My view of borders, sovereignty, life and death was further complicated after meeting with a local human rights organization. The person we met with was from the Tohono O’Odham nation and has developed sharp criticisms of the tribal government’s response to the astonishing number of deaths within the nation’s boundaries. In the fiscal year of 2010, 253 undocumented migrant deaths were recorded by Border Patrol. An average of 50% of undocumented deaths in the Tucson sector occur within the limits of the Tohono O’odham Nation. I hope that this is illustrative of the atrocity happening in the Tohono O’odham Nation (and of course, greater Tucson sector).
Tackling such immense problems is clearly on the agenda. However, deaths will not wait for the abolition of structural violence. What do we do given today’s circumstance? I would offer beginning a network of communication between activists outside and inside the Tohono O’odham nation to begin addressing the myriad of issues that have caused the inaction. I would utilize activists such the person we spoke with who are both a part of the Tohono O’odham and greater Tucson sector community to express the need for action.