Mexican president agitates against Arizona immigration law, inside U.S.
Mexican President Felipe Calderon said Wednesday that U.S. state immigration laws such as that of Arizona, which is fighting for the measure in the U.S. Supreme Court, smack of xenophobia.
"I want to be very clear. We are respectful of U.S. sovereignty. But we have to be firmly against those initiatives that tend to criminalize those that are not committing a crime," Calderon said during an hourlong speech to more than 200 Mexican immigrants at a community center in Houston.
The speech was part of a daylong visit to Houston by Calderon, who also met with local business leaders and the city's mayor. Latinos make up about 44 percent of Houston's population, according to U.S. census figures.
While Calderon made reference to various initiatives U.S. states have passed to control illegal immigration, he singled out Arizona's law, which he described as not only anti-immigrant but also as possibly racist.
..."As president I am not interested that more people leave Mexico. It hurts. ... Community leaders leave ... families are broken," he said. "The people who are here have elemental rights such as respect for their dignity."
If you're new to these issues, the last paragraph is very similar to things Vicente Fox said, and neither of them actually mean it. Sending people north has benefits for Mexico's elites: they get rid of those who might challenge the elites and they get billions flowing into Mexico from the U.S. in the form of remittances.
See Arizona for past coverage of that law, and see Mexican government for the very large number of past instances when that government has meddled in our internal affairs or has tried to agitate their citizens inside our country.