The violent and chaotic Third-World country at our doorstep

In earlier days at VFR, I occasionally got into debates with open-borders “conservatives” who insisted that Hispanics, including nonwhite Hispanics, were really “Westerners,” and therefore would easily assimilate into the U.S. Their syllogistic logic—a type of logic the falsity of which I’ve repeatedly exposed—was that Hispanics are Catholics, and Catholicism is Western, and therefore Hispanics are Westerners. Or that Hispanics speak Spanish, and Spanish is a Western language, and therefore Hispanics are Westerners. These brilliant “conservatives” even argued that Latin American Mestizos were “white,” and therefore Western. But how could Hispanics be Westerners, I asked. We speak of Mexico, for example, as a Third World country—not the worst of the Third World, perhaps, but definitely Third World nonetheless. Furthermore, the West—a.k.a. the First World—is by definition not the Third World. So how could Mexicans, who are Third Worlders, be Westerners?

I’m reminded of those debates now, in light of the State Department’s warning, reported by Doug Powers at Michelle Malkin’s site, that all or part of fourteen Mexican states are so dangerous that Americans should not travel there:

Americans should avoid all but essential travel to all or parts of 14 Mexican states, the U.S. State Department warns as violence has spread.

Shootouts, kidnappings and carjackings have climbed, as have cartels, also known as transnational criminal organizations (TCO), the State Department said this week in a broadened travel warning.

While millions of U.S. citizens safely visit Mexico every year, the country’s ongoing violence and security concerns pose risks for U.S. citizens, and travelers should take precautions, the State Department advises.

Powers posts a map of the travel warning:


He adds:

If you’re not good at reading maps, just remember that it’s like choosing which wine to have with fish: Avoid the red.

- end of initial entry -

February 13

Karl J. writes:

I totally agree with you that Mexico is a dangerous foreign nation, and Mexicans should be kept out of America. But I respectfully submit that the premise “The West equals The First World” is a relic of the Cold War. (Now that the Soviet bloc is defunct, where is the “Second World”?) Japan and Israel, for example, are First World nations, but not part of the West, as an historic entity rooted in Latin Christendom. Latin America (as its very name indicates), for all its faults, is.

If the West is not defined by religion, language, and history (e.g. the Iberian colonization of Central and South America), what does define it? Only secular modernity: capitalism and democracy. Somehow I doubt that you would care to reduce it to that.

LA replies:

This all irrelevant to what I was saying. Though, as you correctly point out, the name “The Third World” originated during the Cold War, the name is still used, and what we call the Third World, whether during the Cold War or now, is not the West. If a country is a Third World country, it is not a Western country. That was my simple point.

As for “the Second World,” that was never a term that was used by anyone, even during the Cold War. There was (1) the West or “the Free World,” (2) the Communist World, and (3) the Third World. The Communist World no longer exists, and thus the three-part division of the world of which the term “Third World” was an expression no longer exists. But the Third World itself does still exist. And the West still exists. And the Third World is not the West.

You write: “If the West is not defined by religion, language, and history (e.g. the Iberian colonization of Central and South America), what does define it?”

I certainly have never said that the West is not defined by religion, culture, and history. But obviously the West cannot be reduced to just Christianity or just a European language such as Spanish. By that reasoning, Christians in Central Africa would be Westerners; Central American indios would be Westerners. A civilization is an entire, organic “package” which cannot be reduced to just a couple of its component parts, which is what people do when they engage in the false syllogistic reasoning I criticized above. While different people may define the West by different criteria (for example, some define the West as the region historically under and shaped by Western Christendom, others define the West solely in terms of liberal modernity), they all agree that there is such a thing as the West. And, again, by any definition, the Third World is not the West.

Stephen T. writes:

Ironically, many Americans reading of the barbaric, backwards country that Mexicans have created for themselves, and the mortal danger its poses to Americans traveling there, will conceive of one and only one solution: allow multi-millions of Mexicans to come into this country ASAP. Obama may coldly calculate that amnesty would be good for Democratic demographics, but he lacks the romanticized attraction to Mexican culture that is held dear by many red state Republican conservatives who are utterly remote from the reality of it (among them, I believe, Rick Santorum). For such “conservatives,” the sight of this map—an entire country that G.W. Bush’s “Hispanic family values” have turned into a chaotic no-go zone for civilized Anglo Americans—can only confirm the voice of their Christian conscience: “We must bring these people into our midst immediately!”

