El Chapo is exhibit A for border security
It's over, and El Chapo is apparently headed for a prison in Colorado, according to news reports:
Mexican drug kingpin Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán has been found guilty on all 10 counts at his drug-trafficking trial at a federal court in New York.
Guzmán, 61, was convicted on numerous counts including the distribution of cocaine and heroin, illegal firearms possession and money laundering.
He has yet to be sentenced, but the verdict could mean life in jail.
We will wait for the sentence, but we can safely predict that El Chapo won't be celebrating any more birthdays in his cherished Sinaloa.
What is the common denominator of his crimes? The answer is a porous U.S.-Mexico border.
Over the last few years, El Chapo made a fortune selling illegal drugs in the U.S. It's true that not all of those drugs came through the U.S.-Mexico border, but lots of them did.
As El Chapo sent drugs north, he got lots of cash and guns the other way. Again, not every high-powered rifle came from the U.S., but a lot of them did. These deadly guns were used to fight other cartels and kill many Mexicans.
All of this has made Mexico a very violent country, as recent statistics confirm.
I lived and worked in Mexico in the 1980s. It was a safe country. You could travel in the countryside without fears of criminals hijacking your car or your family getting kidnapped. I remember Mexico City as a safe city. I took business trips to Monterey, Guadalajara, and Saltillo and felt totally safe. In fact, I used to tell my U.S. friends that overdoing salsa on your food was the most dangerous thing in Mexico.
As a Mexican friend told me recently, "El dinero compra políticos y las armas matan inocentes." The translation is that cash buys politicians and guns kill innocents.
The guns and cash went south because there are portions of the border that are wide open for criminality. Mexican politicians cannot say that publicly, but everyone south of the border knows what's going on.
Don't want to build a wall? Read El Chapo's verdict and ask yourself a question: "Would this man have become the #1 criminal in Mexico if we had border security?"