AMP Report June 26, 2018

Civil advocacy groups denounce Supreme Court
 decision to uphold Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0

By Abdus Sattar Ghazali

The Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, Tuesday (June 26, 2018) ruled in favor of the third iteration of President Donald Trump’s travel ban (known as Muslim Ban 3.0) on five Muslim countries.

In his decision, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that Trump had used his executive authority to “suspend entry of aliens into the United States.”  “The [order] is expressly premised on legitimate purposes: preventing entry of nationals who cannot be adequately vetted and inducing other nations to improve their practices,” Roberts wrote. “The text says nothing about religion.”

Justice Sotomayor in her dissent, wrote: "A reasonable observer would conclude that the Proclamation was driven primarily by anti-Muslim animus, rather than by the Government's asserted national-security justifications. Even before being sworn into office, then-candidate Trump stated that 'Islam hates us.'"

Justice Sonia Sotomayor recalled previous statement’s from the president calling for a “complete and total shutdown” of Muslims entering the U.S., and also noted Trump’s penchant sharing anti-Muslim videos on Twitter, including one titled, “Muslim destroys a statue of Virgin Mary!” “Take a brief moment and let the gravity of those statements sink in,” she said.

The president responded to the court’s decision in a Tuesday morning tweet, and later called it a `tremendous victory’ and `moment of profound vindication’. “Supreme court upholds Trump travel ban. Wow!” he wrote on Twitter.

The current ban, announced in September, prohibits entry into the US by most people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen. It also affects two non-Muslim majority countries, blocking travelers from North Korea and some Venezuelan government officials and their families.

The Supreme Court decision was widely denounced by civil advocacy, Arab, Muslim and religious groups as well as lawyers. Surprisingly, even the atheists also bitterly criticized the decision.

ACLU Slams Supreme Court Decision

The American Civil Liberties Union sent out a series of tweets harshly criticizing a Supreme Court ruling on Tuesday (June 26, 2018) that upheld President Donald Trump's travel ban. The ACLU compared it to the court allowing the government to imprison Japanese Americans during World War II. The organization also called on the public to demonstrate against the decision.

Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU’s immigrants' rights project, said this ruling will go down in history as one of the Supreme Court's great failures. “It repeats the mistakes of the Korematsu decision upholding Japanese-American imprisonment and swallows wholesale government lawyers' flimsy national security excuse for the ban instead of taking seriously the president's own explanation for his action. It is ultimately the people of this country who will determine its character and future. The court failed today, and so the public is needed more than ever.”

ADC: This is a dark hour for the country

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is deeply troubled and disappointed by the decision of the United States Supreme Court (SCOTUS) today (June 26) to uphold President Donald Trump’s Arab and Muslim Ban.  The ADC President Samer Khalaf said:,"This decision is a repugnant affirmation that religion or national origin can be used to determine ones access to basic freedoms. Regardless of today’s decision the implementation of the Ban has shown that it is xenophobic, bigoted, anti-Arab and Islamophobic." “We are saddened and troubled by today’s decision upholding the Arab and Muslim Ban,” said Abed Ayoub, the ADC Legal Director. “Today’s decision will have a disastrous impact on this country as it illustrates that xenophobia, islamophobia, and bigotry are acceptable governing policies for the United States. This is a dark hour for the country, and the Supreme Court.”

Arab American Institute: Arab American Institute Executive Director Maya Berry said with this ruling, the Supreme Court majority has given a blank check to President Trump and future presidents to discriminate simply by claiming national security justifications. “Today we need Congress, as a coequal branch of government, to act to affirm the equal dignity of all, regardless of religion or national origin, he said adding: “In spite of this decision, AAI will continue work tirelessly with both the legislative and judicial branches toward the goal of ensuring that all Americans, as well as guests in our country, are free from government-sponsored discrimination.”

CAIR decries d Supreme Court's decision

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today (June 26, 2018) decried the U.S. Supreme Court's decision announced this morning to allow the Muslim Ban 3.0 to remain in effect.

