If you thought that the fall of the Berlin Wall almost three decades ago was a sign that the world was finally starting to say goodbye to oppressive walls, there's bad news. US President Donald Trump has signed executive orders for a wall to be built along the US-Mexico border - and insisted that Mexico will pay entirely for the project. A former Mexican president has reacted in pretty epic fashion...
— Vicente Fox Quesada (@VicenteFoxQue) 25 January 2017
That's the same Vicente Fox Quesada who was President of Mexico between 2000 and 2006. Considering that he has been one of Trump's most outspoken critics, particularly on Twitter, it's hardly surprising that he has reacted with disgruntlement to the insistence of the POTUS and White House spokesperson Sean Spicer that Mexico will reimburse the US for the wall's cost.
While many social media users have applauded Fox for hitting out at Trump in this manner, many expressed particular admiration of his choice of hashtag: #FuckingWall. It's not the kind of language you would usually expect an ex-President to use, and tweeters certainly ran with it.
A run-down of commentary on Twitter
Both Fox's stance and the hashtag itself attracted praise.
— Nadia Khomami (@nadiakhomami) 25 January 2017
— Shauna Richardson (@ShaunaRRichards) 25 January 2017
Even Fox's swearing could be excused... as, indeed, was made clear by the huge number of people who started using the hastag #FuckingWall. You'll see plenty more examples of them in this article.
I normally **** out swearing words. But if they president of Mexico started it, that's good enough for me. #FuckingWall
— Georgie Bingham (@georgiebingham) 25 January 2017
The hashtag even provoked remarks from tweeters in other countries. The first of the two tweets below says, in French, that "Mexico is slightly pissed". Presumably, they meant to use the American word for being angry, rather than suggest that Fox is drunk. The second of these tweets suggests, in Spanish, that there should be "a T-shirt that says, 'I won't pay for the #FuckingWall'."
— Amandine Rebourg (@Amandiine) 25 January 2017
Una playera que diga "Yo no pagaré el #FuckingWall".
— Bruno Darks (@MascaraDeLatex) 25 January 2017
Of course, many people reacted with the serious political point that construction of the wall could drain millions of taxpayers' dollars that could be better spent on other things.
Not on my tax dollars! I'd rather build a million bouncy castles in public parks than a #FuckingWall
— Andrea McGuire (@AndreaDuus) 25 January 2017
Millions of tax payer dollars are potentially going into a wall. Not health care not education but a #FuckingWall
— Andrew (@ApH_Productions) 25 January 2017
Also noted was the example of the aforementioned Berlin Wall and its negative repercussions.
East Germany had a wall too, that worked out well. No #FuckingWall
— Jeff Davault (@JeffDavault) January 26, 2017
As a person from East Germany who knows what it means to live behind a wall, I shout out: #FuckingWall.
Brave Americans & Mexicans: Resist!
— Julian Röpcke (@JulianRoepcke) January 25, 2017
However, many people couldn't resist a bit of humour. Well, it's a hashtag that in isolation, looks funny... but only in isolation. Trump has said that construction of the wall is expected to start in a few months - but what will it be made of? Here's one idea...
— Asimetrio (@malsimetrio) January 25, 2017
There were also some people who recognised the comedic value of puns on the phrase #FuckingWall. Just notice how some of your favourite songs, provided that each of them has at least one word that rhymes with "wall", show an entirely different character when you manage to crowbar #FuckingWall into their lyrics. Here are just two examples.
— Steve E. (@SFranchiseEsq) 25 January 2017
— Julia Pugachevsky (@jaypugz) 25 January 2017
However, let's stop for a moment and think about what precedents both the phrase and the wall itself could set. There could be implications for every single household, and perhaps not just in America. Just look at the idea that the #FuckingWall has already given this woman.
Gonna build a #FuckingWall around my lounge to keep my kids out when they should be in bed & make them pay for it out of their pocket money
— DG (@Donna_Gallers) 25 January 2017
Anyway, it looks like that former Mexican president has coined a new term more successfully than even he had probably predicted. We can see the term #FuckingWall persisting for a while - maybe it will even make it into history books a few decades from now?
So it's not a Great Wall, it's a #FuckingWall. Trump has been out-Trumped.
— (((FrancesCoppola))) (@Frances_Coppola) 25 January 2017