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Friday, December 01, 2006

'Something There Is that Doesn't Love a Wall'

Here's an excellent reflection by Ralston Deffenbaugh, a participant in the conference and the president of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service.

He raises an excellent point -- that although borders have a positive role in peaceful ordering of human affairs, physical barriers like walls can result in suspicion and even hostility.

Deffenbaugh writes:
"The contact zone, the border area, becomes unpleasant, even dangerous, further accentuating divisions and fears. The powerful and rich can cross over the barriers more easily; the costs of separation weigh more heavily on those who are poorer and less powerful."

He adds,
"What makes the U.S. wall with Mexico so offensive is that it has gone far beyond what is reasonable for combating drugs, smuggling and terrorism. It makes us look like a fearful people who no longer value liberty and peaceful interchange with our friendly neighbors. It is my hope that Congress will pass comprehensive immigration reform that will provide a safe and legal channel for family members and honest workers to come to this country, thereby obviating the need for this ugly wall."
Find out more about Lutheran efforts to work for just immigration and border policies at LIRS' Advocacy Update.

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