Mexican bishop blames 'corruption and greed' for children's exodus to US

Catholic Archbishop José Luis Chávez of Antequera, in Mexico's Oaxaca State, said in a Sunday homily that "corruption and greed" are fueling the flight of immigrant minors toward the United States. Speaking on July 12 in his cathedral, he reflected that the continent is in the midst of social upheaval. The archbishop said that poverty, violence and family disintegration are among the causes of the crisis, in addition to "corruption, self-interest, and poor education."
The archbishop said that it is a lie that there are not enough resources among the various countries and peoples of the world to address the crisis since the world already has everything that is necessary. It is those in power, said the prelate,  who keep the majority in poverty. These attitudes, he said, harm the society's most vulnerable people, especially minors.
The issue of immigrant minors can be linked to laws that neither justice nor guarantee human rights nor child rights. "It is clear that there is a vacuum in the laws of our countries, that there is a social upheaval, and that they are facing all sorts of dangers and risk factors." Archbishop Chávez Botello said that the children of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras (who represent a majority of the current surge of immigrant children entering the U.S. illegally) are evidence that their homelands lack jobs and human rights, while some are trying to reach their relatives in the U.S. 
The Catholic churchman called upon the governments of the Central American isthmus to eradicate the structural causes of migration as well eliminating criminal organizations such as the infamous MS-13 narcoterrorists. He prayed that all people will respect human lives and dignity, and added that the Catholic Church, through its various charities, is seeking to come to their aid.
The archbishop also noted that a good place for the Mexican government can start in a process of gaining the trust of the Mexican people is the case of Bulmaro Rito Salinas. Elected officials, said Archbishop Chavez Botello, should take responsibility for seeing that government functions properly. Prosecuting the case, he said, would serve as a good precedent. Rito Salinas was arrested on July 10 for embezzlement of public funds during his tenure as Chief of Planning for the State of Oaxaca from 2004 to 2010.

Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. He is also a freelance translator.


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