The Santa Ana Wildlife Refuge is on federal land. It is now slated to be destroyed so that Trump can begin to put his wall up. The wall will be 18 feet high and continue for 3 miles. The construction can start prior to Congress approving money for the wall because the funds needed will come out of the Department of Homeland Security’s budget.
According to ThinkProgress,
The Santa Ana Wildlife Refuge comprises 2,088-acres along the U.S.-Mexico border, and was established in 1943 for the protection of migratory birds. The refuge is home to at least 400 species of birds, 450 types of plants, and half of the butterfly species found in North America. It is also home to the highly-endangered ocelot.
Trump’s wall is expected to cost over 21 billion dollars. For what purpose? To stop undocumented workers from coming across the border. He claims that they come across and commit crimes and take jobs from Americans. He also says that they get welfare benefits. None of it is true. Undocumented people cannot get welfare benefits. It is against the law. Those that come across our borders are statistically less likely to commit crimes than Americans. As for taking jobs that Americans want? Ask farmers in California if that is true. Many are struggling to find workers.
There has been a downturn in immigration across the Mexican border by Mexicans. According to Pew, the population of undocumented Mexicans has dropped by a million people. Secondly, there has been an upturn of people coming from Central America seeking asylum from terrorizing gangs and violence. They are looking for the safety of the American promise to accept those fleeing from danger. They want to get caught to apply for legal asylum.
Seth Stodder who served in the Department of Homeland Security under both President George W. Bush and President Obama suggests that what we have isn’t an immigration crisis but a humanitarian one.
The biggest immigration crisis facing the country has nothing to do with Mexicans illegally crossing the border. Instead, it’s that hundreds of thousands of Central Americans are fleeing brutal violence and extreme poverty in their home countries and seeking asylum in the United States — but our immigration system is overwhelmed and completely unprepared to handle the flood.
He also reminds us that,
America obviously cannot solve all the economic problems of Central America, but under U.S. and international law, all migrants are afforded the opportunity to apply for asylum protection if they make it to U.S. soil.
Instead of upholding the law and remembering who we are as Americans, we are now going to build a wall that not only destroys an important animal habitat but our reputation as a nation that welcomes those willing and wanting to embrace a better life.