The number of illegal or undocumented immigrants in the US has increased to 11 million over the last two decades. The number of illegal immigrants in USA, UK, Canada, and other country presumed to be experiencing economic growth and political stability has increased despite the border rules and physical barriers. These kinds of statistics on the illegal immigrants have made many people question the effectiveness of barriers as a tool for deterring illegal immigration.
For a long time, the fences along the US borders with neighboring countries such as Mexico in southern California have been guarded, the US government for border wall erection and maintenance has located repaired and additional budget. This week alone, there have been a lot of debates on border wall funding budget including trump's budget that was proposed to include $3bilion for border wall and the news on the Congress' leader's exclusion of border wall funding from the current $296biliob budget deal. Because Republican Donald Trump has proposed $25B for the border wall, such capital projects should have a guaranteed return on investment. However, with the current debate against the border due to its lack of effectiveness in deterring illegal immigration, proposing such mega projects at a time when the country has people lacking health insurances issues is outrageous. Proposed such hefty budget for such projects is evidence of misplaced priorities (John n.d). While the wall has been effective in border control, building a "beautiful wall" covering the 1300 unfenced miles along the U.S. border with Mexico might not stop illegal migration. Even with the border walls, in the other section of the US- Mexico border, there were over 5604 asylum seekers and immigrants worldwide and over 1100 in the US alone between July 2014 and December 2015.
No historical success
While there is a surge in the interest in border barriers such as walls and fences, it is important to note that that interest is not a media creation. The increasing interest can be attributed to the recent historical trends that were driven by the spontaneous growth in the international migration. Even though there were times in the past when physical barriers were effective in controlling illegal immigration nod trespass, those were during the world war. However, after the world war 11, there were only five borders walls across the world (Jones n.d). The currently, there are over 70 border walls across the world up from 15 border walls as at the time when the Berlin wall fell in the year 1989 (John n.d). With the rush the put up new border wall, one can presume that the border walls had been effective in the past to warrant an increased focus on investment in border walls. Never the less, it is also important to note that there might be other extenuating factors such as political gimmicks, different meaning, and symbolic values.
Changing role of barriers
The role of the border has changed over the last three years, and this is attributed to the rise in the number of border barriers being contracture. While countries used to control movement across borders by treaties and warfare, the 21st century has seen a rise in the rise in the number of fixed borders. In addition to the united nation charters, counties would still respect the non-barricaded border because the convention calls for respect for the territorial sovereignty. There has been a reduction in cross-border invasion, and this has made borders porous save for the invisible lines marking the economic, political as well as cultural systems of a nation state.
Borders walls have symbolic values. With some countries fully fortified than others, the walls might have been used to divert the efforts of the immigrants to the less secured countries. For example, immigrants are likely to enter Canada because it is less secure as compared to the US. Over the last three years, there have been arguments that Canada is a country of immigrants. This was simply because the politicians in Canada were either debating the costs of erecting such walls against the benefits of such walls. The threats posed by immigrants in Canada are not comparable to the costs. Misplaced priorities in Canada could affect the government's operations if the money were spent on erecting borders instead of improving the welfare of the citizens. John argued that "continued war, poverty and climate change will lead more migrants to spend their savings and risk their lives for a better future." Even though the border walls can be metaphorically and theoretically effective in deterring unauthorized movement, they are not effective in physically controlling human movement because even with the US Mexico border wall, there have been numerous tunnels dug by the Mexican drug cartels to smuggle drugs, sex slaves, and immigrants workers into the country. These perceived threats can only be deterred but can never be stopped by the border wall because the motivation to cross the border is more than the human costs.
Building a wall is considered an evocative slogan while the barrier is one is one of the powerful visual symbols of action to prove that the government is addressing the threats of illegal immigrants and the perceived threats such as loss of job, insecurity, cultural, and economic. Based on the trends of border walls began erected worldwide, it is prudent to expect more walls, but the rationale for building those walls will still be questionable inmost as the question on how long the wall will remain standing. Overall, border walls are a short-term solution to border problems, but in the end, the government needs more than just border walls to deter immigrant, asylum seekers and terrorists from entering the country.
Jones, Reece. "Borders And Walls: Do Barriers Deter Unauthorized Migration?." migrationpolicy.org. N.p., 2018. Web. 9 Feb. 2018.
John, Tara. "This Is Why Anti-Refugee Fences Don't Work." Time. N.p., 2018. Web. 9 Feb. 2018.
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