Science fiction is like a blender - you can put in any historical experience and take influences from everything you see, read or experience.
I went to Australia from England when I was right at that age when you learn to read. It's a very confronting thing, traveling halfway around the world and having a mother who was deeply unhappy at ending up in Australia, so you look for some way to find comfort, I guess, and I found it in books.
I think in the U.S., the border fence is no longer an immigration issue primarily; it's a security issue.
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