The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The stalemate over the border


A perspective on the continued threat over Trump’s wall

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last month, you know the United States government was temporarily shut down and the ramifications of the shutdown are still at the forefront of the American public’s mind.

One of the most pressing questions right now is when this two week resolution ends, will President Donald Trump call a state of emergency to fund his passion project?

Generally, “a government shutdown happens when nonessential government offices can no longer remain open due to lack of funding,” as explained by The Washington Post.  Therefore, shutdowns usually happen surrounding fiscal issues.

The facts of the current situation are pretty basic and how we got to discussing the possible use of emergency funds is even easier to understand.

This was the longest shutdown to date, spanning from Dec. 22 to Jan. 19, which was a total of 35 days.  This shutdown happened as a result of budget disputes after Trump’s demand of 5.7 million dollars for his border wall wasn’t passed.

During the shutdown, government employees do not get paid. During this particular shutdown, due to its length, employees missed at least one, if not two, paychecks.

This shutdown put so many people in real danger because they did not get paid or receive government funded benefits.

Trump’s presidency has been one of the messiest and most polarized we’ve seen. Democrats and Republicans are on such different political pages there is no chance for compromise.

When Trump first promised the wall in his campaign, he explained Mexico would pay for it. Now it seems that this idea has been abandoned.

One option now, is to have taxpayers funding the wall. This option has been disputed by many government officials and news sources alike. There seems to be the consensus that if the American taxpayers are required to fund the wall, it will cost them millions. That doesn’t seem particularly ideal. 

Another idea, according to The Washington Post, is to encourage “some trade deal between Canada and Mexico and the United States that would somehow pay for the wall.” But this idea has never been explained to the American public.

I applaud the reopening of the government and find it necessary. However, over the next two weeks, due to our nation’s unwillingness to compromise, will anything change?

My guess is no. It is very unlikely either party will make enough of an effort to compromise. Because the wall was one of Trump’s signature promises, it is unlikely he will be willing to settle for less money.

Democrats and moderate Republicans are both against the wall and aren’t willing to make budget concessions either. We again have to question how the government would come up with this sum of money?

This spending would be a misuse of the government shutdown policy. Moreover, there is the potential misuse of our government’s funding going towards a border wall.

The budget is broken down into three categories: mandatory spending, discretionary spending and federal debt. The wall would fall into the discretionary spending category. Discretionary spending goes towards things like the military, education, health services, housing, services for veterans and more. So I ask, where can we cut our budget to allow for the wall?

For now, the government has temporarily reopened through Feb. 15, but there is the potentiality that the government could shut down again. Trump has also threatened to declare a national emergency at the southern border, which means he could use the United States emergency funding to build the wall.

Trump has threatened time and time again to use our emergency funding for the wall if he does not get the money he wants from the budget. This money is set aside for cases like virus outbreaks, food and housing crises and wartime funds.

The idea of using the money for something that doesn’t exist and is potentially unconstitutional is ridiculous.

I cannot fathom the idea of using our country’s emergency funding for a wall. This is not an emergency. We are not in an immigration crisis.

Finally, how could this wall possibly work? No matter your political affiliation you know those who break laws will always break laws no matter what physically or metaphorically stands in their way.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Hawk News

Your donation will support the student journalists of St. Joseph's University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Hawk News

Comments (0)

All The Hawk News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *