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May 3, 2017     Hays Free Press
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QUOTE OF THE WEEK "She's very grateful for what she has. Very respecOeul person. Very positive family that she comes from. Shejust has a great moral fiber - She works hard, she humbles herself and most importantly she never stops working hard- If I had 11 Maya's, Lehman would be state champs." -Nauri Garcia, Lobo soccer coach, pg. 1 B + Hays Free Press = May 3, 2017 Page 3A There is a dark line, that marks the delineation. Oth- erwise, the lone lights shining in the parking lot of the La Posada Ho- tel in Laredo, where the South Texas Press Con- vention held its annual meeting, comes from the parking lot below. But across that line, across the Rio Grande River, lights shine, cars and buses are lined up, waiting to get into Texas. Trucks idle, bringing products for Americans. How did I get the only hotel room with a balcony overlooking the Rio Grande River? Who knows, but it was worth just sitting out there, watching the local econ- omy in real time. I remember driving through this area many years ago, maybe 20 to 30 years. We always stayed at the Holiday Inn on the river when- ever we spent the night. It also had easy access to the bridge heading into Mexico. We would always walk across and enjoy the food, the shops, the people. Last week, I sat and watched the lights on the other side of the riv- er. I sat on my balcony, drinking my white wine, looking into Mexico. I watched hundreds of cars travel across the bridge into Laredo, into the city that has the largest land port in the nation. Travel buses were lined up, patiently waiting their turn to bring people into the U.S. Trucks come in bring- ing produce, products, all kinds of items that Texans and a lot of Americans really want and need. The air brakes of the trucks echo across the river. We need this port, we need Mexico, we need to have access. Without Laredo, without this port and importation of products, we are all poorer. And Texas will feel it the worst. Laredo processes more than $280 bil- lion - yes, billion - in trade taxes each year. Texas has five customs districts, more than any other state, so building a wall around the United States is really hurting us, as Laredo is the No. 1 land port in all the U.S., and the third largest port in the country, be- hind NewYork and Los Angeles. If a wall gets built and cuts offTexas from Mexico, what happens to our economy? If we keep everything in the U.S. - only built here, only grown here, what happens? We don't have the parts we need to Hip Czech by Cyndy Slovak- Barton We need this port, we need Mexico, we need to have access. Without Laredo, without this port and importation of products, we are all poorer. And Texas will feel it the worst. build every thing we need, we don't have the food capacity or the choice we want to feed everyone here. If you say'Tkmerica first," you would probably be sur- prised at how differently you will have to eat. You'll be surprised at what clothes are not on the market, at the high cost of suddenly fixing your car because parts are not available, at the high cost of purchasing a house. The list goes on and on. Let's face it. We need Mexico. We need the imports, the workers, and relationship. Let's face it. Mexi- co is not going away. Those people crossing the bridge every day to make purchases here are not moving away just because a wall is built. We have to work with Mexico. I want to come back to Laredo, which is incredibly safe; I want to walk across the bridge, as I have in years past. I want to help their econ- omy too while enjoying their food, restaurants. I want to sit again in the outdoor patios, listening to the roiling language that I don't really under- stand. Mostly, let's face the truth a ut our rela- tionship with Mexico. We need them and they need us and it's time to tell Trump, leave our economy alone down here. Listen to the Tex- ans, listen to the people who live on the border. You can't fly in and stay a few hours and fix everything. And you certainly can't understand the situation either. Dh Q ROU I ORE .r wars Enterprising entre- preneurs out there might want to invest in a feet of tractor back- hoes and partial owner- ship of a limestone quar- ry, because it's starting to look like bunker-digging time in America. The threat of nuclear war is spiking like the needle of a meat thermometer on a lava-flow. It won't be long before all the Marts; K, Wal, Qtdckie and the rest, start advertising red, white and blue specials on duct tape and plastic wrap. Survivalist sales. Civiliza- tion closeouts. Mankind markdowns. Various parts of the country are reacting differently. In the south, they're hoarding grits and preserving tomatoes while California stock- piles imported cases of organic, heirloom, arfisanal, gluten-free cannellini beans from the northwest district of the Tuscany region. Califor- nia bunkers have hard- wood floors and a view. While President Trump is busy dropping healthy payloads of big-D democracy on various Raging Moderate by Will Durst Mideast miscreants, North Korea's Kim Jong Un has started to kick demilitarized sand in our face, sticking out his nuclear tongue and wag- ging thumbs in his ears. It might not even be his own thtunbs. It could be his uncle's thumbs. It's 1950 all over again. A brand new serving of the old ColdWar with a little kimchi on the side. The difference being the sequel is destined be televised in color and not a single General MacAr- thur can be found. This time both combatants are overseen by Mad Dogs. We should