"Thrust into a complex debate about the country’s immigration
policies, one of Victoria Lorenzo-Calmo’s children has a simple plea: “Obama, don’t deport my momma.” That was one of the signs held Wednesday outside Helen DeVos
Children’s Hospital as the Guatemalan woman and her supporters rallied
on the Bostwick Avenue NE sidewalk. They want U.S. Immigrations and
Customs Enforcement to let Lorenzo-Calmo stay in town so her youngest
child, 14-month-old Jason, can be treated for a hearing impairment. “She’s not a criminal. She’s a mother,” said Basti Marquez, a local
teacher who’s housing Lorenzo-Calmo’s family at her Kentwood home." - Grand Rapids Press, Dec. 28, 2011.
But For The Grace of God Go I
As a retired US Border Patrol/INS/ICE agent who has witnessed the death of not only two co-workers, but the death of migrants too, I ask people who are so angry about immigration to consider the possibility that the undocumented are really a symptom of a much larger and insidious problem, and not the cause of that problem.
First of all, may I ask you two questions about the Mexican undocumented? I focus upon the Mexican undocumented because they are our direct neighbors and make up almost 50% of the total amount of undocumented present in the US. (I later will also combine illegal Mexican immigration and illegal Mexican drugs because they are so intricately connected).
(1) Would the Mexican undocumented come or stay here if they could make a comparable living wage and have comparable social services living and working safely at home with their families?
(2) Why do we seldom if ever hear US politicians criticize the corrupt Mexican government for its contribution to, and its responsibility for illegal Mexican immigration to the US?
Failed immigration is very similar to other failures in our country which are destroying the middle class. Those include but are not limited to our disastrous mortgage meltdown, failed health care, high unemployment, the high exportation of jobs, and our high cost of living.
The bi-national corrupt 1% (US and Mexico) who are ripping off US taxpayers have much to gain by our failed immigration policies. The Mexican rich export a sub-class of poor and the US rich benefit from their cheap labor. Of course much if not all of the education and medical costs are borne by US taxpayers, not by the US rich.
Yearly these very same undocumented send home billions in remittances to help support their families in Mexico who try to survive on $5.00 a day (not an hour) pay.
Are you aware that trade between the US and Mexico is very important to both countries’ economies? http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2010/05/142020.htm
Mexico is our second largest provider of oil. One billion dollars a day in commerce goes across our mutual border per day. Who do you think assembles much of our electronics and clothing at the maquiladoras on our border (earning $5.00 per day)? Who do you think profits by those US owned maquiladoras? Who do you think is now the most profitable big box store and largest retail employer in Mexico? http://newsinfo.iu.edu/news/page/normal/5724.html
Do you know that the largest influx of Mexican undocumented to the US occurred after Clinton pushed for the passage of NAFTA? I assume you know what NAFTA did to many American jobs, but do you know what NAFTA did to the small Mexican business owners and corn farmers? http://economyincrisis.org/content/illegal-immigration-and-nafta
Finally, do you have any idea how many people have died in Mexico since the US backed drug war was officially started in there 2006? http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-10681249
Do you have any idea of how much profit the cartel elite in Mexico or the corporate elite in the US make off of our bi-national war on drugs? Consider this article by Professor James Petras, “Imperialism: Bankers, Drug Wars and Genocide” http://petras.lahaine.org/?p=1855
I ask you to please educate yourselves before myopically blaming the undocumented for coming here. The problem is much more insidious than our politicians would like us to believe.
I just signed the following petition (click below) addressed to The United States Government¬; Sanction Mexico to Raise Its Minimum Wage to Equal the US Minimum Wage
Fifty per cent of the undocumented living in the United States come from Mexico. The Mexican undocumented would not come or stay in the United States if they could make a decent living wage working safely at home with their families in Mexico.
The current minimum wage in Mexico is about $5.00 per day, yet one billion dollars of trade is exchanged between the 1% of the United States and Mexico per day.
The common citizens of both the United States and Mexico suffer while the 1% of both countries continue to profit. This inequality must stop in order for the 99% of both the United States and Mexico to prosper.