Trump Border - Why does he want to build a wall?

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Running up to the 2016 election campaign, building a wall was one of Donald Trump's key promises when he was campaigning to become president. He believed that there was an immigration crisis with a lot of mexican people crossing into the US from Mexico. And throughout his time, he has also expressed his strong anti-mexican views as ‘Drug dealers and criminals”.

It’s a startling fact that the Mexican immigration issue has divided America in the same way that Brexit has divided Britain. Lots of Americans are unhappy about illegal immigrations in the United States. They believe that Mexican immigrants are a drain on the economy and that migrant workers keep wages low which affects Americans. Nonetheless, this issue did gain Donald Trump many supporters and now, nearly 3 years into his presidency, he wants to deliver on that promise. And, perhaps it’s his way to convince voters to elect him in the next term election.

Currently, there is a total of 650 miles of barrier along the border which is 1,900 miles long. However, Donald Trump believes this is not enough to deter migrant families from crossing the border. So President Trump wants to expand it and build a 1,000 mile wall made out of steel to prevent people from crossing the US-Mexico border.

The problem is, building a wall of this size costs a lot of money.

How much would it cost to build a wall?

President Trump estimates that he would need $5.7 billion (£4.5bn) to build a steel barrier across the border.

However, the opposing party - the Democrats have disagreed with the cost of building the wall. So on December 22nd 2018, the dispute led the US government to a shutdown. This meant that 800,000 of staff working for the United States’s government did not get paid for 35 days. During the shutdown some workers, including thousands of those who work for the US tax office, were ordered to return to work unpaid and the situation made the American people very unhappy.

Since then no formal decision has been made. The US government cannot agree how much funding should be given, or whether funding should be given at all. This has meant that Trumps’s plan to expand his wall has partially closed until a solution can be found. However, he is not giving up on the wall, calling it ‘a state of emergency’. A state of emergency is usually declared in times of a national crisis but, in this case, Trump has claimed there is a migration crisis on the US-Mexican border. This is his way to try to secure funding for his wall. Currently, it is now estimated that 76,000 people try to smuggle themselves over the border every month and this number is the highest it has been for the last decade so this figure could strengthen his point. One in three migrant get caught and those that do are likely to continue trying to cross the border at least twice a year.

What Trump says: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qj3_xNU8-JA

“Some have suggested a barrier is amoral. Then, why do wealthy politicians build walls, fences and gates around their homes? They don't build walls because they hate the people on the outside but because they love the people on the inside.”

What the Democrats say:

“The fact is, President Trump has chosen to hold hostage critical services for the health, safety, and well-being of the American people and withhold the paychecks of 800,000 innocent workers across the nation, many of them veterans,” she continued. “He promised to keep government shut down for ‘months or years,’ no matter whom it hurts.”

“The women and children at the border are not a security threat, they are a humanitarian challenge”

Who disagrees with building the wall?

A majority of US citizens (60%) believe that the wall is a bad idea or that it shouldn't be a priority for the President (According to the Pew Research and from the Guardian).

The Democratic Party, who are in opposition to President Trump's Republican party, believe that building the wall is wrong. Even so, they are not advocating an open border policy. In fact the Democrats have backed plenty of legislations that restrict immigration. And, Obama himself had voted for a border barrier in 2006.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto said that he rejects and condemns Trump's plan to build the wall along the U.S. Mexican border. Originally, Trump suggested that Mexico should pay for the wall, but Mexico is definitely not going to pay and it’s even strange to me that Trump would even suggest it, considering Mexico doesn’t want it.

Do you agree with Trump’s house/fence metaphor of protecting its own American people or is the border just a waste of billions of dollars of US taxpayers that could be spent elsewhere?

Bare in mind thousands of miles of border will require thousands of border patrol officers to man the wall itself which means it will cost even more. However the border will possibly be a significant deterrent to illegal immigration at the border just the fact that it exists would discourage many from making the attempt, but is it worth the cost or should America do more to accept the Mexican people instead? What do you think?

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-46824649

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-47007081

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jan/15/trump-mexico-border-wall-status-migrants

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jan/08/donald-trump-speech-tv-address-border-wall-oval-office

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/05/us/border-crossing-increase.html

Comments (10)

  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_singer | The Ruth Gorse Academy
    19 Apr 2019

    Hi creative_sparrow! I really enjoyed reading your post.

