(The following was written by Kim G. whose blog, El Gringo Suelto, is nearly as much fun as The Unseen Moon.)
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TO THE HORROR of the Republican “establishment” (code-speak for the only people who actually benefit from Republican policies), Donald Trump is now all but the official Republican nominee for the U.S. presidency.
You don’t need me to tell you that. And at the risk of taking a turn into the unpleasantly political, I thought I’d look into one of Trump’s more controversial policies, the one that most obviously affects Mexico. Yeah, the wall.
The “proposed” wall has been described in all kinds of unpleasant language, from ridiculous, to ineffective, to racist, and in a whole lot of other derogatory ways. And I have to confess, I’ve been there along with the wall bashers until quite recently. Today, in fact, when I began to look into it seriously.
OK, maybe not a wall exactly, but there’s a very sturdy fence along a large portion of the border, particularly the parts that are easiest to get to from anywhere in Mexico. (And, really, “what difference does it make” whether it’s a wall or a fence?)
It’s already official U.S. policy to wall off Mexico from the mainland. The legislation to build the wall was passed in 2006 during GWB’s second term with large congressional majorities. It was built over the next few years, and discussed endlessly in the press, protested by both the Fox and Calderón administrations, and derided loudly on the Left.
In short, it’s old news, established policy, business-as-usual. But don’t tell the mainstream media. They are (still!) having a field day acting like this is something new, novel, and dangerously radical, brought to mainstream discussion by a maverick Donald Trump. But it’s not.
Everyone already supports its existence, even if only tacitly. Neither Clinton nor her boss ever argued that the wall/fence should be torn down.
Clinton had the opportunity in her 2008 race for the presidency, but I don’t recall her ever advocating such a position. Nor has Obama. Nor have any congressional democrats.
So the only real point of debate across the mainstream American political spectrum is whether it should be extended or not. Is the wall effective? That’s an entirely different discussion, and frankly the one we should be having.
And there are legitimate questions about whether the wall is appropriately constructed. Parts are designed to stop only vehicles. But people can easily still walk through. (Think bollards) Like anything, it’s clearly NOT 100% effective, as any number of tunnels, catapults, and other evidence prove. (Not to mention the inconvenient fact that many illegal aliens fly into the U.S.A. on tourist visas and simply stay.)
However, from what I’ve read, the wall (where it exists) in fact does mostly work. People who’d rather cross into Southern California are now forced farther east where there’s no wall. Sadly, many of them die in the hostile desert conditions there, but that’s not an argument for letting them walk into Chula Vista, California.
Maybe extending the wall would even be a humanitarian thing to do. Publicize the heck out of it, and maybe people who otherwise would have died in the desert stay at home and try to make a go of the lives they have where they are. Or apply for an immigrant visa and get in the old-fashioned way.
So why has no one pointed out the fact that the U.S.A. already has a ten-year-old, established “wall policy”?
And as you can now see, this is not going to be an easy issue for Hillary Clinton either. She knows it’s already U.S. policy. Neither she nor her boss ever once suggested tearing it down. And unless she’s very careful, Trump is going to take her apart on this one.
And Mexico needs to stop pretending too that the wall is something new. It’s not.
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(Note from Felipe: Panama just announced it’s building a wall on its southern border to keep out illegal aliens entering from Colombia. Walls are catching on.)
(Why Trump will win big-time, according to Dilbert.)
(The Thinking Man’s Guide to Donald Trump in The American Spectator. Quite interesting.)