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Border Security Reform

Updated on March 22, 2014

By: Wayne Brown

Much to the dismay of the majority of the American public, the illegal immigration issue continues to plague our lives. The only real significant action on the part of the responsible party, the Federal Government, has been to take legal action against Arizona for attempting to do something about the issue. Seeing this play out, Americans can only wonder if they are helpless to address the issue. It appears the public must endure the Federal Government’s will to act on the problem and secure our borders.

The problem is highly irritating to me and I feel it needs to be solved as expeditiously as possible with the security of the southern border being the primary task at hand. We all want to stay within the confines of the law on the matter if at all possible. After all, America is still a country that holds the Rule Of Law to a sacred standard thus we must be cognizant of that fact. Given that rationale, is there anything left that we, as individual private citizens of America, can really do about the problem which will have any significant impact?

After much thought I reached the conclusion that the citizens of America do have options and they are options which we control both individually and more powerfully as a group. Certainly we have our right to vote and we should use it to send our message that we do not like what has and continues to transpire on this issue. We also have a lot of power as consumers but we are not using that power to gain the leverage that we can in this particular situation. On that basis, we need to modify our behavior and use this new found power accordingly.

Based on information from 2008, it appears that approximately 12 million Americans visit Mexico each year to go to the various tourist attractions located in the country. This includes ancient ruins but more frequently, the trip is to the beach style resorts located in the coastal areas of Mexico. Needless to say, this is big business for Mexico and one of the primary drivers of revenue within the country. The government of Mexico wants American tourists to come down, bring their money, and spend it in Mexico. Now, you start to see the formula take some shape.

In my opinion, the government of Mexico is doing far too little on their side of the border to control the illegal traffic moving across the border into the USA. In truth, the Mexican government is doing more to support the movement than anything else. Their officials openly criticize America’s attitude toward the illegal traffic and seem to think that it is their right to do as they please at the border.

I don’t know the actual value of American tourism in Mexico on an annual basis but we can speculate at least by assigning an arbitrary dollar figure to each tourist. For example, based on 2006 figures, the average international tourist spent $710 in Mexico on tourism. For 2010, the estimated take for Mexico on tourism dollars is $13.3 billion dollars. Using the project 12 million Americans who visit each year for tourism multiplied by the average dollars spent and it quickly becomes apparent that Americans are approximately $8.5 billion of the projected $13.3 billion tourist dollars coming into Mexico annually, or approximately 64% of the annual tourist revenue.

Tourism in the third largest revenue generator in the country of Mexico. Dollars coming in from tourism provide one in every five jobs in the country. The beach resort of Cancun alone generates approximately 25% of the tourist dollars flowing into the country. This is no small potatoes to the Government of Mexico as tourism revenue makes up 8% of the nominal Gross Domestic Product of the country coming in third behind oil and manufacturing. Mexico got a taste of a decline in revenues last year when tourism dollars dropped by a factor of 15% mostly on the decline of U.S. tourist traffic driven by the H1N1 flu scare. Needless to say, their government began efforts to shore up the sagging tourism.

Given these facts, the American public wields a strong and effective tool over the heads of Mexican government officials which can be used to leverage levels of cooperation and support that we have never before seen. If we, as consumers, begin to withhold our tourism dollars from Mexico by avoiding vacations that include any Mexico destinations, by avoiding cruise ships with any Mexico port stops, by avoid cross border weekend visits, we will soon get their attention financially. Once we do that, good things can only follow.

Friends, this is what I like to refer to as gaining control of the horse’s head. Once you have his head, his heart and ass will follow. As consumers, if we want Mexico to step up and take the necessary actions on the border to control some of these factors to a higher level, all we have to do is exercise our spending power and influence our friends, neighbors, and family to take the same actions. We don’t need the Federal Government to do it. We don’t have to break any laws in the process. And, we don’t have to give up our leisure time or money to do it. We simply elect to spend our vacation dollars somewhere else…like in America maybe??? We don’t have to do it for long either. Mexico will begin to feel the pain within one year and begin to really hurt within two. The message will get through.

Let’s use our power as consumers starting today. Let’s vow not to spend one dime in Mexico until we see some real change going on that spells safety and security along our southern borders. Once Mexico wakes up and shows some sincere and intense efforts to address the problem, then we, as American citizens and as consumers, can reconsider where we spend our tourist dollars. We are in control, we just need to exercise it and let the right folks know it. Let’s Roll!

© Copyright WBrown2010. All Rights Reserved.