    I think that America should accept the Mexican people more. This is because the second most popular language spoken in the US is Spanish ( after English ). With over 37,458,470 speakers, many of these people would have come from the country Mexico as it is so close to the US. Also, there are over 36.3 million Mexican people there. With so many people of that nationality, it would make it feel as if they are being rejected by their home. However, there is a weakness in my answer because only 11.2% of Mexicans make up the US.
    But America, to me, seems like a very diverse place. This is because the president before Trump, who was Barack Obama, was elected as the first African American person to be president. Furthermore, the statue of Liberty is a symbol of hope and welcome to those who immigrated to America a century ago.
    However, some may not think this because there were 12.0 million immigrants from Mexico living in the United States in 2016, and some were in the country illegally. So, some may believe that the wall could stop this. Moreover, Trump has said in one of his speeches that crime around the border has risen. However, this is wrong because statistically speaking crime around the border has fallen in recent years.

    “Some have suggested a barrier is immoral. Then, why do wealthy politicians build walls, fences, and gates around their homes? They don't build walls because they hate the people on the outside but because they love the people on the inside.”

    I don't agree with Trump's metaphor because there is a big difference between a wall that separates countries and a little fence that separates two houses. A fence can be opened and closed to let friends and other people in; a wall can't be opened. This is like how America used to let Mexicans in. Once the wall is fully built this won't be able to happen.
    Furthermore, I think Trump is lying when he says that he doesn't hate the people on the outside. Because if he loved the people on the inside he would protect the 36.3 million Mexican people as well as his fellow Americans.

    Reply to this comment
    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ the BNC
      balanced_singer's comment 23 Apr 2019

      Well done for finding facts to back up your point of view. Where did you find your evidence? Can you think of how a supporter of the wall might use some of your facts for their own arguments?

      Reply to this comment
    2. The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg creative_sparrow | The Ruth Gorse Academy
      balanced_singer's comment 23 Apr 2019

      Thanks and well done balanced_singer!

      To be honest, before doing this issue I knew very little about the wall. As I was delving into some of Donald Trump’s speeches, I did find most of his comments about the Mexican people very offensive as they’re all tarred with the same brush. Some of the extreme terms he uses I definitely would not even quote. There are even younger children than me in his audience, can you imagine when a child asks his/her parents “what does Trump means when he says Mexican people are .....”. So surely, as a president, he should know better and use a better language when he’s addresses to the nation regardless of whether his thoughts are right or wrong.

      Reply to this comment
  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_singer | The Ruth Gorse Academy
    23 Apr 2019

    Hi Tiff. Thank you for the star : )

    This is where I got some of the evidence:
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/46811167
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_Americans
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barack_Obama

    I think if someone were to use the evidence I gave for the opposite side of the argument, they would use it as a way to emphasize how many Mexicans and illegal Mexicans there are in the US. For example, someone could say:
    The vast amount of Mexicans in the US is rising all the time. The population is over 36.3 million and there are 37,458,470 people who speak Spanish there. If we continue to allow Mexicans in the US, the 12.0 million illegal immigrants could easily turn into 327.2 million, which the entire population of America.

    Reply to this comment
  • swedish school.JPG coherent_fruit | Skellefteå
    24 Apr 2019

    I couldn't agree more

    Reply to this comment
  • swedish school.JPG convivial_nature | Skellefteå
    28 Apr 2019

    Very good facts, and i do really agree:-)

    Reply to this comment
  • swedish school.JPG introspective_potato | Skellefteå
    29 Apr 2019

    "It Is so many people walking from Mexico into the USA. Like It's disneyland." Donald Trump. I don't think the mexicans have a choice many mexicans can't live like they do. lots of people live poor. And they even got children living alone on the streets.

    Reply to this comment
  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg creative_sparrow | The Ruth Gorse Academy
    01 May 2019

    It’s important to know that for the majority of migrants who travel illegally to the US-Mexico border, it’s no easy task. It is an extremely long and dangerous route to make and many of them are from Central America (Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala). It’s usually more dangerous to travel alone, so they normally travel in large groups either on foot or hitch a ride through all that desert and unfriendly territory. So when you see families with very young children heading towards the border, it’s because they are desperate and it’s very sad to see. The main reason for this is to escape the horrendous poverty, hunger and violent criminal gangs.

    https://www.amnestyusa.org/most-dangerous-journey-what-central-american-migrants-face-when-they-try-to-cross-the-border/

    Reply to this comment
  • Morley-Newlands-logo-250x250.jpg friendly_llama | Morley Newlands Academy
    08 May 2019

    Donald Trump must of spent a lot of money.

    Reply to this comment
  • Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg impartial_panda_bear | Boutcher C of E Primary School
    24 May 2019

    I understand the feeling of being overwhelmed by people, however, surely a big boy try like America can deal with that? America - the country firstly made up of people wanting a fresh start, now rejecting those who make the country what it is. I wouldn't feel at home if my country was made up of people just from one place. No new personalities, cultures, food, jobs, and opportunities come from others joining us from everywhere. What would happen if Trump was living in a war zone???

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