"I'm full." It is a phrase that is constantly repeated at Thanksgiving, an American holiday where food is abundant and blessings are counted. I remember when my teachers in elementary school forced us to write out what we were thankful for around Thanksgiving. Mostly, everyone wrote basic things—food, shelter, water, etc. At the time, I always thought of counting my blessings as an unnecessary chore. But in today's society of fear and social unrest, counting your blessings may be the key to being happy.
Happiness is uncertain for migrants who are awaiting their fate in Tijuana, Mexico. Most of them are from Honduras, fleeing their country due to threats of gang violence and public corruption.
To help the migrants, the Mexican government has set up a job fair for them with the hope that they will be able to support themselves as their U.S. asylum applications are being processed. According to Mexican government officials, the job fair will continue to be available to the migrants until December 16th. But Tijuana's resources are getting stretched thin. Shelter has become a rare commodity. And Tijuana is running out of room.
Meanwhile, the U.S. government has placed its focus on keeping the migrants out. Nearly 150 miles of barbed wire is available for the U.S. military to place across the U.S.-Mexico border. It's a $210 million dollar project. Yet, this still won't be enough to cover the entire border. But if the barbed wire won't even be able to fulfill its intended purpose, is it even worth the cost?
No. Putting up barbed wire does not address the main reason the migrants are fleeing their country: violence. It also perpetuates a culture of fear. Violence breeds economic instability. But before jobs can be created, the violence must be stopped. Countries like Honduras have fallen victim to the domination of illegal drug activity. As drug lords fight for their cocaine products to be dominant in the U.S. market, violence ensues causing the citizens of those countries to flee.
But how can we solve another country's problem with illegal drug activity when the U.S. has its own illegal drug activity problems to contend with? According to the U.S. State Department, Honduras is a popular transportation hub for transporting cocaine to the U.S. Public corruption and remote villages make it easier for smugglers to bring illegal drugs into the U.S. Helping to eradicate violence in Honduras could be the key to solving the U.S.'s problems with illegal drugs and influxes of migrants.
"There's more then one way to solve a problem." My mom was always fond of telling me this every time I got frustrated. But what she said was true. What we need to decide as Americans is what solution we are willing to accept.