“Fixed fortifications are monuments to man’s stupidity. If mountain ranges and oceans can be overcome, anything made by man can be overcome.” –George S. Patton
The White House’s latest talking points calls for a $25 billion trust fund for the wall system.
25 billion dollars for an object which will really only serve as a symbol to President Trump’s far right rhetoric on immigration. According to the New York Times, from October 2000 through September of 2016, the Border Patrol documented 6,023 deaths of border crossers in Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas. If inhospitable terrain such as the Sonoran Desert cannot stop people from migrating, a man made wall will have no deterrent factor whatsoever. A twenty foot wall will result in an increase in sales and production of twenty-five foot ladders. We will see more welding tools taken to the wall, tunnels dug beneath, and creative ways other than ladders to get over the wall.
This is not to imply that we should simply acquiesce to the building of a border wall. Economics aside, the symbolism attached to the border wall is reason enough to object to it. What message are we sending about the people on the “other side” of the wall. That they are dangerous, bad, something needed to be kept out. In an age of instant communication across the globe, a border wall is a symbol that we see our neighbors as inferior. It is clear that President Trump wants the border wall to appease his base. He has rallied the far right and sees this as his opportunity to give back to those who put him in office. The border wall will clearly be seen through the eyes of history as the Monument to Trump’s Stupidity.