A hallmark of President Donald Trump’s campaign and administration has been his repeated vow to better secure the nation from drugs, human trafficking, terrorism and illegal immigration with a wall along parts of the southern U.S. border with Mexico.
Democrats have studiously attempted to block every effort to do so, however, and the liberal media has excoriated the very idea of border walls to be both incredibly racist and xenophobic, not to mention highly ineffective … ignoring the fact that none of those claims are actually true.
But now at least one liberal journalist, who is typically quite critical of President Trump — New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman — appears to have acknowledged that the president he despises is nevertheless correct in his assessment of just how necessary a border wall is to the security of our nation.
To be sure, although Friedman was rather critical of Trump in his Op-Ed detailing what he found on a trip to the border near San Diego, California — he accused the president of “wasting our immigration crisis” — the columnist described what he saw at the border as “a very troubling scene.”
Friedman noted the sharp spike in illegal immigration in recent months, the varying composition of those crossing the border illegally, how smugglers were exploiting the illegal immigration surge as cover for moving drugs and other people unnoticed, how some illegal aliens were gaming the system, and how Border Patrol agents and facilities were simply overwhelmed by the crush of people they had to deal with on a daily basis.
“The whole day left me more certain than ever that we have a real immigration crisis and that the solution is a high wall with a big gate — but a smart gate,” Friedman wrote.
He pointed out that a high wall would assuage the worries of American citizens concerned by the high volume of illicit cross-border traffic, in addition to obviously providing security in previously wide-open locations.
The “big gate” would, in turn, symbolize our nation’s historical compassion and welcoming arms for those truly in need of asylum or refuge, as well as those migrating to the U.S. for economic reasons, provided their entry was done so in a legal and orderly fashion.
Friedman decried the haphazard nature of the various laws and policies that make up our current immigration “system,” and though he blamed President Trump for the mess, his proposed fixes to the various loopholes and problems he documented would necessarily have to come from Congress.
The columnist further pointed out how well the new border wall system recently completed near the San Ysidro port of entry worked. That system, which has reduced illegal crossings in the area to nearly zero, includes an 18-foot tall steel slat barrier on the border, followed by a road monitored by cameras and sensors, backed up by a 30-foot tall steel slat barrier behind it all.
Friedman ultimately concluded that there were a plethora of things that needed to be done to reform the current immigration system, but a big part of that — which far too many liberal Democrats have summarily rejected — is a tall and complete border wall that will help provide security and orderliness to the border region.
As might be imagined, Friedman’s column sparked plenty of conversation on both the right and left, and he was invited on Wolf Blitzer’s CNN program to discuss what he had written and witnessed first-hand at the border.
“Wolf, I’m as radically pro-immigration as they come,” Friedman told Blitzer. “But, it’s pretty clear to me that unless we can assure a significant number of Americans that we can control our border, we’re never going to have proper immigration flow that I think we need, we desire, and that we actually have a moral responsibility given our history as a nation of immigrants and a refuge for people fleeing persecution.”
Friedman said that a “compromise” was needed between Republicans and Democrats on the issue.
Noting the “chops” President Trump enjoyed with his staunch base of supporters, Friedman suggested that Trump could be the one to reach some sort of deal with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrats on reforming the immigration system. Such a deal could include both a border wall for security purposes and policies that would ensure a continuous and orderly flow of legal immigrants.
When Blitzer pointed out that Friedman’s call for a “high wall” echoed Trump’s rhetoric, Friedman simply replied, “Well, I think you’ve got to control the border. When you have an increase of apprehensions of illegal immigrants of 374 percent since October, obviously you’ve got a situation where the border security is not sufficient, and that’s going to drive people who we should want to be pro-immigration against immigration.”
The crisis at the border has become blatantly obvious to a significant number of Americans, and though much of the liberal media have chosen to deny or ignore that crisis, this liberal columnist — for the New York Times, of all outlets — has witnessed and acknowledged the crisis as real and now admits that Trump’s proposed border wall is indeed quite necessary for the security of our nation.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.