One of the first major controversial issues to emerge at the start of Donald Trump’s Presidential campaign was his promise to build a wall at the border between the United States and Mexico and force Mexicans to pay for it.
But this wasn’t the first time the GOP Presidential nominee had been referenced in relation to an area of land being walled off, although the first was much smaller and the wall was to allow more raucous activity to be engaged in without fear of the law, not to keep people from emigrating there.
Las Vegas (Hills of Donegal) was a massive hit for the Irish folk rock band Goats Don’t Shave in 1992, and, thanks to its resurgence throughout the 2000s, there's a good chance you'll hear it in an Irish bar somewhere/anywhere in the world today. It still gets the crowd pumped up.
Covered by everybody from The Dubliners to The Saw Doctors, the song speaks of how the singer would love to turn County Donegal into the “Las Vegas” gambling hub of Ireland, walling it off from the rest of the country so as to legalize the likes of casinos and chicken ranches.
The chorus from the original Goats Don’t Shave version:
“And if I could I'd build a wall around old Donegal
The north and south to keep them out, by God I'd build it tall
Casinos, chicken ranches, I'd legalize them all
We'd have our own Las Vegas, in the hills of Donegal
Yeah, Las Vegas, in the hills of Donegal."
People from model Brigitte Nielsen to boxer Mike Tyson are referenced but it’s the appearance of one particular billionaire that makes the song the most interesting.
“Inishowen could then be known for it's multi millionaires,” the song continues.
“Where Donald Trump would like a chunk to live in solitaire.”
It seems that even back in the early 1990s Donald Trump was known for his desire to live in a walled-off part of the world in which he could do whatever he wished. We wonder who he would make pay for it this time?
Goats Don’t Shave may not have known at the time how true this one line would come to be (or at least the idea of it), but 24 years on Trump is still talking about building walls in Ireland. After a battle with local environmentalists, his hotel was refused permission to build a barrier around his golf course in Doonbeg, Co. Clare to protect it against erosion by the sea.