February 14

MJB writes:

I’ve lived on the border for 39 years of my adult life. There are several points to make:

1. That map from the State Dept. is “politically correct!” The green dots are supposedly safe. Tijuana IS NOT SAFE. The border area of very southeast Texas that is left white is not safe—it should be red all except the immediate ten miles inland from the coast. The Brownsville to McAllen area is not white/safe. We have lots of violence as does Nuevo Laredo, Reynosa, Ciudad Juarez, and Matamoros—all four large metropolitan areas cross-border from Texas cities (Brownsville, McAllen, Laredo and El Paso.) Reynosa (McAllen) is the most violent of the four. In our two county area containing Brownsville and McAllen, we have at least nine cross-border bridges and all but one have been closed more than twice because of gun battles between the Mexican army and the cartels within a few blocks of the bridges.

Tijuana is also violent (California) and a couple of places in Arizona. These are rarely reported in the MSM or even elsewhere in Texas north of San Antonio. But they are reported locally, primarily by two television stations. Many U.S. citizens (both white and Mexican Americans) have been kidnapped in the U.S and taken across the border and ransomed or just “disappeared.” The cartels cross into the U.S. and assassinate drug dealers or their family members as punishment for talking publicly or losing or stealing large drug shipments. A number of Americans have been assassinated farther into Mexico—primarily church missionaries and white passengers in cars traveling singly on Mexican highways. The cartels are functioning as “coyotes” bringing groups of Mexican and South and Central Americans across and escorting them north through ranch areas of wilderness. We had a local Border Patrol agent killed by one of these groups and he was killed by one of the assault guns that crossed the border in the Dept. of Justice’s “fast and furious” scandal. The gun was left at the scene.

2. Mexicans migrating illegally are primarily Mestizos—Indian mixed with some Spanish. The Spaniard Mexicans are primarily white European Spaniard stock They are the “elites” in Mexico—the wealthy, the politicians, Army officers, business owners etc. Until the violence started, many had vacation homes or condos in country club and South Padre Island resort areas. Now the less-than-elite are buying homes here and conducting business from this area. McAllen has had a booming real estate market for the last two years, primarily from well-off people “from across,” as we say. Most of our population growth have been the Mestizo Mexicans for the past 30 or more years. Mestizo Mexican and Spaniard Mexicans are how I classify Mexicans. After one has been here for a good period, it’s easy to distinguish between the two. The majority of Central Americans are also Mestizos. “White” (meaning Spaniard) Mexican Americans, know the difference, too; it’s just never discussed publicly.

3. Mexicans migrating legally are primarily from the “chain migration” allowance in the immigration law—a legal residential alien can apply for migration of immediate families—spouse, children, parents, and siblings in that order. Once those family members are legal resident aliens they can each apply for immediate family members to migrate in the same order, ad infinitum. Most of these are also Mestizos. There are about a million of these immigrants allowed annually. Their numbers are not included in the number of immigrant visas allowed—they don’t have to “wait in line” in other words.

The law also says that the petitioning resident alien has to sign that they will support the incoming family member as needed, i.e. health care, shelter, etc. But it is not enforced in Texas because the petitioner is poor and is on SSI and Medicaid and Snap supplied by the State. So, ad infinitum, for family support by the petitioner. I’m sure it is not enforced elsewhere. Texas cannot be the only state that does this. Mexico is a Western nation geographically, but it is “Third World” demographically and economically. It is only first world among the Spaniard/Mexicans. Mexico is the way it is because it is full of Mexicanis (Mestizo Mexicans) with a minority population of Spaniard/Mexicans—and both groups are very loyal to their tribes. Please feel free to edit; it’s long and I could have described a lot more violence examples. I did not even mention the economic damage. Outside the maquiladoras, the primary income in border Mexican cities—tourism, i.e. tourist shops, large number of dentists, large number of pharmacies where the only written prescriptions needed are for pain meds, tranquilizers, and sleeping pills. A few dentists are American trained. In Mexico, one only needs to be a primary school grad to attend dental school. The only requirement beyond that is the ability to pay for it. Thousands of businesses related to tourists have closed in Mexico across the entire Texas border. And we have hundreds of poor Mestizos seeking asylum in our cities because of the violence. And the several American citizens from Dallas/Houston who came down for the weekend and/or cheap dental work and disappeared after crossing the border. The news, as I said, is not even being broadcast in most areas of Texas outside the border area.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 12, 2012 11:44 PM | Send

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