There is a Wall and it’s Deadly Enough Already.
As an immigration attorney who runs a center for migrant youth in Brooklyn, one would assume I am immune to Trump’s rhetoric. But when the Executive Director of the Colibri Centre for Human Rights, Robin Reineke, was driving me down to the US/Mexican border even I had to ask, wait, there’s already a wall right?
Not only does a wall already exist, made of steel beams and barbed wire and hovering drones, but it’s already deadly. An estimated 150 migrants die attempting to cross that border and that wall every year. We lamented the death of Alan, the Syrian refugee boy who washed up on Greece’s shores but never hear the stories of the 15 year old child found in the Arizona desert, stomach found full of prickly pear fruit, or the skeletal father who must have re-appropriated a backpack belonging to his children as there were still crayons tucked inside its pockets. The Colibri center archives these artifacts in part to return to the living, in part to identify the dead. Unless a scientifically valid positive ID match is made their bodies are cremated. More than 900 have been sent to the incinerator since the year 2000 alone.
For those of us on the left, we didn’t have to worry about Trump’s election causing mass deaths on the border, ripping apart families, vilifying a child and a father seeking refuge. This American nightmare was already being lived. And now it’s going to get a heck of a lot worse.