Tamez owns three acres of land along the Texas-Mexico border where the Department of Homeland Security would like to build a border fence. The property is a remnant of a 12,000-acre grant from Spain to her family in 1767, before the United States even existed.
"It is my history. It is my heritage," Tamez said.
This week, the Justice Department began legal action against landowners and municipalities who have refused to give government surveyors access to their land.
Tamez expects she will be sued sometime soon, but she is not intimidated.
Asked how long she will fight, she said, "As long as I have to."
Michael Chertoff, the Secretary of Homeland Security, said the fence will not be stopped by opponents like Tamez.
"Can we simply abandon an enterprise because it is a problem for a particular individual?" Chertoff told CNN. "I don't think I can accept that."
Hmm. I expect internet libertarians will be all over that last assaultive statement on civil liberties just the way they were all over Kelo. What? What's everybody laughing at?
(More here. Also related.)