Between hope and indifference: Latin American reactions to Biden’s inauguration

Joe Biden’s arrival in the White House promises a gracious change in relations between the United States and Latin America. With the exception of Cuba and Venezuela, the Trump administration paid little attention to its considered backyard, giving space to Russia and China. Joe Biden wants to correct the course. As vice president, he visited the region 14 times.

Analysts agree that although there is a brutal change with respect to the previous Administration, its policy towards Latin America will not be much different from that of the presidents before Donald Trump. But what do Latin Americans hope will change with the new Administration? We hear opinions from ordinary citizens in various countries in the region.

“For us, who are against domination, to be considered the backyard of the Americans, for us it is the same, both,” explains Manuel Romero, a resident of Lima.

“The US is a power and we are countries that, let’s say, depend on them. I hope that the new government will be more empathetic with the people,” says Gladys Figueroa, also from Lima.

There are those who highlight the universalist vision of Biden, the return of the United States to the front line of the problems that affect the planet as a whole:

“There will be another vision for important issues on the world agenda, such as climate change, such as the issue of discrimination, the issue is respect for minorities,” says Jairo González from Bogotá.

But if there is any point at which millions of Latin Americans expect a radical turnaround, it is in immigration policy.

“May God guide the path of the Biden Administration so that together we can achieve humanitarian immigration reform, a halt to deportations and the elimination of the inhumane program, ironically called the immigrant protection program, which is an oppression,” he stated from the border. with Mexico Hugo Castro, activist with the Coalition for the Human Rights of Immigrants of Los Angeles (CHIRLA).

“Like all our brothers, the migrants want better immigration reform, reunification with their families on the other side and stop deportations as well,” explained Miguel Robles, a Mexican migrant.

The arrest by decree of the gigantic border wall with Mexico and the announcement of the regularization of 11 million undocumented immigrants in the next eight years completely bury the harsh immigration policy of the Trump era.