Users Browsing this Thread
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)
- 05-23-2005, 11:44 AM #1
Mexico accuses U.S. of new 'anti-immigration campaign'
http://www.philly.com/mld/inquirer/news ... 709435.htm
Posted on Sun, May. 22, 2005
Mexico accuses U.S. of new 'anti-immigration campaign'
Politicians on the left and right protest what one saw as the "myopic, racist and xenophobic" Real ID Act.
By Susana Hayward
Inquirer Foreign Staff
MEXICO CITY - When President Vicente Fox came into office in late 2000, he had hoped his legacy would include changes in U.S. immigration policy to allow Mexicans to cross the border legally to work.
Now, that vision is crumbling in the face of legislation President Bush signed earlier this month authorizing construction of more walls along the border and in effect invalidating Mexican-issued identification cards for citizens living in the United States.
Fox is pledging to continue his efforts on behalf of migrants until his term ends in December 2006. But Mexican officials are angry and disheartened at the idea of more walls between the United States and Mexico instead of barriers coming down.
Fox's government is planning to send a diplomatic protest over the law, the first the country has ever formally presented to the United States.
Fox expressed his anger in a recent speech: "I respect the sovereignty of the United States and its freedom to take such decisions and measures, but frankly, it's not the right approach between friends and neighbors."
Much of the news coverage on his comments focused on the racial overtones of his defense of Mexican migrants' role in the U.S. economy: He said Mexicans "are doing jobs that not even blacks want to do." The Mexican government eventually apologized for offending African Americans, and Fox met in Mexico City with Jesse Jackson to clarify the remark.
The comments underlined Fox's frustration and anxiety over passage of the Real ID Act, which was attached to an $82 billion spending bill to pay for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The legislation requires that ID cards, including driver's licenses, meet strict federal requirements in three years if they'll be used to request U.S. government services or board an airliner. It also allows the Homeland Security Department to construct a second wall and other barriers around the metal wall that stretches 14 miles along the border between Tijuana and San Diego.
It wasn't supposed to turn out this way. A rancher and former governor of Guanajuato state, Fox made immigration policy a top priority. During his campaigns, he promised to fight for an open border and for legalizing Mexicans in the United States. He expected Bush, also a former governor with a ranch, to be an ally.
Fox and Bush began a close relationship after they took office, Fox in December 2000 and Bush a month later. They vowed to enrich ties and work on legalizing or giving amnesty to at least four million Mexicans and other undocumented workers in the United States.
But a chill followed the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Bush didn't push an immigration accord. Fox didn't support the U.S.-led war in Iraq.
Last year, optimism was renewed when Bush proposed a program to allow temporary workers, similar to guest programs of the past. But it has stalled in Congress.
Sens. Edward M. Kennedy (D., Mass.) and John McCain (R., Ariz.) introduced a bill this month that would allow immigrants to seek legal status after living in the United States for three years, but its passage is considered unlikely.
Immigration is the one political constant in Mexico leading up the July 2006 presidential election. Even Fox's worst political enemies agree with his criticism of the United States. Mexico City Mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador of the left-of-center Democratic Revolutionary Party, the favorite to succeed Fox, said the United States should help Mexico create jobs, not build walls.
Others agree, calling for a "united, nonpartisan protest."
"This is an anti-immigration campaign without precedent. It's Mexico against Republicans, [California Gov. Arnold] Schwarzenegger, the Minutemen in Arizona, Bush's entire cabinet," said Primitivo Rodriguez, a Mexican political scientist who specializes in immigration. Rodriguez is working to pass a bill here that would allow Mexicans abroad to vote in the 2006 presidential elections.
The Minutemen are a citizens' group that has attempted sporadic border patrols in Arizona and has talked about expanding into Texas and New Mexico.
Anger over the U.S. legislation is such that a diplomatic protest is only one of the tactics planned. Mexican community leaders have advocated going on strike to prove that U.S. employers could not survive without cheap Mexican labor.
"These measures are myopic, racist and xenophobic," said Amalia Garcia, the left-of-center governor of Zacatecas state, which has one of the country's highest emigration rates. "Building walls and preventing migrants from getting a driver's license don't solve any security problems."
- 05-23-2005, 02:11 PM #2
"Building walls and preventing migrants from getting a driver's license don't solve any security problems."
It works for me! High walls with lots of barbed wire and maybe a moat filled with their own 'favorite soccer game liquid' would be great!
- 05-23-2005, 02:23 PM #3
- Join Date
- Dec 1969
Hell, we need a concrete barrier with guard towers, oh wait that will cost money, instead we should use the money from the armed service and place the military on the border. Mexico has thiers on the border, why cant we? Oh thats right, Bush is in the pocket of the Fox.