Enslaved in the ‘land of the free’

The GOP sees them as illegal aliens who threaten the fiber of American society; who won’t be happy until they take each and every one of our jobs.

South of the border, people sell their homes. They cash out their savings. They give up their lives in pursuit of the American dream.

Instead, they end up subjected to human trafficking. Transported as property. Forced into prostitution, sweatshops, manual labor and domestic servitude.

Human trafficking is the business of making money by trading in, and exploiting kidnapped and captive human beings.

It begins with a call from the polleros — also known as coyotes.

In Spanish (and with a clearly Mexican accent), a voice says, “We need more money. Yes, we got the payment, but the price suddenly went up.”

When the family members can’t pay the new amount, the illegal immigrants are at the mercy of the polleros.

Unfortunately, polleros have no mercy.

Oftentimes the polleros want so much for the captive person’s freedom, the latter becomes indebted in the tens-of-thousands of dollars, which, in the case of someone who has no rights or representation in this country, will take a lifetime to pay off.

The lucky ones are transported from city to city until they can make a profit for their captors.

Others are left to die, locked inside safe houses with no food or water. Some are executed.

Sadly this will not stop. Not until the Americans with long family histories rooted in the “land of the free” stop labeling these people as criminals, and see them as the victims they truly are.

Bryan Falla for the editorial board