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Vacation Dangers Beyond the Border

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," March 12, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: There is a new and growing concern for parents who are sending their kids off to spring break, only, this time, it is not related to the dangers of them streaking but to the very real danger posed by Mexico's violent drug cartels.

Now, here's a look at what every parent needs to know before their child heads south of the border.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HANNITY (voice-over): Spring break. It's a time-honored tradition for college students nationwide, but there is a new warning tonight for students and parents, specifically of those looking to let loose south of the border.

Video: Watch the 'Hannity' segment

Mexico has long been a spring break favorite, with party-hearty cities like Cancun, Cozumel and Acapulco.

But beyond the fruity drinks, packed clubs and the sandy beaches, lies the gritty backdrop of drug violence that has exploded over the last two years and is now threatening the lives of tourists.

There were more than 6000 drug-related murders in Mexico last year, and cartels are dumping decapitated bodies in the streets every single day. Just last month, a retired general hired to dismantle the cartels running rampant in Cancun, was kidnapped and brutally tortured. His body was left on the side of the road.

With the violence out of control, some in the Mexican government feared the brazen drug runners might start singling out tourists, much like terrorists have done in Bali and Mumbai.

The State Department has issued a travel warning, urging Americans to use caution when traveling there. So as the annual migration of party- seeking students begins, parents have one more safety concern, and spring breakers have one more reason to keep vigilant.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HANNITY: And joining us now is FOX News anchor and analysts, Kimberly Guilfoyle, and FOX News correspondent, Courtney Friel.

Guys, good to see you. All right. Any parent, my take on this. We have literally 100,000-man armies in these drug cartels, and any parent that sends their kid to go to Mexico on spring break I think is nuts. Agree?

COURTNEY FRIEL, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, actually, the good news is I randomly Googled a couple travel agents and called them up. And they said that there is no interest any more in Mexico, and those that have had trips planned cancelled them. And they're not trying to encourage them to go.

HANNITY: But there are still some parents that are not getting this.

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: They're not getting it. They're not getting it. Don't let your children go. You will be sorry if you do. I'm telling you. Why would you want to take that kind of risk and put your child in that kind of danger? Even in Cancun. Sure, there's fabulous resorts there like the Ritz Carlton, et cetera. That's not where they're going like spring break. And those drug cartels operating there, people have been murdered. It's all over Mexico.

HANNITY: There's a movie out, and I forget the name of it. Liam Nielsen [SIC] is in it, right now, where his daughter is abducted when she travels abroad. And I would be like him, except I'm not as, you know, talented at beating people up.

But any time your child leaves the country, there's a risk.

GUILFOYLE: Look at Aruba.

HANNITY: Looking to Aruba.

GUILFOYLE: Natalee Holloway. There is a risk. And you know what? During this economic — we're having this hardship in this country. How about buy American, travel American? This is an amazing country. Why not you and your family, with your children, take a trip, see a part of the country...

HANNITY: Go to Vegas. Vegas is something.

GUILFOYLE: Spend your dollars here. Is that such a bad idea, Sean.

HANNITY: I know you know Vegas. So...

FRIEL: I do, and there's great deals right now. But another destination that people are going to, Palm Springs, the biggest travel agency on the West Coast had 50 different colleges connected on this trip that they were taking to Baja, California. They canceled the trip, and now, they're going to Palm Springs. So the schools...

GUILFOYLE: That's a good idea.

FRIEL: The schools are canceling trips.

HANNITY: All right. What about, putting aside the drug cartels, parents, if you send your kids to Mexico or allow them to go, remember you're in charge. You can say no. I know that's not a word we're used to any more.

Putting that aside, I don't get this. And believe me, I did a lot of dumb things when I was young. Probably more than both of you put together. Just for the record. But they take these funnels, and they literally are sucking down 12 beers at one time, you know, passing out unconscious — unconscious. I don't get the fun in that. Help me out here. Why is that so common, these drinking games and all that?

GUILFOYLE: Yes, ask Courtney.

FRIEL: I just told you, I drink vodka, not beer. It's not just the kids going over the border. I lived in — not Tijuana. I lived in San Diego for a couple years. I've been to Tijuana, like, 30 times. I bring my friends down there.

But also grandparents go over there to get their prescriptions cheaper. My husband would get his dog medication cheaper there. And people just have to be really concerned, because you can get in the way of crossfire.

HANNITY: Last word?

GUILFOYLE: Absolutely. I think there's a lot of other alternatives that are safe, that are prudent, that also support the American economy now, and you should choose that, choose wisely for your children.

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