AP NEWS

Ron Jackson: No, Mr. President, there is no Santa Claus

February 18, 2019

A second federal government shutdown has been avoided.

Millions of government employees — essential and nonessential — will not have to suffer needlessly being used as political pawns in our governmental chess match.

That is the good news to come out of Washington this week.

The bad news is the rest of America has to come to the realization of what most of us knew two years ago.

If you are one of the proverbial 30 percent who fell for the false promise of a southern border wall, now is the time to accept reality. There is not going to be any wall. There is not going to be any big, impenetrable, beautiful, strong, concrete structure.

By age 10, most of us had learned and accepted the real deal about Santa Claus.

We knew moms, dad, aunts, grandparents, good citizens and The Salvation Army were the real Santas. Of course, we all knew some well-meaning folks who held on too long to the hope the big man in the red suit was real. However, being good folks, we let them believe it, regardless of their biological age.

The southern border wall as promised is a lot like Santa Claus.

It was visually presented as something wonderful, necessary and beneficial to all. It was going to bring comfort and joy. And the one most important benefit of believing any of that was that it was going to be a gift.

Yeah, no cost to you. More free stuff.

Now, who would not fall for that, especially if you are in the early stages of mental development.

It is time to say, I told you so.

There is not going to be a wall.

Mexico never was going to pay for it.

No realignment of trade deals with our northern and southern neighbors was ever going to generate enough money to fund the wall.

Congress never was going to budget enough funds to pay for it.

Creating a false national crisis is not going to pay for it.

Finally, the majority of both congressional bodies agree.

In the words of former President George H.W. Bush, “it wouldn’t be prudent.”

As good citizens, friends and, maybe, even family, it now is our imminent duty to tell the painful truth to those who still might be clinging to false hope.

Be gentle.

Be understanding.

Be nonjudgmental.

Although many of those lingering believers might be decades or a half-century beyond their 10th birthday, recall when you first learned the painful truth about Santa Claus. The truth is not always easy to embrace.

Begin by telling them facts.

Tell them that in 2018, just more than 400,000 illegal immigrants were apprehended trying to enter the country.

Explain very slowly that is the best or lowest apprehension numbers since 1970 when they were wee little whippersnappers.

Tell them to compare those numbers to 1986 and 2000, when illegal immigrant apprehensions were 1.68 million and 1.67 million, respectively.

Tell, them something already is working effectively.

Be warned. Even when facts are readily available, some folks still won’t believe you. There is too much to the contrary on the World Wide Web and television everyday. It’s like asking them to not believe in Santa Claus when he’s on television commercials every year.

If we take into consideration the number of adult-age people who actually thought a wall would be built or still think its necessary, it reaffirms one of our greatest and real national emergency issues, mental health.

I’m not saying that if you believe a wall will be built along our southern border or is even necessary that you might have a mental issue. I am not credentialed to state that.

But, I admit, I have thought it.

Valentine’s Day was about being sweet to your special one. Now it’s time to be real and honest to everyone.