The Instigator
Duron
Pro (for)
Winning
30 Points
The Contender
arrivaltime
Con (against)
Losing
9 Points

The border fence.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/24/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,820 times Debate No: 955
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (13)

 

Duron

Pro

As a sovereign nation we have a strong interest in securing our borders.

Without the border fence this becomes problematic, with illegal immigrants, drug runners and terrorists crossing into America at will.
The border fence is an asset to our national security, and helps protect our culture, our citizens, and our economy.

The completion of the border fence is a national imperative.
arrivaltime

Con

To help me (because quotes bug people and I hate switching between frames), I'll list your arguments presented at the top and respond to each.

1. Without a border fence, we run the risk of allowing
a. illegal immigrants
b. drug runners
c. terrorists into America at will.

2. The border fence is an asset to our national security.

3. A fence would help protect our
a. culture
b. our citizens
c. our economy

4 The completion of the border fence is a national imperative.

In response to point 1a, illegal immigration is a completely different can of worms to open. I don't think that illegal immigration is necissarily a bad thing, and I think instead of intimidating illegal immigrants we should encourage them to apply for citizenship.

In response to point 1b, a fence will do little for drug runners. According to the New York Times, drug runners use tunnels a lot of the time so a fence wont be highly effective in elimminating this problem.

In response to point 1c, terrorists crossing the Mexican border wont be stopped by a border fence. That money should instead be spent on better security and research on more effective ways to keep terrorists out.

In response to point 2, I agree that the threat of terrorism and drug trafficing is a threat to our national security, but I maintain that a fence will not help either of these causes. Drug runners will go through tunnels and terrorists will find other ways as well, so the better option is to have more security at the border. The fence will not help our relationship with Mexico, and as their neighbor its important that we maintain this relationship.

In response to point 3a, I am sure my opponent will agree that America's culture will not be threatened. America is a melting pot and many Americans celebrate the diversity in our nation. Allowing illegal immigrants into the nation does not hurt our culture, it strengthens it! The only hurting is the resentment many citizens feel towards these immigrants, but were we to make becoming a temporary citizen less difficult, this could be improved.

In response to point 3b, our citizens are only harmed if the terrorists are getting through. This is why a fence is a bad idea, because a fence can be overcome much easier than security.

In response to point 3c, what will our economy be hurt by? I imagine this is referring to illegal immigrants, but they will spend a lot of the money they make. Illegal immigrants will eat food in America, buy clothes in America, rent in America...they will be putting their money back into the economy. As far as taxes go, again this would be improved (not rectified I grant you) if we were more lax with temporary citizenship in America.

In response to point 4, I feel that it is NOT a national imperative because it will hurt our relationship with Central America and increase the negativity many Americans feel about the Hispanic culture in America. Instead of spending money on a border fence, we should spend it on increasing security at the border.
Debate Round No. 1
Duron

Pro

My counter responses are as follows:

1a: When it comes to illegal immigration what can I say, its illegal. Encouraging it would promote disregard for American law, if they don’t respect American law, why should we let them in? Furthermore it would make a mockery of every immigrant who comes here legally.

1b: As the drug tunnel near Lynden Washington demonstrated so handily, the border patrol’s sensing equipment is quite capable of detecting such laughable attempts to bypass our border security. They were detected months before completion of the tunnel. Such equipment would be a natural supplement to the fence.

1c: No one method will stop 100% of the terrorists, do you suggest that anything that is not completely effective at halting terrorism on its own should be discounted? The border is still the easiest way for terrorist groups to enter our country.

2: Every nation has the right to secure it borders, like it or not, that includes us and that takes precedent over appeasing a corrupt Mexican government. Of course they would be upset, the drug lords bring a lot of money into the country, some of that money greases palms in their government, That’s not something I want to support, do you?

3a: Over the course of American history our culture has benefited from outside influences as immigrants brought element of their culture even as their took on our own. That’s the melting pot at its best. However many of the illegal immigrant have no intention of melting in, they want to keep their culture and language, and are loathe to blend into the general population.
Even President Clinton spoke of it,
“Ethnic pride is a very good thing. America is one of the places which most reveres the distinctive ethnic, racial, religious heritage of our various peoples. The days when immigrants felt compelled to Anglicize their last name or deny their heritage are, thankfully, gone. But pride in one's ethnic and racial heritage must never become an excuse to withdraw from the larger American community. That does not honor diversity; it breeds divisiveness. And that could weaken America.”
And for once, he was right.

