We’ve had a US-Mexico border crisis for years. Everyone seems to have an opinion about it, from what they call immigration reform, to work visas, to amnesty or building a border fence.
The latest idea is to have Central Americans ask for asylum in Mexico, their first stop after leaving their homelands.
It’s not a new thought but some are talking about it again.
Frankly, it’s not a workable idea for a few reasons:
First, Mexico won’t go for it. Why does Mexico want hundreds of people seeking asylum and flooding their southern states;
Second, my guess is that they will stay in Mexico long enough to get asylum and then figure out how to get to the US, their ultimate objective; and,
Related to my second point, The Washington Post has concerns for the safety of Central Americans in Mexico:
In a recent report, Doctors Without Borders noted that two-thirds of Guatemalan, Salvadoran and Honduran migrants in Mexico have reported being victims of violence; almost a third of migrant women there had been sexually assaulted.
Twelve of the world’s 50 most violent cities are in Mexico. Forcing refugees to seek sanctuary in Mexico would thrust tens of thousands of them into a country with weak law enforcement, a flimsy judicial system, an anemic asylum process and predatory criminal gangs.
Under those circumstances, it is folly to think migrants would stay put. Much more likely, they would simply find a way to enter the United States illegally, even without the chance to apply for asylum here.
So what do we do?
There are no quick answers. Nevertheless, forcing these countries to improve their quality of life is the only one that makes sense to me.