Trump’s Muslim Ban 2.0

Maybe it was to distract from his Russian problem. Perhaps it was to protect Jeff Sessions and give the Attorney General a chance to be a team player. Imaginably it was another move to placate his base. Very conceivably it was some or all of the above. In any event Donald Trump signed an executive order calling for another version of his Muslim ban. He was a bit slicker this time. Let’s explore.

Monday, with the press nipping at his heels, President Trump signed a new version of his Muslim Ban. The original produced chaos, led to mass demonstrations and was quickly neutered in the courts. It is better; but only in the sense that a twenty point loss is better than a forty point loss. If I’m the coach I don’t consider that progress. To be kind, there is much work still to be done.

The original ban went into immediate effect; this version has a ten day lag. That is an improvement.

The original ban covered seven Muslim majority nations including Iraq. Version 2.0 brings the number down to six, excluding Iraq. The Trump administration will tell you that this is because they worked out a deal with the Iraqis for stronger vetting. The reality is that we have many troops and interests in Iraq and could not afford counter sanctions. Morally the inclusion of Iraq was wrong because it would have denied entry into the United States to many Iraqis who, at great personal risk, collaborated with us during the occupation.

The new version of the ban omits any specific reference to Muslims, (or Christians for that matter), but only a fool would be unable to see the intent.

Those are the three major differences between the original and the new ban. Those changes will make it much easier to defend the ban in court against the inevitable legal challenges. Also with Sessions in place Trump will not face a mutiny at the Justice Department. The waste of taxpayer money…well that is another thing.

Despite the rhetoric coming from the White House and Trump’s xenophobic supporters this ban will not make America any safer. Only recently Trump’s own executive branch issued a report, (that the White House tried to bury), which determined that country of origin was a terrible predictor of who would later engage in terrorist activity on American soil.

If that were not the case Trump’s formula would still be fatally flawed. The six remaining countries, (Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen), are not the countries of ethnic origin of the majority of previous perpetrators of terrorism aimed at American targets. They are however countries that Trump is not doing business in. You connect the dots.

Terrorism can strike anytime and anywhere. That is the essence of terrorism; it is unpredictable and terrifying. The Trump administration’s attention to terrorism is a welcome thing; too bad it is misguided and being used as an excuse to placate the prejudices of much of Trump’s base. In reality this action isn’t keeping me, my family, my neighbors or my countrymen any safer. It will use tax dollars that could be better spent benefiting America.

The packaging may be a bit less ugly and perhaps more defendable in court; but the content still stinks.

This story is being written Monday afternoon for Wednesday morning publishing.

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One thought on “Trump’s Muslim Ban 2.0”

  1. The same report that said country of origin is not an accurate predictor of terrorism, also said that immigrants are radicalized after they come to this country. Well, duh. If you come to this country and find yourself ridiculed or harassed…or killed by xenophobes, that would be the kind of environment which might make you inclined to become radicalized. Ya think?

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