Opponents of US President Donald Trump's initiative to build a wall on the US-Mexico border to stop migrants from entering the country illegally have started their own fundraiser in response to another one created by supporters to raise money to build the barrier.
The fundraiser is called simply "Ladders to Get Over Trump's Wall," and is being advertised as a silly solution: if the US builds its wall, just give migrants ladders to climb over it. But that's not really where the money will go.
In actuality, the fundraiser will send money to RAICES, a Texas legal service that specializes on assisting migrants with the immigration process. Justifying the name of their fundraiser, the organizers say they view RAICES' legal services as metaphorical "ladders."
The organizers, however, claim that "they [We The People] will never reach their goal," citing an estimation that, at a rate of $1.7 million per day, it will take 35 years to raise the $21.7 billion to finance the entire project. "We the People," of course, only aims to make $1 billion, the maximum allowed by online fundraising platform GoFundMe.
"No matter how much we raise, we're going to reach ours," say "Ladders" organizers. "Supporting an organization working to help immigrants seeking legal asylum. This GoFundMe isn't really about ladders at all. It's about lifting people up."
Charlotte Clymer, an activist at the Human Rights Campaign, who started the campaign, told reporters she finds discussions about the wall "incredibly concerning."
"The wall is wholly absurd, and the folks supporting it are doing so for the worst reasons," she said. "We need to reject white supremacy in our country."
The US government is facing a shutdown over the issue of funding the wall. Trump wants $5.7 billion for the project, but a budget bill designed to keep the government running until February that passed the US Senate did not contain those funds. A bill passed by the House of Representatives did, but would not pass the upper chamber, Democratic leaders say.