Government Shutdowns: What It Means And Why Does It Happen
Start writing a post

Government Shutdowns: What It Means And Why Does It Happen

Closed for business.

Government Shutdowns: What It Means And Why Does It Happen

"We need to build that wall real quick." My dad's friend asserted. Turning around, I glared at her, irritated that she decided to use politics as a conversation topic. Ignoring my glare she continued, "We have to keep those immigrants out. Protecting Americans should be our priority—not giving out freebies to border jumpers." I started to say something. I wanted to argue. To protest her ignorance with statistics. But my dad gave me a warning look and I knew it was better to shut up now rather than hear the lecture later.

President Trump feels just as strongly about the border wall as my dad's friend does. During his campaign, he expressed his desire for Mexico to pay for a wall on the U.S. Mexico border with the hopes of keeping immigrants out. Nearly two years in office later, the wall still has not been built and President Trump is furious. He has threatened to shutdown the government if Congress won't fork out $5 billion for the border wall's construction. So far, the funding has been approved through the House of Representatives so that a shutdown may be avoided. But the Senate also needs to approve the funding. If not, according to President Trump, a shutdown will occur.

A government shutdown occurs when Congress needs to submit a federal budget but can't agree on its contents (what to spend, how much to spend, etc.). Since 1976, the government has shutdown a total of 20 times. Three of those times have been in the past five years. The government may shut down again this year because Congress can't agree on whether or not President Trump should be given $5 billion to help build the border wall.

Is the shutdown even worth it? If the government shuts down, more than 420,000 federal workers will go without pay. Federally funded attractions like museums and zoos will also be shut down. And what about the wall's effectiveness? According to a Stanford University study, if the wall is built it will reduce the flow of illegal immigrants by 0.6%. But it will cost $8 billion to $67 billion to build—all thanks to taxpaying Americans. Would Americans be willing to pay that much for a wall when some of us gripe about forking out taxes to fix highways?

Are there more cost effective ways that will reduce illegal immigration and have a higher success rate? Yes, and the answer lies in economics. One of the many reasons why illegal immigrants come to the U.S. is for higher wages. But, if costs of trade between the U.S. and Mexico continue to be at low levels, this leads to higher wages for both U.S. and Mexican citizens. NAFTA, a free trade agreement between the U.S., Mexico, and Canada in the 1990s, helped to ensure that costs of trade between the countries of North America remained low. This tradition has continued with the installment of the U.S., Mexico, and Canada Agreement (USMCA), a free trade agreement replacing NAFTA.

While free trade helps, it does not address the root of budgetary issues: the fact that Congressional members refuse to agree with one another. As one of my business professors once said, the key to negotiation is compromise. Even if both sides don't get 100% of what they wanted, at least things still get done. As a citizen of the United States, it is not the border wall that worries me. What worries me is the divisiveness that is still evident in our government. What kind of message does this send to the people in the U.S. and the world? As the new year approaches, I can only hope that the message is one of productivity and change.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Content Inspiration

Top Response Articles of This Week

Kick off spring with these top reads from our creators!

Hand writing in a notepad

Welcome to a new week at Odyssey! The warmer weather has our creators feeling inspired, and they're here with some inspiration to get your Monday going. Here are the top three articles of last week:

Keep Reading... Show less

No Sex And Upstate New York

A modern-day reincarnation of Carrie Bradshaw's classic column


Around the age of 12, when I was deciding whether or not to be gay, Satan appeared on my left shoulder. “Ramsssey,” he said with that telltale lisp. “Come over to our side. We have crazy partiessss.” He made a strong case, bouncing up and down on my shoulder with six-pack abs and form-fitting Calvin Kleins. An angel popped up on the other shoulder and was going to warn me about something, but Satan interrupted- “Shut up, you crusty-ass bitch!’ The angel was pretty crusty. She disappeared, and from that moment forward I was gay.

Keep Reading... Show less

To The Classes That Follow

I want you to want to make the most of the years that are prior to Senior year

To The Classes That Follow
Senior Year Is Here And I Am So Not Ready For It

I was you not that long ago. I was once an eager freshman, a searching sophomore, and a know-it-all junior. Now? Now I am a risk taker. Not the type that gets you in trouble with your parents, but the type that changes your future. Senior year is exciting. A lot of awesome things come along with being the top-dog of the school, but you, right now, are building the foundation for the next 4 years that you will spend in high school. I know you've heard it all. "Get involved", "You'll regret not going to prom", "You're going to miss this". As redundant as these seem, they're true. Although I am just at the beginning of my senior year, I am realizing how many lasts I am encountering.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Power Of Prayer Saved My Best Friend's Life

At the end of the day, there is something out there bigger than all of us, and to me, that is the power of prayer.

Julie Derrer

Imagine this:

Keep Reading... Show less

Why Driving Drives Me Crazy

the highways are home


With Halloween quickly approaching, I have been talking to coworkers about what scares us. There are always the obvious things like clowns, spiders, heights, etc. But me? There are a number things I don't like: trusting strangers, being yelled at, being in life or death situations, parallel parking. All of these are included when you get behind the wheel of a car.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments