Precautions should be taken crossing border

Freedom New Mexico

Traditionally it’s been easier to cross into Mexico than the United States.

Mexico has a light system that calls for vehicle inspections only if a light, which is said to be random, flashes red as a person crosses. A green light allows crossers to drive right through, with no need to even stop for a cursory customs review.

With violence escalating across the border, however, Mexico’s government has announced plans to show more vigilance at border crossings. Ten percent of all vehicles entering the country from the United States will now be inspected, officials said last month.

People who cross south should be aware of the changes, and not only because they should plan for longer crossing times. The consequences of being found with any contraband are notoriously harsh in Mexico. At the very least, U.S. citizens find they must deal with a legal system that is quite different than that with which we are familiar in the United States.

Mexican Attorney General Eduardo Medina, in announcing the heightened vigilance, said the goal is to intercept weapons, many of which find their way to organized criminals who have been growing more violent in recent years. Medina’s office has reported that nearly 11,000 guns, many of them assault rifles, and more than 1,400 grenades have been seized in the past two years. The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives reported that 90 percent to 95 percent of weapons seized in Mexico originated in the United States.

The problem is no secret in Texas’ Rio Grande Valley. Many people have reported being approached in the parking lots of