05/20/10 — Diplomacy? Apologizing for Arizona not one of the discussions that president should have

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Diplomacy? Apologizing for Arizona not one of the discussions that president should have

A fancy state dinner was held at the White House last evening as President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, welcomed Mexican President Felipe Calderon and his wife, Margarita Zavala.

And aside from the usual hoopla about what the first lady was wearing and the media focus on whether or not, this time, someone got in without an invitation, the event was not at all unusual for a visiting head of state.

But what Americans should be paying attention to, and what President Obama needs to think twice about, is why the Mexican president is here, and the concessions he would like to see from the United States with regard to an issue that has been a source of friction for both countries.

You see, Mexico's president is worried about the Arizona immigration law -- and what it could mean across the miles of border the U.S. shares with his country.

And here is what our president should say to Mexico's president about illegal immigration: "This is our country -- and how we handle people who try to illegally cross its borders is our business."


There is not going to be a flood of discrimination against Mexican travelers as a result of the U.S. cracking down on law-breakers. In fact, it might actually improve relations between the two countries.

And, think about it, of course Mexico wants to be able to have open borders. It is getting rid of a whole bunch of its criminal element, too.

If there is a discussion to be had with Mexico, it should be about the continuous flow of drugs and crime across the U.S. border. When Calderon cleans that up, we can talk about U.S. immigration policy.

Published in Editorials on May 20, 2010 10:48 AM