Many years ago, I consulted/toured a Japanese manufacturing plant in Mexico. The people working there were diligent, hardworking, positive, and productive. The Mexican government, at that time, put a cap on how much the company could pay their workers. So, the management arranged things like showers, medical care, and food subsidies, to make the employee’s lives more comfortable.
Of course, the factory could only hire a limited number of workers, so a shantytown built up just outside the gates. Thousands of people lived there in the hopes that they too could be hired. Unless you’ve been there, you can’t imagine the poverty I saw. I saw a baby playing with dried dung because it was the only toy around. Most homes were madeout of things like cardboard and coffee can lids.
The plant was protected by a high fence, razor wire, and armed guards. Everyone wanted in, but there wasn’t enough to go around.
I’m a softie anyway, but I wept as my plane lifted off from the nearby airport. I didn’t stop weeping until we were wheels-down in the USA.
This situation was a living analogy to our current border problems with Mexico. People, many of whom are sincere and productive, are desperate to get into our country. We have the jobs, the stability, the safety, the educational opportunities, the medicine, the food, that so many need.
The problem is that we can’t have open borders any more than that factory could take down its fence and let everyone from the shantytown into the factory. Tens of thousands of people would overwhelm a factory built for several hundred employees. It would be a disaster. Change needs to be orderly and have a controlled rate of change, or the economy can collapse. This is a basic tenet of mathematical ‘Chaos Theory.’ Too much change too quickly, even good change, can destabilize an organization, economy, or other social-construct. And the problem with Chaos Theory is that no one knows exactly where that Chaos Threshold is, for any given system, on any given day.
On the other hand, societies that have all the good stuff are very often conquered by societies that don’t have any good stuff. So, immigration is necessary for our long-term survival. Plus it’s just the right thing to do morally. Besides, we need more people paying taxes to help fund the ‘Graying of America,’ so it is important to bring in people who are ‘net givers.
So, how do you bring in people who are ‘net givers’ and screen out those who are ‘net takers,’ or does that matter? Do we just take the “...poor huddled masses yearning to be free?”
But, some kind of delineation and barrier at our border would make sense. The form and operation of that barrier are best left to The People of the United States. It’s way beyond me.
But, like the factory that started this essay, a barrier will probably lead to one or more shantytowns near our border, made up of poor and desperate people. It seems like we should be prepared to help the people in the shantytowns by whatever means necessary. This could be done in concert with the Mexican Government. Christian missionaries might be able to help deliver the support and help the shantytown needs.
So, whatever our nation decides to do: I, as a follower of Jesus Christ, want to help them, whoever they are, and on whichever side of the border they stand. In fact, the people who don’t get in need our help even more than the ones who do cross our border. So, whether we let them in or not, we have a lot of stuff and they don’t have any. We are America. We need to find a way to help them.