Across from White House, Muslims and allies protest travel ban

Leslie Carter and other protesters gather in Lafayette Square park to voice their disapproval of President Trump's travel ban. The #NoMuslimBanEver March on Oct. 18, 2017, centered on Muslim refugees trying to leave Arab countries to come to the United States. RNS photo by Chris Mathews

WASHINGTON (RNS) — After a second federal judge ruled this week against the Trump administration’s latest travel ban, protesters gathered across the street from the White House to stand in solidarity with Muslims and refugees.

Hundreds of Muslims, Jews, Christians and the religiously unaffiliated began their protest in Lafayette Square park Wednesday (Oct. 18) for the #NoMuslimBanEver March, before they walked the few blocks to the Trump International Hotel.

Muslim American protester Kalid Ali said President Trump, in a misguided attempt to protect Americans from terrorism, is punishing whole countries full of Muslims for the actions of a very few.

Ali encouraged people to speak out by saying “Mr. President, not everybody agrees with your decisions, and not everybody is a bad person. … He has to understand if there are bad people somewhere, there are many, many good people here, too.”

The protesters gathered around a large stage in the center of the park, where speakers gave personal testimonials and led the crowd in chants, including “No Muslim ban ever!”

“As we’re shouting, democracy is what this nation is all about,” said Leslie Carter, one of the religiously unaffiliated among the crowd. “And we have to work hard every day to prove that.”

Gamileh Jamil, from Buffalo, N.Y., belongs to the Arab American Community Center for Economic and Social Services and said 1 out of 3 people in the city of Buffalo are immigrants.

“We’re here to stand up and really represent all of the faces that we see on a daily basis,” she said.

“The tears, the frustrations of families being in a very traumatized, very war-stricken country and not being able to bring them in,” she continued, referring to refugees denied shelter in the U.S.

Two federal judges — one from Hawaii and a Maryland judge — temporarily blocked the ban this week.

The ban would prevent people from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad, North Korea and certain Venezuelan government officials from traveling to the U.S.

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Chris Mathews


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  • Where the heck were you people back when the Democrats were in power and they were agitating for expanding State powers on profiling Muslims to strip away their constitutional rights without trial??

    Oh right, you only care about discrimination against Muslims if it’s politically expedient for your party.

    Just like none of the pro-immigrant sentiment directed against Trump was around when a democratic president deported more immigrants than any other president before him.

    And none of the anti-war sentiment directed against Trump was around when we got into Libya. And Syria. And Yemen.

  • “when the Democrats were in power and they were agitating for expanding State powers on profiling Muslims to strip away their constitutional rights without trial??”

    I am very interested to learn more about this. What should I search for to find articles about this legislation/executive order?

  • Bummer, I was really hoping to have some good links from you so i could read more about this situation!!

  • public Law 414 chapter 2 Section 212 The law was passed June 27, 1952 “The prohibition of entry to the US if the Alien belongs to an organization, religion or cult seeking to overthrow the government of the United States by force, violence or other unconstitutional means.”

    and i think, you’re going to have a hard time trying to prove their holy quran and sharia law is not a clerical fascist constitution hostile to any other religion, secularism, or government.

    and the fact that anyone is opposed to public Law 414 chapter 2 Section 212 verifies their a hostile entity. and the way islamic nations, treat christians and jews is also verification of this. coming from nations, that shout death to Yesrael death to jews, death to america and americans, death to secularist, also verifies their hostile intentions.

    it is total stupidity and ignorance, to allow immigration from countries hostile to our nation. i am having, a difficult time believing americans are this insanely stupid and easily deceived.