William Wagner
Beds for detention facilities at the border, tooth brushes, and accountability
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By William Wagner
June 26, 2019

Editor's note: The following was written by William Wagner's son, Luke.

Stupidity and lack of accountability are two sides of a coin. That simple equation between the inane and the unaccountable applies to Democrats, Republicans, and the media. The contrapositive is also true: wisdom comes through taking responsibility for stuff. However, it is difficult to take ownership in politics. Owning a mistake requires admitting that you have fallen short and tarnishing your political reputation. The current lack of resources in detention facilities for immigrants is just such a circumstance where all parties have fundamentally failed, where there is no accountability, and where stupidity is being given free reign.

First, Democrats took no time after seeing immigrants being kept without hygiene items and sleeping space at the border to begin an attack on the president. Just months after negotiating away funding for beds at the border, Democrats are ripping the president because immigrants are being detained without beds. Cause and effect can be a tricky thing, but in this case, it's pretty clear cut.

As well, every single problem that has been reported on during the Trump administration regarding insufficient detention facilities existed under the Obama administration. It is not as though Trump came to the Whitehouse and signed a Xenophobic Manifesto that radically changed policies and practices at the border. I defy you to find the statement he signed declaring the Southern border to be a toothpaste free zone. To pretend that the problem began when an elephant replaced a donkey in the White House is ridiculous.

Much of the media does not have clean hands in this either but in a more roundabout way. Meaning, the mainstream media can continue to blame the president for the growing distrust that people have for them, but without taking accountability, it verges on the inane. Just this past week, major news stations and outlets pushed the story of a woman claiming to have been raped by the president. Her story has absolutely no corroboration and she has said all kinds of bizarre things including that she associates rape with fantasy. Meanwhile, her book detailing the sordid claims comes out next week.

The media pushed this story because it fit their pre-established narrative that the president has no respect for women. This points to a larger problem. When the media documents bad conditions at the border and assigns all blame to the president, they will not be listened to because they have already squandered their credibility on 99 other ridiculous stories in any given news cycle. Unless the media takes accountability for what they have done to damage their own credibility, things will not approve.

Finally, Republicans do not have clean hands. The government lawyer who claimed that a lack of hygiene items and a lack of beds is not a safety problem revealed a big moral issue. The lawyer may have been doing his job, trying to show how the government's actions do not violate their legal responsibilities, but it's not good. When prisoners of war are owed more than we are giving to some immigrants, illegal or otherwise, it's time for a change in policy.

Yes, the Democrats are very much responsible for this problem because they refuse to give funding where it's needed, but where is the president? If the president flew down to the border and had a press conference where he demanded that the democrats fund the beds that are needed for the detention facility, it would accomplish two things. It would be a political win, and it would be the right thing to do. Because no one is willing to be accountable for the problem, it continues, which everyone knows is absolutely stupid.

Ultimately, we should not expect the media, the Democrats, or Republicans to take responsibility for things on their own. That was never the design of our government. We the people are the ones who are supposed to keep our government officials accountable. The situation is complex at the border. Where there is complexity, there are also mistakes. Denying mistakes in the face of a complex situation is the recipe to remain in a stupid course of action. However, the contrapositive is also true: taking corrective action and moving forward is the path to wisdom. That step, for all parties involved, may just involve fearing God more than they fear men.

Luke Wagner teaches various courses at a classical Christian school. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and and Masters of Biblical Studies from the Master's University in California.

© William Wagner

 

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