Valley Shelter seeks more donations for helping illegal aliens

A decrease in the number of illegal crossers apprehended by Border Patrol will not put a stop to the humanitarian efforts at one local church.

Leaders at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen say there is still a need to provide for those released from Border Patrol custody.

“There’s still people coming,” the Sister Norma Pimentel said.

The shelter at the church helped up to 300 people a day during the peak of the immigrant surge last month. Pimentel said fewer immigrants are searching for help.

“We have plenty of clothing, but sometimes not enough clothing for certain items,” she said.

Pimentel they have limited supplies of sweaters, undergarments, pants and bags.

“Blankets … we need those. They all want a little blanket when they travel with their kids,” Pimentel said.

“Because of the fact, that I thought the numbers were dropping, almost completely, we asked to stop the donations. In reality, soon after they drop a lot, they come back again,” Pimentel said.

The nun said every single dollar donated is being stretched.

“The funds that we’ve spent are donations given to us. We’ve spent all of that and it’s possible only because of the donations by the good-hearted people,” she said.

Experts are predicting a second major wave of illegal immigrants in the Rio Grande Valley.

“We’re in constant dialogue with the Border Patrol, with the city officials,” Pimentel said.

Her faith has inspired pilgrimages.

“Washington, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles … you name a city in the United States and we have groups that come just to be here with us,” Pimentel said.

“It makes me rejoice that we in the United States have a heart,” she said.

See video here.

Militias patrolling Texas border draw scrutiny, concern

by Molly Hennessey-Fiske

Perry has so far said the troops do not have arrest powers, something immigrant advocates and some local officials oppose, although it appears they could if authorized by the state.

Militia members started arriving on the Texas border in recent weeks to assist as part of a deployment they called Operation Secure Our Border: Laredo Sector. The effort entails  creating a training command near San Antonio and rotating groups south to patrol private ranch land on the border with the permission of ranch owners.

The early groups included Oathkeepers, Three Percenter’s Club and Patriots. Then the Minutemen announced that they, too, were deploying.

There has been an online controversy. For instance, after a militia member appeared on YouTube advising members to confront and intimidate those caught crossing the border illegally. And there have been tensions between militia groups. But no major clashes have been reported.

Response to the groups has been mixed.

Mike Morris, who works with the Three Percenter’s, told the Los Angeles Times that several militia groups were invited to South Texas by ranchers who face regular break-ins and “incursions” by migrant groups.

“It is a dangerous situation,” he said.

Morris said there were numerous militias operating without a central command, some armed. While some groups “observe and report,” he said, others saw the need to be armed in remote areas because if a threat arises “the Border Patrol are stretched so thin—they may not respond.”

“Some parts of the border these days, Border Patrol has pulled back and it’s not safe,” Morris said.

Local law enforcement circulated a bulletin among themselves after a group camped out near an international bridge to Mexico in Pharr, Texas.

Some sheriffs declined the militias’ assistance, while others refused to take a position on their presence.

This week, the San Antonio Express-News published photographs of militia members patrolling the border, including an image of a Border Patrol agent leaning through an armed militia member’s car window and pointing to a map. The paper reported that a militia provided the photos on condition that the paper blur members’ faces because they feared being identified by cartels and gangs.

Outraged, members of the Texas Democratic congressional delegation wrote a letter to the state’s attorney general demanding he denounce the militias and define what they can legally do.

The dozen members of the delegation said they were “deeply disturbed” by the images of “armed and masked militia groups purportedly patrolling our Texas border in response to the arrival of unaccompanied children from Central America to our state.”

Atty. Gen. Greg Abbott, a Republican campaigning to replace Perry as governor, dismissed the letter through a spokeswoman.

Abbott backed the National Guard deployment and the state border surge, and has demanded the federal government foot the bill.

Abbott spokeswoman Lauren Bean called the letter a “partisan political stunt” and said that instead of complaining about the militias, the Democrats “should work with their Republican colleagues to secure federal funding for the state’s border security efforts.”

EXCLUSIVE: ‘A lot of people die out here’ and ‘all this blood…is on Obama’s hands’: Shocking images show corpses of illegal immigrants left to die after border crossings

by David Martosko

The dead bodies of illegal immigrants are turning up in south Texas as Central Americans pour across the U.S.-Mexico border, and a veterinarian who ranches cattle 70 miles from ground zero has the photos to prove it.

