By Mya Todd, staff member
*This piece is an editorial meaning it involves the writer’s opinion
A government shutdown occurs when congress cannot agree on appropriating funds. On December 21st, 2018, the current government shutdown began at midnight. The current government shutdown has been the longest shutdown in United States history. As of January 11th, 2018, the government has been shutdown for twenty-two days. This government shutdown has forced many government funded centers and organizations to close.
A whopping 800,000 employees are affected by this government shutdown. Many of these employees are put on furlough or are working without pay. Many national parks are littered with trash and graffiti. Airline safety is being affected as many TSA workers are calling in due to the lack of pay. The Food and Drug Administration lacks funds to properly check food and drugs that are being sold to consumers.
All of this chaos is surrounding one thing: the wall. President Donald Trump is seeking more than 5 billion dollars to fund a border wall between Mexico and the United States. During his campaign, Trump tried to force this hefty payment upon Mexico, but the Mexican government refused to pay for the border wall. Trump has faced backlash as many of his supporters believed that Mexico would fund the $5.7 billion wall.
President Trump’s administration now plans to declare a national emergency to receive funding for the wall. According to Merriam-Webster, a national emergency is a state of emergency resulting from a danger or threat to a nation from foreign or domestic sources. If a national emergency is declared, the wall funding would be taken out of a saved 13.9 billion dollars that is supposed to be for the Army Corps Engineers budget. That means the 13.9 billion dollars would have been going to areas that have been affected by natural disasters.
Democrats and even some Republicans oppose the idea of declaring a national emergency. The House’s Democratic leadership staff hopes to pursue a lawsuit against the Trump administration. On the topic of the national emergency, Republican Mike Simpson said, “I don’t like the idea of pulling money out of defense and military construction and the Army Corps of Engineers. That’s not a good option.”
The want for this wall comes from President Trump’s thoughts on immigration. Trump believes that illegal immigration leads to violent crime, however, according to the CATO institute, native-born citizens are more likely to commit crimes than immigrants. President Trump also believes that the construction of a border wall would stop the income of illegal drugs into the United States. According to the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency), many of these illegal drugs come in through legal ports of entry.
In all, this government shutdown may lead to no real solution. There is a chance that the wall may never even be constructed. All of the chaos due to the government shutdown may be for nothing. This is all in hopes for President Trump to “Make America Great Again”.