Tales of border survival are best told by artists

This post was originally published in Trace of Echoes. The Greek philosopher and teacher Aristotle once said, “The ultimate value of life depends upon awareness and the power of contemplation, rather than upon mere survival.”

Laredo is a rich environment for that sentiment, because issues of survival explode in front of us every single day. Harsh geographic and political circumstances along with the demoralizing violence of poverty confront large numbers of our neighbors. The river swallows the dreams of those seeking a new world, while the appetites of drug users way beyond the border checkpoint fuel a dependence on drugs and the violence they breed. Amid this constant border reminder of how important it is to survive, there is a beckoning to the awareness and contemplation encouraged by Aristotle.