3b: No one would expect the fence to run itself; it is a tool and not a replacement for our border guards.

3c: On this I agree in part, they work and spend here. However they often send money home and out of the country.
Secondly they receive services from the government but pay no taxes, unbalancing the system. I would consider that an economic problem. Immigrants who come to contribute to the economy are welcome; those who come for handouts are not.

4: The fence is by definition, increased security at the border. It is not a total solution, but should be implemented as part of a wider reinforcement of border security.
The negativity you refer to is often a result of the problems mentioned above, and would probably decrease if they flood of illegal immigrants stopped crossing the border and giving our many outstanding Hispanic citizens a bad name.
arrivaltime

Con

1a. Which is exactly why we should make it easier for immigrants to get temporary visas and become citizens.

1b. I wouldn't call the tunnels laughable; though the boarder patrol comes up on them often, many tunnels have been in existence for a long time or were before they were stopped. Increasing boarder patrol is much more important than putting up a fence.

1c. I agree that the boarder is the easiest way to enter, but I also think that a fence is the least effective way of stopping terrorists from entering. It's just a wall that will become exactly like the Berlin wall, doing much more harm than good.

2: I am not debating over Mexico's government, but the relationship between the two nations. It is important as Mexico is directly below us to at least maintain a decent relationship, and a fence WOULD NOT help.

3a. I don't agree with you on what illegal immigrants want. In St. Louis, we have a lot of illegal immigrants and I have met many of them when I worked for a local clinic as a translator and also a Mexican grill; these immigrants struggled to fit in and embraced the English language, however the English language is one of the most difficult to learn and so they were very slow going at it. The belief that illigal immigrants have no interest in melting into the States is exactly what I meant about a boarder increasing negative connotations; while some immigrants may be resistant, the majority are not and try to work with Americans to melt in-- its the Americans that resist them by being prejudice against the Hispanics.

3b. Yes, but I feel the issue is a lacking number of guards who are professionally trained. There are too many vigilantes taking action when it should be the boarder control.

3c. Immigrants sending money home should not be a huge derailment to our society if they are still spending money on themselves in America.

4: I believe the fence would only make a lot of people angry and increase violence at the border.

The negativity towards illegal immigrants is entirely in the heads of those who don't understand the reasons people try to come into America and eventually are forced to enter illegally. Immigrants come as a refuge from their countries, to escape poverty, or to be with their families. While I am not advocated illigal immigration, I still hold that the government should revamp its laws about immigration and the people should encourage illegal immigrants to become citizens, rather than refer to them as violent criminals or "bad" Hispanics.
Debate Round No. 2
Duron

Pro

1a: Worker visas could lead to a sort of second-class citizen, and I don’t think any decent person would want that.
I do however agree that a streamlining of the immigration process is a good idea.

1b: I favor both the fence and an increased number of border guards, a comprehensive approach to the border.

1c: The Berlin wall was to keep people in as an act of oppression. The border fence is simply the front line in our security measures. And should be patrolled by an ample security force with full government backing to uphold the law.

2:As I stated before we have a national right to secure our border, so does Mexico. And they have no grounds for complaint if we decide to exercise our national right.

3a: I didn’t say all illegal immigrants are resistant to assimilation. However more of them by are resistant then say the German immigrants of the 1800s, or the legal Mexicans of today.

3b: They are only vigilantes if they take direct action; otherwise they are simply doing their civic duty. I do not condone private citizen taking direct action against illegal aliens that is the job of the border guards.

3c: Perhaps, but that does not excuse them from paying taxes just like everyone else. If they want to send the money fine, but they have to contribute like the good citizens they claim to be.

4:A fence separating Mexico from the US, would keep (Would be) be illegal aliens on their side and away from any possible violence on the north.

People have come to America from numerous backgrounds, many of them cruel and oppressive, but they did it the right way, and our southern neighbors should follow their example. Yes the immigration laws could stand a good revamping, but they are (for better or worse) the law of the land and immigrants can demonstrate their respect for their new country by following them.
arrivaltime

Con

1b & 2: I understand your argument, however I still feel it would put even more unnecessary tension on the relationship if a wall was built. We do have the right but I do not believe we should excersize it.

1c: The intention of the wall may be for good but I believe it would be seen as oppressive, just as the Berlin Wall was. I think it would just make a lot of people angry on both sides, as instead of being seen as a security measure it would be seen as an oppressive force, a barrier, or a cage.