have known the Beloved Leader would flip out, having been recently supplanted atop the prestigious "World's Wackiest Leader with the Weirdest Hair" list. An award that had been in his family for generations. That was the Kim legacy. Poor little chubby Korean kid had one thing going for him, and Tnunp took it away. It's interesting to note the two have a lot more in common than worst commander-in-chief haircuts in history. They also have rabid-mammal with cut-paw temper- aments. Complicated family relationships. A penchant for rearrang- ing cabinets on a whim. Although removal from the North Korean circle of influence does tend be a tad more permanent. The Pentagon might be taking the whole thing more seriously if Pyong- Fang were to develop a delivery system more efficient than a team of musk oxen. Their mis- siles have a disquieting habit of blowing up on the launch pad like Pop Tarts in a malfunctioning toaster dur'mg a power surge. But the jeopardy is le- gitimate enough to have spurred Vice President Mike Pence to rattle a few sabers on the south end of the DMZ, where he pronounced the US was about to abandon its "failed policy of stra- tegic patience." Which sounds suspiciously like "straighten up and fly fight or someone's going to bed without dinner. Again." President Trump even reversed a campaign pledge to label China a currency manipulator in hopes that North Korea's adult neighbor to the northeast will keep on eye on the local juvenile delinquent and apply the appropriate economic spanking ff necessary. With a leather belt stud- ded with ivory. After all, China has a vested interest in seeing that nothing happens to us, since we owe them trillions of dollars. It's a smart dealer that keeps his best junkie from getting beaten up. It's all so very exciting that every day without a mushroom cloud should be consid- ered a victory. Although, some might call that a bit too exciting. Will Durst is an award-winning~ nation- ally acclaimed columnist, comedian and former short haul truck diver of plaster molds. Wi were just etting ready for ur daily walk to the post office, Goldie and I were at the comer of Meyer and Center Street in Kyle; it was late in the day, about 3:30 and a yellow school bus was rounding the corner. I looked up into the window and I thought the young man sitting there waved at me, so being a good neighbor, I waved back. We continued on our walk to the post office and it dawned on me that he wasn't waving at me after all; he was giving me the middle finger salute! For the rest of the walk I pondered what would lead that young man to reply to my friendliness with such hostility. My first thought that he was no fan of the Chicago White Sox because I was wearing that baseball cap. I realized that was a little far-fetched, but then he being angry at me for 6oldie Walks by Mark Stoub no reason was pretty far- fetched as well. Then I thought, maybe it was his comment on the state of education in the school system; I mean there's always something wrong with how we're try- ing to prepare our young people for the future; and it would seem that precious few people are asking for or taking any- thing he might say about how he would like to be educated seriously. It certainly had something to do with his difficulty dealing with authority, because well, I'm older than he is, and being a teenager, it's his job to think we're all full of green cheese. And in a way, I'm a safe target be- cause he didn't know me, he knew he would never see me again, and well, if it made him feel better, if briefly, then I'm willing to suffer those "slings and arrows." The easiest explanation is also the hardest as well. The easiest explanation is that he just had a pretty rotten day; I know, spend- ing a whole day confined at school can feel like prison, especially if you're not doing very well. I get that too. But here's the hard part. He's angry about it, and has no way to channel that anger, has no one he can trust who will really listen to what the problem is or how to fix it. Anger can make you crazy, make you do dumb things, things he might soon regret. And unless someone, a parent, a coach or a teacher, picks up on that anger and helps him redirect it, then we're all in trouble. One of the best ways to redirect that anger is with an interested third part, someone who's a safe place to take all that anger. I choose to do that by mentoring. I hope that my relationship with a young man may help him as he grows into adulthood to make better choices, to invest in his life the way I'm investing in his. That's just one and all it costs me is an hour a week, which seems very small for a possible return of a life well lived. If you'd like to help affect the life of a young person contact Angie Mendez at the HaysCISD, who will fit you with a young person whose life you can help shape for a furore full of hope. MarkW Stoub is a retired Presbyterian minister, author of Blood Under the Altar and the forthcoming Fire in the Blood. mj.stoub@sbcglobal.net Barton Publications, Inc. News tips: news@haysfreepress.com Opinions: csb@haysfreepress.com 113 w. Center St., Kyle, TX www.haysfreepress.com 512-268-7862 7864O Publisher Cyndy Slovak-Barton News and Sports Editor Moses Leos III Reporters Samantha Smith, Lesly De Leon Logan McCullough, Quixem Ramirez Columnists Bartee Haile, Chris Winslow, Pauline Tom, Clint Younts Proofreaders Jane Kirkham Marketing Director Tracy Mack Marketing Specialist James Darby Production Manager David White Production Assistant Christine Thorpe Circulation/Classifieds David White Distribution Gabe Ornelas Tanya Ornelas + I I I !ill i i ii