Over the past few months I have witnessed up close what is happening on our border with Mexico. Like most people supporting legal paths for immigration, treating people humanely and with respect is as important as all the ongoing debates.
We all know how divided we are when it comes to immigration. How do we break the divide and find lasting solutions? Recently I listened in on a meeting with about 40 migrants being cared for on the Mexican side of the border. They were brought to the shelter where they are being protected by the Mexican government with the help of volunteers offering food, clothing counseling and medical assistance. As they listened to a volunteer talk about some of the issues they were facing, many eyes filled with tears. I realized at that moment how much they need our help. Clearly respecting our immigration laws, these people only ask that they be given a chance for a better life.
Most people in the US do not understand that the migrant problem on our border with Mexico is not just a humanitarian challenge on the US side, but on the Mexican side as well. Most migrants being processed by Homeland Security in El Paso do not have the same level of care in Mexico. In Juarez the Mexican government counts on people who have very little themselves to come to the aid of those hoping for a better life.
Here in El Paso we are living on the front lines where every day people from all over Latin America are trying to come to the United States for a better life. Over the past few months I have met people from Cuba, Honduras, Venezuela, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Mexican States where drug lords are making life extremely dangerous.
Everyone has a different story. Every individual is a child of God with the same feelings and desires all of us have in living this life. As I open my eyes and think more about these people I am reminded of the words from a Janet Jackson album recorded decades ago. “In complete darkness we are all the same, it is only our knowledge and wisdom that separates us, don’t let your eyes deceive you.”
Aposento Alto Tree of Hopes Mexico is on the front lines doing all we can to help people in need. Every offer of support with donations and volunteer assistance is greatly appreciated.