Border Control

During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump pledged to build a wall on the border between the U.S and Mexico that would stop illegal immigration and block the entry of drugs. The wall is meant to be over 1,000 miles long, between 30 to 50 feet in height, impenetrable with concrete planks, and pleasing to the eye.

While during his campaign, he claimed that Mexico would pay for the wall, the U.S is ending up paying for the wall. In 2017, Trump signed an Executive Order that directed the government to begin construction of the wall. With the legal battles for receiving funding for construction, building the wall has been extremely slow. The total estimate to build the wall is over $20 billion and will take as long as three years to build.

What effects will the wall have on immigration and stop contraband from entering?

There are many examples of current border barriers that are effective. Barriers such as the Hungarian border barrier, the Israeli border walls, and the Israeli West Bank barrier have lowered illegal border crossings. However, researchers at Texas A&M and Texas Tech believe that the wall is unlikely to be effective at reducing illegal immigration and the movement of contraband.

Border Control

Many critics on the wall say that the wall would not stop the misuse of the legal ports on entry. Additionally, even a border wall could be bypassed by tunneling, climbing, or by using boats or aircraft. There are also several other problems that the wall won’t solve.


There are multiple ports of entry along the border, and cartels are smart and tactical in adjusting their behavior. Cartels and traffickers carefully study how security operates at the checkpoints, which means they can instantly respond to weaknesses.


Another problem that the wall won’t fix is that terrorists aren’t undocumented. The Department of Homeland security has found no credible intelligence that terrorists’ organizations are plotting to cross the southwest border. Most terrorists in the United States have been U.S citizens or permanent residents. Lastly, the immigration courts in the United States are already overwhelmed. The United States is already close to a breaking point and adding more people will cause the court system to grind to a halt.

The border wall between the U.S. and Mexico has been a significant point of discussion that began during Trump’s presidential campaign and continued through his presidency. Although during the campaign, Trump said that the U.S. would have Mexico pay for the construction for the wall, The U.S ended up being the one to pay for it.

While the wall may be aesthetically pleasing, it does not guarantee that illegal immigration and contraband smuggling will decrease. Researchers in the U.S. believe that the wall will be ineffective and won’t help to solve the other problems that the U.S. faces with illegal immigration.