Have Volkswagen Questions? Ask an Expert Now.
OK- that pull lever attaches to a simple lever in the latch- you will need a 90 degree pick or a bent wire, and a flashlight. Lift the hood as far a you can, and look straight in where the secondary release lever was, you should be able to see the lever. Hook it with the pick or wire, and then let the hood relax just enough to release tension on it, pull the lever, and lift the hood. The safety lever is snapped over a pin that goes through this lever, and sometimes the pin falls out.
If you look in between the radiator support and the hood, can you see the striker loop from the hood that comes down and engages with the latch? You should be able to see that it is above the latch "fingers" but still has one curved hook over it. That is the part that is moved by the safety lever. (funny, I just had a jetta doing the same thing in the shop this morning)
you may need to use a screwdriver or something similar to pry that hook toward the right to get it to release the striker. Due to the curvature of the hook, the hood moves a little bit up and down as the curve of the hook travels behind the striker. The latch I just worked on was very rusty and didn't move easily, but at least the safey lever was still attached.
I think you could probably cut the hook off the latch if you have a hacksaw or reciprocating saw. Then replace it with a less corroded junkyard part.