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Experiencing Life at the Border!!

I believe it was a great trip and experience in the sense that it open the eyes of many of my classmates. They understood in a way the actual struggles that people have to go through living in Mexico and people that cross the border legally and illegally. My point of view is somewhat different because many of the situations we saw I have seen and lived through them. I still have family that go through everyday experiencing what we saw in the field trip. Something that impacts the life of many and also family members is that of maquiladoras. In the article by Maria Guadalupe Torres, she described exactly what a lot of people have to live through in a daily basis. She describes how she had to wake up at 4:30 in the morning in order to walk to get to work at time, she would work 10 to 14 hours and could not complain about anything. She also described how she would have to work around three hours in order to buy a gallon of milk.

            She ends here article with a statement which I really liked, it states, “We are human beings, not machines. We are persons who feel and cry. We need the work, yes. But let it be just and good work. Let it be work that brings life not death.” This quote means a great deal to me and my family because it is something that we have thought about and many people have in there mind in a daily basis. Lets just consider how just it is, to kill yourself for more than 10 hours working a strenuous job and not making enough to feed your family. Why is migration a problem, many people ask in this side of the border. It goes beyond trying to find a job and having a stable life. Coming to the US means survival for many of us that are now living here.

            As we saw in the maquiladora that we visited, most of the people are making 60  up to 100 dollars a week. There were people from the United States that I saw and it hit me, this people are making at least 35 thousand a year, and that is not counting the housing that they get for free and money for food. Yet the workers are making only four or five thousand a year. The only word that came to mind is exploitation. The United States was founded by exploiting others, taking there lands away and then bringing slaves to work for nothing. It seems to be an ongoing cycle.

            The family that we had lunch with, (Jazmin and Laura) were really nice. They were talking about how they also worked in a maquiladora and how hard it is to feed there children. At the same time I was thinking the reasons why the crime rate is so high in border towns. It is also an ongoing cycle; poor wages, hunger, the government not doing anything to help, migration, and people against migration.

            In correlation with the maquiladoras and the low wages people still cross the border every day to buy groceries and supplies. When I asked the host family why they did it they answered, “Because things are of better quality and it is less expensive.” People know some things about life in the United States. They know things are less expensive and people can make enough money to buy them. They have a sense of how life can improve for them and there family if they come to the US. They will risk many things even there life to obtain and work (literally work) for a better life. There was an article in the packet by the title of “Eight Migrants Murdered in Similar Way over Eight Months in AZ.” People are risking there life and the lives of there family members by exposing themselves to the dangers of heat, cold, and bajadores. The term bajadores are people that will rob you or they will steal the people from another coyote (or Mexican travel agents), they many times kill the people who coming illegally in order to not leave witnesses. As the article on the eight people murdered it seems that bajadores were involved. Many people get hurt and many die trying to reach “the American dream.”

            From personal experience people who come here illegally have to experience extreme weather situations. I have family that recently came and told me that they had to cross the mountains east of the I-10 just south of Tucson, 40 miles north of the border. It took them three days to get about 15 miles south of Tucson. They took the risk because of the situation they were living in. Me personally I am great full for what I have and have achieved in the US. I can compare how my life is here and compare it how it use to be in Mexico and how it still is for many of my family members I am very lucky in a way. You gain some things but lose others, such as culture, family connections and believe it or not some values are lost in the way There are many thing that affect migration in this country, I believe it is extremely important to understand the circumstances that cause this cycle to occur.


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