Dr. Mike ‘Doc’ Vickers of Brooks County, Texas showed some of the grisly images to MailOnline, all of them far too grotesque to publish unedited.

One picture shows a corpse propped up against a tree near his ranch in Brooks County, his eyes missing and dried blood cascading down his shirtless body.

‘This guy, obviously, had to lay down up against that tree, and that’s where he died,’ Vickers says in interview footage provided exclusively to MailOnline by documentary filmmaker Chris Burgard.

Falcons native to the Rio Grande river valley ‘plucked his eyes out before he was dead,’ the animal doctor concludes. ‘He bled out through his eyes, which tells me that he was probably in a coma but they were eatin’ on him before his heart stopped beating.’

Burgard is working on a sequel to his 2007 documentary, ‘Border,’ which made a splash on the film-festival circuit years before illegal immigration swelled to what President Barack Obama now concedes is a ‘humanitarian crisis.’

When he filmed ‘Border’ in 2005, he said, ‘we had to go out and find illegal traffic.’

‘This time it found us.’

He screened his film on Capitol Hill back then, telling members of Congress that children were becoming pawns in Mexican drug cartels’ smuggling operations into the U.S. homeland.

‘I am not surprised to find immigrants dying 70 miles north of the border,’ Burgard told MailOnline, but ‘I am surprised that nine years later it is still a secret to most of the American people.’

‘The Federal Government has long known about this,’ he said, ticking off Texas and Arizona counties where human remains are continually turning up.

‘Local officials who deal with collecting the bodies are so overwhelmed financially that the cost of coroner inquests on each case is dramatically affecting their budgets.’

Continue reading here (+ graphic content).

Illegals to Be Kept in ‘Suites’ with Flat Screen TVs & Exercise Facilities

Immigration and Customs Enforcement on Friday will open a remodeled detention center three hours north of the Rio Grande Valley.

The Karnes City center will house women and children who entered the country illegally through the Valley.

The 532-bed facility underwent a massive renovation to house women and children. The center housed only adult immigrants in the past.

Immigrants will be at the facility for an average of 23 days.

The feds said the rooms will be referred to as “suites.” The suites are furnished with bunk beds, play tables for children, flat-screen television sets and landline telephones.

“I will refer to everyone in this facility as a resident. ICE generally refers to people in custody as detainees,” ICE San Antonio Field Office Director Enrique Lucero said.

Lucero oversaw the transformation of the center.

Obama mulls large-scale move on immigration

by Erica Werner

Even as they grapple with an immigration crisis at the border, White House officials are making plans to act before November’s mid-term elections to grant work permits to potentially millions of immigrants who are in this country illegally, allowing them to stay in the United States without threat of deportation, according to advocates and lawmakers in touch with the administration.

Such a large-scale move on immigration could scramble election-year politics and lead some conservative Republicans to push for impeachment proceedings against President Barack Obama, a prospect White House officials have openly discussed.

Yet there’s little sign that the urgent humanitarian situation in South Texas, where unaccompanied minors have been showing up by the tens of thousands from Central America, has impeded Obama from making plans to address some portion of the 11.5 million immigrants now in this country illegally. Obama announced late last month that congressional efforts to remake the nation’s dysfunctional immigration system were dead and he would proceed on his own authority to fix the system where he could.

Since then he’s asked Congress for $3.7 billion to deal with the crisis of unaccompanied youths, a request that’s gone unmet even as the House and the Senate scramble to see if they can vote on some solution to the crisis this week before adjourning for their annual August recess.

Meanwhile, White House officials led by Domestic Policy Council Director Cecilia Munoz and White House Counsel Neil Eggleston, along with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, have been working to chart a plan on executive actions Obama could take, hosting frequent meetings with interest groups and listening to recommendations from immigration advocates, law enforcement officials, religious leaders, Hispanic lawmakers and others.

Advocates and lawmakers who were in separate meetings Friday said that administration officials are weighing a range of options including reforms to the deportation system and ways to grant relief from deportation to targeted populations in the country, likely by expanding Obama’s two-year-old directive that granted work permits to certain immigrants brought here illegally as youths. That program, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, has been extended to more than 500,000 immigrants so far.

