October 14

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“The Great Wall of Foolishness”

Here is a fantastic article by Toronto Star writer Alfred Holden. Inspired by recent news that the United States is mulling the idea of erecting fencing along its border with Canada, Holden takes on the folly of walls in general.

Here is my favourite bit:

But the bigger picture — the tide of history — is another matter. The globe is littered with walls whose names now evoke ridicule and failure. Again and again, the fullness of time has revealed that larger, insurmountable forces were behind the migration or conflict that the walls were supposed to control, and couldn’t. There has also been the reality, through the ages, that physical barriers are more visual cues and mental concepts than effective stoppers. All along, notwithstanding the huge cost and formidable infrastructure, there have been bribable sentries, ladders, tunnels, and freeze-thaw cycles that turn stone to dust.

The full story can be found here.

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