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Posted: 7/29/2001 7:05:24 PM EDT
To explain where I've been- I spent the last week outside of Harlingen Texas, with our church's Senior High(I'm a college freshman). Mission Discovery provided facilities, we provided the cash for our stay, and the building materials. A lot happened on that mission trip, and at some point I may sit down and tell all of you about it, in some soul-stirring revelatory, opinionated post which covers immigration, the TX/MX border, compassionate capitalism over forced charity, and everything else. As soon as I managae to figure it all out myself, that is. I may tell you about helping college and high school students to build one of 5 16'x12'houses in the colonia of Reynosa, Mexico, for a Mexican family of 5. Yes, the father works, in construction, and makes enough to, until recently, live in a plywood shack. Now he lives in a well built plywood shack, courtesy of Community Church. I may at some point tell of recent my struggle with my strong feelings against illegal immigration(legal immigration is ok in my book, but few have the opportunity), and rail against a problem with no apparent capitalist solution-an overcrowded nation with a poorly run government, and a severe lack of educated workers. I may tell of how I steadfastly continue to favor private charity for relief effort over Socilized aid through taxation and redistribution. I may tell you that the Rio Grande is no big deal. I may tell you that I grew closer to Christ on this trip, and what an exceptional spititual experience it was. I may tell you about haggling with the steet vendors(cool). I may tell you about the Border Patrol's Beretta model 96's, and being the only one who knew what they were packing. Customs had Glocks, I didn't ask for a closer look[:D] I may warn you not to drink the water, no matter HOW nice the restuarant is. I may tell you about the tearful goodbye I said in broken Castilian spanish to 'our' family, and to their children, and of the love that grew between us over a week of humbling service for the poor. I may do all of these things at some point, but right now, I just want you to know where I've been. OK, so the post leaves you hanging, without any apparent reason for being, nor with any lasting conclusions reached on my part. It's a bunch of disjointed thoughts about my experience this week, which while exceptional, left me pensive and serious, and not quite so read to see the world in black and white. So sue me.[;)] And, now for this post's only other reason for existing- So, has anyone here been to Mexico? Juggernaut
Link Posted: 7/29/2001 7:14:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/29/2001 7:11:30 PM EDT by TREETOP]
I've been to Tijuana quite a few times, to party or shop the pharmacies(Years ago!!). I've had opportunities to join mission trips like the one you describe, but I've never gone. I do have a good deal of respect for missionaries and helpers who selflessly give assistance to the poor. It must give you quite a sense of accomplishment, and I'm sure it gave you a new perspective on many things we all take for granted.
Link Posted: 7/29/2001 7:17:09 PM EDT
I went down to Mexico once when we were visiting my Sister in Law in Phoenix. Tourist trap border town. Do the street vendors still follow after you lowering their prices all the while?
Link Posted: 7/29/2001 7:44:18 PM EDT
In my life I've been to Mexico perhaps 8-9 times. I stick to Baja and that area. They're poor, no doubt about it, but no more so than the rest of the 3rd world. I would disagree with your assertion that few have the opportunity to immigrate here. In fact, if you look at the INS statistics, you'll see that the VAST majority of legal immigrants come from Mexico. Add to that the illegals and it's no wonder people worry about the situation. There is a major problem with government corruption in Mexico. No one would argue with that. But I think it's a problem they have to work out for themselves. The lack of educated workers in Mexico is not totally the result of a lack of opportunity. Mexican culture is not big on higher education and they bring that belief with them when they come here. This doesn't mean the 2nd or 3rd generations hold those feelings, simply that as a group they tend not to be as interested in education as other immigrants. Not to be mean spirited, but poverty exists everywhere in the world, even in the US. It's unfortunate that it exists so close to home, but that doesn't mean we should open our borders to everyone seeking relief. There is a limit. Add to that the current trend in moving low paying manufacturing jobs to China, you have to ask yourself this: if we were to adopt a more liberal immigration policy towards Mexico, what will they do when they get here and who will support them during the time they are seeking these jobs that no longer exist?
Link Posted: 7/30/2001 9:52:27 AM EDT
Good for you Juggernaut! At one time I did volunteer labor with Christmas in April thru my church. After a couple of those projects I could not do it anymore. I don't have a problem helping the "deserving poor" but I hated helping out people who were just lazy, drunken pigs. GunLvr
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