By Thomas D. Williams, PH.D.
In a powerfully worded editorial, the Catholic archdiocese of Mexico City has condemned all companies and individuals who would work on Donald Trump’s border wall, calling them “immoral” and “traitors to their country.”
The unsigned editorial titled “Treason to the Homeland” appeared in Sunday’s edition of Desde la Fe, the weekly magazine of the Archdiocese of Mexico.
Pulling no punches, the op-ed savages the U.S. President, calling him a “fanatic” who is intent on constructing a “monument to intimidation and silence, hatred and xenophobia.”
As harsh as its denunciation of Trump may be, however, the article is directed at Mexicans who are willing to work on the wall. What is regrettable, the piece states, is that “on this side of the border, Mexicans are ready to collaborate with a fanatical project that annihilates the good relationship and harmony of two nations that share a common border.”
The article states that in recent days, more than 500 Mexican companies have expressed interest in contracts to participate in “the construction of the wall of ignominy,” by providing cement, materials, lighting and paint.
“With the fine justification of being companies that generate jobs, these companies seek to make a profit, regardless of the consequences, and consolidate their presence in the industry they exploit.”
For these companies, “the end justifies the means,” it reads.
The result, the piece adds, is that the “investment of Mexican companies in the wall will end up nurturing all those forms of discrimination that throughout history have subjected millions of human beings.”
The op-ed also takes issue with the Mexican government for its “lukewarmness” in dealing with Mexican businesses. In their short-sightedness, the piece continues, government officials fail to see that the wall is an “open threat” that violates social relations and peace and therefore has not taken legal action against these companies.
In an interesting twist, the op-ed states that “any deportation, when there is no proven crime and administrative failure justified according to law, is a sign of terror.”
It is entirely possible that the Archdiocese is unaware of Mexico’s own immigration policy and practices, which in most respects are stricter than those of the United States.
Under Mexican law, illegal immigration is a felony. In Article 118, the General Law on Population states that foreigners entering the country without the required documentation will be fined the equivalent of “20 to 100 days of established minimum salary.”
Article 125 adds that along with the stated fine, foreigners without legal documentation will be deported from the country.
According to the Pew Research Center, in 2015, the Mexican government “carried out about 150,000 deportations of unauthorized immigrants from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.”
The Mexican Archdiocese states that the border wall is a monument “to silence the voices of poorly paid and ill-treated workers, unprotected families and abused persons. It is a retreat from the noblest longings of mankind, for which much blood has been shed. It is a prelude to the destruction of the values of democracy and social rights.”
Moreover, the wall “represents the predominance of a country that considers itself good with the manifest destiny to crush a nationality that it has considered perverted and corrupt: the Mexican.”
The article concludes: “Any company that intends to invest in the wall of the fanatic Trump would be immoral, but above all, its shareholders and owners should be considered as traitors to their country.”