Monday, July 28, 2014 | 2:01 a.m.
In response to the July 20 letter “Washington won’t listen to us,” I have a question: What is a secure border? Is it a border that completely stops all travel, trade and traffic? Or one that stops only illicit travel, trade and traffic? Many nations have walls or fences with borders near high-population areas, but many don’t.
The border formerly between East and West Germany, and the border between North and South Korea are extreme examples of secure borders. Even they are/were not totally effective. If we were to put our mind and resources to totally secure our southern border, we could spend maybe $100-200 billion a year and halt almost all of our exports to Mexico and points south. It would be an ecological, social and moral disaster.
When you travel to Mexico, you can see all the stuff they buy from the U.S. Our corn exports have decimated their local farmers at times, and a great deal of the pigs they raise are from piglets they buy from us. And from the inception of irrigated farming in the Southwest, labor has been supplied by Mexico.
Our current border security is intercepting a stream of unaccompanied minors arriving here. They are fleeing conditions of death, brutality and other privations. Have we become so craven and inhumane that we can’t treat them in a decent way?
The conditions they live under in a large part are our doing, including continuous meddling in Central American governments, the war on drugs and our voracious appetite for illicit drugs.
Those who live with us and work with us have become part of the fabric of our society. They are our neighbors and friends. Allow them to become legal and, in time, citizens.
Save your hate and anger for businesses that cheat the system and have exploited them. Allow the adjustment of status to be concurrent to added border enforcement and expanded E-Verify. It’s the humane, American thing to do.