Letter to the Editor

This migrant life

Friday, June 22, 2018

Dear Editor,

Quote from the President of the United States as it appeared in the NYTs on June 21, 2018, "He said the trek through Mexico from Central America was like a walk through Central Park in New York City. 'Mexico is doing nothing for us except taking our money and giving us drugs,' he said."

Now that I am retired, every week I spend a few hours searching for missing migrants. I review prison records, look at descriptions of unidentified bodies on NamUs the database for the missing, read newspaper articles about finding dead bodies and call, and call ICE when I get a lead. (Calling ICE is frustrating) I also visit a migrant shelter once a week to donate basic supplies, soap, diapers and the like. I get referrals for missing family members and I also have the opportunity to talk with the individuals and families at the shelter. the shelter in southern Mexico. The undocumented crossing from Honduras to Guatemala and on to Mexico does not reflect in any way a walk in Central Park. Lawless gangs patrol the crossing points, drug cartel members demand money and sex, Mexican law enforcement officials can be brutal and corrupt. I have walked in Central Park with my son. He has never been ripped from me and I thank the good Lord that I have not been shaken down by corrupt law enforcement officers in Central Park.

No, Mr. Trump fleeing from chronic violence and institutionalized corruption is not the same as a walk in Central Park.

Come and visit me, Mr. Trump, I can show you my life of working with migrants and refugees. That was my life for over 20 years in the US, Latin America and Africa. Let me tell you about my friends killed in Guatemala and those who were tortured or disappeared. I can tell you about the bag of body parts that was found behind my house in El Salvador. I can tell you how violence and fear causes a level of psychosis that paralyzes you.

No, Mr. Trump, this migrant life is not a walk in the park.

Jane Lyons,

McCook, Neb.

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