US President Donald Trump repeatedly claimed he would build a wall along the US-Mexico border. However, his plans are still a long way from coming to fruition. Much of this relates to the fact that the President said he would make the Mexican government pay for the wall. The Mexican government, however, has refused to oblige. Yesterday, Trump went on a Twitter tirade to warn the Democrats of that he would shut down the government if they do not vote in favor of his wall (despite that being a far cry from making Mexico pay). Amidst this chaos, an amputee veteran has created a GoFundMe campaign called “We the People Will Fund the Wall.”
Brian Kolfage, a triple amputee who served in Iraq for the US Air Force, is behind the GoFundMe campaign. His plea raised around eleven million dollars in its first three days online. Such an immediate success has made the campaign the talk of the town. Kolfage wrote on the campaign page:
“As a veteran who has given so much, 3 limbs, I feel deeply invested to this nation to ensure future generations have everything we have today.”
Brian Kolfage claims that he has believed in the need for a border wall for a long time. He said that persistent inaction from politicians finally drove him to start a GoFundMe campaign for the cause so that sympathetic citizens could fund it themselves. Kolfage seems to be aiming for the five billion dollar mark that Trump has set. He said that if all the 63 million people who voted for Trump pledge $80, they can easily reach their mark.
“I’ve been receiving thousands of emails from citizens who have waited in line to become Americans and completed this process the legal way. They are so thankful for this. They are giving and they are from both sides of the aisle, and that’s why this movement is growing so fast.”
Kolfage is aware that the highest amount any GoFundMe campaign has raised was $22 million. This was for the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund for victims of sexual harassment in the workplace. Another notably huge amount of $3.5 million was raised for March For Our Lives. However, Kolfage is looking to surpass the one billion dollar cap on GoFundMe campaigns.
Another veteran, Charlotte Clymer, has started a hilarious new GoFundMe to counter Kolfage’s. This one is called “Ladders to Get Over Trump’s Wall.” Clymer has stated that she does not like it when people use their military service for political ends, especially ones that foster division and hatred. She is, therefore, urging people to pledge money for compassion and unity. Clymer’s campaign is also trending on GoFundMe and $30,000 in its first eighteen hours. The campaign says:
“This GoFundMe isn’t really about ladders at all. It’s about lifting people up.”
This opposing campaign is not going to invest in ladders. It is, however, aiming to donate all the money raised to RAICES, or Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services.