SAALT Objects to the Supreme Court’s Partial Reinstatement of the “Muslim Ban”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
South Asian Amer­i­cans Lead­ing Togeth­er (SAALT), a nation­al South Asian racial jus­tice and civ­il rights orga­ni­za­tion, strong­ly objects to the Supreme Court’s deci­sion to rein­state part of Pres­i­dent Trump’s “Mus­lim Ban”. It is dis­ap­point­ing that the high­est court in our land will hear the fed­er­al gov­ern­men­t’s appeal despite fed­er­al appel­late courts repeat­ed­ly strik­ing down and stay­ing key parts of the “Mus­lim Ban” as unques­tion­ably uncon­sti­tu­tion­al.
“Rein­stat­ing any part of this admin­is­tra­tion’s patent­ly dis­crim­i­na­to­ry ‘Mus­lim Ban’ is con­trary to the val­ues of the Unit­ed States and the ideals this coun­try was found­ed on,” stat­ed Suman Raghu­nathan, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of SAALT. “The Pres­i­den­t’s exec­u­tive orders, and the Supreme Court’s deci­sion to par­tial­ly rein­state the ban, amounts to gov­ern­ment sanc­tioned dis­crim­i­na­tion. It does not make Amer­i­ca safe, it makes Amer­i­ca afraid.”
Indi­vid­u­als from the six major­i­ty-Mus­lim coun­tries iden­ti­fied in the Pres­i­den­t’s exec­u­tive orders who do not have a “bona fide” rela­tion­ship with a per­son or orga­ni­za­tion in the Unit­ed States will be barred from enter­ing the coun­try. This admin­is­tra­tion’s dogged pur­suit of a “Mus­lim Ban” has pro­vid­ed a promi­nent plat­form for white suprema­cists and anti-immi­grant voic­es.
The “Mus­lim ban” dis­crim­i­nates against trav­el­ers as well as any Mus­lim or indi­vid­ual per­ceived as Mus­lim in the Unit­ed States.  These indi­vid­u­als have the right to walk down the street with­out fear of harass­ment or vio­lence by virtue of how they pray, what lan­guage they speak, or their nation of ori­gin. Today’s Supreme Court announce­ment is cou­pled with the Admin­is­tra­tion’s announce­ment on Fri­day that it will no longer active­ly sup­port efforts to counter Neo-Nazis, white suprema­cists, and oth­er far-right hate groups as part of the “Coun­ter­ing Vio­lent Extrem­ism” pro­gram. This change is divorced from the real­i­ty of ter­ror­ism in the Unit­ed States, as Klan groups con­tin­ue to mul­ti­ply and feel embold­ened in the cur­rent polit­i­cal cli­mate.
South Asians are the fastest grow­ing demo­graph­ic group in the nation, yet this admin­is­tra­tion’s poli­cies, under the guise of nation­al secu­ri­ty, paint mil­lions of peo­ple with sus­pi­cion and make our com­mu­ni­ties ques­tion their place in this quin­tes­sen­tial nation of immi­grants. SAALT calls on Con­gress to over­turn the Pres­i­den­t’s “Mus­lim Ban” to safe­guard our nation­al integri­ty and to state clear­ly and con­vinc­ing­ly that hate and fear will not be allowed guide our coun­try’s poli­cies now or in the future. We reject any attempt to dis­crim­i­nate and divide us base upon how we pray, what we look like, and where we come from.
Con­tact: Vivek Trive­di — vivek@saalt.org