There are two major complaints about Trump’s wall. The first is that it is expensive. The second is that it is unfair to illegal immigrants. We’ll leave the cost analysis for another day, but the humanitarian issues tied to the wall are almost always brushed aside by the main stream media. While it could cause separation between families, it offers a number of humanitarian bonuses that far outweigh negative impacts.
Loss of Human Life
There is a huge statistic that liberals and critics of border security love to ignore: thousands of people die trying to illegally cross into the U.S. It’s an easy statistic to overlook, because in the grand scheme it is still a new concept. Even as recently as the 90s, only tens of people died crossing the border every year.
In more recent years, those numbers have spiked. The most recent data comes from 2012 when more than 500 people were confirmed killed crossing the border. The majority of deaths came from dehydration and exposure, but drowning and even simple accidents added to the toll.
In fact, since 2000, more than 11,000 people have died trying to illegally immigrate. While a wall may not be able to reduce this number to zero, there is no doubt that thousands of lives will be saved by dissuading immigrants from even trying to cross the border illegally.
While deaths are an obvious problem, there are other humanitarian issues tied to the wall. One of the major issues is with refugees. It turns out, a huge chunk of illegal crossings are done by people not from Mexico. As conditions get worse in war-torn and famine-stricken countries, Central American refugees have fled to the U.S. in record numbers.
In 2016, more than 409,000 Central American immigrants were caught trying to enter the country illegally. When they are turned away, they have nowhere to go, and shelters are packing hundreds of people into facilities with a single bathroom. As the numbers increase, conditions only get worse.
How does a U.S. border wall help? It discourages migration to the U.S. in the first place. If illegal immigration is more difficult, then fewer people will make the attempt in the first place. This alone doesn’t solve the problem, but it alleviates the overburdened resources trying to help refugees at towns across the border.
It also forces governments to acknowledge the refugee situation and deal with it more proactively. Mexico is lax on their own southern borders because so much of the influx of immigrants eventually flows north into the U.S.
A standoff is the only way to push the reform necessary to deal with the migration problem at its source, and until that happens, the people simply looking for a better life will continue to be lost in the process.
There is also the extremely violent drug wars to consider. Despite over a decade of effort, the Mexican cartels still hold significant power across the country, and they continue to terrorize citizens.
Pragmatically, there are only two ways to solve the problem: a full-scale war against the cartels or an economic attack that will deplete their power. The former has been tried to little avail. The latter is most easily accomplished with a border wall.
The economics are simple. The wall won’t stop the flow of drugs, but it will make the process more expensive. That will in turn reduce demand from Mexican-imported drugs, and the end result is an economically weakened cartel culture. Without the funds necessary to secure their position, the cartels will ultimately recede.
If the effects of the wall can be bolstered by trade agreements that don’t cripple Mexico’s agriculture, then things might finally improve.
Finally, there is the issue of human trafficking into the U.S. We all like to pretend it doesn’t happen, but the cold hard facts are there. Sex rings are constantly being disrupted by U.S. law enforcement, but by far the best way to attack the problem is to make it more difficult to transport people from and into the country.
The trafficking problems extends much farther than the illegal sex trade. Immigrant workers are frequently exploited for cheap labor. In fact, liberals champion the cause, often complaining that without illegal migrants the costs of their favorite foods would rise.
In truth, dramatically reducing the availability of exploitative labor increases the value of migrant workers (even when their status isn’t legal), and it creates market conditions that are more favorable to these vulnerable workers.
A border wall is expensive, and getting it built is a major effort that will come with complications and problems. None of that changes the fact that it is the most effective proposition in many years that will actually combat inhumane conditions in both the U.S. and Mexico.
~ Conservative Zone