LETTERS: Thoughts on visit to migrant camps; Keep guns secured

Thoughts on visit to migrant camps

During the weekend of Nov. 15-17, Call to Action Rio Grande Valley (Part of National Call to Action) sponsored “A Border Experience, Life at the Margins. On the last day of the event 18 people from various parts of the United States crossed the border at Brownsville to visit the camps at the bridge in Matamoros. Two representatives of the Angry Tias y Abuelas gave us an orientation and guided our visit.

Moving on from section one we encountered the Rev. Bruce Nieli, CSP, in alb and stole, strumming his guitar and singing. He comes from Austin on his day off to visit the camps. It struck me that he was doing what Pope Francis did when he visited Mexico and came to the border. Bishop Daniel Flores of our Brownsville Diocese was chosen by the U.S. Bishops to accompany the pope. That trip of the pope gave huge publicity to the events at the border.

Border bishops from the U.S. and Mexico meet regularly. They have issued some powerful words after each of these meetings.

It occurred to me that if they would visit the camps on the Mexico side it would be a great prophetic act and draw needed attention to the existing humanitarian disaster. Also struck me that Fr. Nieli comes from Austin to visit (have “the smell of the sheep” that Pope Francis asks of bishops and priests). It makes me wonder what local religious leaders are visiting these camps.

David Jackson


Keep guns secured

Laws sadly are broken.

Criminals break the law.

Pen on paper isn’t all binding.

Eyes are not the gateway to the heart and soul.

No one can see evil or malice.

Efforts misplaced are a waste of time. If preventing and ending child violence, suicides, accidents and school shootings is truly the mission, then all efforts must shift to proper gun storage and parent gun education. Gun safety isn’t about politics, more laws or the Second Amendment, it’s about keeping children safe — and alive. Some 78% of school shooters get their firearms from their home or relatives. An unsecured gun at home can be a loaded gun at school.

Rates of death from firearms among children and adolescents have drastically increased due to unsecured firearms, slacked gun safety and of course complacency. In the United States, middle- and high school-age children now are more likely to die as the result of a firearm injury than from any other single cause of death that they most likely got from their own home or that of a close friend or relative. Unsecured weapons are the root cause of all these child and adolescent tragedies; the fault, however, is 100% the adult gun owner.

Parents, an unsecured gun at home can become a loaded weapon at school or be the cause of senseless violence, homicide and even child suicide. It’s someone’s fault children, teens and adolescents are getting their hands on handguns. Parents, do your job by protecting your kids. Secure your firearms at all times when not in use. Make sure to keep all guns unloaded, locked up and properly secured away and inaccessible to children and others.

Hortencia Camargo