Weatherford Democrat

March 14, 2013

Letter to the Editor - March 14, 2013

Weatherford Democrat

Physical barriers are a waste of time, money

Dear Editor,

The proposed immigration bill has one part that is, in the words of one famous World War II general, a monument to the stupidity of men. The building of walls to keep people in or out has failed throughout human history.

Two thousand years ago, the Chinese built the largest manmade structure in history to keep northern barbarians out of China. The building cost thousands of lives and absorbed almost all of the national wealth of generations. The emperor did not plan for the incredible cost of manning and maintaining the wall after completion. The Wall was breached within a hundred years and stands to this day as a symbol of human arrogance.

Hundreds of years later, the great Roman Empire built Hadian’s Wall across Great Britain for exactly the same reason as the Chinese. Again, the expense of manning and maintaining the wall caused abandonment.

In modern times, Russia built the infamous Berlin Wall between East and West Germany, this time to keep people inside East Germany. The flow of immigrants simply went around, under or over the wall. You can buy pieces of their wall today for a few dollars.

The only thing that has slowed the flow of Mexicans into the United States is the Great Recession and the lack of jobs. The so-called electronic wall costs billions of dollars never worked and had no detectable impact on illegal immigration. It has provided Mexican children a source for TV cameras, sensors and copper wire.

The pity is every informed American knows physical barriers are a great waste of time, labor and money. If we really want to control immigration, then control and regulate the access to jobs. Create a guest worker program that does not necessarily lead to citizenship. Require every resident of this country possess a difficult to counterfeit national ID card. Let each citizen choose how much information is contained in each card above name, address, picture, thumbprint, or retinal scan and citizenship status.

Personally, I would love to have a card that carried my medical history, credit rating and passport information. However, each holder should be able to choose what information is included. It would be easy to control access to this information by limiting card scanners to only the portion authorized by the holder.

I am sure there are electronic capabilities of which I am not aware. But just think of one small card that could replace drivers licenses, voter registration, medical records, prescription lists, passports, credit cards, game licenses and many more items. Each card could carry one or more of the masses of information we need in a modern society.


Dennis Tilly, Weatherford