With Donald Trump and politicians in Congress agreeing to re-open the government until February 15th allowing federal workers to receive their salaries and ease tensions across the country, the immigration debate and border security will dominate the upcoming legislative conversation.  Front and center will be Southern Border Wall Funding.  Trump has requested $5.7 Billion dollars to construct approximately 230 additional miles of steel barrier fencing.  Democrats may decide to give him that and much more if they can get immigration reform that is agreeable to the majority of the House and Senate.  The shutdown that just ended lasted 35 days and was the longest in U.S. history.

To put that in financial perspective a recent study found that 58% of American households have less than $1,000 in savings.  Certainly some of the 800,000 +/- federal employees that were furloughed during the shutdown were likely to be amongst those people who are living paycheck to paycheck.  Ask anyone who is in the majority of people in the U.S. if they can go a month without receiving their salary.  My guess is you will get a resounding NO.  Life is tough.  Sometimes you are able to get ahead on your bills and can put away some extra money in savings.  Other times Murphy’s Law brings you unexpected headaches and expenses.  If you are unable to borrow money or are maxed out on your credit lines, hearing politicians say “make adjustments” or “get a low interest loan” infuriates you to no end and shows just how out of touch some of the people in power are with everyone else who is just trying to survive.

At The Centrist POV we like to deal in facts, not hyperbole and reality, not rhetoric.  I’m going to list a few examples of countries that have walls and barriers.  Each country has individual challenges that dictate what kind of defense system they feel is necessary to secure their borders.  The United States like every other nation has the sovereign right to protect its citizens in the way that works best.  When our politicians refuse to appropriate funding for border security and force a government shutdown all in the name of not giving the President a ‘political win’ we have to ask ourselves ‘What The Hell Is Wrong With Them?’

Israel

Israeli border wall
Israeli border wall

According to The Jerusalem Post, the “wall” most comparable to what Trump is suggesting is the one along the southern border with Egypt.  That barrier—a “smart” barbed-wire structure equipped with cameras, radar and motion detectors—“was erected to prevent illegal [African] migrants from crossing over a once- porous border into Israel,” Yehuda Ben Meir, head of the National Security and Public Opinion Project at the Tel Aviv-based Institute for National Security Studies, related to The Media Line.  “It was constructed in cooperation with Cairo and includes some military crossing points so that the Israeli and Egyptian armies can collaborate when needed,” he added.  Israel also has landmines along some of its borders that they installed decades ago.

China

China, The Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China

TravelChinaGuide.com states The Great Wall of China is the longest man-made structure in the world. Traversing northern part of the country, what was a huge military line of defense in the past has now become a unique world heritage site and a symbol of China.  With a total length of 21,196.18 km (13,170.70 miles), equal to half the length of the Equator, the Great Wall of China is the longest feat of human engineering.

Moscow

Moscow wall and towers
Historic Moscow wall and towers

Here are some key facts as noted by Moscovery.com: The surviving structures were built mostly between 1485 and 1495 on the site of timeworn white-stone walls erected in 1366.  The triangular-shaped fortress has twenty towers connected by walls.  Three corner towers are round in shape to facilitate all-round fire and the remaining ones are square and very distinct from one another.  The Kremlin wall is 2,235 meters in length, 8 to 19 meters in height and 3.5 to 6.5 meter thick.  Built by Italian architects, the towers feature elements of Italian architecture of that time.  The names of the towers reflect their history and that of the site.

Hungary

Hungary border fence
Hungary border fencing installed in 2015

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  In 2015, Hungary built a border barrier on its border with Serbia and Croatia. The fence was constructed during the European migrant crisis, with the aim to ensure border security by preventing asylum-seekers and immigrants from entering, and enabling the option to enter through official checkpoints and claim asylum in Hungary in accordance with international and European law.  The number of illegal entries to Hungary declined greatly after the barrier was finished as it effectively abolished the access to asylum in Hungary.

Those are just four examples of countries that felt having a wall with different security features was the right decision for the security of their people.  The concept of a wall has nothing to do with morality and everything to do practicality.  Here are some statistics provided by the Department of Homeland Security.  Where fencing and walls have been built we have seen a decrease in illegal immigration.

  • San Diego (built in 1992): Illegal traffic dropped 92% over the following 23 years.
  • El Paso (built in 1993): Illegal traffic dropped 72% in one year and 95% over 22 years.
  • Tucson (built in 2000): Illegal traffic dropped 90% over 15 years.
  • Yuma (built in 2005): Illegal traffic dropped 95% over 9 years.

Ask yourself this; if a politician is against border security and barriers that have worked around the world for thousands of years, what are they for?  If it’s to oppose the party in power because it appeals to radical ideology that encompasses their base and gives them a perceived advantage in the next election you have your answer.  If the goal is open borders you have no borders at all.  The reason why you have borders is economic and strategic. You have a limited amount of resources to provide for your people.  Having unchecked and unfettered immigration puts a strain on those resources.  It’s incumbent upon the leaders of our nation to put the needs of its citizens first.  When they put politics before people, we are a country lost.

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