Opinion: Mexico’s president should continue to stand up to Trump

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and then-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump before a news conference in Mexico City in August.
Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and then-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump before a news conference in Mexico City in August.
(Yuri Cortez / AFP/Getty Images)

To the editor: Last week, President Trump demanded more respect from Mexico. This is astounding, considering he has told Mexicans they will pay for a border wall. It doesn’t seem the president understands that he is so widely disrespected because he constantly disrespects others. (“Mexico-U.S. tensions escalate after Pena Nieto cancels his trip to Washington and Trump seeks 20% import tax,” Jan. 26)

I consider myself a strong American patriot, but in this matter I stand with the Mexican president. Regarding the wall, I hope that President Enrique Peña Nieto doesn’t negotiate with Trump for a second.

Mexican-Americans make up a sizable and an important group in this country. Mexico is a neighbor, friend and partner. I’ve befriended and worked with very fine people from Mexico, a country that has sent us some of its best.


I grew up in a country with a wall. We were so happy when that thing came down. Let’s not put another one up.

Christoph Bull, Los Angeles


To the editor: I agree with Trump that not only do we need a secure wall, but also that only Mexico should pay for the cost of completion.

This would not be a two-way wall. The intent would not be to keep U.S. citizens from illegally entering Mexico, but to keep Mexicans and other non-U.S. citizens from illegally entering the U.S..

The majority of Mexicans entering the U.S. illegally are decent people trying to improve their lives. But the primary responsibility for improving the lives of Mexican citizens lies with the Mexican leadership. If the Mexican government could end corruption and defeat the drug lords, its economy could improve to an extent that Mexicans would have little reason to leave.

The efforts of the U.S. government should be to aid Mexico in accomplishing these goals.

Michael Gesas, Beverly Hills


To the editor: With all of the talk about who is going to pay for the wall, there is practically no discussion of the fundamental question: Do we actually need a wall?

A 2015 study by the Pew Research Center concluded that 140,000 more Mexicans returned to Mexico than entered the U.S. from 2009-14. It is probable that we are going to spend up to $30 billion for a project we don’t need.

And one must not be fooled by the various proposals such as a border tax to pay for the wall. The cost of any border tax will ultimately be paid by the people who buy the products (us) or the companies that import them, not the Mexican people.

Bernard Peltzie, South Pasadena


To the editor: In your account of the cancellation by Peña Nieto of a planned meeting with Trump, it states that “Trump had his own, unique version of events.”

If Trump were in the vicinity of the event horizon of a black hole, or if he were somehow subject to laws of physics different from those known to govern the universe, he might have “his own, unique version of events.” This is not the case. What he does have are lies.

His statement that he and Peña Nieto mutually “agreed” to cancel their meeting is a lie. It is a failure of journalism and a disservice to the public not to label it as such.

Christopher John Smith, Los Angeles

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