Advocates would like to see deferred action made available to anyone who would have been eligible for eventual citizenship under a comprehensive immigration bill the Senate passed last year, which would be around 9 million people. But Obama told them in a meeting a month ago to “right-size” expectations, even as he pledged to be aggressive in steps he does take.

That’s led advocates to focus on other populations Obama might address, including parents or legal guardians of U.S. citizen children (around 3.8 million people as of 2009, according to an analysis by Pew Research‘s Hispanic Trends Project) and parents or legal guardians of DACA recipients (perhaps 500,000 to 1 million people, according to the Fair Immigration Reform Movement).

“Our parents deserve to live without the fear of deportation,” Maria Praeli, a 21-year-old from New Haven who came to the United States from Peru 16 years ago, said at a protest outside the White House on Monday. “It is time for the president to go big and to go bold.”

Another focus could be the potentially hundreds of thousands of people who might be eligible for green cards today if current law didn’t require them to leave the country for 10 years before applying for one.

At the same time, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce says it is actively working to determine whether there are steps Obama could take by executive action that could help the business community.

For Obama, the political repercussions of broad executive action on immigration could be unpredictable, and extreme.

Republicans are warning he could provoke a constitutional crisis.

“It would be an affront to the people of this country which they will never forgive, it would be a permanent stain on your presidency,” Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., said on the Senate floor Monday, while urging language to block such executive action be made part of any legislation to address the border crisis.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., announced plans to use an oversight hearing on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency Tuesday to raise questions about Obama’s plans, which he warned could “worsen the border crisis and encourage many more to come.”

On the other side, some Democrats have debated the best timing for Obama to take executive action, raising questions as to whether acting before the midterms could hurt vulnerable Senate Democrats in close races while boosting turnout among the GOP base.

But liberal advocates noted that Obama’s move on deferred action two years ago gave him a boost heading into his re-election and could help this year with Latino voters discouraged over the failure of immigration reform legislation and record-high deportations on Obama’s watch. Republicans would be in a position of deciding whether to come out in favor of deporting sympathetic groups, such as parents, and many liberals say impeachment talk would only shore up Democratic base voters.

“Most Democrats will be thrilled” if Obama acts boldly on immigration, said Frank Sharry, executive director of America’s Voice, a leading advocacy group. “And Republicans will keep lurching to the right and cementing their reputation as the anti-immigrant party.”

[Watch] Border Agents and Their Families Becoming Sick After Contact With Infected Illegals

by Rick Wells

A DHS Inspector General is reporting that some Border Agents who have come into contact with infected illegal aliens have contracted the same diseases they are carrying. There are also verified instances where those agents have subsequently passed those infections to their own families.

The area identified in this report was in the southern Del Rio area of Texas. The diseases and infestations contracted included scabies, lice and chicken pox. Additionally, two Border Patrol agents in two different El Paso, TX substations have reportedly contracted tuberculosis.

In the past two weeks a total of 48 Border Patrol agents in the El Paso area have filed paperwork based upon a perceived health concern attributable to contact with the illegals.

The reporter was also able to confirm that two El Paso area agents were treated after they contracted scabies.

This will be the shared new reality for all of us who must face the fact that we no longer have the luxury of a border to protect us from the unpleasant things which afflict the rest of the world. We are being turned into a third world nation by the Democrats and with that distinction come the requisite diseases.

As we see our own children dealing with a totally contrived and deliberate infection that Obama, DHS and company have afflicted them with, we know where to direct our anger.

This is no random act and it is by no means an accident.

See video here.

United Nations blasts US plans for child migrants

The United Nations’ human rights chief expressed concern Thursday at what she said were plans by the U.S. government to deport tens of thousands of unaccompanied children who entered the United States in recent months.

Navi Pillay, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, urged Washington to protect the child migrants and investigate dozens of reports of abuse against them by U.S. officials.

“I am particularly concerned because the United States appears to be taking steps to deport most of these children back,” Pillay told a news briefing in Geneva. “There are almost 100 reports of physical, verbal and sexual abuse by agents towards the children, filed in a complaint by NGOs (non-governmental organizations).”

