Mary Anne Somerville writes in her “Epistle from the Desert” from Arizona:
This is an interview with John Ladd, a rancher in our area, who lives on the border line between Mexico and the United States. He is an honest man who strongly believes we are not doing the right thing with our Border Patrol. I have had personal conversations with him about this issue. His message has consistently been, “Put the Border Patrol on the border.”
US Congress is debating an increase in border security as part of an overhaul of the country’s immigration system. But local residents and long-time ranchers along the border worry that their already diminished rights might be under attack again.
Since its peak in 2000, apprehensions of illegal immigrants at the Southern border have decreased 78% to 357,000 in 2012. Two thirds of this drop can be explained by a weak US economy, according to a report by the Council on Foreign Relations. The other third is due to enforcement increases.
The BBC talked to John Ladd, a fourth-generation rancher whose land borders Mexico, about the border agents who patrol his property.