(Counterpoint: The following is a guest editorial submitted by Barbara Carrasco. Occasionally, I will publish counterpoints submitted by readers to my blog. To be considered for a counterpoint, please send me your comments in an article fashion on topical topics that I am covering on my blog. As I have written many times before, we learn from the perspectives of others. Although I may not agree with someone’s perspective their opinion matters and should be considered in order to have a proper debate. Counterpoints may not necessarily represent the views of Martin Paredes and are published in their entirety as submitted by the author.)
Author: Barbara Carrasco
Although immigration is not at the top of the list for most Americans in this election, it is a major issue for El Pasoans, as we are a border city and directly affected by those crossing illegally.
I will discuss effects on Mexico because the majority of illegal immigrants crossing our southern border are from Mexico.
Focus on illegal immigration is on those who successfully cross our borders and the unfair and unjust treatment received once here. Never has any real focus been given to victims of illegal immigration across our border. The victims I refer to are (1) those that are not fortunate to make the journey; (2) disintegration of the family and its true origin; (3) effects of emigration on communities in Mexico; and finally (4) Mexico’s reason for not wanting illegal immigration enforced or construction of a “wall.”
Would-be illegal immigrants face kidnapping, murder, rape, and others are forced to carry drugs into the U.S. The desert areas subject travelers to heat, exhaustion and dehydration. Many are victims of extortion by their smugglers.
The Heritage Foundation stated that one of every five individuals wanting to cross illegally are female and 60% will experience sexual abuse. Amnesty International explains that women and unaccompanied children are especially vulnerable and “face serious risk of trafficking and sexual assault by criminals.”
Hundreds of people die every year attempting to cross the border into the U.S. In 2010, 72 bodies of potential illegal immigrants were lined up and executed. They were found 90 miles from the U.S. border. In April of 2011 several mass graves of slaughtered bodies were discovered in the same area as those in 2010.
Hundreds of remains of would-be illegal immigrants are stored at the Pima County Medical Examiner’s Office awaiting identification. These individuals were attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border and met their unfortunate death.
According to an analysis by the Washington office on Latin America, approximately five migrants die every four days.
Our open borders contribute to the atrocities perpetrated upon would-be illegal immigrants. Little, if any, attention, media coverage or importance is given to those who lost their lives or were abused on their journey.
The facts are that the starting point of broken families is Mexico.
Catholic priest Samuel Fernandez describes the situation: “Yes, they have raised their lives a bit economically, but it is a pity, the divided houses we have here. The people morally, psychologically, have many problems. The families lose control, they lose unity, and they lose the sense of being families. Every year more people leave. Every year the towns are more and more alone.”
Alan Wall states: “This siren call of American wages, in addition to skewing the job market here in Mexico, exacerbates family disintegration, which is on the increase here in Mexico, immigration definitely being a factor.”
Our open borders are the catalyst for broken families in Mexico.
Many towns in rural Mexico have been depopulated. As Mario Garcia, mayor of a small community in Zacatecas state has bemoaned: “People have one thing in mind, and that is to go to the United States.”
Zacatecas farmer Pedro Chavez observes, “The people here can make more money by staying at home and waiting for a check from the United States, so many of them do not work. At least they do not want to work in Mexico.” (Jobs Mexicans won`t do?)
In 1992 the American Public Health Association studied migration-related HIV epidemic in western Mexico. They concluded “Migrant Mexican women’s commitment to an illusion of fidelity will hinder HIV prevention initiatives targeted toward them.”
UNICEF and SU-SSC studied the impact of migration on children left behind. They are at great risk to drug abuse, teenage pregnancy, psychosocial problems and violent behavior. Sentiments expressed by priest Fernandez.
Our open borders are ruining people’s lives, destroying communities and contributing to the destruction of children’s futures.
MEXICO’S FIGHT FOR OPEN BORDERS
In 1998, then-independent senator Adolfo Aguilar Zinser observed that “The government`s (Mexico’s) economic policy is dependent on unlimited emigration to the United States.
In 2000 President Vicente Fox called illegal immigrants “heroes for their remittances to Mexico of over $1B a month and has stated that they are indispensable to creating a modern and prosperous country.” The Mexican government acknowledges that remittances received from illegal immigrants are the country`s third-highest source of revenue. In 2012 remittances totaled $22.4 billion.
Vicente Fox made migration a priority during his administration. In 2001 he proposed a four-point migration plan to President Bush which included, among other provisions, legalization of illegal immigrants in the U.S. and included proposed changes to our laws which would exempt Mexican immigrants from U.S. visa ceilings! (Imagine the U.S. proposing changes to the Mexican laws)
To ensure the flow of billions of dollars continue, and in an apparent attempt to decrease the difficulty and the stress of living in the U.S. illegally, Mexico issues matricula consular cards which allows them to open bank accounts and rent apartments.
