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American Borders Forum

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The Border Fence - Good Policy Or Waste Of Time And Money?: Left of Center View

Like many of the schemes from the right wing to distract the American people from the real problems we need to address the border fence is just another bit of smoke and mirrors. The fence only covers a fraction of the border and even where it is in place it barely slows down determined people wanting to find opportunity in America. To continue to pour precious resources into its construction is to throw good money after bad. It doesnít work and taxpayers are getting little to no benefit from their money being spent on the project.

The border fence is a disaster in every sense of the word. It has been a miserable failure at controlling traffic across the border and has done nothing but harm to the ecosystem wherever it has been erected. Several endangered and threatened species of desert animals have been irreparably harmed by its presence and in some cases the fence has forced immigrants to take routes that they otherwise would not have taken that disturb fragile habitats that cannot be restored once damaged by man.

You might be asking yourself at this point why people would build something that doesnít work and does more harm than good. Itís a good question. Illegal immigration has not declined because of the fence. Penn and Teller actually did a show about the border fence showing that it could be circumvented (over, under and through) in a matter of minutes by people who are even a little motivated to get through. When you think about the fact that the people coming across our southern border often risk their lives crossing the desert to come here itís actually silly to think that some poorly constructed fence is going to stop them.

When you stop and think about the problems facing our nation right now the border fence somehow doesnít rank very high on the list. While the right wing pundits and activists have tried to paint illegal immigration as one of the core problems facing America itís really not. Most of the jobs that have gone away have done so because of corporate greed and outsourcing not undocumented workers. Illegal immigration had nothing to do with 9/11, the banking crisis or either of the wars in the Middle East. The border fence debate is nothing more than a distraction to keep us from looking at the real sources of our nationís problems.


LJ Finstermore - World Citizen | E-mail Comments on this column. | Click icon to Digg this article

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The Obama Administration Takes Arizona To Court Over Their New Immigration Law

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The Border Fence - Good Policy Or Waste Of Time And Money?: Right of Center View

Border security is essential to the survival of our nation. We need to use whatever tools are at our disposal to assure the health and well being of our people. The border fence provides one more layer of security and is therefore a valuable asset in the defense of our nation. If we fail to use the tools available to us we will only hasten our own demise.

One of the oldest principles of national defense is that of fortification. From the earliest civilizations, societies have built walls and fences to keep invading enemies out. The Great Wall of China was built as a fortification to protect the Chinese empire against any invaders that might come. It turned back many enemies over the course of centuries and made China stronger for its presence. As the worldís premier power we are a target and we need to keep that in mind at all times. Protecting our borders is not only desired it is necessary. We must fortify the borders or invite attack on our citizens.

Critics of the fence often say that it is not effective enough, which may well be true but it is preferable to leaving the border unprotected. The solution to the problem of insufficient border fence is not to abandon the fence but rather to pay more attention to getting it completed so that it is more effective at protecting our border. Of course people get through because the fence isnít finished. If we finished the wall and took additional steps to fortify our borders we would be safer in the long run for it.

The border fence project is worthwhile and in fact important to the security of the United States. It alone will not keep us safe but as part of an overall security strategy that includes greater enforcement of the laws within our borders it can be a valuable tool in the fight to keep Americans safer. In a post 9/11 world we have to be aware of the dangers we face and have the resolve to make the sometimes unpopular choices that will keep us safer. While nobody wants to spend billions of dollars to build a fence along the border we need it and should make it a budgetary priority sooner rather than later.

Tony M. - California | E-mail Comments on this column. | Click icon to Digg this article

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Last Week's View from the Right:
The Obama Administration Takes Arizona To Court Over Their New Immigration Law

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