Hightower, The GOP northern border wall craze

Some Republicans are saying we need to wall off the 5,500 mile Canadian border, too. You can’t even satirize this stuff. The Detroit River that separates Windsor, Ontario from Detroit, Michigan. The river, from the French word for the strait, Détroit, gives The Motor City its modern name. It was a major trade and migration route well before European conquerors came, so surely had other names in the Anishnabe languages. Photo by AaronMK

Border wall absurdity is reaching new heights

by Jim Hightower

In the 1980s, many Texans were alarmed that hordes of immigrants were fleeing Rust Belt states and pouring across the Red River to take our jobs. So my friend Steve Fromholz recommended a big beautiful wall across our northern border to keep them out.

Fromholz, a popular singer-songwriter and renowned political sprite, was ahead of his time in the political sport of wall building.

Instead of steel barriers and miles of nasty razor wire, Steve proposed preventing Yankee refugees from entering the Lone Star State by planting a 10-foot high, 10-foot thick wall of jalapeño peppers along the length of the Red River. Eat your way through and you’d be accepted as a naturalized Texan.

I thought of Steve’s impishness when I read that Nikki Haley, Ron DeSantis, and other Republicans were concocting a whole new xenophobic bugaboo to goose up their anti-immigrant demagoguery.

We can’t just fear the “invasion” coming across our Southern border, they cry! Indeed, Haley wailed: “It’s the northern border, too.” She added ominously that we must “do whatever it takes to keep people out.” DeSantis piled on, saying we should wall off America’s Canadian border.

Meanwhile, nearly all residents living along that 5,500-mile boundary fear the political wall-mongers more than the imaginary threat of foreigners surging across illegally. “People have always been coming through Canada,” says a clerk at a general store in far-north New Hampshire. Scoffing at the silly political hype, she says: “I don’t think the residents are really worried.”

But Chicken Little politicos won’t be shooed off by reality. After all, they still have the east, west, and Gulf coasts to shut off — so expect them to propose razor wire for the entire US shoreline. Their ridiculousness makes Fromholz’s satire seem rational!


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