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Advocate editorial board opinion: Follow DPS advice: Don't go to Mexico

By By the Advocate Editorial Board
March 9, 2011 at 7:03 p.m.
Updated March 8, 2011 at 9:09 p.m.


MEXICO UPDATES

http://Mexico.usembassy.gov/eng/eacs_MexicoSecurityUpdate.html

Spring break is very much like a spring ritual for students.

But this year, maybe students who plan to go to Mexico should try something different.

Already, the Texas Department of Public Safety has warned students about going to Mexico. In past years, hoards of students would cross over the border at Brownsville and other points from Port Isabel and South Padre Island to have a night or two of revelry in Matamoros and other Mexican cities.

But the Mexican border has grown dangerous because of the drug cartels and unrest about illegal immigration. Also, the Mexican side of Falcon Lake has become deadly, as well as problematic in terms of robberies.

"While drug cartel violence is most severe in northern Mexico, it is prominent in other parts of the country, as well," said DPS Director Steven C. McCraw. "Many crime problems also exist in many popular resort areas, such as Acapulco and Cancun, and crimes against U.S. citizens often go unpunished."

We think it would be wise to plan accordingly because of this official warning. Instead of extreme partying, why not do something to help your community or help around your home and neighborhood?

Otherwise, stay in groups when you travel on spring break, even on this side of the border.

"Drug violence has not discriminated - innocent bystanders and people who may have been in the wrong place at the wrong time are among the casualties. Underestimating the violence in Mexico would be a mistake for parents and students," McCraw said. "Our safety message is simple: Avoid traveling to Mexico during spring break, and stay alive."

We agree. Why take a chance with your lives? Have fun, but stay in the United States, and take extra caution this year.

This editorial reflects the views of the Victoria Advocate's editorial board.

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