Back in August, we started the school year with our NSO edition. The theme was “You Belong Here.” In November, Donald Trump was elected. Last month, he was inaugurated. This week, he issued an executive order barring citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries “” Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Sudan, Libya and Somalia “” from entering the United States for 90 days and blocking new refugees from entering for 120 days.
The justification used for the order is that the policy aims to “keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the United States of America.” In 2015, President Obama placed some restrictions on travel from these countries “” however, Trump’s order is much broader. It creates questions about the legitimacy of green cards and visas in the future. Many have also questioned the logic behind the ban, because far fewer people who have committed acts of terrorism on U.S. soil have come from the seven countries on the list than countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia, which are not on the list. Probably not coincidentally, Trump reportedly has business interests in the last two countries, so including them on the list would be personally detrimental.
Perhaps the most immediately concerning aspect of the whole situation is the islamophobic and xenophobic attitude it is perpetuating. As someone who is not currently being subjected to this kind of discrimination, I cannot begin to understand, much less explain, what members of our Trinity community and our nation who hail from these countries are experiencing right now. Our cover story includes voices from students and faculty who can. We hope the Trinitonian can bring these voices to the forefront of the conversation so we can celebrate the diversity on campus and around the world.