Our esteemed US Representatives are again set to approve (again!) legislation that mandates the building of 700 miles of fence on the border between Mexico and the US. All in the name of granting the US more border security, making it harder for terrorists to enter the US.
This argument, that the fence is supposed to keep America safer from terrorists, just makes me so MAD. It’s fear-mongering at its worst. And to top it off it hides the deeper reason for this fence, that is, for keeping Latin Americans out of our country, the real America. Anyone brown: not welcome. Because if it was national security that was the actual issue, how ’bout that long-ass border with Canada. Well, that’s just not a problem. Canadians are, by and large, white. They aren’t coming here in droves, taking (white) American’s jobs. Never mind that actual terrorists can relatively easily traverse that border. I mean, I’ve heard of several terrorist types that crossed into the US via the Canadian border. But I haven’t heard of any that got through from Mexico. No, the people that are crossing that border “illegally” are either drug runners or people desperate to create a better life for their families. The latter are willing to undergo horrendous journeys with a number of dangers to make it to the US. They then work themselves to the bone at jobs that are low-paying and often degrading and that no “self-respecting” (white) American would do, send money home to their families (to the tune of $11 billion in the first half of 2006, according to the Associated Press), and get screwed at every turn by the US government.
Make no mistake, this fence is not about national security. It’s about racism and classism. It’s about using fear – the fear of terrorism – to get the American people to accept something that is fundamentally wrong.
Moreover, this is an immigrant country. The people who lived here originally were forced to accept immigrant occupation. And since then there have been many immigrants who have flowed into this country and made it what it is today. To decide that no more is just wrong, in my (not-so-humble!) opinion. Just cos these people are brown doesn’t make them any less worthy of being here, contributing to our economy, or even making our economy run. We benefit from their work- they pick our fruits and vegetables, they clean our toilets, they wipe our childern’s butts, they worked at clean up of the World Trade Center (a fact I find amazingly ironic), they construct our buildings. And yes, their children attend school. Those children may even go to college and enter well-paying professions that their parents could only dream of. And if that’s not the freakin’ American Dream! And so who are we to stop this pursuit of the holy grail myth of the US? Is that American Dream only for white people?
*and any other brown people, who are after all, practically black. And we don’t need any more of those trouble-making, welfare- and healthcare- and schooling- sucking up types. (In case it’s not totally obvious, that was very sarcastic in tone.)