Author Archives | Morgan Smith

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Morgan Smith

Morgan Smith is a former member of the Colorado House of Representatives as well as Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture. He has degrees from the University of Colorado School of Law and Harvard University. From 2000 to 2004 he was the president of the American Society of Barcelona, a non profit organization for people interested in US/Spain relations. He and his wife, Julie have lived in Santa Fe since 2006 and he works as a free-lance writer and photographer, focusing mostly on issues related to the Mexican border.

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Rebuilding Economies on the Border

08. October 2014

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By Morgan Smith

“Mexico is the draw and we’re along the way,” says Mayor Philip Skinner of the tiny village of Columbus, noting how the violence across the border in Palomas, Mexico and further south had cut into the number of visitors who passed through Columbus, thus hurting the local economy. He was speaking at a recent and historic meeting of local political leaders from both sides of the border, stretching from Silver City in the north to Casas Grandes to the south. The meeting took place in Columbus and he was the organizer and this driving force in this bi-national effort...

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Assaulting Women

22. September 2014

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By Morgan Smith

“He tried to fork me to death,” the trembling woman said as we stood in her living room in Adams County, Colorado. I was the Public Defender appointed to represent her husband in this wife beating case. My wife, Julie came with me to help with this interview.

Julie and I were puzzled as to what “fork me to death” meant until this woman rolled up her sleeve and showed us a series of tiny marks – four black and blue dots – where her husband had repeatedly jabbed her with a fork. Then she took Julie into her bedroom, removed her clothing and showed Julie that her whole body was completely covered with these marks. The husband had jabbed her hard enough to cause pain and leave the black and blue marks but not enough to break her skin...

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Love shines light on immigration crisis

15. September 2014

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By Morgan Smith

Families and young people decide to flee the horrendous violence in their Central American countries of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, arrive on our border after a terrifying journey through Mexico and surrender themselves to our immigration authorities. Suddenly we have another immigration crisis.

What happens?

Congress argues but does nothing. President Obama ponders and then defers until after the elections. Is anyone going to do anything this humanitarian crisis? Allegra Love from Santa Fe is one of the very few...

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Charles “Chuck” Bowden

01. September 2014

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By Morgan Smith

It’s devastating news. Charles “Chuck” Bowden died last Saturday evening of an apparent heart problem. The author of Murder City: Ciudad Juárez and the Global Economy’s New Killing Fields; El Sicario; Down by the River: Drugs, Money, Murder and Family; A Shadow in the City and many other books and articles, he was a true hero in terms of his work in Juárez and the border. Everyone talks about immigration and border issues but Chuck was one of the few who was actually there, again and again, in the most dangerous times and the most deadly places...

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New Shoes in Juárez

09. August 2014

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By Morgan Smith

Although Mexico ranks last in the rankings of the 34 Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries in terms of educational achievement and although it has a much higher level of poverty than the US, public education isn’t free. Santa Feans Jim and Pat Noble and their powerful team of volunteers not only manage an orphanage in Palomas, Mexico – La Casa de Amor Para Niños – but they have also raised scholarships for some 300 youngsters there.

Recently, I tried to do my share in the Juárez area by helping several kids I know from my work at the mental asylum, Vision in Action...

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The New Immigration Crisis

28. July 2014

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By Morgan Smith

Governor Rick Perry orders 1,000 National Guard troops to the US-Mexico border. President Obama urges the Presidents of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to focus on their “shared responsibility” for the influx of migrant children from their countries. But where are Governor Perry’s troops going to go and what are they going to do? And what responsibility does President Obama think we have for this crisis?...

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Moments of Truth

19. July 2014

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By Morgan Smith

In her last MMA fight on March 29, Natalie Roy from Santa Fe floored her opponent at one minute and forty seconds of Round One. On Saturday night, June 14, it took her only 32 seconds to defeat Brittany Horton. It was a moment of truth for Brittany, however, because she agreed to take the fight on very short notice when Natalie’s original opponent had to drop out. Knowing that she didn’t have a chance and not having had a fight for three years, it took great courage to step into the cage against Natalie...

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A Story of Three Women

12. July 2014

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By Morgan Smith

This is a story of three young women in Juárez, Mexico. These three stories are intertwined by virtue of the asylum and the leadership of its founder, Pastor josé Antonio Galván, who has created a family atmosphere where not only the patients but the members of the larger “family” provide an enormous amount of support for each other...

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Tongues of Fire on the Border

27. June 2014

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By Morgan Smith

With the defeat of Eric Cantor, immigration reform may be dead for the near future. Nonetheless, there are heroes out there who won’t be deterred by Congressional dysfunction. One of them is Reverend John Fife who was recently in Santa Fe.

Back in the early 1980s when wars were raging in Central America, refugees fled to the United States from death squads in their home countries, particularly Guatemala and El Salvador. The first church to respond to this crisis was Fife’s church, the Southside Presbyterian church in Tucson, Arizona. On March 24, 1982 he started the Sanctuary movement and initiated an “underground railroad “system to move refugees to other parts of the country and to Canada where they would be safe...

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The VA Scandal

10. June 2014

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By Morgan Smith

When former Senator majority leader and Presidential candidate Bob Dole said that it was time for VA Secretary Erik Shinseki to go, that was the end because Dole, a war hero, wounded veteran, great public servant and frequent user of VA services has more credibility on this issue than any American. Having introduced Shinseki at his confirmation in 2009, this must be a very painful experience for him.

Senator Dole’s comments made me think of my cousin, Molly from Middleburg, Virginia who worked for eleven years as a volunteer at the Walter Reed Army Hospital...

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