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Latina Lista: News from the Latinx perspective > Life Issues > Health > Man with TB Underscores Disparities in Border Security

Man with TB Underscores Disparities in Border Security

LatinaLista

It took:
1 man
2 transatlantic flights
5 countries visited
80 people exposed
to showcase how unequal security enforcement at the US-Canadian border is compared to the US-Mexican border.


By now, we all know the story of Andrew Speaker, who was determined to follow through on his wedding in Greece that he endangered others and himself just to say “I do.”

Andrew Speaker
(Source: abc news)
And though he was infected with a drug-resistant form of TB and deemed a serious enough threat that his name was on the computer to alert border security that he should be restrained — using gloves no less, the border guard, who thought the computer warning was for “discretionary” judgment, knowingly waved him on in.
It makes you wonder if Andrew’s name had been Andres and he was brown-skinned and speaking with an accent, if he would have been so easily waved into the country.
Somehow, I doubt it.
This case not only underscores the disparities of who is allowed to cross our borders but just how vulnerable our northern border is compared to the US-Mexico border.
Our border with Canada is the world’s longest undefended border. It measures over 3,000 miles.
Yet, a border that is less than 2,000 miles long and has 2-3 times the number of border security agents is still described as being more vulnerable and posing a greater threat to national security.
Why is that?
Is it because of the level of illegal activity that we know takes place there?
With so many more miles left unguarded along the Canadian border, how do we know the same level of illegal activity isn’t happening up north as well — or more?
One thing we do know is that there is a certain amount of “discretionary” judgement allowed border agents.
It’s very telling in which direction that discretion is slanted towards.

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Comment(2)

  • Miss Profe
    June 6, 2007 at 4:17 pm

    Well, my brother always said that the difference in border enforcement is a matter of skin color. I concur with that point of view.
    As they say, you are spot on with your post.

  • none
    September 3, 2007 at 7:35 pm

    Maybe it’s because millions of Canadians aren’t coming into the US illegally, swamping the emergency rooms at taxpayer expense, causing crime and driving drunk as well as having tons of anchor babies. Also, brown-skinned people from Latin America have far higher rates of TB then whites. I’m sick of hearing about skin color or racism. Mexico has some of the stricted immigration laws in the world. The US should do the same and stop tolerating the racist illegal invasion by Mexicans who won’t even let people in legally.

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