April 25, 2019 | 54° F

EDITORIAL: ‘Muslim Ban’ is attack on U.S. values

Trump’s Executive Order has questionable justifications


The nation seems to be in a state of hysteria as the effects of President Donald J. Trump’s Executive Order settle in. Trump’s orders, referred to by the public as the “Muslim Ban,” entails the temporary halting of refugees from entering the United States for several months. This order also blocks new visas for people who are from any of the seven Muslim-majority countries listed in the statute. These countries include Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. There have also been incidents of green card holders, who are legal U.S. residents, being blocked from U.S.-bound flights. This means that this order, although not stated explicitly, blocks people who have legal access to the U.S. and have lived here for many years, from coming home. Trump has waged war against the very values that this nation functions upon.

Trump has named this order, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States.” Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani supported this title, as he stated that the ban was focused on danger rather than religion and that the countries listed were chosen “based on places where there is substantial evidence that people are sending terrorists into our country.” But how true is this assertion?

Trump’s justification for the order is that since the 9/11 attacks, terrorism has been a rampant concern throughout the United States. But a closer look into the major terrorist attacks that have taken place in the United States since the 9/11 attacks shows that Trump’s focus may be in the wrong place. In fact, of the seven countries listed, there has been zero fatal attacks carried out by immigrants in recent decades on U.S. soil. In fact, the only attacks that were committed by people from these countries did not result in any American deaths. If Trump really did his research on terrorism, he would know that between 1980 and 2005, 94 percent of terrorist attacks were carried out by non-Muslims. Not recent enough? A new study indicates that there are 3.3 million Muslim Americans. Of these 3.3 million people, only 46 were “linked to violent extremism at home or abroad.” These countries that Trump has targeted in his ban are only responsible for 7 percent of terrorists that have connections to the Islamic faith. If Trump did want to target countries that he thought were a threat, then perhaps he would have included Egypt or Saudi Arabia on his list. But they are not. Perhaps this has to do with Trump having economic interest in these countries or his warm relationships with the two governments. Either way, if Trump’s true concern was the safety of this nation considering the 9/11 attacks, wouldn’t he be focusing on the countries that were reported to be involved?

At the end of the day, Trump should not be placing any ban on these countries. This Executive Order, made without the consultation of a majority of the Republican Party, is not just hurtful to those who identify with the Muslim faith and the countries that Trump has listed, but it is just un-American. America is a country of immigrants. There are about 42.4 million immigrants living in the nation, and that doesn’t include those who were born here but have families from different countries. Trump has not only created a disturbance within other nations, he has also affected people right here at home. Rutgers, home to students from 63 countries, houses several Muslim-student groups and organizations. The effects of this policy on these students can be drastic, and the University community came together for a protest yesterday that even University President Robert L. Barchi spoke at.

Trump claims to be issuing orders for the benefit of America but this is not what it means to be American. This immigration policy is so far-removed from patriotism that it is unsettling.

The Daily Targum's editorials represent the views of the majority of the 148th editorial board. Columns, cartoons and letters do not necessarily reflect the views of the Targum Publishing Company or its staff.

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