Pink custom-built seesaws have been placed on both sides of a slatted steel border fence that separates the United States and Mexico so that children from both the countries can play together.
A set of fluorescent pink seesaws have been built across the US-Mexico border by a couple of professors seeking to bring a playful concept of unity to both the sides of the divide. CNN reported that one side of the seesaw lies in Sunland Park, New Mexico and the other in Anapra, Mexico.
Ronald Rael, a professor of architecture at the University of California, Berkeley, and Virginia San Fratello, an associate professor of design at San José State University are the ones who came up with this idea. UC-Berkeley said that the two professors designed a concept for a binational seesaw at the border for a book called 'Borderwall as Architecture: A Manifesto for the U.S.-Mexico Boundary', back in 2009, which uses "humor and inventiveness to address the futility of building barriers." And now, ten years later, their conceptual drawings have become a reality. Rael and his crew transported the seesaws to Sunland Park, New Mexico, separated by a steel fence from Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.
Artists installed seesaws at the border wall so that kids in the U.S. and Mexico could play together. It was designed by architect Ronald Rael. — Mauricio Martínez (@martinezmau) July 30, 2019
Beautiful reminder that we are connected: what happens on one side impacts the other.
🇲🇽 ❤️ 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/vSpfxhtvkX
Professor Rael's Instagram post which revealed the picture of 3 pink see-saws on the Southern border of New Mexico has garnered over a hundred thousand likes and has received thousands of comments. Ronald wrote on the post, “One of the most incredible experiences of my and Virginia San Fratello’s career [is] bringing to life the conceptual drawings of the Teeter-Totter Wall from 2009 in an event filled with joy, excitement, and togetherness at the borderwall."
"The wall became a literal fulcrum for U.S. – Mexico relations and children and adults were connected in meaningful ways on both sides with the recognition that the actions that take place on one side have a direct consequence on the other side. Amazing thanks to everyone who made this event possible like Omar Rios [CHOPEkE Collective] for collaborating with us, the guys at Taller Herrería in Ciudad Juárez for their fine craftsmanship, Ana Teresa Fernández for encouragement and support, and everyone who showed up on both sides including the beautiful families from Colonia Anapra, and Kerry Doyle, Kate Green, Ersela Kripa, Stephen Mueller, Juancarlos Reyes, Chris Gauthier and many others (you know who you are),” he added.
CNN also confirmed that Sunland Park, New Mexico is also where a private group built its own border wall using millions of dollars raised in a GoFundMe campaign. The militia also detained migrants in this town earlier this year. The University of California published an official statement where they said that people from both sides of the border came together to play in a "unifying act".
They also reported that the people on the Mexico side had no idea that this was going to happen. Videos of the seesaws went viral and started acquiring thousands of views after one was posted on Twitter by Mexican actor Mauricio Martinez.
“What is done on one side has an impact on the other, and that is what a seesaw does.”— DW News (@dwnews) July 30, 2019
The seesaws were built across the US-Mexico border so children from the two sides can connect despite the barriers. pic.twitter.com/gYSGKJyR28
Based on a U.S. Department of Homeland Security internal report seen by Reuters that was published last year, President Donald Trump's “wall” along the U.S.-Mexico border would be a series of fences and walls that would cost as much as $21.6 billion and take more than three years to construct.
Mexico–United States border extends 1,954 miles, in addition to the maritime boundaries of 18 miles in the Pacific Ocean and 12 miles in the Gulf of Mexico. This "seesaw" initiative by the UC-Berkley professors comes amid America’s highly-debated stance on immigration, including how best to handle the many people who arrive at the southern border seeking new lives in the U.S.
The book is called Borderwall as Architecture. The seesaw is modelled in there, as well as essays + ideas on border walls in history & future; protests, solutions, concepts. On the right is Rael yesterday. pic.twitter.com/58UfLkZOTD— Hannah Jane Parkinson (@ladyhaja) July 30, 2019
One day these kids will tear down these walls— MaKin (@KiarKini) July 30, 2019