Vicente Fox believes that Mexicans have a right to cross the border at will and unimpeded, find employment and be given legal status. The reality is, these illegal immigrants are used to “prop” the Mexican economy and consequently the Mexican government is not inclined to assist us in controlling illegal immigration. It is mindboggling that millions upon millions of uneducated and unskilled illegal immigrants are a crucial element of the backbone of Mexico. A study by Reymundo Campos-Vazquez and Horacio Sobarzo confirms that “Mexican migrants to the United States do not originate from the best-educated and wealthiest segments of the population.”
By encouraging illegal immigration, Mexico is absolving itself of its responsibility to its citizens. There is no requisite, urgency or motivation on the part of Mexico to provide for the health and welfare of its poor, uneducated and unemployed. To this end, the U.S. has become an enabler and is complicit in exacerbating Mexico’s internal problems and robbing them of a healthy functioning nation. According to the Monterrey Institute of Technology, in 2010 53 million Mexicans were living in poverty – half the country’s population.
It is difficult to adequately to describe the actions of the Mexican government regarding their poor, unskilled and individuals. They are called “heroes” yet encouraged to abandon their country in order to save it! Shouldn’t that be the Mexican government’s role…to create an environment that improves the economy and educates their citizens?
With Mexico’s aggressive recruitment of U.S. companies and their suppliers, and a growing number of companies actually moving to their shores, one would believe that Mexico would be laser focused on educating their youth and be working to prevent immigration to the U.S.
It is easy to label people like me, and millions upon millions like me, as “racist” and anti-immigrant”. This is simply not true. It is a falsehood. Let’s forget about political correctness, and call it what it is. It’s a boldface “lie”. It’s an effort to shut us up. Illegal immigration has many moving parts that are ignored. Ignoring them doesn’t make them go away nor does it render them nonexistent.
Mexico has condoned illegal immigration for decades and our administration by its actions, or inaction, also condones it. Both countries share guilt in the murders, deaths of individuals who didn’t have the strength to endure the harsh elements, and the abuse of females along the treacherous journey to enter our borders illegally.
When facing a problem, it is imperative that all moving parts be considered if one is sincere in finding a solution. It is obvious neither country, because of their respective political reasons, is serious about illegal immigration.
The free-flow-open-porous borders’ mentality is destroying communities, ruining people’s lives, getting people murdered and pitting two countries against each other. These are just a few of the consequences of the free-flow-open-porous borders’ mentality.
Obviously Mexico is talking out of both sides of their mouth. It is stated that Mexicans should be allowed unrestricted entry into the U.S. And are viewed as “heroes”. Now the Mexican government conviently doesn’t talk about the draconian enforcement of their southern border. Not to mention, murders, rapes, hostage for ransom, human trafficking for sex, etc are swept under the rug. Btw, there IS a wall on the southern border.
Of course the Mexican government wants open borders, it relieve them of any responsibility for governing to provide its people. It’s much easier to send them out of country and pocket the revenues for personal enrichment. It’s not that the government can’t provide for its citizens, it DOESNT want to!
Need an education, medical treatment, jobs. Just issue maps to the U.S. Who gives a damn about the border cities paying taxes to provide for people that usually don’t contribute or are uninvited. If someone would do the research, we would probably find that these “goodies” are costing in the billions. It’s not that Americans don’t want to help or don’t care, it’s just that we can’t afford the freebies. And much to the astonishment of some, it’s not free money ! We pay taxes that pay the extras.
The solution is not a wall, convince the Mexican government to aggressively patrol the border ! Worried the patrols would accept bribes, well our people take bribes as well. The difference, the U.S. punishs the criminals. Mexico, it’s ok so long as the boss gets his cut.
However, the U.S. is part of the problem. Everyone wanted a nanny, gardener or driver in the former days so the uninvited were accepted with open arms. Now we expect them not to come?
Well said. The one that was left out was that during that same period Mexico changed its laws to make it easier for naturalized US citizens born in Mexico to re-enter the country using their Mexican passport and re-establish their Mexican citizenship as dual nationals. In the current election, the Mexican Consulates are encouraging Mexican nationals with green cards to complete the process in time to vote and reassuring them they don’t have to worry about losing their Mexican citizenship in the process. Imagine if our Consulates in Mexico started a campaign designed to influence a Mexican election. Trump is correct when he says Mexico (not the people of Mexico) is not our friend and it is time to start having more conversations about Mexican government policies which are not in the best interest of US citizen taxpayers.
Great article; well said, and most importantly–THE TRUTH!
Ms. Carrasco does not fully enumerate the effect on America of having millions of undocumented immigrants within our borders. We pay for the incarceration of thousands of illegals who have been convicted of criminal acts. We are deprived of tax revenues from their work if it is not in legal employment. We pay for the education of their children and, I assume, healthcare and other forms of government assistance. Also, we see a shadow world that illegals have to live in here that deprives them of civil rights and exploits their labor. Then the worst is that, when we raise these issues, we are assailed by the PC ninnycrats telling us we are racists because we think this is unfair to Americans and the millions of immigrants who are here legally and making this a better country, like Martin (who should become a real citizen, OK).
She speaks the unpleasant facts.
