immigration is such a hot-button issue, especially here in the southland (infamous home of the minuteman project). i was listening to npr yesterday as i was driving and i heard a very provocative set of interviews with different residents of border towns – both from mexico and the united states.

one story: us border officials set up a roadside check-in station in a city (not a border town, though) and pulled over people who appeared to be of latino descent. one family was forcefully separated by these officials, after the entire family was detained and the parents were interrogated for over eight hours. as it happened, the parents had immigrated illegally thirteen years previous to this incident, and their children were born in the states. after basically being treated like the perps in the law & order questioning room, the parents waived all their rights and were deported. just like that.

another woman, an american, was interviewed in a different city (this one a border town). she complained loudly about how “those mexicans” earned money here in the states and then sent it back home to mexico. according to this woman this is a major economic issue, you see, because that money should stay here. the reported must have sensed something was off, because he continued to question her.

he saw the woman’s family in the car, so he asked if the family was going somewhere. they were going across the border to mexico, she explained, so her daughter could get an eye exam. an eye exam? the reporter questioned. well, duh, the woman answered – it’s like $30 there and over $90 here.

after an awkward pause, it dawned on this woman. “well, um, i guess our money isn’t staying here, either,” she stammered.

if this woman could remove all of “those” people from this nation, how would it improve her lot? *sigh*