The Suffering of Our Children. Same Issues Just A Different Language and A Different Color of Skin

A Brief Study Behind Honduras and Central American Immigration V\S European Immigrant To The United States

As I stumbled upon a copy of this great book, this morning, I recalled that it was given to me years ago, as they cleaned out boxes, and emptied rooms, when my friend Rev. Edwin Ayala (RIP) and my wife Damaris, both work at this powerful, benevolent organization.

Both of them from Puerto Rico, both immigrants in a sense of being in the diaspora among other Puertorican and Latino emigrants. They both held key positions at the then Christian Activities Council, this powerfully and well political connected, historic organization that was designed to uplift and empower immigrants as they arrived to this new land and try to get re established. At such Edwin, was the associate executive director, Damaris, was the business manager. Although the prospective goals and work of the administration had long been changed, just as the color of this new wave of immigrants, whom now appeared with a different face, no longer blond, blue eyed speaking German, Dutch, Irish, Italian, nor other Slavic, European, lingo, but Central American Spanish, Latino and of course, West Indian blacks.

Today, as we observe the faces of the children amidst those horrible human caravans, young men and women, the vital workforce, and the future of an entire nation trickling upward, “el Norte”… running out of Central America, marching like ant colonies toward the border between these United States of America and Mexico, our hearts tend to ache.

We suddenly began to blame everybody from the sinking, failed states sitting (dictator-like) presidente a la brava, to the presidents of the US. While ignoring the US-Central American failed policies, friends post social media videos, crying in hysteria, for each person represents a fragmented piece of Honduras that while the American dream has long morphed into a nightmare for many Honduras, chances today grew worse, since they might never return alive. “This is happening now too often.” She uttered “I am so broken, I’m so sad, I may never see them again.” As she ran off camera to hug one of the tiresome looking young men.

All meanwhile wanting to run and feed these children- as we scream in church and shouted from our pulpits, without ever stopping for a minute to ponder and think, assume for a brief second, nor feel the accountability toward any of these human casualties, due to our lack of responsibility. Though we’re all guilty.

To everyone’s understanding, yet apparent amnesiac, as we failed to grasp upon the worlds knowledge that their big North American brothers, Countries such as Canada, and the US overall, grew rich by extracting cheap raw material and often cheap or in certain cases, even free labor off the backs of their southern neighbors, to then moved on to other cheaper, emerging markets across, Asia with complete and total disregard regarding the tremendous amount of human carnage, environmental distress and their eroding political devastation, left behind, as if our self righteousness, granted us an overall permission to destructively create, what could well be seen, as if it being a real life, prequel to one of Arnold Schwarzenegger Terminator series, or another one of the many Hollywood horror movies. Only, this is real life, and these are real people, whom are now caught in the midst of our lack of human dignity and therefore our carelessness.

The following, is a little recap on the disastrous commerce and immigration policies toward the end of the XX centuries that still affect us all throughout the US and the Central American region still today. And why we all have blood dripping down our hands… we are all guilty.

As the banana companies, furniture makers, and dozens of other manufacturers, growers, closed down shops, rolled up tents and swiftly ran across the pond to India the Philippines Indonesia and later China, they left behind, what former presidential candidate, Ross H. Perot, referred to as “that sucking sound.” In addition to the concurrent Sandinistas Liberation Army and the Salvadoran FMLA wars going on at the time. All meanwhile rumors of guerrilla wars spreaded across like wild fire through, Guatemala, and Honduras.

Unemployed, defeated and persecuted families ran across the borders, trying to save their lives and therefore seek a better and safer way of life for their children. Although instead of being received by benevolent organizations, such as the Christian Activities Council, and the many others that spread across the American landscape, during the XIX and early to mid XX century massive immigration exodus flowing out of Europe. They were instead faced by racist acts of violence and discrimination and physical confrontations by all whom lived here and had benefited from the goods, natural resources, and free labor that had long been siphoned, extracted and exported from Central America.

