Univision, a dominant Spanish-language media outlet, reports that sixteen Latin American and Caribbean countries submitted a compliant with the US Justice Department in an effort to demonstrate solidarity and to express their concerns against the newly passed state immigration law in South Carolina, known as S20, that authorizes law enforcement agents to question a motorists’ citizenship status during a routine stop, if the driver is suspected of being an illegal immigrant.
The story accentuates how policy in a global community transcends geographic boundaries. Mexico, for its part, said that, “it has to protect its citizens.” Other countries supporting the complaint are Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, República Dominicana, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Perú y Uruguay.
While the country captures the dismay felt by the 16 Latin American countries, it does not answer three important questions. First, what are the efforts taking place by the concerned 16 nations to deter their individual citizens from entering America illegally? (Some of the countries listed in the complaint, for example, have criticized building a fence along the US-Mexico border) Second, what are the perils, if any, of allowing foreign nations to interfere with US state issues and federal affairs? Third, why isn’t Puerto Rico, which is a US Spanish-speaking commonwealth, not part of the complaint or story? Puerto Ricans, regardless of their automatic US citizenship status, can potentially be subject to some of the trappings of the S20 law.
Summary by Luis Perez
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