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    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas

      @Recon Jack...Thanks doubt this issue is a political football. Bush saw it as disasterous to the labor base in the USA and Obama sees it as a way to play to the Hispanic vote. Any honest politician would have to admit that border security and illegal immigration are two separate and distinct issues and should be addressed as such. It is a waste of time to address illegal immigration until the border is secure. Once that is done, and that is where the dilemma really lies, then we can decide what to do about the illegals who are already here. Thanks for your comment and I look forward to your articles. WB

    • Recon Jack profile image

      Recon Jack 5 years ago from United States

      This is an excellent hub and discussion. I think your theory is sound and credible but I would venture to say that few of the people currently visiting Mexico are politically aware. Only a fool would vacation in Mexico today. I agree with the premise, I just don't see it as a viable option due to the corresponding political fallout assured to both parties. My opinion (overly simplified) is that the Rightwing makes money from cheap labor and the leftwing acquires votes. Why would they want the status quo to change?

      I spent four years as a Border Patrol Agent and have developed a broad range of theories and recommendations on this subject. I have a tendency to expound on this subject frequently. As most of my friends and family are sick of my soapbox ranting, I intend to create a series of hubs on the general subject of the border and its enforcement as well as the historical development creating the mess that exists today.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @francisid...Thank you, glad you agree! WB

    • profile image

      francisid 6 years ago

      two thumbs up! everybody must do something to protect his rights!

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @Cindy...Up until recently, the violence associated with the drug cartels and various crimes had stayed clear of the tourist areas. For whatever reason, there has been a shift there recently with problems on both coastlines. Mexico's third higest revenue source is tourism and most of that comes from the USA. I agree with you that many of those who have money for a vacation down there are far too selfish to deprive themselves in order to keep the revenue out of Mexico but we could hit them in the wallet somewhat in that manner. Obama and the liberals need a new poor folk base in America which they can depend on for votes. The Hispanic/Latino vote is very encouraging because it carries a potential majority effect in some states like California and is growing significantly in Texas. One day a candidate will be able to win those states on the strength of one voting sector...just like the labor unions of the northeast. The money Hilary muled down to Mexico was never spoken of again as it was just pay off money. Our lack of border security in the south is going to cost us big time and not just on the issue of illegal immigration...if Obama gets his reform package, that will also cost us dearly. The big time cost for us sooner or later is the potential for a terrorist act coming from that direction...not a matter of if but when. Thanks Cindy! WB

    • profile image

      Cindy 6 years ago

      How many billion did Hillary take to Mexico for the drug problem as soon as they got into office? Have you heard another word about that? The $600 million Obama took for border control, huh? Our problem is in our country, Mexico is rich, and who is helping them get richer. The only thing we can do is get a new government and who do we trust? Most citizens don't even care and if they have money for vacations in Mexico they have no time to care about things getting right, things are right for them and that is all they care about. At least it is an idea, just not the right one I don't think, we have to get more serious than that.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @Harvey Stelman....Thank you Harv! I really think we have the economic opportunity as consumers to bring some pressure. As the Rev. Jesse Jackson might say...we just need to form a coalition! Thanks for the read and the good comment. WB

    • Harvey Stelman profile image

      Harvey Stelman 6 years ago from Illinois

      Wayne, Nice hub, the border is necessary for any conntry to protect. The #1 money earner in Mexico is oil. #2 is money (usually US dollars) being sent to Mexico from all forms of Mexican's. This includes US citizen's, and legal and illegal immigrant's. There are no drug figures, and US Aid cannot be counted. H

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @Micky Dee...Thanks Micky, I think that is the key to solving the problem...getting Mexico to step up and someone on this side of the fence to grow some balls! WB

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 6 years ago

      Yo Wayne! I hit three buttons. It wasn't that funny like a lot of mine. But you had the useful with great advice, awesome with those tacos (I mean the food), and you had beautiful with the food...and tacos.

      Mexico could step up in many ways for their citizens and ours. So could our government. Thanks Wayne!

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @tdarby...Those folks looked like great candidates for amnesty reform huh? We should be proud to have the as citizens of America! We will need to wake up! Thanks for the visit and the read! Hope to see ya again! WB

    • tdarby profile image

      tdarby 6 years ago

      That video is insane. I grew up in a farming community in central CA and very early on realized that many of the illegals didn't care so much for the "rules" of this country. It seems the anger has grown even more.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @sambaran08...Thanks much for the read. I'll check you out! WB

    • sambaran08 profile image

      sambaran08 6 years ago from India

      Nice blog,visit my hub 2...

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @poetvix...If we cannot get our own government off its butt, then we, the citizens, have to do something about it. Hitting them in the wallet seems like the best approach. We also need to be quite vocal about why as well! It will take a bit of time but that is all we have left short of taking the law into our own hands. Thanks for the good words! WB

    • poetvix profile image

      poetvix 6 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

      I have read a lot of material on the internet about the illegal immigration issue but I have to say this is one of the very few I have seen that offered a viable solution controlled by the people and not the government. It's bloody brilliant!

