The Upside and Downfall of the Mexican-U.S. Border Wall


Ever tried to run through a brick wall or jump over a chain-link fence?  Now imagine doing both of those at the same time but the fence is more supported and extremely taller than normal.  People are not climbing the wall for fun or a great workout but to save their families. This is what Mexicans have to deal with to try to better their families’ lives due to the U.S. – Mexico border wall.  Now, consider the stance of Americans attempting to keep criminals and illegal drugs out of their neighborhoods.  These two sides of this topic describe the hardship and struggles of supporting or opposing the border wall.  Also, there is an abundant amount of information that can be retained about the history of the border and the wall itself.  The change of presidents over the years has also impacted the construction and funding money of the border wall.  Due to this controversial topic and people who oppose or support it, this creates many viewpoints that will help explain the history, background, and the economic impact of this geographical region. 

With the recent flare-up and rising concern among U.S. citizens, they tend to believe that there should be a wall built between the U.S. and Mexico border.  Many websites and sources claim they have the information and evidence to back up the previous statement.  According to the website Thought Co., illegal immigration supposedly cost the United States an estimated $113 billion lost in income tax revenue.  There already has been information showing the success of physical barriers in previous uses as well.  On one occasion, the use of a physical barrier reduced the number of people trying to cross the border illegally from 600,000 to 39,000 in just 20 years (McFayden 2021).  Also, the use of border fortifications helps to reduce crime around the area.  Fortified borders were first created for military reasons but are mainly used now for economical issues and immigration.  As stated in the article titled Do Walls Work states, “fortifications built in such regions are more effective, thereby reducing the international spread of violent militancy from one state to the next” (Linebarger 2020).  The need for these fortifications is essential, especially because of the violent crime history around the border.  In addition to helping decrease local crime, the border wall helps keep out illegal immigrants, criminals, and the smuggling of drugs across the border.  Although the border wall does not take care of all illegal activity, it helps discourage the spreading of this problem.  It has been proven in many areas that having a border wall reduces the risk of illegal activity in the area.  With the information that I have retained from a website named Homeland Security, the use of a wall indeed decreases the spread of these issues.  Although in some locations where the illegal immigration is not as drastic, the fortifications still help to ensure that the least amount of people possible immigrate illegally.  As I stated earlier in the paragraph, due to the rise of illegal immigrants around the Mexico and U.S. border wall, the U.S. government has been losing money because of this issue.  The U.S. government hasn’t just been having to handle the loss of income tax revenue though.  With all of the money that is being lost the U.S. government resources are now starting to stress with the continual loss of money.  

While there are some people who believe that there are more advantages to having a wall, there are others that believe that building a wall will only cause more problems.  These problems show that they will hurt both Mexico and the United States.    Also, these issues wouldn’t just be financially, but also would affect the wildlife aspect.  The border wall derails the habitats and shelters of wildlife throughout the border region.  Since the border is so close to the equator, there are many exclusive and even some endangered species living in this geographical region.  Information that I have gathered from sources leads me to believe that the border wall will be harmful to the diverse wildlife around this geographical area (McFayden 2021).  The wall discourages wildlife to access different needs of life.  Also, migration would greatly be affected by the wall as animals would have to take a different route.  The building of the wall can cause harm and even destroy some habitats of these animals.  Everyone always takes a look at the government side and the politics but instead we need to look and see how much we are harming and affecting these magnificent creatures.  Some of these animals have already become extinct and many more will in the next few years.  Also, the health and housing of these people and communities by the wall are very poor as well as their wages and quality of life.  Many sources have stated that the water that these people have is very limited and not high quality (Hively 2017).  That can mean their shower water, water for their crops, and also their drinking water.  Why would someone who has horrible living conditions and hardly any drinking water want to have this border wall?  As well as that issue, many cities and communities are simply divided by the wall.  This means that some houses could have electricity and working plumbing while the others could just have a roof over their head.  Imagine yourself in their shoes and how frustrating it is for them.  You look one way and see tiny huts and clay houses and then look the other and see mansions with bright and flashy LED lights.  With the use of industrial activity, it causes the small dense area to have a very high rate of air pollution as well.  Although there aren’t many cars in these communities, big factories and businesses make up for the amount of pollution that is released into the air.  It is even common for a family to not own a car which makes sense.  Just like in New York everything is close together and very accessible by walking.  No matter how they migrate to the U.S., people will always find a way to better their families’ lives.  Nothing will be able to discourage these hard-working people from helping their families and loved ones succeed in life.  Families and individuals will take drastic measures to try and enter the United States.  Living conditions can be intense while trying to smuggle someone across the border.  With this being said and the cost of it still on the rise it will never be able to stop someone from the chance of having a better life.  In one source it even states “almost 5,000 people have died attempting to cross the border between 1994 and 2007” (McFayden 2021).  This proves my statement above about how parents and families will do whatever it takes to help their family succeed.  

Nonetheless, the different points of view and opinions on whether or not there should be a wall built will never satisfy both sides.   This issue is something that will last forever and will more than likely never be truly resolved.  The chance of both sides being satisfied is slim to none.  In addition to the reasons for and against the wall, one aspect that is often overlooked is the economic impact.  The economic impact around this area will always be a struggle for both sides, not just America but also Mexico.  While those on the Mexican side are trying to escape from low-paying wages, those on the American side don’t want their land values to decrease due to illegal immigrants and illegal activity (Yasuda).  Additionally, when comparing how little the wall decreases immigration and the smuggling of illegal drugs, it does not show good stewardship of taxpayer dollars (Bier 2017).  The safety along each side will always be in contrast with the other.  The Mexicans are trying to escape harsh living conditions and find safety for their families.  On the other hand, Americans are trying to keep their neighborhoods safe from the crime that some of the Mexicans bring in (Hively 2017).  The workforce and government impact that the wall provides or denies has both positive and negative effects.  These effects can strangely upset and anger the American civilians.  Also, the government impact of illegal immigrants who do not follow government rules causes the U.S. government to lose money.  However, many Mexicans are willing to accept blue-collar jobs that many Americans won’t (Yasuda).  Some of these jobs are:  carpenters, bricklayers, agricultural workers, meat processing plant employees (Tyson), construction workers, and housekeeping.  

In conclusion, the economic impact on the geographical region surrounding the wall, along with the varying opinions helps us realize the different viewpoints held by many people over this controversial topic.  This controversial topic affects many families and communities around the Texas and Mexico area.  Also, there are many different borders and walls throughout the world.  Everything that happens with this border can be used as a precedent and guideline for the rest of the world.  Borders and walls can be helpful but also can hurt the environment and communities surrounding them.  How would you feel if your community was divided by a wall or your family was scared or concerned with the smuggling of illegal drugs and criminals?