Friday, August 21, 2009

Crossing the Borders

Kevin Drum wonders today why traffic from the United States to Canada has dropped suddenly. I can't give a global response, just two recent examples.

A young US couple with two children can't get back into the United States because an immigration official finds a birth certificate somehow lacking. This was before the requirements were increased to passports.

A woman brings her niece and nephews (total: three young children) back to the US from Mexico because of a serious injury to their father while on vacation. A number of her friends put together backup plans up to notifying the congressional delegation if she runs into trouble with immigration. Fortunately, there is no problem.

I have to admit that I am less enthusiastic than I once was about travel, particularly outside the US, because of the TSA and immigration hassles that might or might not take place. I've been terrorized once by TSA and lost a Swiss Army knife to them, although, to their credit, they didn't put me on the terrorist list. Yet.

The United States has always had more intimidating entry procedures than other countries. Now we've extended that unpleasantness to our next-door neighbors.

As we all hear stories like these, from trusted friends and relatives, we all become more apprehensive, less trusting of our own government, more afraid of what it might do to us.

No comments: