To those who oppose President Trump’s declaration of a national emergency to build more border wall, the president and his supporters are racist, heartless opportunists who are merely appealing to bigotry and ignorance for political purposes.

To those who support building more barriers and cracking down harder, the verbal and statistical gymnastics in which many engage to play down the problems caused by our porous southern border are just plain bewildering.

Cable news networks, radio talk shows and bloggers have been quick to adopt predictable narratives on the subject. The liberal outlets highlight heart-rending stories of families trying to reach U.S. soil for a better life or to escape violence or political persecution.