Everyone benefited, from the filthy rich Wall Street Bankers and investors to the rich, upper middle class, down to even poor whites, as well as Jews, Indians, Asians to yes, and even the Blacks and\or African Americans, who’d managed to make it out of the South, during the “Great Migration.” And even the now well-off, black West Indians, Garinagu, who’d been here long enough to climbed a step or two, upon the ladder, hence had somehow invested, received retirement benefits, GI bill, worked as merchant seamen, as a dock worker, or manufacturing in one of the many factories that during their day to day, used the raw material that had long been siphoned from our countries up north.

Following the conclusion of the 1970’s, as long termed US, supported, West Point graduate, and crowned dictator, Nicaraguan king, Anastasio Somoza regime, had finally been dethroned, and expelled. Many Nicaraguans refugees escaped, running from possible prosecution and of course perhaps even their lives and that of their families and children. They happily shared a similar political philosophy with the many Cuban Americans already living in Miami and were notably welcomed, with sort of an open arms, tender, kid gloves. In fact I believe many received similar packages as their Cuban counterparts… barring the famed “pies mojados” immigration policy. Nevertheless they were offered immediate political exile status, work permits, and asylum, while their cubano hermanos en la lucha gave them jobs.

This however, wouldn’t be the case for Salvadoran, Guatemalan and most certainly not for Honduran parents and their children, whom would later followed.

As the political killing, corruption, assassinations and guerrilla war spread across the land, Guatemalan, and Salvadoran families flee across the border, running for their lives. This was during the mid to late 80’s, and were forced to live in gang infested neighborhoods, unable to find jobs and being forced to survived by any-means necessary. Meanwhile, perhaps due in part to this new market, by now the increase of illicit drug, now grew heavily on the rise throughout the nation… as cheap crack cocaine inundated, thus causing the proliferate destruction of the American cities through and through.

Many of their young children remain unsupervised, and alone, homesick, depressed, often unable to speak the language… as their parents-often a single mother, worked up to two and three jobs. These young people, were then either forced to join gangs, or were simply indoctrinated and educated into the drug trade by friends and classmates or simply found it, as the only way to survive and therefore received protection from bullying, earn status or perhaps a daily meal, as they adapt and grew a costumed to their new homeland.

Prisons life and dress code, such as saggy pants, laceless sneakers, untied boots, and other now accepted way of dressing became the inner cities garb, as jail houses, juvenile detention centers, grew filled to overflow into the streets, and these young men and women would be released, again and again back onto these same streets, as in a form of a pipeline, reversed method of dismemberment, built within their human growth toward their rapid incapacitation, geared to an award development, which sprout from the rooted hatred and racism of a simple punishment for being born brown and on the other side of the border.

New gangs emerged and those, which had originally been created as a community support for newly arriving Latino immigrants in the diaspora, such as the Latin King, were now forced to new drug abd sex trade markets, as well as to beefed up their protective territories, as the slice of the imaginary, inner city American pie, geared toward the Latino communities, would suddenly diminished into crumbs to be fought over by all… all meanwhile the African American youth scramble to find a way to inject, the voice of the city, turned rap, to hip hop, to help make sense as they themselves appeared now shocked and fully anesthetize.

The Jamaican and West Indian new comer and young, would relay on us, the church… the older generation to help tutor, and therefore educate these new comers. I was invited to volunteered to teach playwright, English, American history and theater, through the West Indian Foundations established programs throughout the north end Hartford schools.

Although under stricter and more cohesive home guidelines, they still figured out that just as their black American youth, they too could capitalize on the craft afforded to them via their cultural icon, and Jamaican global hero, Bob Marley and others had long made famous… music! Not just music, but reggae music. That which such, now proven to have a global appeal by which transcends, language barriers upon all markets; it was the ganja and reggae!

The XXI century arrived as if no one awaited changes, although they’d long been sang, written, talked and preached about. With the arrival of the year 2000, it was as if we’d taken a short pause, and every single one had suddenly, finally grown into their senses. As I recalled, then president Bush visiting with then Mexico sitting president, Vicente Fox, and discussing new emigration policy’s that somewhat favored immigrants and the region as a whole.

