Goodbye NAFTA and good riddance

Beyond the Rhetoric

Harry C. Alford & Kay Debow | 12/19/2019, 11:05 a.m.

There was another big casualty in this trade agreement Mexico was made up of many small farms. With NAFTA, farming in Mexico became a big business. Eventually the small farmers were decimated by new gigantic farms taking advantage of the trade agreement. The economic effects are still being felt by the Mexican population. It has probably fanned the flames of illegal immigration into the United States on our southern border.

Also, cheap Mexican labor was employed along the southern side of the border for production of goods to be quickly imported into the United States These workers were exploited and abused without any attention being given to them. They worked hard but were greatly exploited for their toils.

Canada and Mexico profited from NAFTA nicely and to the detriment of United States manufacturing It wasn’t until President Donald Trump came into office that discussion of ending NAFTA was paramount to our economy. Thus, the new trade agreement, United States, Mexico, Canada Agreement – USMCA was proposed by the Trump Administration as a cure for the ills of NAFTA. It was approved by all three nations but there was a stall by Congress. Finally, last week it was passed.

Thus, the effects of NAFTA will soon come to pass. We have learned a great lesson in this – hopefully. The saying, “The grass always seems to be greener on the other side” seems to apply here. Not all trade agreements are good. We must analyze each one of them and determine the true outcome if it is to exist. To our unions we say, “Don’t let the politicians fool you”.

May we never make such a foolish mistake again.

Harry C. Alford is the co-founder, president/CEO of the National Black Chamber of Commerce ®. Kay Debow is the co-founder, executive vice president of the Chamber. Website: www.nationalbcc.org Emails: halford@nationalbcc.org kdebow@nationalbcc.org