Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Mexican Immigration Law

Pardon My English sends us to a Center for Security Policy paper (in PDF), Mexico's Glass House, which is a good rundown on Mexican immigration policy and a recommendation that we reciprocate by asking Mexico to change its immigration laws, or changing our own to reflect Mexico's.

Some of those points are:
• Immigrants and foreign visitors are banned from public political discourse. [I.e., no demonstrations - PJ]
• Immigrants and foreigners are denied certain basic property rights. (Limitations on the type of real estate and the percentage of certain types of companies non-citizens can own.)
• Immigrants are denied equal employment rights. (Hiring preferences for citizens.)
• Immigrants and naturalized citizens will never be treated as real Mexican citizens.
• Immigrants and naturalized citizens are not to be trusted in public service. (Non-citizens can't serve in the military, police forces, and even naturalized citizens are barred from serving in the legislature, supreme court, or as president -- for president, even your parents have to be native-born Mexican.)
• Immigrants and naturalized citizens may never become members of the clergy.
• Private citizens may make citizens arrests of lawbreakers (i.e., illegal immigrants)
and hand them to the authorities.
• Immigrants may be expelled from Mexico for any reason and without due process. is webpage, maintained by pro-Mexico individuals, that details disparities in Mexican and US immigration law, and advocates Mexico change its immigration laws. What I find most interesting are some fairly clear indications of racism enshrined in Mexican law. Here are some interesting points:
Mexicans, and people of Mexican parentage can become dual citizens of Mexico and the USA. Nevertheless, U.S. citizens who are NOT of Mexican descent are still prohibited from becoming citizens of Mexico, unless they are willing to formally ... represent that they have renounced their U.S. citizenship. ... By the way, Article 20 I c) is an example of how Mexico gives preferential treatment to folks from Latin American nations or the Spanish peninsula when awarding nationality status versus their "gringo" competitors, despite the existence of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

We are not aware that Mexico allows foreign-born citizens to hold truly significant governmental posts, especially not if they are of non-Mexican ancestry and if they want to maintain dual citizenship elsewhere. In contrast, the U.S.A. has allowed various foreigners to hold truly prominent federal and gubernatorial offices without requiring that they renounce their citizenship abroad. Among them are Madeleine Albright, Henry Kissinger and Arnold Schwarzenegger. ...

Wouldn't our governents' finally addressing the abovementioned legal differences help elevate Mexico's $9,000 annual GDP per capita to more closely resemble the USA's $38,000 figure? We would like nothing better for our beloved friends in the USA's neighboring trading partner of Mexico than to see them get to leave their country only when they truly want to, instead of out of economic desperation. Is Mexico's current governmental administration doing nearly enough to help Mexico's people though?

Alan Wall, an American legally living and working in Mexico, tells the story of 18 Americans deported from Mexico for participating in a demonstration:
The Americans’ offense was to participate in May Day marches in Mexico City and Guadalajara. The ones in Mexico City were college students, visiting with their professor from Washington State. They had joined a group protesting the expropriation of land near Mexico City for a new airport and were waving machetes with the other protestors. They might have gotten away with it, except that some of them were heard on the TV news shouting protest slogans in broken Spanish, which in turn caused Mexican journalists to express outrage.

The INM wasted no time. The offenses were committed on May 1st, and by the evening of May 2nd, the offending gringos were on their way back to the U.S.A., their Mexican visas revoked.

Wall then goes on to show the heavy influence the Mexican government is exerting in the US through its 47 consulates and President Fox.


Apparently, Rush Limbaugh beat me to the punch on this one. I would link the article on his website, but it's members-only.

It seems to be going around. This is a well-written article!

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