Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Immigration -- The Mexican Government's Response to the Bush Speech

From Ash:

I had a number of problems with President Bush's Monday night speech on immigration. Of course, one of my biggest problems with his speech was that he didn't take on the Mexican Government -- even address its role in the whole mess. I don't know why he's afraid of doing that. But all I can say is that fear -- much like the flow of migrants -- is a one-way street. The Mexican Government shows absolutely no fear of Bush, and is proving that in its response to his speech.

Now Bush left out a lot of crucial issues that need to be addressed, like what to do with children who are illegal and have lived here for most of their lives, or children who are citizens, but have parents who are undocumented. And a lot of what he wanted to do isn't really up to him. I agreed with an NPR commentator's observation, that he could have given the same speech months or even years ago. Instead, Bush waited until his popularity is at an-ever-falling-levels, so that he doesn't really have the political wherewithal to make itchy-for-re-election congressmen do anything they don't want to do. Things that he could do, more on his own (such as order a re-organization of the immigration service), in order to deal with the backlog of applications, he never mentioned.

But mostly, I was disappointed that no one on President Bush's staff seemed to have read our essay on -- because he made no mention of holding Mexican government accountable for the massive migration from that country. We've taken over Afghanistan and Iraq because of alleged governmental ties to theoretical threats to our border -- but he won't say word one about the Mexican government's actual sponsorship of illegal immigration.

The Mexican government, on the other hand, isn't afraid of us. Even before Bush announced the National Guard would be working on the border, President Fox was objecting to the plan. Now, following Bush's speech, Mexican officials are planning to file suits on behalf of immigrants caught by the National Guard. An official from the Mexican National Immigration Institute, a branch of the Mexican Government, is asking the Mexican government to send its own military to remote parts of the border, to protect its migrant citizens from our Guard. (Once again, they claim to be doing this for the sake of 400-500 lost lives -- which are tragic, but nothing compared to the millions of Mexican people who suffer in extreme poverty. Conversely, I think it's closer to the amount of Chiapas and Zapatista revolutionaries who've died at the hands of the Mexican military.)

In other words, their plan is use their military to attempt to help its people evade our military -- even escort them past -- so that the Mexicans can continue to illegally cross the border.

Madness. Absolute madness.

If any other country was doing such such a thing, we'd be at the United Nations, screaming about our national sovereignty and a threat of war. Instead, we politely agree that we have a "shared responsibility."

Most of the newsfeeds are running versions of an AP article about all this. But I've only seen one version, so far, that ended with this sentence:

"Many analysts believe that Fox is willing to trade enhanced border security for a comprehensive plan that legalizes the status of undocumented workers in the United States, something on which he could stake his legacy."

What I have to ask is, why isn't that in all the articles? And why on earth isn't that the lede?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed the article on opened my eyes to a new point of view, and one that I'll debate with my graduate student friend who's studying public policy and latin american affairs.

12:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a theory:

It seems to me that Bush does not want to ruffle the feathers of the Mexican Government.

It is weird how Bush goes after certain countries but seems to have an hands off policy where Mexico is concerned.

I wonder why......

6:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mexican Tourism Ad

One thing I really can't believe is this Mexican Tourism ad from Jones American Comedy Network. "Experience Mexico the way they experience the USA". They have it in their podcast too.

5:54 PM  
Blogger Moses said...

I am very interested in this whole Immigration policy, and it annoys me that so many sites are just concentrated on saying that PRESIDENT Bush is a bigoted racist out to kill or inhumanely treat every Mexican who sets foot across our borders.Your blog is the first site that I have seen that has something constructive to say about the President's speech, though I do have a few disagreements with your theory. my main reason for coming on here was that you said something about the Mexican Gov't, and the Mexican President in particular. I was wondering if you had some quotes from the Mexican President about the US President's speech/plan, or if you could direct me to another site that would have some. thanks
P.S. When talking/writing to or about the President of the United States, the proper form of address would beone of these: President(last name); President (full name); The President; Mr. President; or "President". I am tired of people talking about our current President as just "Bush". please show a little more respect next time.

1:37 PM  

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