Boom! But then came 9/11, and everything would go to hell in the ugliness of Little Red Riding Thah Hood In A Hand Basket.

As America began to expel and deport these young people, whom we’d failed to educate and who’d been raised between prison, disastrous neighborhoods and gang life, back to Central America. Often times just with their clothes on their backs. As they arrived to a place they had not seen nor visited, since they were perhaps 3,4, 8 year old children… without speaking the language, often unable to read or write in any language, but that of violence, extortion, corruption, racketeering, kidnap, murder, etc.

As they arrived back to this unknown place, they’d simply used the antisocial tools, which had been given. Those by which, we ourselves had co-signed upon, through our own ignorance, bigotry, and discrimination of “thah other,” by shared ignorance and hatred toward the unknown.

And so anew that new wave of terror in the northern triangle of Central America would take hold. Of course, as if the drug kingpins had been carefully consulting a crystal ball, the new Colombian drug trade route would also change to favor these new mules, now traveling through out Mexico and so the suffering of these children would rise to an even wider and deadlier increase.

Yet instead of each of the following US administration concentrating, supervising the uplifting of the souls and spirits of their long manipulated, bullied and abused poorer neighbors to the south, we continue to beefed up their military, which we’ve long know and understood full well that it lays its might, upon the people, therefore crushing their free will, and even their ability organized politically, therefore solidifying and further serving as regional protectorates of such governments that continues to kneel upon the necks of our people until their being left lifeless, just as brother, George Floyd (RIP).

As the gang warfare grew, so was the devastation and rapid erosion of the American inner city, the deterioration of the young, Latino, black, African American mental health and overall physical stability. Fortunately for me at the time, I relocated just in time from Hartford Connecticut to far less populated and wealthier suburbs of Middletown. Although the population with whom we then worked toward hospital discharged from the state of Connecticut department of mental health, were older, Anglo, transitioned out to the community into the newly formed, Independent Community Living model, I suddenly became this sort of sheltered caseworker, case manager.

However, as these would swiftly become a Republican governor political ponds, toward privatization AKA payoff for votes.

By the end of 2001, I was back to the psychiatric hospital, this time, as a Lead Mental Health Worker and state appointed specialist on the Latino psychiatric unit at Cedar Crest Hospital. And I would be deeply emerged front center in Latino youth gang warfare. Of course this appointment has no textbook nor any kind of preparation. We often had two and three rivaling gang members on the same psychiatric unit. This was better known as 1 West, but it would suddenly become hell. The historic, Harford famed Puertorican parade had been flooded by bullets two years in a row, innocent bystanders shot. Little girls on their way to school, being gunned down like animals. It was so much of a war zone that many of our friends, and colleagues, whom were also medical students, entering med-schools would chose to study in universities nearing LA, Washington DC, New York, Boston and other large metropolitan cities, not for that big city college life experience, rather for the opportunity to get to practice battlefield medicine, stemming from the gang warfare bubbling through the immigration failed policies that had fomenting, thus fertilizing the raise of such dangerous street gangs. And these would be the same people now sent back to Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador to terrorize the streets of these poorer, undeveloped nations, whom were already plagued with more than enough suffering of their own.

The poor people of the Central American region need us to concentrate on creating good paying jobs in their country. No one actually wants to leave their country to walk hundreds of thousands of miles to die in a desert near a border with their young children in tow!

I pray each day that god will open doors and show me a way to diminish the suffering of our people by creating jobs, and an ability for them to work freely and earning decent wages by which they and their families could afford to live.

I’ve prayed each day for a change that would help to uplift not only Honduras, but the entire region, and therefore benefiting these beloved United States of America, a land which has indeed been so good to me, my children and my family personally, for which I so dearly love, and want to continue to help see grow into that “kinder-gentler-nation,” long talked about.

Just as I recalled, as our respectable, honorable currently sitting president words, resonate today, while write his words during his 2020 campaign debate, “we’re better than this,” President Joseph Biden, 2020 presidential campaign trail.

Thank you very much for reading.

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