“The United States does need to urgently investigate all alleged human rights abuses against children and severely sanction perpetrators,” the former U.N. war crimes judge said.

Around 57,000 children from Central America were detained at the U.S.-Mexico border after crossing the frontier without their parents in the nine months leading up to June 30.

Faced with a delicate and divisive political issue, President Barack Obama’s administration has said most of the children will be sent home as they would not qualify for asylum or refugee status.

The administration’s announcement comes amid an increasing belief among Americans that his administration should provide temporary support for unaccompanied Central American minors crossing the Texas border.

Nearly 70 percent of Americans — across political affiliations and religious backgrounds — believe the immigrant children should be treated like refugees, according to the poll by the Public Religion Research Institute.

Democrats and youth were most compassionate toward the immigrant children, with roughly 80 percent of both groups saying the government should support them until their cases are fully reviewed.

Last week Obama urged the leaders of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to work with him to stem the flow of child migrants and said most would not be allowed to stay.

But Pillay said children should only be deported if their protection was guaranteed in the countries they are returned to. Those needing international protection should be identified and granted protection in the United States, she said.

Mandatory detention of child migrants should only be a “last resort option” as it contravenes the legal principle of upholding a child’s best interests, she added.

Meanwhile, several Texas border mayors on Wednesday echoed Pillay’s concerns. Mayors from the border towns of Brownsville, Edinburg and McAllen, who have welcomed unaccompanied children over the past several months, called for a compassionate response to the crisis.

“What we need to do as a nation is to understand the human rights of all human families. I think it’s imperative that due process is implemented for all children, but some of the legislation we are looking at doesn’t have those provisions,” said Tony Martinez, mayor of Brownsville, Texas. “Children shouldn’t be expedited to the point where we don’t have justice.”

Obama’s drive to tackle the migrant crisis with $3.7 billion in emergency funds has hit trouble because the deeply divided Congress leaves on a month-long recess at the end of Friday.

John Cornyn of Texas, the No. 2 Republican in the U.S. Senate, said Sunday that he expected the House of Representatives to pass a “skinnied-down” emergency funding bill this week to deal with the crisis. But that potential finding was in doubt Thursday, after the House canceled a vote on the bill due to lack of support in the Republican conference.

“I recognize that there is a complicated political situation and we are in a position to offer assistance and advice and we do so,” said Pillay.

In the meantime, the United States must provide migrant children with services to support their “physical, psychological and emotional recovery,” she said.

Report: Feds Release Far More Illegal Aliens in Texas Than Any Other US State

by Kristin Tate

Amid the border crisis, President Obama’s Health and Human Services (HHS) has been quietly releasing illegal immigrant minors onto U.S. soil. According to HHS’ Office of Refugee and Resettlement, a total of 30,340 unaccompanied minors have already been released from federal custody after being placed in a foster home. Although foreign minors have been set free in all 50 states, Texas has received far more than any other U.S. state.

As of July 7, 4,280 illegal immigrant minors were released in Texas.

It is easy to imagine that many Texas residents are frustrated and may feel unfairly targeted by the federal government–the illegal immigrants will impose many costs on the state. Texas’ schools, hospitals, and other public facilities will now be forced to accommodate the growing number of foreigners dumped in the state.

Several other states received a large number of the minors: New York: 3,347; Florida: 3,181; California: 3,150; Virginia: 2,234.

Other states, however, received very few. Only one illegal immigrant minor was released in Montana, while three were released in Vermont.

HHS’ process for deciding how many illegals are brought to each state is unclear. The migrants’ foster families, or “sponsors,” are often located through nonprofit organizations. Breitbart Texas has reported closely on the process of becoming a foster parent of a foreign youth.

The HHS website said, “Ensuring that a potential sponsor can safely and appropriately care for the child is a top priority.  A background check is conducted on all potential sponsors, and steps are taken to verify a potential sponsor’s identity and relationship to the child.  In some cases where concerns are raised, a home study is done. Before children are released to a sponsor, they receive vaccinations and medical screenings. We do not release any children who have a contagious condition.”

In some cases, sponsors can make up to $7,400 per month for housing up to six illegal immigrants at a time. The payments are dispersed by the federal government. A spokesman from Catholic Charities, one organization seeking out foster parents for the unaccompanied minors, told Breitbart Texas that the illegal immigrants are also provided with taxpayer subsidized education, health care, transportation, and an “allowance.”

