16 January 2012

Southside commentary on the new border fence

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It's been about a month since the new border fence went up, permanently dividing what was once one of the world's few binational parks. Here, loved ones separated by immigration status were able to see each other face to face and families would often picnic backed up against the posts.

The replacement wall stands three feet north of the actual border and now blocks U.S. access to a historic monument the two nations once shared

Bigger, badder, taller and thicker than its wobbly-looking predecessor, as far as border barriers go it would no doubt be the Hulk or Chyna or the Hulk played by Chyna or something. A new addition: a layer of hardcore chicken wire made of thick centimeter-sized mesh, making the transfer of anything that outsizes a chicle impossible. Seriously, all that's missing are loudspeakers blasting the "Team America" theme song into the air.

Workers finished installing the westernmost stretch just over 30 days ago. And the graffiti went up almost immediately. In a fitting blow of irony, the prose is impossible to see from the American side.

"Viva NAFTA. Aqui es donde rebotan los sueños (this is where dreams ricochet). Welcome to fortress America. Osama rocks. Which way to freedom? Lesson in how to lose friends and alienate neighbors. Everything is under control. Enjoy your security, America. This wall will not save your economy. Todos los muros caen; los imperios tambien (All walls fall; empires, too). Empires crumble from within."

And my personal fave: "Please don't feed the gringos."