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @dallas93444...They'll have to sell pencils on the sidewalk when we start punishing them by withholding our purchasing power! Thanks much! WB

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Amen! Preach it brother..! great hub. Great comments.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @garynew...The thought crossed my mind that it could increase but something has to give the Mexican government a good shake on this one. The alternative is the USA taking actions that our government surely feels will create issues with Mexico. The way I see it, we have everything to gain and little to lose by taking the necessary action. Thanks Gary! WB

      @American Romance...Somebody has got to grow some balls in this situation. If we continue the way we have, the cartels just take it as an invitation to escalate their activities and their boldness. Some folks need to find out what a 50-caliber sniper round feels like when it comes out of nowhere. These folks are terrorist in the first degree and deserve to be in the sights of our war on terror. This has gone on far too long and both Mexico and the USA are hurt greatly by it yet they sit on their hands and let it go. It's insanity! WB

    • American Romance profile image

      American Romance 6 years ago from America

      Wayne speaking of tourism, I had a fishing cabin on lake Amistad, only a few miles from Falcon where the man was shot off his jet ski, We used to drive our pickups accross the border at night to eat at wonderful restaurants etc. the streets were packed with college kids and adults enjoying the street bars and eating places not to mention shopping. Now days the streets are ghost towns and no one including myself goes there for fear of drug cartels and violence! Mexico is under siege from the cartels and the government is scared!

    • garynew profile image

      garynew 6 years ago from Dallas, TX and Sampran, Thailand

      Great idea, Wayne. If the drug violence gets much worse, the tourism dollar will go away anyway (but it may make illegal immigration worse also).

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @sheila b. Right on, Sheila! I quit spending my money there in the 80's when friend and her boyfriend mysteriously died there while on vacation. I just hope others will embrace the power we have over this situation and use it.

      @Tom Whitworth...You are so right, Tom. We have too many of their "illegal tourist" in our country right now! We need to exercise our power as consumers! WB

      @TimBryce...Rampant Liberalism is alive and well in America, Tim. The terrorist may be using Pakistan and Afghanistan as their sanctuary but America has become the true haven of Liberals, Socialists, Marxists, and the like. Dragging Latin American countries in to testify on a domestic issue is a good example of the power they wield within our own government. WB

    • profile image

      TimBryce 6 years ago

      Wayne -

      Good article. I'm still mystified as to why the Latin American countries are being allowed to participate in the Arizona case.

      All the Best,


    • Tom Whitworth profile image

      Tom Whitworth 6 years ago from Moundsville, WV


      Your suggestion is spot on and in line with my position since the 1980's.

      We must buy American made goods and services to preserve our great nation, the United States of America!!!

      Let the Mexicans vacation in their homeland and we will spend our money in America!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • sheila b. profile image

      sheila b. 6 years ago

      As far as I'm concerned, anyone still gooing to Mexico on vacation is nuts. I'm all in favor of not supporting the Mexican government with tourist dollars, and I'll add to that - Mexico is a dangerous place.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @drbj...I'm in and I will work on everyone I know to get on board to. We should be able to see the effect as Mexicao recovered began a recovery of a 15% drop in 2009. We need to give them something that drops it even further for 2010 and 2011 to get their attention...all the time sending a message..."clean up the border and we'll be back!" WB

      @suziecat7...We are not going to get politicans from either side of the aisle who will accomplish what we can..I don't understand it but no one will make the moves to get it done. For God sakes...why would the President not ask for a boycott of tourism to bring some leverage? It makes no sense unless you stand to profit by it in some way! WB

    • suziecat7 profile image

      suziecat7 6 years ago from Asheville, NC

      Politically, we continue to kiss Mexico's butt. Bush did and now Obama does. Things will never change until we have the guts to elect politicians with kahunas.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 6 years ago from south Florida

      What a simple but effective solution this could be, Wayne. If enough American tourists stop visiting Mexico and spending money there, you can bet that the impact will get attention - on both sides of the border. I'm in. No Mexican visits. No spending American dollars there.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @breakfastpop....I think quite a few people have Poppy but we need a lot more to pull back and quit spending money there. When they get their act together on the border, we can always go back then. Either that or somebody on this side has to grow some balls and do something! WB

      @eovery....Just like in America, the majority of good people in Mexico and caught in the middle of this thing but something has to bring Mexico to the table and it is not going to be our government. We consumers have the power if we can get together and use it. WB

    • eovery profile image

      eovery 6 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

      I know several Mexican people and I have a great love for them. They are not like these idiots.

      We need to secure our border for the protection of my friends. We also need to stop our useage of drugs in the US because our dependance on drugs is ripping Mexico apart.

      Keep on hubbing!

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 6 years ago

      Brilliant!, Absolutely brilliant. I have actually been doing this for a while. I will not spend one dime of my money in Mexico. Let's face it, Mexico could care less about our problems. Illegal aliens come here, work, earn money and send it home. We are a gold mine for them. They are not interested in the illegals who are trafficking in drugs and people..