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The last I checked, we live in the 21st century, not the 7th century BCE when the Great Wall was built. It didn’t work so well, either. In this age we have much better ways of providing security. If we truly want to prevent a massive influx of immigrants from “south of the border,” especially from strife-ridden countries, we should be bolstering aid to enable better law enforcement and the creation of industries that provide income-producing work.

Getting past our racist immigration policies would also help. This country has a long history of racial quotas and denial of entry based on race and religion. Just ask the Irish, Jews, Chinese and Japanese, among others. Now it’s “Mexicans” and Muslims.

America has an abysmal record on our relationships with central American countries, so it’s no wonder that they are in such bad economic, political and social straits. Yes, we contributed to their devolution into narco-states by propping up despots and dictators. Nevertheless, we can overcome that history and begin to recognize and support efforts creating safe and economically viable countries in Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and throughout central America.

In the meantime, it’s up to the current regime in the White House to grow up and begin negotiations for a variety of options for securing the southern border. Temper tantrums that appeal to the 40 percent of voters who still support the regime should not dictate policy and budgetary decisions. America is better than that.

Robert B. Harris, Ph.D.

Albany (Dec. 27)

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