PROJECT: Last View
The border between the United States and Mexico is a point of contention across media outlets, politicians, and American citizens. In general, border issues are spoken of as being black and white. From this perspective, there is only right and wrong no matter the circumstances and no one should cross the border into the U.S. for any reason whatsoever. Of course, for many, these issues are being discussed without any serious consideration of the individual humans involved or the various catalysts that drove them to risk the dangerous trek across the border. The media uses fear to drive ratings and politicians depict migrants in the most frightening way possible in order to sway votes their way. The media often leaves out the stories of these individuals, many of whom are escaping horrible violence. Men, women, and children alike make an ill-fated and unprepared trip into the desert to cross into the United States. The desert is an unforgiving environment—the land itself is very difficult to maneuver with dangerous climbs through canyons laced with painful cactus and venomous rattlesnakes. Temperatures can exceed 120 degrees fahrenheit in the summer and drop below freezing in the winter. Chances of finding water are few and far between. Many people who plan to cross the border hire guides or “coyotes” that are supposed to safely usher them into the US. However, every year many people get separated from their guide. Once separated it is extremely difficult for a person who is not familiar with the terrain and trails to find their way to water let alone to their original destination. As a result these people ultimately succumb to the unforgiving environment. Since 1999 over 2,500 people have died while crossing the border into the United States. Humanitarian aid groups have tried to ameliorate these deaths by hiking into this harsh terrain and dropping off innumerable jugs of water to attempt to save lives. It; however, is never enough, people continue to die, and with new deaths being reported every month, there is little chance of this problem going away any time soon.