Dave Peyton: $10M better spent in WV, not border wall
Columnists love it when a good column idea seems to fall out of the sky, even if the idea comes from dummies.
Such is the case of the three West Virginia legislators who have proposed that the state give $10 million to President Trump for his $5 billion-plus wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
When I saw the story about this, I had to read it three or four times before it soaked in.
Imagine anyone suggesting that West Virginia, arguably the poorest, most star-crossed state in the nation, give $10 million to a wacky president who is holding hundreds of federal employees hostage while he is in the throes of a temper tantrum.
Delegates Carl “Robbie” Martin of Upshur County, Patrick Martin of Lewis County and Caleb Hanna of Webster County are behind the legislation. Remember those names. They claim they want to give the money to Trump because they believe that building the wall will slow or stop the flow of drugs into the U.S.
There are so many problems with this line of thought, it’s a pity that anyone would believe it.
First and foremost, there is the overriding law of supply and demand. Simply stated, if there is a demand for something, there will always be a supply.
The way to eliminate the overwhelming drug problem in West Virginia is to eliminate the demand. Ask Huntington Fire Chief Jan Rader about it. She’s on the right path toward elimination of illicit drugs in the state.
If West Virginia has $10 million to spare, give it to Rader and her kind who have sanity and truth on their sides.
Time and time again, the experts on the topic of drugs in America have said that nearly all of the illegal drugs arriving here come through legal ports of entry.
What we need are more people at these legal ports to monitor what’s going on. I’d say that if Trump’s wall were built, there would be no change in the amount of killer drugs coming into this country.
Besides all that, how could any sane, rational West Virginian even consider giving the federal government $10 million when we have innumerable crises in the state.
There is the foster children crisis. There is the secondary road crisis. There is the poverty crisis. There is a crisis cause by lack of good-paying jobs. Despite the recent increase in teachers’ wages, there is a continuing education crisis.
Then there is the coal crisis, perhaps the most serious state crisis of all. It is the belief among too many that “beautiful clean coal” will come back some sweet day.
Perhaps we could apply the $10 million toward psychotherapy sessions for all of them.
In the long run, I suspect there is a slim chance the $10 million or most of the $200 million surplus we currently have will be used properly. Too many politicians trying to brown-nose the people who elected them or the president.
And frankly, that’s the overwhelming problem: too many dummies.
Dave Peyton is on Facebook. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.