facility a week before, and between his protest and the Hollywood outing, a group of mayors from around the country (including NYC’s Bill de Blasio) went to Tornillo to stage an ostentatious entry attempt and lecture whatever hapless HHS security officials got stuck with fence duty that day.
The Joy Ann Reid broadcast on 24 June – “three full hours” – gave us a number of shots of the location from which Ocasio-Cortez was having her meltdown at the fence. It’s behind Reid and her guests in the opening talk segment of the video, on the viewer’s right. Like everyone else there that day (it looked like several hundred to me, in images posted at the various media sites), Ocasio-Cortez was outside the entry gate, over on one side of it, a considerable distance from the actual housing area with its collection of neat, air-conditioned tents.
MSNBC was able to gain entry for Reid, but she couldn’t go inside the habitation structures. A Facebook video shows her speaking from the housing facility, standing outside a door describing what they were able to see. The facility operator (a contractor with HHS) had provided images of a few interiors, and children with their faces obscured. Judge for yourself how much any of this looks like a “concentration camp.”
As shown in one of the images she tweeted on 26 June 2018, Ocasio-Cortez at one point joined Lena Dunham, Mira Sorvino, and others in holding up a parachute someone had made for the event.
We also see her in one of her tweeted images embracing Maria Teresa Kumar of Voto Latino, one of Joy Ann Reid’s guests in the opening segment of the broadcast.
What is there really to say? Organized protest; cheap theatrics by AOC.
Oh, and Ocasio-Cortez voted against the House supplemental spending bill this week, which provides additional funds to alleviate the overcrowding in migrant detention facilities.