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Voice: Survivor kits as bad as lifesaving cables

June 08, 2001

Well, Christine, I have good news and bad news. The good news is the survivor kit program is a bonafide, Mexican government-funded operation. So you should be relieved to know that the appearance of stupidity on Mexico's part is genuine and not the work of a "Mexican-hater."

The bad news, well there are two parts to it. You are absolutely correct that those survivor kits are an embarrassment and are worse than worthless and will probably cost some naive people their lives; just like lifelines, come to think of it. Their real impact will be to encourage foreign nationals to break our laws and take suicidal risks doing it: just like lifelines, come to think of it. Unfortunately, Christine, I have to tell you to "oh hush" because it's politically incorrect to criticize Mexico for anything except maybe, if you're subtle about it, getting diarrhea from drinking their water.

I have a suggestion, though, for getting around this sticky issue. Survivor kits and lifelines are equally dumb ideas. However, survivor kits are a Mexican inspiration and therefore exempt from ridicule in the interests of political correctness and multiculturalism. But lifelines are the conception of an American "committee" and it's the height of political correctness to denigrate anything American. So what you can do is stay angry thinking about survivor kits but when you talk or write about them substitute the world lifelines.

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Oh, Christine, do me a favor. Look up the word de facto in case we ever have to meet at the border to rescue a duck.

WALTER TYLENDA

Calexico

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