The Lacey & Larkin Frontera Fund and Associated Non-Profits

The Larkin & Lacey Frontera Fund was placed together due to the combined efforts of Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin, who are the co-founders for the Phoenix New Times and Village Voice Media. The fund was created out of the settlement money procured when the two journalists were arrested at night and taken in from their homes by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio on October 18th, 2007. Learn more about Michael Lacey:

Their arrest was due to backlash from the county that the journalist’s reporting on the grand jury proceedings seeking journalist’s notes were revealed as truths on a major media outlet.

To make matters even more controversial, grand jury subpoenas were issued demanding that those who read the New Times stories on the web also receive punishment for choosing to read the story about the lawman.

The $3.75 million settlement that resulted from the arrest and subsequent suing of the county, has been formed into what is now known as the Lacey & Larkin Frontera Fund. The fund was created by Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin in support of groups that seek social justice, such as advocating for human, civil, and migrant rights. Read more: Michael Larcey | Twitter

This also includes organizations that protect freedom of speech and participation in civic duties throughout Arizona. That also includes issues relating to the Mexican border, also known as “la línea fronteriza” by many involved in the human rights community.

No More Deaths is just such an organization that advocates for human rights, particularly those surrounding border control efforts. They are known best for their participation in helping immigrants who pass through the border by providing adequate food, water, clothing, and shelter while they adapt to the transition.

Their efforts save lives, especially during 100 degree or more days in the months of summer when food and water are in particular need by immigrants.

It isn’t a new occurrence but agents from the Border Patrol are against efforts made by such organizations and recently they’ve set their sights quite heavily on cracking down on No More Deaths and their humanitarian activities.

They’ve recently set up surveillance on the non-profit organization’s encampment near the border in Arizona and have essentially broken the international human rights law which states that government may not interfere with humanitarian aid efforts.

In as recent as June 7th of this month, a bill has been passed by the House of Representatives titled the Anti-Border Corruption Reauthorization Act, which lowers the quality of Border Patrol personnel and subsequently the quality of those who are inhibiting the non-profit.

Lowering the standards on those who do patrol the border is a mistake that the bill that has been passed is allowing. Not only do workers in the Border Patrol not have to pass a mandatory polygraph test but this also proves that the hiring process is meant to take in quantity over quality.

This is due entirely to Trump’s goal of reaching 5,000 BP agents and 10,000 Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, regardless of what this means for allowing corrupt and mentally unstable workers to patrol the border and hinder the progress of humanitarian aid in the process due to personal bias.

Thor Halvorssen: Proof Small Pebbles Make Big Waves

In the realm of human right’s activism, there are few more overlooked than the founder of the Human Rights Foundation, Thor Halvorssen. Born in Venezuela on March 9, 1976, Thor started political advocacy at the age of 13 by organizing against South African apartheid. However, his real efforts into human rights began at age 18 when his father became a political prisoner. At the age of 23, Thor became involved in a campaign to prevent Lucent Technologies from buying products made with slave labor. This came after the discovery that several camps in China were using slave labor to make products.

Thor’s biggest contribution to human rights started in 2004 after his mother was shot and wounded by the Venezuelan security force. He announced the creation of the New York-based human rights organization, The Human Rights Foundation. Early on, the HRF was involved in several advocacy campaigns and some of those were in Thor’s country of origin, Venezuela. In 2007, They launched a campaign to free a prisoner named Francisco Usón. Thor also opposed human violations in Uganda, China, North Korea, and several others. Thor also managed to create a media firestorm when they exposed payments from foreign dictators to several U.S. celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, 50 Cent, and Hilary Swank.

However, Thor Halvorssen does not only engage in political and human rights activism in through his papers and the HRF; He is also a fairly accomplished producer. He is the producer of the 2006 film, Hammer & Tickle. The film was a documentary about jokes and humor were used in the Soviet Union as a form of exposing the truth of the Soviet regime as well as poke fun at it. He then went on to produce The Singing Revolution, a documentary about the people of Estonia seeking to escape soviet occupation.

Thor Halvorssen also produced The Sugar Babies. The 2007 film the decries the human rights issues in the in the Dominican Republic sugar industry. His new announcement for The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress shows a dedication to his film career and his political activism.

Thor Halvorssen, Founder of the Human Rights Foundation, Shoots It Straight Politically

The more I read about this Thor Halvorssen guy, the more I like him. He is a real straight shooter. He even shoots straight when it comes to politics which is something rare to behold these days. Here’s an example.

As a young man in college at Pennsylvania University, his father was taken political prisoner in Venezuela. His crime? He was helping the Venezuelan government crack down on drug cartels. I guess he got too close to busting the wrong cartel. Anyways, the man was beaten in prison for nearly 72 days.

Thor helped free his father. You would think Thor hates socialism because the Venezuelan government that imprisoned his father was socialist, but you’d be wrong. He hates unilateral dictators because the leader of the socialist government of Venezuela had ultimate authority without checks and balances. That, Thor would later proclaim during a Fox News interview, is where human rights violations come from.

As an avowed capitalist, Thor would later work for The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. The right-leaning group fights for an individual’s choice to seek out the education that they want. But despite working for such a conservative group, Thor Halvorssen endorsed Bernie Sanders for the 2016 presidential election. This shocked many, but his reasoning was brilliant.

As someone who cares deeply about human rights, Thor Halvorssen stated that Bernie Sanders had the best human rights track record on either side of the aisle. His democratic socialist stances on many issues did not bother Thor even though he disagreed with many of his platforms. This caught Fox News by surprise.

During an explosive three-minute interview, Thor Halvorssen shocked Fox News. They brought him on believing that he was a right-winged human rights activist that hated socialism. It was the conservative news network’s opportunity to bash the position of Bernie Sanders, who was the democratic frontrunner at the time.

Instead, Thor turned the interview around by shocking the interviewer with the fact he donated the maximum amount to the Sanders campaign. He then schooled everyone in the studio on human rights and their importance in the presidential campaign click here.