Let me be the first to say that I have no desire to cross paths with a jaguar if ever I decide to cruise the Rio Grande. But I hate to threaten the steely-faced cat’s very existence on this earth (and precious few places on earth do they now roam) for the sake of what is but a momentary source of geo-political frustration in the grand scheme of things. This, however, is precisely the scenario we are facing in the likely imminent construction of a fence meant to curb illegal immigration along the Mexican border.
And the jaguar is just the beginning of it. And I don’t want to come close to seeing the end of it. Which is why we have to ask ourselves, as concerned citizens, to be more creative here. (Has it occurred to anyone besides me that the flourishing presence of jaguars might function as an ecologically friendly deterrent to unwanted human crossing? Not that I want any of my fellow human beings to end up as dinner for a hungry kitty. I’m just saying that primal fear speaks to people.)
Time is of the essence here. The Bush administration reportedly drafted its environmental impact statement regarding the fence in three months. Typically such an undertaking would take two to three years, so those who want to alter or halt the measure altogether must be just as speedy.
We have to get creative before irreparable damage is done––and I never have that chance to be scared out of my skin on the Rio Grande.