A young boy from Austin, Texas is joining in on the effort to construct a new border wall along the United States-Mexico border by raises funds in his local community.
His effort was simple but effective: Benton Stevens offered to sell hot chocolate for $2 a piece near a sign which read, “proceeds help Trump build the wall.”
As ABC 13 reports, each sale also included an option to add large “Nancy Pelosi” marshmallows for an additional 50 cents. Customers could opt for smaller “Beto O’Rourke” marshmallows for no extra charge.
Check it out, via ABC News:
A young Texas boy has raised thousands of dollars to support President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall with his hot chocolate stand.
Austin resident Shane Stevens posted a Facebook video of his son, Benton, manning his hot chocolate stand in a parking lot next to a gas station on Saturday afternoon.
“So, what are we out here doing?” Stevens asked.
Benton replied, “Doing a hot chocolate stand to help Trump make the wall.”
“On Monday, more than $2,000 had been raised, partially with the help of the Venmo account Stevens created for those who were not able to make it, he wrote,” ABC News reports. “Stevens reported that the funds had reached about $5,000 by Tuesday, ABC Houston station KTRK reported.”
Here’s more, from Fox 8:
“Every day, he would get off the bus and say, ‘Mom, can we go do my stand?’” said the boy’s mother Jennifer Stevens told KEYE.
The border wall hot chocolate stand quickly became a family effort with the boy’s brothers making signs and his mother brewing the hot chocolate.
When the idea took off, the family opened up a Venmo account for others to make donations.
BORDER WALL BATTLEWATCH: A 7-year-old in Texas is doing a fundraiser for President Donald Trump's border wall. Benton Stevens set up a hot chocolate stand raising money that he says will go toward immigration reform. Several people are calling the 7-year-old, "Brainwashed" and even "Little Hitler".
Posted by KHQ Local News on Wednesday, February 20, 2019
According to the report, the young boy’s efforts were stopped once internet trolls took to criticizing him and his family.
“People think he’s brainwashed,” Jennifer Stevens said, per NBC Austin affiliate KXAN. “Well, of course, he supports Trump because we do, and he hears how we talk and this and that. Call that brainwashing, but I call it parenting, because we instill our values in him.”
“I guess some liberals – or whatever you want to call them – they were griping at the owner (of the store) and going in and yelling at him and slamming him on Facebook,” she continued.
“It seems like there are more people supporting it than against it but the people that are against it keep going and going and going.”
“He was called a little Hitler yesterday,” Stevens said to KXAN. “A guy pointed at him in his car and then he said that we didn’t like brown people. I don’t understand that at all.”
Both of Benton’s parents are members of the Republican National Committee, KXAN reports.
Online, Stevens says she and her husband were criticized for their actions, but she said, “that’s the price you pay when you make a political stance.”
“We’re going to get it into the wall,” she said of their plans for the money. “There’s a GoFundMe page and we’re also part of the RNC and we’re pretty connected there so we will 100 percent make sure it goes towards the wall.”
According to a report from Business Insider, making sure money goes directly to a certain project with the federal government can get complicated. Donations to the government go to a fund called “Gifts to the United States” but there is not a way to guarantee that money goes toward a specific project. Donating money to the Department of Homeland Security would require Congressional approval, according to a 2008 policy directive.