I was disappointed that you did not visit the Texas/Mexico border when you were less than 300 miles away in Austin. But I get why you didn’t. See that was me years ago — I didn’t want to see.
It was easier for me to sit in my suburban home nice and secure while judging and spewing out my point of view about the situation on our borders. I live in Corpus Christi which is less than three hours away from the border. My city sits right off the main corridor that immigrants are trafficked through to get to one of the main hubs, Houston.
Not wanting to sound all arrogant and judgmental, I would still question and put down those parents living in Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala that would send their children to cross our border illegally. I was appalled that they would buy their young pre-school age children a trip to the USA with no supervision. I was infuriated at the coyotes that exploited the situation, not to mention abused, molested, beat, and starved these children along the way. I was even enraged that our Border Patrol Agents couldn’t do anything to stop these cartels of traffickers who were concerned about making a mega-profit off these children.
It was easy then to sit back and spout off about what should be done.
But the day came when I had to see. With a trip to Guatemala and a week in Guatemala City, I soon saw with different eyes how parents there could pay money to send their children to the USA. After a week in the dump city and the stench lingering as it had permeated my clothing, I saw with different eyes. Not only did I see, but now I had a responsibility to do something. This September will be my third trip there to show compassion to the children and families I encounter partnering up with the Potter’s House.
Then a year and a half ago I had the opportunity to have a conversation with a Border Patrol Agent who works the borders. My eyes were widened and my jaw hung in disbelief as he told his story — the story of the border. Back then there were over 300 coming through the borders daily freely as we did not have the manpower to capture and detain them all and the majority are coming from Guatemala. These captured children were held in cells until provisions were made to ship them back to their country in hopes that they were reunited with their families — but reunions with their families were never verified.
My journey to learn also led me to Bokenkamp here in Corpus Christi where I saw first hand the boys and girls who were detained and being held as government agencies tried to figure out what to do with them. Sadly I learned, many families do not even want them back. My heart broke. This is the reality of what our open border has done — split and torn families apart; children left without a home, culture, roots, or family.
Once you see, you have responsibility.
With that said, Mr. President, I get why you don’t want to come. It’s hard to see the cold hard facts. It’s much easier to get briefings and news releases from others as it comes desensitized. Your mind doesn’t have to comprehend what it has heard because there is no real-life visual to accompany the news.
And Mr. President, the photos you see — well, they just don’t do justice to the real travesty going on. Your heart can not feel the hurt and confusion of the children when you stare at photo’s. Your senses don’t have to process the in-humaneness of it all.
I hear you say that you are compassionate.
Mr. President, with due respect — it’s hard to be compassionate towards someone when you are hundreds of miles away. But sitting 1097 miles away does make it easier to avoid the facts that this is not compassion, but a humanitarian crisis.
And if you insist on considering this is compassionate, then can you please answer these questions?
What is compassionate about encouraging children to leave their parents?
What is compassion when you know people are being scammed out of their life savings to have their children trafficked to receive a tale of a “better” tomorrow?
Where is compassion when these young boys and girls are being raped, molested, beaten and abused as they make the long journey to our border?
How does compassion greet them when they arrive to our borders only to be held in cells, scared, and a long way from family?
Yes, I know why you didn’t come!
Seeing is believing. Seeing puts the responsibility in your hand. Oh how I get this — for years I didn’t want to see. I loved my nice comfortable life and when I finally saw, I was disturbed. Disturbed enough to do something! There could be no more complacency and comfortability in my life.
In conclusion, I’m so thankful you didn’t come Mr. President. I’m glad you can still golf, have your dinners, and hang out with your daughters and not be disturbed. Because I’m telling you, it is heart-wrenching going to bed with these children’s faces in your mind.
Mr. President, maybe next time you’re in Texas you’ll come see the truth of what is happening with these children.
Sincerely from a positively-disturbed American-Texan citizen,