Tragedy in San Antonio: 50 immigrants died suffocated and without water

José López Zamorano | La Red Hispana 
Photo Credit: Josiah Farrow / Unsplash

Without water, without air, but full of hope. This is how entire families of immigrants traveled in pursue to fulfill their American dream of living and working, of having a better future in the United States, when one by one they died suffocated inside a trailer container.

Not to imagine the anguish of a mother who probably saw one of her children die in her arms, both desperate due to the lack of oxygen.

It is without a doubt one of the worst humanitarian tragedies in the hell that the border has become for hundreds of thousands of families fleeing poverty, violence, insecurity and lack of opportunities in their own countries.

And whoever is free of blame in this tragedy cast the first stone. We are all responsible in some way, by omission or commission.

In the first place, the United States Congress, which has not passed any significant immigration legislation since the amnesty passed by a Republican president, Ronald Reagan in 1986. Under different justifications and excuses, they have failed in their responsibility to legislate on one of the most important issues for the country from a humanitarian, economic and social perspective.

Or hasn’t the COVID-19 pandemic confirmed this country’s need for the workforce represented by essential workers in agriculture, construction, the health care system, the service system, meatpacking, supermarkets? Let’s not be naive, many of those workers are undocumented who probably arrived in this country in similarly dangerous conditions.

But on the immigration issue, as in others, the loss of 50 lives will surely not bring the issue of immigration reform to the forefront of national attention in this country. In the same way that the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School did not result in an immediate change in gun control legislation.

Nor can the responsibility of governments that are expelling immigrants be ignored, due to the incompetence they have shown to significantly solve the serious problems their societies face in terms of income, corruption and insecurity.

We all have an obligation to do everything in our power to prevent the repetition of similar tragedies. If the massacre in Uvalde led to the approval of the first legislation related to the problem of armed violence against students, it is time for a similar response to stop the hemorrhage of unnecessary deaths at the border.

The deaths of these mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, daughters and sons cannot be in vain. Passing a comprehensive immigration reform is the best way to honor the memory of those victims, whose only ambition was to search for a better future in the land of the American dream and only met an anguished death.