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Ruben Navarrette

Columnist, host & author

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Americans should be grateful for Mexican, Canadian neighbors

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Ruben Navarrette

Columnist, host & author

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The United States is fortunate to share its borders with amicable North American neighbors. It boasts the longest undefended border globally with Canada and a 2,000-mile border with Mexico. The U.S. government recognizes Canada as a “neighbor, friend and ally” while referring to Mexico as a “strategic partner.”

Straight Arrow News contributor Ruben Navarrette reminds Americans to recognize how good they have it, with peaceful neighbors to the north and hard-working southern neighbors. He cautions against divisive rhetoric, citing recent comments by GOP presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy, who proposes the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Canada border.

Like a good neighbor, Mexico is there. And so is Canada. Our two “border bros” protect their own national interests by helping protect the international borders of the United States. They do this by sharing intelligence, cooperating with U.S. law enforcement agencies, and flagging would-be border crossers who raised suspicions.

We Americans don’t realize or appreciate how good we have it, or how lucky we are when it comes to the countries that border us. In the same way that some of us take for granted things like freedom or U.S. citizenship, many of us also take for granted the concept of border security. For instance, Republican politicians loosely and irresponsibly throw around terms like “invasion” to describe a phenomenon that’s been happening for more than 150 years — the movement of people across the U.S.-Mexico border in search of a better life. These people aren’t coming to do us harm. More often, they’re coming to do work that Americans won’t do.

By the way, in light of current events, you would think that Republicans would be more careful with a word like invasion,” seeing how we’ve recently witnessed a couple of real ones. First when the Russians attacked Ukraine in February 2022. And again, when Hamas attacked Israel several weeks ago on October 7.

Like a good neighbor, Mexico is there. And so as Canada, our two border bros protect their own national interests by helping protect the international borders of the United States. They do this by sharing intelligence, cooperating with us law enforcement agencies, and flagging would be border crossers, who raised suspicions. We Americans don’t realize or appreciate how good we have it, or how lucky we are, when it comes to the countries that border us in the same way that some of us take for granted things like freedom, or US citizenship, many of us also take for granted the concept of border security. For instance, Republican politicians loosely and irresponsibly throw around terms like invasion, to describe a phenomenon that’s been happening for more than 150 years, the movement of people across the US Mexico border in search of a better life. These people aren’t coming to do us harm. More often, they’re coming to do work that Americans won’t do. By the way, in light of current events, you would think that Republicans would be more careful with a word like invasion, seeing how we’ve recently witnessed a couple of real ones. First when the Russians attacked Ukraine in February 2022. And again, when Hamas attacked Israel several weeks ago on October 7,

which reminds me halfway around the world, Israel did not fare as well in the neighbor lottery. It’s not just that our friend has to contend with murderous attacks by Hamas terrorists who run the Gaza Strip next door. Israel is also surrounded by four Arab states that attacked it just 50 years ago,

during the 1973, Yom Kippur war, with the goal of wiping it off the map, see, 50 years is in the ancient timeline of the Middle East about 15 minutes. There’s Lebanon, which today serves as a base for the terror group Hezbollah to fire 1000s of rockets into northern Israel, their Syria, which is a messy hotbed for extremists after its civil war, even the supposedly friendly states, Egypt and Jordan, were quick to criticize Israel for defending itself against future attacks by Hamas. Meanwhile, back in this hemisphere, besides being our neighbor, friend, ally, and number two trading partner after Canada, Mexico also has a side hustle. It serves as a giant temp agency that provides workers to US employers who can’t get enough of those hard working Mexicans. That’s one group. They don’t have to worry it’s going to go out and participate in the great resignation so they can go find themselves. As for Canada, it does such a good job of keeping watch over our northern border that Americans often forget that the border is even there. Luckily, we have GOP presidential hopeful Rebecca Ramaswamy. To remind us at the recent GOP presidential debate in Miami, the entrepreneur got eyes rolling when he sounded the alarm against the woefully underreported Canadian invasion of the United States. See, anyone can build a wall on our southern border with Mexico. That’s easy. And really it’s so 2016 Donald Trump a Republican, build a piece of the wall. Now, Joe Biden, a Democrat is building another piece. Ramaswamy says he has seen the future and that’s covered with Moose, Mounties and Maple Leafs.

Quote, there was enough fentanyl that was captured just on the northern border last year to kill 3 million Americans, he said. So we’ve got to just skate to where the puck is going. Not just where the puck is. He said, quote, don’t just build the wall. Build both walls.

Get that Ramaswamy wants to build walls on both borders, the one with Mexico and the one with Canada. What a great idea. I bet we can even get the entire cost of construction covered by Mexico and Canada. You see our neighbors are watching all this play out and right about now. They’ve got to be eager to wall themselves off from the land of the crazy and the home of the absurd.

 

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