Among the abundant executive actions President Trump has taken, his latest immigration ban has been discussed extensively for a variety of reasons. The order itself is made up of different parts. Primarily, it suspends the refugee program for 120 days. As a result of this, many were startled because it came "out of the blue" and did not have any direct cause and effect relationship like orders we have seen from previous presidents when they declared similar, but distinct immigration bans. The order banned citizens from 7 different majority Muslim countries from entering the United States, which was heartbreaking to hear for Middle Eastern refugees. To follow up with targeting people from majority Muslim countries, he called for "extreme vetting," which means even more extensive background checks, and as well as "indefinitely banned refugee entry from Syria." Many popular human rights activists have spoken out to condemn President Trump's actions.
While the justification for extreme vetting is to prevent "radical Islamic terrorists," refugees are facing discrimination. This provoked disapproval among constituents because they feel that Trump is prioritizing Christian refugees.
The order did have repercussions on airport security and even took the form of protests in the U.S. and abroad; people have been organizing for a variety of reasons ever since Trump took office. At airports there were sit-ins and marches occurring the entire weekend as people united in solidarity with immigrants who were being detained at airports and refugees who were at a stand-still in foreign countries as a result of the ban.
Monday continued to see protestors in some airports, such as LAX, while Trump and his administration continue to defend the ban. Thankfully, through the support of legal services provided by the lawyers who visited airports to help those detained, many people have been freed and several judges have blocked the order. In fact, the acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates (appointed by Obama in 2015) sent a message to Department of Justice lawyers tonight to not defend Trump's immigration ban.
After a period of silence, former President Obama finally commented on the issues America has been facing and stated he's proud of those resisting:
Obama's disapproval of the immigration ban comes with comparison to similar actions he took while in office, but there remain striking differences. Essentially...
On the other hand, celebrities have taken to social media, commenting on the immigration ban with their own varying viewpoints.
There's your usual public and politically induced drama. Others, like Kim Kardashian, provided further insight.
While refugees struggle to travel, educational institutions are worried about the effects this could have on their student populations, both international and undocumented. Hence, the support the Universities of California reaffirm in a recent letter as a response to the Muslim ban. Moreover, they also provide the following suggestions:
Their support paired with other institutions who have already declared themselves sanctuary campuses encourages many to resist and hold on tight to their values, especially during these controversial times. If this executive action is any warning of future policies regarding immigration, citizens should continue to unite and be informed as our lives and the lives of those around us are being affected indefinitely. Even though funding for sanctuary cities is already being threatened, we can all become sanctuaries depending on how we choose to support immigrants. Whether it be donating to ACLU, joining protests or talking to your international friends to make sure they are alright, we can all do something. If we are all proud of our diversity as a country, then that requires unity.
Lead Image Credit: Joe Piette via Flikr Creative Commons