The federal government desperately needs to diet. Much of our spending is constitutionally dubious and it is immoral to pass our national debt, now exceeding $21 trillion, to our yet unborn children.
The one exception to the diet argument is national security. Without a physical barrier that works we cannot remain a country. History has demonstrated our southern border to be too porous.
We’ve had 20 government “shutdowns” since 1977, according to the Congressional Research Service. Most Americans never knew when we were in one. In fact, “shutdowns” may be a good thing if they reduce the national debt.
Democratic opposition to a southern border wall (they advocate for open borders) has been the principle reason for the last two “shutdowns.” Open borders is the “real” reason for their opposition. The other two reasons are that a wall won’t work, and it costs too much.
But walls do work. Many of those pushing the ineffective argument, hypocritically, live in gated communities. If walls (gates) did not work, they would not live there.
Today’s 143-mile steel border fence in southern Israel has stemmed the flow of illegal immigration by 99 percent, according to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (The Jerusalem Report, Herb Keinon, January 2, 2013). It “stopped the flood of African migrants into the country,” ending “Sinai terror.” At one time 2,300 people crossed each month but after the fence it dropped to 18, a 99 percent cut.
Democrats argue that the wall costs too much but in the requested 2018 budget of $4.094 trillion, certainly five billion is but a drop in the bucket. Spending beyond our means has never been a deterrent for Democrats. In the 10-year Farm Bill of 2014, they gave $3.3 billion alone for a cotton income protection plan. Other gift giving in that nearly trillion-dollar bill, considered pork by critics, included: $119 million for peanut crop insurance, $100 million for organic food research, and $150 million to promote farmers markets. Ironically the 949-page bill spends about $1 billion dollars per page ($956 Billion Farm Bill Loaded with Pork, Your World Cavuto).
The non-partisan Center for Immigration Studies recently found that “63 percent of non-citizen households access welfare programs compared to 35 percent of native households,” costing taxpayers an average of $73,000 per immigrant over his lifetime.
In addition, they found, “compared to native households, non-citizen households have much higher use of food programs (45 percent vs. 21 percent for natives) and Medicaid (50 percent vs. 23 percent for natives).” Plus, illegals get cash.
Looks like we need the wall for both national and domestic security. To get this, apparently, we have to have the Democratically imposed partial government shutdown. Let us keep the partial shutdown in place until we get a commitment from both parties for the whole $25 billion needed; or legislation to redirect the funding of illegals to the wall.
‑ Dr. Harold Pease is a syndicated columnist and an expert on the United States Constitution. He taught history and political science from this perspective for over 30 years at Taft College.