Many have claimed that the infamous Berlin Wall and “Trump’s Wall” are dissimilar. However, emblematically, both walls share striking similarities.
Nothing symbolized a polarized world divided by an “Iron Curtain” more than the concrete barrier running through the heart of Berlin. The Berlin Wall represented a haunting reality of the stark, ideological contrasts and contradictions within a world caught up in unsettling Cold War rhetoric and, at times, hysteria. Over its almost three decades of existence, that 90-mile stone structure had become the embodiment of a radical change in global politics and a drastic disparity between societies that emotionally touched – and charged – humanity.
Similarly, a wall along the Mexican border sends a potent disdainful, unsettling, and jingoistic message to our southern neighbors. The President’s wall would divide the “Americas” between “Gringos” and “Latinos;” and, as such, it could become the catalyst for the pejorative, hysteria-driven cancers of xenophobia and bigotry to metastasize. Potentially, the southern border wall could reverse the progress that the United States has made in its foreign policy with our southern neighbors and, consequently, resurrect the ill-feelings that historically have been associated with “Yankee Imperialism” and “Gringo Economics.”
The world is too small for walls! Indeed, this nation – any nation – needs to defend and protect the integrity of its borders. However, in this era of advanced technology, the efficacy of perpetuating the use of a concrete barrier to deter undocumented immigration should be seriously challenged. Suffice it to say, there has to be a better way.
John Di Genio