As the Lower Rio Grande Valley ponders the debate over whether we should accept the federal government’s choice of erecting a wall or to choose the alternatives.  

It is vital that the characters involved be not defiant, but firm and united in speaking with one voice.

The year 1607 marks the establishment of the first permanent colony in what is now the United States. At the beginning, America was not the paradise pictured by many.

As time evolved, it was the colonist spirit that helped shape the character of this country. Yes, great American statesmen have been instrumental in making the United States a more desirable place to live in than any other in the world. 

Those in Austin and Washington have consistently viewed our existence in South Texas from a distance and sometimes treat us like an undesirable colony. Let us not forget that when the United States acquired Texas, California and other territories—it stimulated the expansion of this then-young nation.  

Our country should never forget that the border area played a significant role in the “Western Movement” that helped in the progress and shaping of this country.

Today, Washington wants to solve a global problem with a fence. It is difficult to accept the fact that we have to engage our own government in the courtroom to reach an agreement on how best to divide land and people. 

Today’s media, in its race to tweet, chat, and publish—deliver a sea of information which makes it difficult for the public to determine what is truth or fiction. 

There is a simple way of coming to terms with this issue, if we just listen to the words written by Charles E. Hughes: “All ills of democracy can be cured by more democracy.”

We in South Texas have been explicit in our patriotism. Let it be clear that we are not against a more secure border, but merely against this method to secure it. We cannot refute the fact that those who have crossed our boundary—legally and/or illegally, have contributed to the historical landscape of this region/country.  

After the Mexican-American war, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed 1848, and a division was established between the United States and Mexico. The Rio Grande has been a source of life to many and a stream of death for some who have dared to cross it.   As long as there is hunger in this world, no obstacle is too great for anyone to conquer.