By Michael D. Jacobsen
Nothing seems to be a bigger hot-button issue to most people than the discussion over a border wall with Mexico. It dominates most of the headlines, and it dominates the discussions that most people are currently having over political issues. While it may seem like the discussion over a border wall is relatively new, it actually has been going on for many years.
The true beginning of the border wall discussion began in 1993, when President Bill Clinton began using a border barrier strategy, which created a 13 mile wall stretching from San Diego to Tijuana. While it was effective, it was also labeled as creating a humanitarian crisis, as people trying to cross illegally were forced to detour for many miles in harsh terrain. Similar barriers were built in 1994 in Arizona, and also in Texas. Further construction of a barrier between the United States and Mexico did not happen until 2006, when the Secure Fence Act was passed with bipartisan support. The act authorized the creation of 652 miles of fencing, vehicle barriers, cameras, and checkpoints along the border.
It was reported by the Department of Homeland Security that by 2011 the fence had been completed in 649 out of the 652 miles authorized by the Act. Since then, there have been added monitoring systems for detecting those crossing, as well as roughly 40 miles of pedestrian fencing.
It should be noted that prior to the election of President Donald Trump, some sort of border barrier was supported by both the Democrats and the Republicans. Most notably, Hillary Clinton was a supporter before her run for President in 2016. Bernie Sanders is another one who was in favor of some sort of barrier. In 2013, he voted for $18 billion for the border barrier, but now opposes it. This is typical of politicians playing partisan politics, where they flip flop on an issue in order to keep their supporters in the dark as to what they truly believe in.
While the politicians keep stringing people along with the support or non-support of a border barrier, here is what really happens…nothing at all. A politician will talk tough about securing the border, knowing that others will rally against their effort, or other politicians will try and make their reputation on opposing doing anything at the border. This is all part of the game they play to befuddle the masses.
We all know that current President Donald Trump has been going back and forth with the current Congress to gain funding for a border wall, even going as far as to shut down certain parts of the government due to the refusal to fund the wall. We also know that in losing his battle with Congress, he has declared the wall as a National Emergency in order to secure the required funding. What is interesting in all of this, is that he had plenty of time to push through funding for the wall with a Republican controlled House and Senate, but chose not to do so. This was not made into a major issue, until the Democrats took control of the House of Representatives.
So, why wait until the after the time of the easy route to push a border wall was over? The answer is because he never really wanted it in the first place. It was obvious that the new Democrat-controlled House was going to make sure there was little to no border wall funding. In fact, it is not hard at all to figure out that individual states would sue the government to stop the funding for the wall. It is far easier for politicians to play on the left/right divide than to actually do anything. The carrot is dangled to keep the voters support, while making sure the voters never get what they want and were promised by campaigning politicians.
Coincidentally, by declaring the border wall a national emergency, President Trump has opened a Pandora’s box that has set the precedent for any future Presidency to use a national emergency for almost anything they want. Perhaps this is the real reason why Trump waited this long to take action on the border: not to fund a wall, but to set the mark for more government overreach. This is commonly referred to as moving the Overton window.
While the carrot of the border wall is being dangled, other effective means of securing the border are being ignored. Ideas such as burying a fiber optic cable across the border has been shown to be highly effective in tests, and it also has the advantage of being comparably low in cost. It also has the advantage of detecting underground tunneling and even objects passing overhead.
As I pointed out in a previous article, A Case Against Illegal Immigration, our focus should be on stopping those who are criminals, sex traffickers, and the diseased from entering our country. We do not need a full wall to do that. We also cannot ignore how wrong it is to seize private property through eminent domain to build the wall. A more cost-effective and practical way of dealing with the issue is to build the wall where we can, and use something like fiber optic cable to detect people coming through any gaps. It will make it much easier to apprehend people crossing if the gaps are smaller and easier to control.
We need action on the issue of border security, not empty promises and constant blaming of the other side when nothing gets done.
That is not leadership, that is a bad joke.
And that, my friends, is the Uncensored Truth.
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