Trump Reiterates Demand for Border Wall Amid Strong Protests

Video Editor: Ashutosh Bharadwaj

Several hundred protesters chanted slogans and waved signs opposing the building of the wall next to the South Texas airport where US President Donald Trump arrived for his trip to the border.

This comes a couple of days after Trump used a prime-time address on Tuesday, 9 January, to convince Americans that he needs billions of dollars from Congress for his long-promised border wall. Speaking from the Oval Office, he said there was a "growing humanitarian and security crisis" at the US-Mexico border, and that all Americans were hurt by uncontrolled illegal immigration.

"“My fellow Americans, tonight I am speaking to you because there is a growing humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border. My administration has presented Congress with a detailed proposal to secure the border and stop the criminal gangs, drug smugglers and human traffickers. As part of an overall approach to border security, law enforcement professionals have requested 5.7 billion dollars for a physical barrier.”" - Donald Trump, US President‘Hey Hey, Ho Ho, Donald Trump Has Got to Go’

Demonstrators held signs reading "Oppose Trump's Wall," and "Impeach #45" and even inflated a Trump-baby blimp. Protesters insisted that they don't need more security, what they need is due process and more of a humanitarian solution.

"“I do believe we have a national security crisis but I believe that it’s within our walls not outside. I believe that mental health is really where these billions of dollars should be spent, on mental health and education to help the people that are here and accept the people who are coming from struggles and hardships into our country. I don’t believe billions should be spent on a wall.”" - Gabrielle Hernandez, Protester‘Hope Trump Gets the Money. We Need a Wall Right Here’

Amid protests against the wall, a smaller group of protesters shouted back, chanting, "Build that wall!"

Eva Arechiga wore a red "Make America Great Again" sign, and held a placard that says "Finish the Wall." A 54-year-old resident of McAllen, Arechiga said she wanted to welcome Trump and thank him for working to stop illegal immigration into the US.

"“There is a crisis. The crisis is that when they arrive here illegally they cannot get jobs, they don’t even have a working visa. So immediately they fall into working for the drug cartel or they’ll go into prostitution or human trafficking. The schools are packed with illegals. We don’t even know if they’re vaccinated. So there is a crisis. There is a crisis.”" - Eva Arechiga, Supporter‘Trump Trying to Create Fear and Hatred in Our Country’

Independent Senator from Vermont and potential 2020 Democratic presidential contender, Bernie Sanders delivered a scathing response to President Donald Trump's address to the nation, saying "President Trump lies all of the time," and that his prime time remarks were just the latest example.

"“Sadly, what President Trump is trying to do is to create fear and hatred in our country. Instead of trying to bring us together as people, he is trying to divide us up. And, in the process, divert our attention away from the real crises facing the working families of this nation. We don’t need to create artificial crises. We have enough real ones. Let us end this shutdown and bring the American people together around an agenda that will improve life for all of our people." - Bernie Sanders, Vermont Senator

(With inputs from AP)

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