Welcome to the All American Canal. With a name like that, you'd think you were going to see a scenic waterway, dotted with beautiful co-eds in bikinis and families fishing from the banks. You'd be wrong. The AAC is an 85-mile aqueduct that diverts water from the Colorado River into the Imperial Valley in California.
It's the largest irrigation canal in the world and brings water to over 500,000 acres of land that helps provide over 2/3rds of the United States' winter produce. It's an important artery that pumps the lifeblood that feeds our country.
But that's not why we're posting about it. We're posting about it because it also happens to be the most deadly body of water in the United States, having killed at least 550 people that we know about. Why haven't you heard of this death trap? Because the majority of those killed are illegal aliens trying to enter the country.
60 Minutes aired a piece tonight that disgusted us. Here's a link to the video. The piece focused on Dr. John Hunter, a physicist and life-long Republican who also happens to have spent most of his life designing weapons for the US Military and who's brother was a former Congressman who advocated a double-border fence. Not exactly your typical bleeding heart, liberal.
"I'm a very right-wing guy," Hunter said. "I'm not an open border kinda person. I just don't believe we should be letting people drown in our backyards. It's inhuman."
And he's right. The AAC is owned by the Federal Government but managed by a regional authority. And neither entity is doing anything to stop the senseless loss of life. One expert that was hired to look into the canal said it was the most dangerous body of water in the country. He recommended the installation of safety precautions like buoys and lifelines every 150 feet. He estimated such precautions would cut the drownings approximately 75 percent.
For those who believe these people are getting what the deserve (and if you look at the comments over at 60 Minutes website, there's a lot of them), Hunter had a good answer:
"Why should the United States spend dollars on safety features in this canal when the people who are drowning in the canal, frankly, are criminals?" Pelley asked. "They should not be coming into the country."Illegally crossing the border is a class B misdemeanor. It's not a felony. And there's a reason for that. It's because we NEED these people to do things like pick the produce the water in the AAC grows. And we've funneled these people to areas where they have to try to cross the AAC with things like Dr. Hunter's brother's border fences. But we're not doing anything to save lives in this canal.
"Right. If they were serial murderers, it they were child molesters, I'm a right wing guy, I'd say 'Let 'em, have at it, put the gators in the canal. You know, we'll line it with mines, too, and I'll help you set the fuses on the mines.' But they're not! You saw those pictures. Alejandra was a ten-year-old saving her 12-year-old sister, so they're are not your hardened criminals."
Well...that's not entirely true:
Last year, there was a massive effort to save lives on the All-American Canal. The federal government paid for a project to rescue fish, lifting them over the hydro-electric "drops" where the human bodies tend to gather.
Let's face it, we will never stop illegal immigration to this country because we can't and we really don't want to. We need cheap labor to exploit. In fact, we've been doing it since our inception. From indentured servitude to slaves to chinamen to wetbacks, cheap and exploitable labor is the smack our country has been mainlining since we first got out our gear way back when at Plymouth Rock. At least back in the day, slaves were counted as 3/5ths a person. Now, our labor apparently ain't even worth more than fish. Damn...now that's depreciation.