See video here.

EXCLUSIVE: Report reveals ‘disturbing trend’ of brazen attacks against border security by gangs, drug and human traffickers

by Jana Winter

EXCLUSIVE: A game warden hit in the head with a rock while trying to seize a raft. Police officers wounded in an hours-long standoff with a gang member wanted for murder. Criminals spewing obscenities and death threats at local cops before asking for – and receiving – medical treatment.

And that was just last week.

A weekly report distributed by a Texas state agency to senior law enforcement officials paints a grim picture of the Mexican border, where authorities regularly confront illegal immigrant gang members and draw automatic gunfire from across the Rio Grande, and where local, state and federal authorities fight a never-ending battle against drug smugglers.

The most recent Border Operations Sector Assessment report compiled by the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Border Security Operations Center, dated July 25 and obtained by, details local and federal authorities encountering smugglers carrying millions of dollars’ worth of marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine, some of which was found in vehicles filled with biblical passages and religious items; federal agents being assaulted and shot at; gang members brazenly approaching people in their homes; and ranch workers witnessing men crossing into the U.S. wearing camouflage and carrying long guns and automatic weapons.


“In recent weeks the traffic appears to have slowed slightly, yet assaults on law enforcement have increased. This is a disturbing trend that needs to be addressed,” Chris Cabrera, vice president of the National Border Patrol Union, Rio Grande Valley Sector, told

“It is paramount that we get this problem under control. It is evident that we need more agents in the field to address the various threats posed to law enforcement as well as to our nation.”

The Austin-based Border Security Operations Center serves as the focal point for the six Joint Operations and Intelligence Centers located along Texas’ border with Mexico. Officials there analyze intelligence from state, local and federal law enforcement agencies in an effort to facilitate communication among them.

In the week of July 16-23 alone, according to the report, U.S. authorities apprehended 6,028 illegal immigrants, 4,152 of whom were not from Mexico. Most came from Central America. But there also were people from Russia, Morocco, China, Cuba and India, among other nations.

Cabrera, the union rep for the Rio Grande Valley Sector, the most heavily trafficked portion of the border, was shown a copy of the report by He contends the increase in attacks against law enforcement and the compilation of such events–including the game warden assault that occurred in Cabrera’s sector — should have been shared with him and his colleagues. But only higher-up officials receive the weekly reports, he said.

A spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety declined to respond on the record; Border Patrol did not return’s request for comment.

The 83-page report for July 16-23 reveals, among other things, that authorities seized $478,879 in U.S. currency, recovered more than seven tons of marijuana (street value: $6.35 million) and turned up more than a million dollars’ worth of cocaine and methamphetamine.

Most of the marijuana was found in an abandoned stash house, resulting in no arrests, while most of the other drugs were found inside vehicles stopped by law enforcement.

The report also revealed Texas Parks and Wildlife game wardens routinely encountered illegal immigrants and gang members, and detained hundreds to be turned over to Border Patrol agents. One reported being hit in the head with a rock while trying to seize a raft used to ferry illegal immigrants across the river. “A Game Warden attempted to seize a raft and was assaulted on the head with a rock that was thrown from the MX river bank,” the report reads. “The subject surrounded himself with children to avoid counter measures. Wardens patrolling the river heard approximately 15 rds of automatic gunfire in MX. A total of 55 IAs were detained,” the report says.

Game wardens also reported seeing people wearing black uniforms and armed with rifles on the Mexican side of the river, and they said gunshots from automatic weapons were heard throughout the night on at least four different occasions.

Last week reported that Border Patrol agents patrolling the Rincon Peninsula, south of Mission, Texas, and across the river from Reynosa, Mexico, had been forced to run for cover when rounds of .50 caliber gunfire were shot from the Mexican side to the U.S. side of the Rio Grande. Without any protection from such high-caliber rounds, the agents were forced to hide until the barrage stopped. Federal and state sources who work in the area said they believe the gunfire continued for about 15 minutes.


“This happens all the time. We’re out on the border, often we are alone, and all you hear is gunfire,” a Border Patrol agent working an overnight shift along the Rio Grande said last week.

