Fear

Many people in our country believe that building a fence will solve our illegal immigration problems. It will keep individuals from entering this country illegally by serving as a barrier. The idea itself is not problematic; however the application is. The US is located below Canada, and above Mexico; therefore, it has two borders. Most of the illegal immigration attention is focused on the US-Mexico border. This is understandable given that more illegal immigrants come from Mexico than do from Canada. However, shouldn’t the US be just as concerned about the US-Canada border, as they are about the US-Mexico border? For, an illegal immigrant is an illegal immigrant no matter what country of origin. The attention that has been directed on the US-Mexico border encourages action, but a lot of this attention has been motivated by racism.

Mexico and its citizens do not resemble what the dominant society in the US considers desirable. Mexicans do not, generally, share the same physical traits as dominant white society in the US. Mexicans have darker skin. This is important because America largely judges an individual based on the color of his or her skin. Thankfully, this practice is less common today than in earlier periods of our history, yet it still lingers somewhere in the subconscious mind.

Population increase is another factor in the building of a fence along the US-Mexico border. The dominant group in America does not want any minority group to threaten its position. Hispanics, mostly Mexicans, have increased their share of the population due to natural growth. The larger this group grows the more powerful they will be. This is threatening to the dominant group because it has to deal with the realization that its power will diminish as this minority group grows. Therefore, the dominant group will do absolutely anything to maintain its power. Advocating strict laws or the building of a fence to keep this threatening group out is a desperate attempt at holding on to the reins of power that drive a society. Why is power so important? Power equates to control. If a group is no longer in power, it is no longer able to control or structure a society.

The dominant society is responding to this threat out of fear. Its response is entirely visceral. If this group analyzed this problem from an intellectual perspective, it is unlikely that it would respond in such a rudimentary manner. Fear is a powerful motivator. It alerts an individual when to be more attentive, and it releases adrenaline. The dominant group is experiencing the fight-or-flight response. Capitulation is not the American way; therefore, this group will fight to prevent Mexicans from expanding or gaining power by any means necessary. They will attempt to conquer, and defeat this group via legislative acts just as they have done to other groups in the past. It will do this to hold on to power. This power could be either perceived or imaginary. However, if something is inevitable, it will occur no matter what. An increase in Hispanic growth and power is inevitable. Therefore, the attempts of the dominant group to suppress this group are futile.

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