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Taking a closer look at the “Muslim ban”

Posted on Wednesday, February 1, 2017 at 11:47 am

EDITORIAL---ron-mug-colorgsSo is it a “Muslim ban” or is it not?
Many U.S. citizens have been trying to filter through news reports from several mainstream media sources and countless Social Media posts to get the facts on President Donald Trump’s temporary 90-day to 120-day or more Executive Order entitled “Protecting the nation from foreign terrorist entry into the United States.”
President Trump’s official statement on the issue is:
“America is a proud nation of immigrants and we will continue to show compassion to those fleeing oppression, but we will do so while protecting our own citizens and border. America has always been the land of the free and home of the brave. We will keep it free and keep it safe, as the media knows, but refuses to say. My policy is similar to what President Obama did in 2011 when he banned visas for refugees from Iraq for six months. The seven countries named in the Executive Order are the same countries previously identified by the Obama administration as sources of terror. To be clear, this is not a Muslim ban, as the media is falsely reporting.
This is not about religion – this is about terror and keeping our country safe. There are over 40 different countries worldwide that are majority Muslim that are not affected by this order. We will again be issuing visas to all countries once we are sure we have reviewed and implemented the most secure policies over the next 90 days.
I have tremendous feeling for the people involved in this horrific humanitarian crisis in Syria. My first priority will always be to protect and serve our country, but as President I will find ways to help all those who are suffering.”
There are several important things to take from this.
President Trump is right in pointing out that the ban doesn’t affect the some 40 other countries with a Muslim majority.
The largest Muslim population in the world is found in Indonesia and that country wasn’t affected by this order.
It’s also important to note that the countries listed are those labeled as “countries of concern” by the Department of Homeland Security under the President Barack Obama administration through the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act.
Those countries are Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Iran, Somalia, Libya, and Yemen. Other countries like Saudi Arabia likely should be included but were not.
These countries have a Muslim majority but  this decision might be what some critics call the “Muslim ban” connection. Then I took a closer look at the bill and found what is likely concerning to many, though it appears not many on either side of the political aisle are noting where it is originated.
In a couple of subsections of the bill, it says the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, can “prioritize refugee claims made by individuals on the basis of religious-based persecution, provided that the religion of the individual is a minority religion in the individual’s country of nationality.”
So in looking at these countries, Islam would be the majority religion, not the minority religion.
This is where the “Muslim ban” definition is apparently coming from.
I understand why the administration phrased it this way. I understand why their focus of concern isn’t on Christians, for example, in these nations.
A majority of extremists causing crimes all over the world appear to be influenced, whether right or wrong in our perception, by their Muslim faith.
I’m thankful the President is taking a hard focus in being serious with protecting our nation’s borders. He’s wanting to see where the vetting process is at and try to fix it before more terrorists enter our borders.
An ABC undercover operation recently found two Iraqi refugees that came to the United States to live as refugees in Bowling Green, Ky. out of all places.
One of the two men was found to have built a dozen or more bombs in Iraq and used a sniper rifle to kill American soldiers. They were officially linked to an attack killing four U.S. soldiers by an IED in 2005.
Yet they were found living in public housing as refugees while setting up attacks on U.S. soil.
While there are countless refugees who are living fulfilling lives in America, Lord knows how many other refugees are also up to no good that our leaders have no way knowing that threat lies now within our own borders.
A quick Google search on Europe’s refugee crisis can be a real eye opener to what the U.S. may experience if adopting similar refugee policies.
I would say with the way the Executive Order is worded, critics who say this is an apparent “Muslim ban” are correct in their assessment.
The administration would have been wise to leave the issue of religion from the part out of the order.
So now their good intentions are being labeled as hateful, evil, and the criticism ramped up even more when President Trump fired the interim Attorney General who said she would not follow his orders on the issue. Some critics like Sen. Chuck Schumer even shed tears in giving out a statement. He tweeted “Like many Americans, I am angry and perturbed but resolute in opposition to the president’s mean-spirited, un-American Muslim Ban.”
Nearly two years earlier, he was opposite of his views with a tweet that said “we must tighten loopholes in the Visa Waiver prgm, ensure passports can’t be faked & stop terrorists who want to exploit the system.”
The hypocrisy of the opposition may only lead to the President feeling justified to take an even stronger stand on this issue as it goes along with his view that not enough had been done previously to protect Americans.
While President Trump was looking to have the most memorable first 100 days in the history of his office, this one measure may overshadow a lot of what he’s already and yet to accomplish. Perhaps it’s not too late to change some of the wording…