Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump may have many things working against him: very limited political experience, an unfortunate habit of alienating women and a poor response to criticism. However, one thing Trump succeeds at is his ability to fire up a crowd.
The trick, it seems, is to shout out something that his supporters want to hear. For example: “I will build a great wall – and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me – and I’ll build them very inexpensively. I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.”
This eloquently said statement was released June 16, 2015, and it took ten months for Trump to explain exactly how he plans to build his wall. In a memo released on Tuesday, Trump explained that in order to force Mexico to pay for the wall, he would use a far-stretched interpretation of the Patriot Act as a tool for regulating all money transfers from the United States to Mexico.
In other words, Trump would stop Mexicans from sending the money they had earned in the United States home to their families. As a country that relies on money sent from abroad to account for $25 billion of its economy, Mexico would suffer substantially if Trump’s plan becomes reality.
The fact that Trump is willing to blackmail an entire country with threat of financial distress should be enough to put a dent in his support. Unfortunately for Mexico, the United States, and frankly the world, the sad reality is that many Trump supporters don’t take into consideration the effect Trump’s policies would have on individual human beings. Or perhaps they just don’t care.
So, besides the likely possibility that it would lead to the decrease of an entire country’s economy, here are some more reasons why Trump’s wall would be a catastrophe.
That $25 billion doesn’t all come from the U.S. That amount is sent back to Mexico from dozens of
countries. In fact, it’s India that receives the largest amount remittances world wide ($72 billion). Even if Mexico paid for the wall, Trump’s plan still calls for the deportation of all illegal immigrants, a process that according to the American Action Forum would take 20 years and $200 billion. That’s $200 billion paid by the United States, not Mexico.
Many of the Mexicans illegally working in the United States are doing so because they are unable to find jobs in their home country. Forcing a tariff and eliminating inbound funds will decrease economic growth, which in turn will lead to more immigrants searching for jobs.
With the world’s second largest economy right next door, it makes sense that they will search for work in the United States. It’s almost as if building walls between nations has never, and probably will never, solve problems.
Millions of people all over the world are currently dying because they made the decision to leave their home countries in search of a better life. Millions more have left their country not for money and success, but for survival. It’s unfortunate that Donald Trump and so many of his supporters would rather spend $200 billion kicking people out of one of the wealthiest countries in the world than spend a fraction of that amount on creating resources meant to aid.