A little over a week ago, Trump issued the “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States” Executive Order, banning nationals from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen, and Libya from entering the United States. Some people think this action necessary to ensure the safety and protection of American citizens, others feel it is discriminatory, unconstitutional, or even counter-productive. Some supporters have been thumping the Constitution and others raising the specter of Islamist terrorism. In part, I can agree (I definitely want us to do more for our safety), but I feel that some people are making this issue too simple for themselves: Continue reading
The video below presents an encounter featuring an immigrant from Iraq, a Latina wife, their American-born children (O.K., they’re not the same family, but they could be), and many other American-born fellow citizens together comprising our immigrant nation. Those who worry about cultural estrangement should think of how much melting pot aspects of America like Chinese, Japanese, and Mexican restaurants; St. Patrick’s day; German-heritage American beer; English cheddar; Pizza, hot dogs and Hamburgers; jazz; rock; country music; and so many easily overlooked multi-cultural aspects of our language and way of thinking enrich our lives. Maybe if we traveled more outside our borders, able to afford to do so by not stuffing our robber billionaires with out hard-earned dollars anymore, more of us would come to see the often so boring, rigid, and narrow-minded, monotonous, uniform other cultures of non-immigrant countries. Then we might value our melting pot more and be less vulnerable to xenophobia. Well, one can dream…
This scene also reminds us that immigrants are often the staunchest fans and supporters of our country. Usually, they come from places even worse than ours, and America is their beacon of hope which they fiercely defend. By the same token that we need to value and protect America’s newest members, we must never abandon any older groups (like poor, blue-collar white folks who in their desperation voted for Trump’s nativism) or – for that matter – our truly “native” Americans (hint: DAPL).
(Note: if the video linked above gets deleted, you may search the Internet for the title: “Interview Iraqi Man Released from JFK Airport During President Trump’s Muslim Ban Protest”)
As always, please comment below.
Basically, whenever you lump people together on the basis of one shared but very vague characteristic, great injustices and utterly idiotic consequences result from it. I understand the concern about Islamist terrorists — indeed, I share them — but there are smart and dumb ways to handle it. Being born a Muslim, for instance, does not mean being a terrorist any more than being born a Christian means being a Salem witch hunter. People’s merits should never be overlooked. Also, it doesn’t behoove us to forget that we are and always have been an immigrant nation and aspired to be the land of the free. All the more reason to act smart, not dumb.
Here is Cenk Uygur’s spirited rant, well worth watching (although I myself don’t quite agree with his Hillary-Trump comparison; I see them as different on some points, sometimes better sometimes worse, but equally bad on most):
(Note: if the video linked above gets deleted, you may search the Internet for the title: “Federal Court Stops Trump’s Muslim Ban! Gigantic Airport Protests Against Trump!”)
Please comment below to your heart’s content.