At a rally in Montana on November 3, Trump spoke on immigration and the security concerns of Americans. When noting the role that the military is to play on the southern border, Trump said, “Barbed wire used properly can be a beautiful thing.”
Trump is not making a case for the aesthetic beauty of barbed wire here. He is referencing something more dear to the hearts of Americans, a symbolic beauty. For the lining of barbed wire along the southern border represents a will to defend the nation, American communities, and American values.
“Women want security,” Trump acknowledged, noting why border control resonates with his base of women supporters. Americans want security. They want to know, want to see, that their governmental leaders prioritize their well-being.
“These people were vicious,” said Trump, commenting on the manner in which the current caravans broke into Mexico. “They broke through into Mexico throwing rocks,” violently forcing their illegal entrance into a sovereign nation. “They broke through. You saw it, it was on television. It was terrible.”
These migrants are “Criminals in some cases, in many cases,” Trump declared. “They hurt Mexican police, they hurt Mexican military very badly.” Reports of gunfire and the creation of Molotov cocktails highlights some of the more violent criminal acts so far. It has also been suggested that multiple MS-13 gang members are traveling north in the caravan.
Trump acknowledges how “Mexico is trying,” but suggests “We’re different. We have our military now on the border.” His rhetoric suggests that American soldiers will not allow such hostility to go unchecked on American soil.
The military is preparing to face this violent band of travelers. “I noticed all that beautiful barbed wire going up today,” Trump said. “Barbed wire used properly can be a beautiful sight.”
When it comes to setting a precedent, and protecting the nation from forceful migration, the President has a point. Barbed wire sends a message to the American people that something is being done for the sake of national security. It also sends a message to would be violent invaders, “You are not welcome here.”