JerryK you did not fully understand the purpose of my article. It was to point out specifically the impact of illegal immigration on Mexico and Mexico’s willingness to encourage it which we do not hear the press addressing. Yes, they are unpleasant facts that we need to include in the discussion. As you can imagine there are a tremendous amount of other facts that weren’t covered because of space constraints. Illegal immigration has enormous negative impact on the U.S. also. If Martin will permit me, I will be submitting other articles elaborating the impact on U.S. as well as legal vs illegal immigration. I appreciate that he would print my article without editing it!
No disagreement with you, Barbara, that Mexico’s main foreign policy re: USA is to export its poverty problem rather than deal with it. But ask yourself why the major political parties here have done nothing about it for years. Could it be that both perceive benefits from a pool of illegal immigrants?
The GOP types get cheap, docile labor for their farms, construction companies, hotels and ag plants. The Dems see a potential permanent welfare class that will vote them in office for decades.
The excluded middle includes both the exploited illegals and the US working class that the Dems dumped when Clinton signed NAFTA and who have finally figured out the game and are looking to Donald Trump as their savior.
I’m not sure where Martin fits in, but this gringo is glad he is here 🙂
Interesting article and good points. I’m glad you mentioned how much this nation is complicit in the open border situation. In addition, a truly free market with free exchange of goods without mega regulations and tariffs by either nation would probably relieve the stress of illegal immigration. Monopolies encouraged by the US and Mexico make it very hard for many smaller businesses to manage on either side of the border. So, with the help of both governments, mega corporations exploit many to work for low cost wages from those in Mexico and force those in the US to work at lower wages and, thereby, reduce, their livelihood. It is the corrupt governments that create the poverty and slave labor for the behest of mega corporations.
Thank you for your insight, Barbara.
Here is the issue every one glosses over or total miss. Both Democratic and Republican parties have had total control of government several times in the last quarter century and neither have been able to address and fix this issue of illegal immigration. At some point you have to get real and face facts that neither party wants to address or fix the issue because some special interest in both parties benefit form the undocumented work force.
It is that simple.
The special interest to the Republican side love the cheap labor and the under cutting of the American workers wages. The Democrats like it for the same reason but like the thoughts that they may get a few more voters in the long run for their side.
Neither Hillary or Trump will do more than window dressing of this issue if elected and we will be talking about this very same issue in four years. It’s time to tell the true your elected officials do not want to fix the problem and the illegal immigrants are just pawns caught in the middle to be used and abuse by all sides.
I love so many of the people of Mexico. That is why this article is so important. It puts the spotlight back on the problem–the government of Mexico. The Mexican government is guilty of crimes against it’s citizens.
My best wish for Mexico is that it becomes strong, independent and prosperous, enough to have an attitude. Like France in the 1970s under DeGaulle: “Yeah, we’re your friend, but we act in our own interests, not yours, Yankee.”
That’s the kind of neighbor to the south I want to see.
Where did Ms. Carrasco get all those quotes and talking points? Did she do the research herself? Is her reference to “a wall” an indication that she supports Trump? If she does, she is completely discredited.
Anita, I did my research. Everything in the article can be verified by simply researching the articles and individuals I quoted. You will notice that there are many more facts I was unable to include because of space constrains. This article was apolitical. Nothing political about the article. The term “wall” is the same word used by Vicente Fox, Obama, Cruz, Trump, proponents of a “wall” and opponents of a “wall.” What have we become when an individual can be “discredited” by the use of a word? Are you “completely discredited” because you used the word “Trump”?
I agree, can’t believe that people are defined by a regular word like wall. Last time I used the word wall was to make arrangements to have it repaired. Odd, the contractor didn’t view it as a endorsement for Trump.
Incredible !! Barbara simply stated the facts not some PC or political slogan.
Who is Alan Wall? He is not even identified. Nor is the source of his quote or the other quotes and information. This article was obviously culled from talking points circulated by conservatives.
Same old liberal tactic, place opposing team on defense by attacking.
Be SPECIFIC and tell us how Barbara is incorrect and her points are Trumpism. Post the liberal talking points, remember this is a discussion about immigration not personalities. Again be SPECIFIC
If Barbara really wants to do some research, she should read study after study showing that the U.S. has always benefitted economically from illegal immigration. All she does is parrot conservative talking points. She won’t say if she supports Trump.
Anita, read the title of my article and the FIRST TWO PARAGRAPHS. It was an article discussing the “other side of immigration”— the effects in MEXICO!!! I parrot no one. I wonder who you’ve heard go into detail on the Mexican side of illegal immigration? I surely haven’t. That’s what prompted me to research and write this article. Why do you have to know who I’m voting for? That has absolutely nothing to do with the article. Stick with the topic.
We are still waiting “your” research and counterpoint with “specifics”.
A persons comment are not necessarily any endorsement for any candidate or support of position. In any case why is it necessary to post ones voting record to post ? Obviously you don’t agree with Barbara’s comments so post yours and we can decide on which candidate your support.
Barbara’s points are on the money and states that both countries share responsibility for the migration problem. One out of cheap labor and the other as a means to avoid responsibility for its citizens.
Why don’t you write a counterpoint about the issues and suffering of migrants on the Mexican southern border ?
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