Migration Threatens Purified Trusts

Holy week, Lent is about to end. Local authorities are called to the Capitol — to the District of Columbia — for a high-level dialogue. In this time of penitence, tradition calls for purification. Thus, it is worth mentioning that President Juan José Arévalo will arrive this week fully enjoying a relationship that has also been purified. Full of the confidence he has acquired through arduous honesty, he will be received at the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue. Vice President Kamala Harris will welcome him to a high-flying summit. They will discuss two central axes in an announced agenda: one is the strengthening of a country that has been restored to maximize economic opportunity including good governance, investment, security and development; the other will address the eternal dilemma of how to address the exodus of people spreading throughout Central America.

I imagine there are few problems that are as much a burden to Harris and company today as the noise coming from the U.S. border with Mexico. We are barely half a year from the November election, and the challenger is pursuing revenge, attacking everything he can think of at the top of his lungs as he opposes the Democratic presidency. Donald Trump says Joe Biden is “the worst president that we’ve had in the history of our country.” And his followers, loyal to the death, applaud his words. The problems that have traditionally troubled the American electorate are always present, but Trump blames almost all of them on the problem of mobility, which today has truly global effects. If there is insecurity in his country, it is because Joe Biden lets in “millions of migrants.” If social security is in trouble, it is those “millions of migrants” who will eat up the undeserved funds.

It is important to recognize the significance of the immigration situation in U.S. politics today. It is enough to listen to one of the Republican campaign rallies that last 1 1/2 hours where a third of the time is devoted to creating a state of panic with regard to immigrating foreigners — a strategy of fear that seems to be paying off handsomely. A Gallup poll released in February showed that for the first time since 2019, immigration appeared as the single most important issue for the American public that will vote in November. The problem concerns us: According to CBP, Guatemalans alone average an estimated quarter of a million encounters annually at the border. It is for this deep and long-standing problem that Arevalo and Harris will seek to coordinate action during their meetings next week.

Political voices define the situation on the border as a unique crisis. But, although numbers are at an all-time high, they represent nothing more than prolonged growth, an established trend and one that was only interrupted by the 2020 pandemic.

Unlike her opponents, Vice President Harris says she seeks to address the problem at its roots, a unique situation that a country like Guatemala should take advantage of as it seeks to improve local living conditions. Arevalo will want to take advantage of the situation, but he is armed with few resources. With no migration policy and an approach that seems somewhat theoretical, maintaining the joy of the purified relationship seems like a real challenge. The thing is, it is months beyond the theoretical and political. People continue to be expelled from our country. The voting public will not give second chances.

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About Patricia Simoni 182 Articles
I began contributing to Watching America in 2009 and continue to enjoy working with its dedicated translators and editors. Latin America, where I lived and worked for over four years, is of special interest to me. Presently a retiree, I live in Morgantown, West Virginia, where I enjoy the beauty of this rural state and traditional Appalachian fiddling with friends. Working toward the mission of WA, to help those in the U.S. see ourselves as others see us, gives me a sense of purpose.

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