Costly Fence on US-Mexico Border is Effective – Only in Hurting Nature

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Billions of dollars have been invested in building the U.S.-Mexico border in order to keep immigrants out, but it seems that it has only made it slightly more difficult for immigrants to cross instead of eliminating the issue.  American taxpayers are taking on the burden of the $2.6 billion on border walls and the cost greatly outweighs the benefits.  Not only has the government spent billions on the physical border wall, but also on the failed “virtual fence” that cost more than $1 billion and was cancelled by the Obama administration in January.  On the same day this announcement was made, construction started on a new wall along Rio Grande in Brownsville, Texas and there is also supposed to be reconstruction of border walls with taxpayer’s money.

The amount of money being put into the border isn’t the only problem.  The border is causing extreme environmental damage to the land and animals that is surrounds.  This project has violated over 38 federal laws such as the Wilderness Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Clean Water Act, but Congress passed the REAL ID Act that allows Homeland Security to overrule these laws in order to build the border.

The “virtual fence” project was abandoned due its ineffectiveness and the physical border needs to be assessed with the same standards.  Instead of investing billions on a border that hasn’t successfully addressed the issue of immigration from Mexico to the U.S., the government should spend that money on programs that tackle the real causes of immigration.

Title: Costly Fence on US-Mexico Border is Effective – Only in Hurting Nature
Author: Scott Nicol
Source: The Christian Science Monitor, 2/27/11

Student Researcher: Ashley Wood, Sonoma State University
Faculty Evaluator: Professor Peter Phillips, Sonoma State University