Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Mexican Hypocrisy

Mexico doesn’t like the idea of the US controlling its borders and enforcing its immigration laws, which are labeled racist and xenophobic. Yet, while Mexico is happy to recommend national suicide for the US, it maintains exactly the opposite policy within its own borders.

Foreign-born Mexicans can't hold seats in either house of the congress. They're also banned from state legislatures, the Supreme Court and all governorships. Many states ban foreign-born Mexicans from spots on town councils. And Mexico's Constitution reserves almost all federal posts, and any position in the military and merchant marine, for "native-born Mexicans."

Recently the Mexican government has gone even further. Since at least 2003, it has encouraged cities to ban non-natives from such local jobs as firefighters, police and judges.

Mexico's Interior Department - which recommended the bans as part of "model" city statutes it distributed to local officials - could cite no basis for extending the bans to local posts.

After being contacted by The Associated Press about the issue, officials changed the wording in two statutes to delete the "native-born" requirements, although they said the modifications had nothing to do with AP's inquiries.

"These statutes have been under review for some time, and they have, or are about to be, changed," said an Interior Department official, who was not authorized to be quoted by name.

Sure. And if you believe that, there’s a pyramid in Mexico City for sale, real cheap.

But because the "model" statues are fill-in-the-blanks guides for framing local legislation, many cities across Mexico have already enacted such bans. They have done so even though foreigners constitute a tiny percentage of the population and pose little threat to Mexico's job market.

The foreign-born make up just 0.5 percent of Mexico's 105 million people, compared with about 13 percent in the United States, which has a total population of 299 million. Mexico grants citizenship to about 3,000 people a year, compared to the U.S. average of almost a half million.

So, let’s get this right. Mexico exports millions of its people to the US every year, all the while excoriating Americans for daring to complain about the invasion, but only grants Mexican citizenship to 3,000 people every year and won’t let non-natives hold key jobs. Gee, which country is racist, xenophobic and hypocritical again? Or rather, which country is pursuing an agenda to advance its own interests at the expense of its neighbor? And which country is the greater fool?


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