3a: Though more may be seen as resistant, the number is still very small. Many immigrants come here and are resistant to melt in to America, especially Uzbekis and other Middle Easterners. I do not think the portion of Hispanics is unequal to the portion of other immigrating countries; but again, we have gone off topic! Immigration is not the issue, the fence is.

3b: I agree completely. Vigilantes do not help when taking direct action, which is why we need properly trained border patrolmen. The cost, however, would be very high between training, wages, and upkeep of the fence-- I think building such a fence and hiring all the security is unnecessary compared to other things we should be spending our money on.

3c: Yes, they should, and if the government realized how much these millions of people could be contributing in taxes, maybe they would be a bit lax on their at least temporary citizenship requirements and let these people work here and pay taxes like a normal citizen.

4: Only would-be illegal Mexican immigrants from crossing at that border-- there is still the problem of boating, which is how many Guatemalans get into the Midwest.

I feel that the border fence, despite the intentions, would only be seen as an oppressive force to people. In general, nobody likes to be kept out. Mexico would view it as a blow to them, Mexicans would view it as our government being oppressive, and it wouldn't stop drug runners from tunnelings, terrorists or illegal immigrants from boating here, and it wouldn't help our country's foreign relations at all. We continue to mutilate our foreign relations and making our neighbors angry is a very bad idea. We should not spend so much money on this fence and its upkeep which will have only negative connotations, and instead we should look for a way to encourage illegal immigrants to become citizens and increase jobs by giving more job to border patrol men.
Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Quadrunner 1 year ago
Quadrunner
I was very surprised there was no cost vs return vs savings analysis in this debate.

I would vote for Duron if I could, and I am against the fence. Didn't sway me, but he/she did provide evidence for being right, and successfully defended it. Good job.

Arrivaltime's argument was weakened by the fact that they mainly argued that a better immigration system would curtail illegal immigration without the fence, which would obviously be done in conjunction with border security whether we have a wall or not. I felt it got off the topic of the border fence being an asset to the nation worth building and there was little evidence to back the con's claims. I personally didn't buy into the argument that the wall would offend anyone, or increase tensions, and there was little else said against it. The cost of the wall vs benefit turned out to be a loss for the con as well with the Pro bringing National Security up with no rebuttal.
Posted by griffinisright 9 years ago
griffinisright
I voted for, Duron because I believe his argument carried more weight. Good job PRO!
Posted by mv 9 years ago
mv
illegal immigration isn't a good thing when you're paying for them to use our social services, our roads and medical systems and paying for them to go to school so some of them can just turn around and create uneeded crime (as if we don't have enough). and then on top of that grant amnesty. i am opposed to a border fence though. i have a feeling that over time it's gonna keep us in more than keep people out. solution? enforce visa rules. immigration officials must track visa holders and deport anyone who overstays their visa or of course violates american law. this is obviously an important issue when we look back and realize that a number of 9/11 terrorists had expired visas. don't provide welfare for illegals. end birthright citizenship because as long as illegal immigrants know their children born here will become american citizens, their incentive to enter the u.s. illegally will remain strong. anyway, the debate was for or against a border fence so i voted for the con.

and i agree with duron, i like your organization. it's something i lack.
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
Thank you, I enjoyed the debate a lot. I appreciate your not attacking me and hopefully you don't feel I attacked you either! It was a fun debate :).
Posted by Duron 9 years ago
Duron
Thank you, I enjoyed debating with you. Your arguments were well organized, and I hope to learn from your presentation style.
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
hey thanks for voting on the debate rather than your opinion there, yeah
Posted by das_kapitel 9 years ago
das_kapitel
Duron, I agree with you completely. If we do not do something about the people coming across our border, the respect for American law will be lost. We need to build a fence, increase security, and keep a database of all non-citizens in this country.
13 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by raptor10 9 years ago
raptor10
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by confines_of_gravity 9 years ago
confines_of_gravity
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by griffinisright 9 years ago
griffinisright
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by mv 9 years ago
mv
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by kels1123 9 years ago
kels1123
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by SnoopyDaniels 9 years ago
SnoopyDaniels
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by bizzyjudy 9 years ago
bizzyjudy
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by shwayze 9 years ago
shwayze
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by j00b4g3l 9 years ago
j00b4g3l
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by das_kapitel 9 years ago
das_kapitel
DuronarrivaltimeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30