braceros1bra•cer•o noun /brəˈserˌō/ one who works with his hands.

Mexican immigrants have occupied an important part of the history of the United States from its very beginning. Millions of US citizens can trace their origins to Mexican citizens who have migrated to the United States or returned to the lands that had been lost to them. Contrary to the belief held by many, Mexicans had already occupied many parts of the United States even before the United States was conceived as a nation.

As you are all aware, President Barack Obama is initiating executive actions that attempt to document about 4 million undocumented immigrants. As the history of immigration reform in the United States can attest to, this latest immigration reform has elicited various responses based on political rhetoric.

Any discussion about immigration almost always includes a discussion about Mexican migration although the issue of immigration reform includes immigration from all other nations of the world. However, immigration reform cannot exist without the Mexican component because Mexicans are the largest group of migrants to the United States, today and in the past.

Unfortunately, because of the complexity of the issue of immigration and because immigration is such a volatile topic the discussions about immigration are distorted by public agendas for various reasons. This fog of distorted propaganda drives the discussion and the realities and truth are lost along the way.

Likewise, as immigrants, we fail to engage in the national discussion and we neglect to participate at the electoral box allowing the distorted immigration discussion to drive immigration policy.

We must end the cycle of distorting the immigration discussion for political agendas in order to effect a proper and equitable solution to the immigration problem.

As such, yesterday I launched a website intended to serve as the repository for reliable and factual data on immigration to the United States in order to allow immigration reform advocates the ability to correct the distorted record through historical and current data based on facts. Although centered on the Mexican experience for brevity reasons, immigration reform should include and welcome all immigrants to the United States because the reality is that the United States is a country based and driven by immigration from the moment it was founded.

Those interested in the information can access the website at:

I have created sections devoted to the history of immigration from the moment the United States became a country through the president’s latest action. I also have a section on the economics of immigration. Economic effects are at the center of immigration and I have documented how the economy is impacted by immigration.

The single most important issue for the Republicans is the notion of border security. I have a section on this dispelling the myth about border security as it is used for political points. Immigrants are routinely scapegoated for political reasons. That is why I will be including a section on how immigrants contribute to the country.

Part of the discussion on immigration involves the process to immigrate to the country. The truth is distorted for political reasons. As time permits, I will add a section on realities of the broken immigration process.

The debate of immigration reform has always been hijacked by erroneous information and therefore I have a section titled “Nothing but the Facts” providing a list of factual information to use in the ongoing debate or to set the record straight.

A project of this magnitude requires much time and effort and it is beyond my capability to handle it alone. Any of you, who is interested in immigration reform and who wants to contribute to the project, please contact me. I can use the help.

I have also set up a Twitter handle for regular updates to the immigration reform. You can follow it at @mximmigrants

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...

One reply on “The Bracero Project”

  1. Your post states that we should welcome “all immigrants”.

    The statement above contributes to the oversimplification I see on both sides of the immigration debate. One side tends to lump all immigrants in the “bad” column while the other side wishes to lump the all into the “good” column. Therein lies the problem. We know that many come to this country wanting to make it better, while others come and become a burden or worse,seek to do this country harm.

    Our problem with immigration is that we don’t know who comes to contribute and who comes to destroy.

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