Photo by Lorie Shaull.
President Trump ran his campaign on a promise that he would build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, claiming that the Mexican people who were emigrating here were “rapists” and “bad hombres.” Not only are President Trump’s characterizations of the Mexican community racist and incorrect, this wall he’s proposing is a massive undertaking of finances, resources and labor. When NPR spoke with a concrete expert, he estimated that this 1,000-mile, 40- to 50-foot high wall would require 250,000 concrete trucks just to produce the cement. It would then require “tons and tons” — literally — of steel reinforcement bars. The overall cost would be “astronomical.” Trump claimed that it wouldn’t cost more than $8 billion, while others have estimated it would cost anywhere between $15 and $25 billion. The real number is probably more like $49 billion — a cost that will fall on American taxpayers and is at least three times greater than what Republicans are claiming we should expect.
But wait, President Trump said Mexico’s just going to pay for the wall. That’s true, he has said that many times, but odds are it’s not going to turn out that way. Especially because Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto publically canceled a meeting with Trump after the Administration claimed that in order to force Mexico to pay for the wall, a 20 percent tax would be placed on all Mexican imports to the United States (a cost that would ultimately fall on American consumers). Mexico’s a crucial ally for the United States, so this beef that’s formulating between the Trump Administration and President Nieto is not good.
Not to mention Trump’s wall would heavily impact wildlife and would require the government seizure of many American’s property. Unless landowners are cool with a massive concrete wall running across their backyards. (They’re not.)
Here’s what you can do to reject this wall. It’ll take less than 10 minutes.
Call your representatives.
You have two senators and at least two congress people. Call all of them, or at least your Republican representatives who are more likely to be gung-ho with Trump’s border wall than Democrats. No matter where you live, you can reach each one of these people by calling 202-225-3121. Just tell the operator who you’d like to speak with or give them your zip code. If you’d prefer to just leave a voicemail, call after 5 p.m. If you reach a voice mailbox that is full, call the office back the next morning. This is unacceptable and means that your representative is not listening to their messages, or doesn’t have an adequate system set up to accommodate all of the Americans who want to voice their opinions.
All you have to say is:
“President Trump’s border wall is going to cost American taxpayers $49 billion. I oppose it and urge you to reject any motion to move forward with it.”
But if you want to say a little more, here are some talking points you can refer to.
President Trump used bigotry, misogyny and racism to progress his campaign, this wall is just another extension of that.
American tax dollars should be going toward healthcare, education, climate change action, and other important and actually necessary infrastructure projects. These are the things my community cares about, why doesn’t the Trump Administration care about them too?
It has been proven numerous times that Donald Trump is a failed and corrupt businessman. He’s filed for bankruptcy four times. He has violated contracts, manipulated consumers, refused to pay workers, and allowed construction projects to fail. He’s not even capable of completing a massive project like a 1,000-mile long wall.
Mexico is a crucial ally to the United States. This wall proposal is driving a wedge between the peace that exists between our two countries.
If you’re interested in exploring further…
Check out HBO’s The Fence. It’s a short documentary about how President George W. Bush’s border fence impacted both Americans and Mexicans and how ineffective it actually was.
That’s all you have to do. Time estimate: less than 10 minutes.
If you completed this action, or have other thoughts, leave your comments below. Matador Network is committed to providing you with easy ways to speak out against the issues that impact us all. If you have an Action Alert suggestion from your community, state, or country, contact Emma at firstname.lastname@example.org.