Donald Trump has been in office less than two weeks and already he has managed to plunge the United States of America into utter chaos. I knew Trump was going to be a terrible president, but even in my most pessimistic moments did I ever imagine that things would get this bad this fast.
Let us survey today's headlines:
Mitch McConnell says we have no religious tests in the U.S. while at the same time supporting Trump, who says that the U.S. will prefer Christian immigrants over non-Christian immigrants, a position widely denounced by Christian leaders around the world. Giving preference to Christians sure sounds like a religious test to me, but in the era of alternative facts I guess a religious test can be whatever you say it is as long as you're the person in power.
Trump chief of staff Reince Priebus said that the executive order barring entry into the U.S. from seven Muslim countries does not apply to green card holders. While he was saying this, green card holders were being denied entry into the U.S. all over the world contrary to court orders.
A twelve year old girl who is one plane trip away from being a U.S. citizen is stuck in Djibouti:
The 12-year-old is now in the worst possible limbo. That immigrant visa grants her lawful permanent resident status the instant she’s admitted to the U.S. by Customs and Border Protection. And once she reaches the United States, Section 320 of the Immigration and Nationality Act stipulates that, as a minor living with her U.S. citizen parents, she automatically becomes a U.S. citizen. But on Saturday, hours after Trump signed that executive order, Ali and his daughter were pulled out of line by airline personnel and prevented from boarding their Ethiopian Airlines flight. Until she’s admitted to the United States, she will not have green card status. The girl and her father are trapped in East Africa, where they have no friends or family, as they wait for a resolution to an ordeal they had thought was overAt least two people were actually forced to surrender their green cards:
The Aziz brothers’ story is particularly stunning because, says Sandoval-Moshenberg, not only were they handcuffed while they were detained by CBP at Dulles, and not only were they turned away and sent to Ethiopia, but they were also made to sign a form, known as the I-407. In doing so, they surrendered their green cards, under the threat of being barred from the U.S. for the next five years if they did not.This is particularly chilling. If people can be forced to surrender their green cards, what is to stop Trump from forcing Muslim American citizens from surrendering their passports? Think it can't happen? It already has. If Barak Obama can revoke Ed Snowden's passport, you'd better believe that Donald Trump can revoke yours.
It goes on and on and on and on and on and on.
Oh, this might be a good time to remind everyone that Steve Job's father was an immigrant from Syria. If Donald Trump's immigration policy had been in place in the 1950s there would be no Apple Computer today.
If there is any doubt in your mind about the human toll of Donald Trump's reckless executive order, you should read this:
Hamid Kargaran ... is a U.S. citizen, and a successful one at that. He owns a Bay-area marketing company that works with Google, another that consults with medical practices and teaches at two local universities. His wife of two years, Elaheh Iranfard, 28, is a painter studying at the San Francisco Academy of Art. They both embrace California and U.S. culture with gusto.
She had been back home for a short visit with her family, a trip she’d planned after her parents were unable to get a visa for the United States. But in the hours after President Trump signed the executive order banning entrants from seven Muslim countries, including Iran, the door slammed shut. Agents at multiple airlines told her she couldn’t board, legal U.S. resident or not.
For two sleepless days, he has desperately tried to get information from airlines, government officials, friends and family. At one point, he staked out a part of San Francisco International Airport where Customs and Border Protection officers take their break. Three of them gave him different answers to the same questions; one of them told him: “Iranians are not our friends.”
It’s been a shock to a man who joined pro-American demonstrations in Tehran after terrorists struck the United States on September 11, 2001. What he was hearing now, as friends advised him to scrub from his phone any social media posts that suggested he disagreed with Trump, reminded him of the Iranian repression that drove him from the country.
“I never thought when I moved here and made this country my home that this would happen,” he said. “I employ people, I pay taxes. We love this country. But I feel like the hard work has been meaningless. We’re second-class citizens.”
Now he was waiting, and he knew there would be no relief until his wife actually walked into the sun in San Francisco. In three hours, she would find out if Lufthansa agents in Tehran would let her on the plane. In Germany, she would learn if officials there would let transit on to California. At home, she still had to pass through U.S. passport control.
“I don’t know,” Kargaran said. “We’ve tried to do everything right. Doesn’t that matter?”