In case you’re new around here, Hi! I’m Annie and my family and I came legally from Colombia in late 2002, then we became citizens almost ten years later in 2011.
Not all immigrants are the same, but before I get (too) political, I’d like to debunk what many out there keep saying and wrongly believing about Trump’s recent Executive Order regarding immigrants (NOT just refugees) from parts of the Middle East.
Rather than grabbing opinions left and right, I went to the source itself: The actual Executive Order. From it, I’ve extracted the pieces that I thought would be key to my post today: (All emphasis my own) (If you don’t want to read it to hold an informed discussion with someone, that’s your prerogative.)
Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States
Purpose. The visa-issuance process plays a crucial role in detecting individuals with terrorist ties and stopping them from entering the United States. …
The Administration then goes to mention that this process failed when those behind 9/11 were given visas, and that it was overhauled after that failure.
Visas help the bad guys stay away. For the sake of those who feel neglected, though, I’ll add that visas can also prevent some of the good guys from coming in.
Numerous foreign-born individuals have been convicted or implicated in terrorism-related crimes since September 11, 2001, including foreign nationals who entered the United States after receiving visitor, student, or employment visas, or who entered through the United States refugee resettlement program. Deteriorating conditions in certain countries … increase the likelihood that terrorists will use any means possible to enter the United States. …
This is a key part and I don’t get how those against this order can be based on this. Numerous intelligence officials have stated that terrorist networks may infiltrate well-meaning U.S. (assistance) programs. Meaning that the new administration isn’t saying NO to refugees, but RATHER to the potential entry of terrorists who violate those programs (like those in Europe already have!).
In order to protect Americans, the United States must ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward it and its founding principles. … In addition, the United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred (including “honor” killings, other forms of violence against women, or the persecution of those who practice religions different from their own) or those who would oppress Americans …
In what world is ^that^ wrong?
Sec. 2. Policy. It is the policy of the United States to protect its citizens from foreign nationals who intend to commit terrorist attacks in the United States; and to prevent the admission of foreign nationals who intend to exploit United States immigration laws for malevolent purposes.
Please put yourself in the current president’s shoes: The wellbeing of almost 400 million people is in his hands. One way that he seeks to protect us is by making it more difficult (even impossible) for those who want to harm us to come in.
Sec. 3. …
(c) … I hereby proclaim that the immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the United States of aliens from countries** referred to in section … would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, and I hereby suspend entry into the United States … of such persons** for 90 days … (excluding those foreign nationals traveling on diplomatic visas, North Atlantic Treaty Organization visas, C-2 visas for travel to the United Nations, and G-1, G-2, G-3, and G-4 visas). …
Sec. 4. Implementing Uniform Screening Standards for All Immigration Programs.
(a) [A lot of departments] shall implement a program … to identify individuals seeking to enter the United States on a fraudulent basis with the intent to cause harm, or who are at risk of causing harm subsequent to their admission. …
The administration then goes on to define what this screening program will entail in about seven+ lines, depending on your screen size. This wasn’t thought up in a minute: The administration really wants to ensure that those coming in are inherently good people. I invite you to scroll down** to see whose administration really came up with the list of countries referred to in this section.
(Also, take note of those exceptions!)
Sec. 5. Realignment of the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program for Fiscal Year 2017.
(a) The Secretary of State shall suspend the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) for 120 days. During the 120-day period, the Secretary of State … shall review the USRAP application and adjudication process to determine what additional procedures should be taken to ensure that those approved for refugee admission do not pose a threat …. Refugee applicants who are already in the USRAP process may be admitted upon the initiation and completion of these revised procedures. …
- This is a TEMPORARY halt.
- Current refugees will just be scrutinized more closely. They won’t all be immediately and automatically denied entry. (PS- Half of the original number of participants will still be allowed to come in.)
(c) … I hereby proclaim that the entry of nationals of Syria as refugees is detrimental to the interests of the United States and thus suspend any such entry until such time as I have determined that sufficient changes have been made to the USRAP to ensure that admission of Syrian refugees is consistent with the national interest. …
Syrian refugees are currently banned, for the time being, until the program can more properly establish that they’d all foster our values.
(e) … the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security may jointly determine to admit individuals to the United States as refugees on a case-by-case basis … but only so long as they determine that the admission of such individuals as refugees is in the national interest …
This one is also key, people: Their applications will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis, meaning it’s not a blanket denial. For so long the U.S. has been taken advantage of, and I find this part refreshing, for lack of a better word, in that it finally states that if someone from those at-risk countries won’t add to our society’s value (or is facing danger), they won’t be allowed entry.
The next bit of the EO has to do more with how the data will be processed and other kinds of administrative processes. These last few bits are important to note, as it addresses a new, more straightforward system to let us ALL know of terrorist-related activity:
Sec. 10. Transparency and Data Collection.
(a) To be more transparent with the American people, [the Secretary of Homeland Security shall collect and publish every 180 days]:
[information regarding the number of immigrants who, while in the U.S., have been charged with or convicted of terrorism-related offenses, been removed based on terrorism-related activity, been radicalized after entry and engaged in terrorism-related acts, have provided material support to terrorist organizations, or any other national security reasons] …
(iii) information regarding the number and types of acts of gender-based violence against women … in the United States by foreign nationals …; and
(iv) any other information relevant to public safety and security as determined by the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Attorney General ….
The last part of the Order relates to more administrative details.
Now, as for my takes:
One of the main issues people have with this ban is that those countries** haven’t done anything bad to us. However, they’ve been found to hold ties to individuals who have wronged us.
Another recurring issue I see is that this prevents good people, incl. women and children who need our help, from entering the country, and that we need to support the needy around the world.
I have many things to say about this:
- We’re not the world’s defender: For decades, other regions have taken advantage of our country without ever giving anything back. These regions don’t improve or seek ways to better themselves, becoming ever-dependent on us. This has to stop. At least “pay us back” by getting better, no? We’re not enablers.
- Not all good people will be denied entry: Fifty-thousand people will still be allowed in, and after four months, all will be considered on a case-by-case basis. If you’ve ever applied for a visa, you know how this works. (Granted, residents from these countries will face tougher scrutiny.)
- I can’t stand privileged celebs, in their expensive gowns and mansions, decrying such a measure and asking people to donate to the ACLU***. Where were they when the San Bernadino, Paris, Belgium, Tehran, Istanbul, etc. massacres (for lack of a better word) occurred? (And, as a matter of fact, where was our president when we needed strength?)
Lastly, I’ll leave you with a couple videos and quotes I’ve seen roaming around:
**Who chose the countries on the “Ban List”:
If you have a bowl of Starburst and one of those is sour, how are you to tell it apart from the ones that aren’t? You can’t. –Excellent analogy.
That Wall sure got plenty of support:
Every night I lock my doors, not because I hate my neighbors or the people outside but because I love the people inside more! –Another good analogy!
***No hate to the ACLU. It just so happens to have been the only cause mentioned at the SAG “Awards” so it was more top-of-mind.
And here’s an excellent read, in case you want to separate the facts from the hysteria.
What’s your take on this executive order? (Please keep things civil.)