In a statement in reaction to today's ruling, CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said: "This is a setback; not the end of the road. Today, the Supreme Court made it clear that the responsibility will continue to be on the American Muslim community and its allies to push for an end to the Muslim Ban. The Supreme Court's decision is an invitation to inject discrimination back into our immigration system. More than half a century ago, Congress abandoned a racist immigration system that preferred some races over others. This decision is an abandonment of that milestone. The Muslim Ban's bigotry should have been as clear to the Supreme Court as it is to the Muslims demonized by it. Apparently, everyone but the Supreme Court can see the decision for what it is: an expression of animosity."

Keith Ellison: Today's ruling will be remembered as a mark of shame

In a message Rep. Keith Ellison, who is leaving the congress to contest for Attorney General of Minnesota, said:

“Our nation was founded on the principles of religious freedom and tolerance. Yet today’s ruling has lent legitimacy to the Islamophobia and scapegoating that was a hallmark of this President’s campaign, and which remains a central focus of his Administration.

 The United States has always been a nation of immigrants – a beacon for those seeking refuge from war, tyranny, oppression, and instability. We’ve aspired to govern in the spirit of the words so many have read at the bottom of the Statue of Liberty, "give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” And we’ve all been made better for it.

“Today’s decision falls far below those ideals. It is unjust, and it will be remembered as a mark of shame on our nation’s history. But until then, it’s never been more important for us to fight for an America that respects the humanity we all share.”

Quaker Lobby Denounces Supreme Court Ruling

The Quaker Lobby, the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL), strongly criticized the Supreme Court for ruling in support of yet another Muslim travel ban.

 “This ruling does not change the fact that President Trump’s executive order immorally and intentionally targets Muslim citizens, immigrants, and visitors from reuniting with their family members and traveling to the United States,” said Diane Randall, Executive Secretary for FCNL. “Quakers strongly oppose this Muslim ban and all means of religious and racial discrimination. Detention and exclusion of individuals based on religion or country of origin is unjust.”

 “Our heart goes out to families and individuals who continue to be affected by this racist Muslim ban,” said Hannah Graf Evans, Legislative Representative for Immigration and Refugee Policy at FCNL. “We continue to stand with them, as we have since the moment this Islamophobic ban first was signed.”

Muslim Advocates: Muslim Ban Decision “Puts the basic rights of all Americans at risk.”

In a statement Farhana Khera, executive director of Muslim Advocates, said in affirming President Trump’s bigoted Muslim Ban, the Supreme Court has given a green light to religious discrimination and animus.   "Not since key decisions on slavery, segregation in schools, and Japanese American incarceration, have we seen a decision that so clearly fails to protect those most vulnerable to government-led discrimination.  Trump may have won this round, but we are focused on the next round and will continue to fight until justice prevails and his anti-Muslim agenda is overturned for good," she said adding:

"This decision puts the basic rights of all Americans at risk. It says that even when an administration is clearly anti-Muslim, when it targets Muslims, when it insults Muslims, and when it puts a policy in place that specifically hurts Muslims – that the Court will let it stand. If it can happen to Muslims, it can happen to anyone."

Neal Katyal, the Washington lawyer who argued the case for Hawaii and other challengers, expressed disappointment at the ruling and called on Congress to step in. “We continue to believe, as do four dissenting justices, that the travel ban is unconstitutional, unprecedented, unnecessary and un-American,” he said in a statement. “. . . The travel ban is atrocious policy, and makes us less safe and undermines our American ideals. Now that the Court has upheld it, it is up to Congress to do its job and reverse President Trump’s unilateral and unwise travel ban.”

Muslim Legal Fund of America disappointed

In Dallas, Texas, Representatives from Muslim Legal Fund of America, a constitutional rights defense fund, expressed disappointment on today’s U.S. Supreme Court's 5- 4 ruling in favor of President Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban.

In a statement, the Muslim Legal Fund of America said that it agrees with the 4 dissenting Supreme Court judges that their colleagues arrived at this decision by "ignoring the facts, misconstruing our legal precedent, and turning a blind eye to the pain and suffering the Proclamation inflicts upon countless families and individuals, many of whom are United States citizens." 

 Executive Director of the MLFA Khalil Meek said, “Since discrimination, bigotry and outright racism continue to infest our government structures and institutions we must continue to increase on our efforts in protecting the constitutional rights of Muslim Americans across this country.” Additionally, he stated, “If you or someone you know has been affected by the travel ban, we encourage you to fill out a request for legal assistance through our website”

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Executive Editor: Abdus Sattar Ghazali


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