Open Borders / by kevin murray

In 2010 about 73% of deportations or "removals" as the U.S. Dept of Homeland Security prefers to call them were Mexican citizens.  That statistic isn't surprising as we share a border of nearly 2,000 miles with Mexico and the Mexican economy can't hold a candle to the United States.  The United States is still seen as the beacon of hope for impoverished Mexicans, perhaps slightly less so in recent years, but the beacon remains quite bright.  It isn't surprising, and I would call it human nature, that if you live in a country in which the opportunity to make a living and provide for your family is suspect that you would want to at least consider other possibilities, rather than a life of abject poverty.  Additionally, ten states of our present Union were either all or in part, once owned by Mexico.    Our two most populous states, California and Texas, were originally part of Mexico.   Some might argue, that's past history and not really relevant but history is always relevant and should be taken into account.


Give credit to Canada, the United States, and Mexico for signing the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which was implemented in 1994.  This agreement essentially removed tariff barriers between these neighboring countries and thereby created a "free market" economy between these three North American countries.   The removal of tariffs not only reduced the cost of goods between countries, it also reduced paperwork and bureaucracy.  If the NAFTA agreement is good enough for economic reasons and benefits for all countries involved, why not take the next logical step and open up the borders between neighboring countries so that people can more easily traversed from one country to another.


The net benefit for these countries would be tremendous as there is no better trade partner than your immediate neighbor.  Take, for instance, the example of Germany in which they were torn asunder in the aftereffects of World War II in which for the first time in its history there was an arbitrary border and distinction between West Germany and East Germany.  This division into two separate nations lasted from 1945 through 1990.  Since their reunification in 1990, East Germany has modernized at a rapid rate to which its current productivity is about 80% of the former West Germany, and although their salaries are about 20% less than present-day West Germans, the former East Germany productivity in whole surpasses all other previous Communist countries in Eastern Europe.


Of course, Germans speak the same language and have been united for most of their history, but here in America, this country has acted and behaved in a bi-lingual way for a number of years.  The fact of the matter is a more prosperous Mexico would be a net benefit for all parties involved.  The more that Mexico can become a true partner with America, the greater our security, our freedom, and our mutual strengths.    Mexico has great wealth and wonderful potential which Uncle Sam can help to develop.


While campaigning for the Presidency in November, 1979, future President Reagan said: "…any person with the courage, with the desire to tear up their roots, to strive for freedom, to attempt and dare to live in a strange and foreign place, to travel halfway across the world was welcome here."  I wholeheartedly agree with his sentiments and would love to see the United States live up to its ideals and to welcome into our land all those that desire to be part of this Promised Land.