Border Fence Concern For Longview Hispanics - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

10/27/06-Longview

Border Fence Concern For Longview Hispanics

      President Bush's authorizing of a fence across 700-miles of the U-S Mexico border, has drawn mixed reactions from Longview Hispanics. The issue of security and illegal immigration has drawn differing opinions from the Hispanic community.     Some see the "fence" as a "paper tiger", while others say it will make immigrants "play by the rules".

     "My personal opinion, I think this was more political strategy to try to get something passed before the election" said Longview attorney and immigrant rights activist Jose Sanchez.

     "Sanchez" is a product of Reagan amnesty in the 80's. He says while border security is important, putting up a fence may not have much impact.

      "I think we're all in agreement that we need to protect our borders, 40 percent of the people who are here are documented or they come in with visa's and they expire and they just don't ever go home" says Sanchez.

      Longview restaurant owner "Angel Monsivais" who came to this country legally 37 years ago, feels the fence could make a positive difference.

    "We need people to come in here legally and they can work for a better life make a right way to live" Angel says.

       Some worry that the "fence" will send the wrong message.

    "I think that our borders should be secured to keep many bad people out but I also think there's a lot of people that deserve the opportunity we've had to come over" said Longview resident Estela Torres.

     But Sanchez says regardless of a fence, illegals will still find a way in.

   "They're going to find a way to over the fence, go under the fence go through the fence, or find other clever ways to get here, and employers are still going to hire them" says Sanchez.

    And what about the price tag.

    "Even though they're passed this bill that allows 700-miles of fencing they're only allocating 1-billion dollars to it, which has an estimated cost of 7 billion" he says.

    For now, though, they'll wait and see if it makes a difference. Bob Hallmark/bhallmark@kltv.com.

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