It's only been one month into the new year, but the feeling of newness and excitement has more than faded away for much of us. I'm not even sure I can accurately sum up the events of the past few weeks — something even more grim happens every day. Recently, though, President Trump has signed executive orders that will severely limit the number of refugees and immigrants that are accepted into the US. The explanation behind this, and other conservative legal actions, is that we need to put our own country first. Focus on ourselves first, and then....well, the claim never really gets beyond that. But we have enough problems, right? We're putting our own people first.
To everyone who thinks that denying others will make us safe, think about this: If you really think it's the right decision to #BuildThatWall, then fine. But don't expect to keep on traveling freely into everyone else's countries. That would be selfish, presumptuous, and oh-so-stereotypically American. So, that whole closing our borders thing? That means no more summer trips to Europe. No more nice vacations at Niagara Falls, and definitely no more wild spring breaks in Tijuana. Sorry, college kids — America first, partying later. Ditto for all those amazing study abroad opportunities — I'm sorry, you wanted to volunteer in a different country to pad your resume? Having a semester at sea in the Mediterranean doesn't sound like "putting America first" to me.
It's only fair, after all — we won't even let a poor immigrant come to the US, all for the glimmer of a chance to work a grueling minimum wage job and maybe support their family. Hey, if we won't even let refugees with children find safety from terrorism in our country, then it would just be silly to let Americans go to tourist traps in Dubai. You can't have one and not the other! Aw, is it gonna be hard if those Mexican Cokes you like so much get way more expensive? Or if all your undocumented employees who were picking fruit for cheap get deported? You asked for a wall. Now we're getting one. Let's see how far we make it before we realize that you always, always reap what you sow.