“We are sitting ducks, and it’s only getting worse. Every night, it gets worse.”  Continue reading here.

Exclusive Interview: Rick Perry Says Deploying Troops to Border Sends a ‘Powerful Message’

by Josh Siegel

Texas Gov. Rick Perry compares the role of National Guard troops at his state’s border to the deterring effect that cop cars stationed along neighborhood roads have on crime.

Perry, in an exclusive interview with The Daily Signal, said even though the 1,000 military troops he activated to help manage the border crisis in his state will not be authorized to make arrests, the sheer presence of the military will deter illegal activity.

“It’s a powerful reminder that what you are doing is a crime,” said Perry, who has been a critic of the White House’s response to the border crisis. “It’s just like a law enforcement effort in your neighborhood, where you see a parked patrol police car on the corner, and the bad guys see it and don’t commit a crime.”

By announcing plans to deploy the National Guard to the border on his own rather than through the federal government, Perry has the power to order the troops to make arrests and apprehensions.

But Perry, perhaps responding to critics who worry about the troops’ lack of training in immigration law, told The Daily Signal he has decided not to give arrest power to those deployed to Texas’ border with Mexico.

“Their real job is not apprehension,” Perry said. “Border Patrol apprehends.”

National Guard on the Border

In 2006, President George W. Bush sent 6,000 troops to the four border states. They repaired and built fences and roads, and conducted surveillance, among other duties.

Troops in that deployment did not have apprehension and arrest powers.

“What you are doing is a crime,” says @GovernorPerry of illegal immigrants.

Troops were similarly limited when President Obama eventually extended that deployment while ordering a second wave of National Guard forces to Texas, California, Arizona and New Mexico in 2010.

With troops’ responsibility likely to be limited again this time, Border Patrol agents who are responsible for apprehending and arresting illegal immigrant crossers argue that the National Guard will make little impact.

Border Patrol union representatives told The Daily Signal last week they worry the troops will interfere with agents’ work.

>>> National Guard Would Be Waste of Resources, Border Patrol Agents Say

Perry, who says he has talked to Border Patrol agents about his decision, believes otherwise.

“They aren’t displacing Border Patrol,” Perry said. “It’ll be just like how we partner with law enforcement. They want to see the border secure, so they won’t resist the assistance. Just the presence and knowledge that they’re deployed will have a powerful message.”

The troops that are due the border next month will actually work side by side with police officers of the Texas Department of Public Safety, not alongside Border Patrol.

The state officers are there as part of Operation Strong Safety, a Perry initiative approved last month that sent state troopers to the border to assist local law enforcement.

Just like the National Guard, state and local law enforcement officers can only defer to the Border Patrol those they suspect have entered the country illegally.

Stopping Smuggler and Criminals

Not including the deployment of the 1,000 troops, Perry said there are already 300 state and National Guard troops at the border for Operation Lone Star, an annual joint military and civil humanitarian medical mission.

“For those who say, ‘This is very out of the ordinary,’ the National Guard being at the border is not an unusual situation,” Perry said. “There’s troops at the border every year and there’s troops there now.”

Can the National Guard help Texas stop the surge of crossings on the border?

Perry hopes the new troops will send a message to drug cartels and other criminal groups that he says have exploited the latest border trend — the surge of Central American children coming across the Rio Grande Valley.

“There has not been as much focus on the drug smugglers and other criminals because of these children,” Perry said. “There’s been an effort by the cartels to distract Border Patrol into taking care of these kids. The danger that this situation presents for ordinary Texans and Americans has not been a focus of the mainstream media.”

>>> Brooks County, Texas: Ranchers Help Round Up Illegals Who Skirt Checkpoint

Perhaps realizing the threat, President Obama dispatched a team to the border last week to determine whether a federally organized National Guard deployment was necessary.

No matter what Obama decides to do, Perry has said he intends to ask the federal government to pay for his deployment of 1,000 troops, estimated to cost $12 million a month.

Perry, who warned the Obama administration about the border crisis in his state more than two years ago, did not speak with the president’s team while it visited Texas.

“This [the National Guard deployment] is important for the peace of Texas and the country,” Perry said. “I had to make a decision.”