Donald Trump’s quest to build a border wall along the southern U.S./Mexico border has not only proven to be an impossible challenge for him, but it is now costing him voters in the south.
According to a recent interview with BuzzFeed, many people living in the southern border – conservatives and liberals alike – are against building a wall in their backyards.
Photographer Elliot Ross and writer Genevieve Allison from BuzzFeed drove around the U.S. southern border to speak with citizens about how they felt about Trump’s proposed wall.
According to the report, “Their project was born from a desire to see how people along the border felt about the increased calls for a wall from political factions elsewhere.”
“The singular most surprising thing going into this was seeing this core issue of building a wall as not this really divisive thing,” Ross admitted. “Within the national discourse it is, but once you get to the borderland and meet the people who live with the border as a part of their daily life, across the board, rather than it being a divisive issue, it’s one that brings people together in opposition. That was surprising to us.”
According to the photographer, both political parties are against Trump’s proposal.
“From far right to far left, and for different reasons,” he explained. “The Republicans have very Republican reasons: They want to avoid federal overreach — and the government coming in and taking their land, using eminent domain for the border, is the definition of federal overreach.”
Ross claimed that he and his partner did discover some people who supported the wall — but it was limited to “a handful.”
“For all the thousands of people that we met, we only met a handful who were pro-construction of the wall, and that’s something that is not really acknowledged,” he recalled, adding that the controversy over building the wall is found elsewhere where people’s daily lives won’t be disrupted. “I feel like so much of this conversation is driven when anecdotes are needed from a very few select group of people, most of whom don’t even live in the borderland.”