Last week, President Donald Trump claimed that the “crisis” at our nation’s border is so catastrophic that “We will build a Human Wall if necessary.”
Tremendous numbers of people are coming up through Mexico in the hopes of flooding our Southern Border. We have sent additional military. We will build a Human Wall if necessary. If we had a real Wall, this would be a non-event!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 5, 2019
It looks like some of the president’s supporters have taken that tweet rather literally, according to reports that a group, donning “Make America Great Again” hats, gathered to form a human “wall” along a section of the U.S.-Mexico border in Sunland Park, New Mexico, just northwest of El Paso, Texas.
Pictures from the demonstration soon made the rounds online.
President Trump Supporters and Concerned Americans in action. Love it.
Border-Security Advocates Join President Trump’s ‘Human Wall’ in New Mexico. pic.twitter.com/FeJ58gTBLk
— Friends Of Trump UK🇬🇧& Commonwealth Affairs 🇺🇸 (@trump_friends) February 10, 2019
Demonstrators formed a human wall along a piece of the U.S.-Mexico border between Sunland Park, New Mexico, and Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua state, Mexico, Saturday. pic.twitter.com/dbep8CDXyA
— FOX News Radio (@foxnewsradio) February 10, 2019
As did video footage:
Though it appears the “tremendous numbers” of immigrants streaming through the southern border had a previous engagement, those who participated in blocking them were swiftly criticized.
Trumpers heard their idiot in chief call for a Wall of human beings. I shit you not. Hundreds of people held hands to block the border. Then I thought, "what if lightening hit one of them?" Is that wrong?https://t.co/3iUm0wvwts
— Chip Franklin (@chipfranklin) February 12, 2019
Years ago I watched Ronald Reagan do nearly the same thing. RR said Sandinistas were within a days march of the border. Van loads of people, including KKK showed up at the border to stand hand in hand. LULAC chased away the Klan. https://t.co/EUTclCtedI
— Brian J. Karem (@BrianKarem) February 12, 2019
What is WRONG with these people? I bet they proudly go to church on Sunday. HYPOCRITES.
Dozens of Trump supporters form "human wall" at southern border pic.twitter.com/SY1hWkNS1Z
— ᴛʀᴜᴛʜ ᴡʀɪᴛᴇʀ (@WritesTruths) February 12, 2019
Hard to be an effective human wall when your hands are busy making the white power symbol. pic.twitter.com/TBQjkOuvVN
— Chadwick Steph (@chadwick_st) February 11, 2019
The president’s claims of a “crisis” at the border are overblown.
The president further claimed that “No issue better illustrates the divide between America’s working-class and America’s political class than illegal immigration” and that “working-class Americans are left to pay the price for mass illegal immigration.”
In fact, the number of arrests by the Border Patrol is the lowest since the early 1970s, even as the number of agents has more than doubled.
Border Patrol made over 1.6 million arrests in 2000. At the time, there were just 9,600 agents nationwide. As the government has devoted more time and resources to staffing, surveillance technology, and fencing, that number has dropped steeply. 19,000 Border Patrol agents made 310,000 arrests during the last fiscal year.