Law & the Courts

The Left’s Response to SCOTUS Travel-Ban Ruling Is Typically Baseless

Protesters outside the Supreme Court following the ruling upholding the Trump administration’s travel ban, June 26, 2018. (Leah Millis/Reuters)
Yet another liberal narrative collapses into a smoldering pile of lies

When the U.S. Supreme Court decided Tuesday to endorse the president’s so-called “Muslim ban,” the Left’s knee-jerk response was typically predictable, pathetic, and phony: “Trump is a racist!”

  • “By upholding the Muslim ban, the United States Supreme Court has sided with a racist and xenophobic attack on Muslims and immigrants,” roared Johanna Calle, director of New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice. “Banning travelers and refugees from Muslim-majority countries has been a part of the Trump Administration’s policies against immigrant communities from the beginning.”
  • The court’s 5–4 ruling, Representative Keith Ellison (D., Minn.) told NBC News, “gives legitimacy to discrimination and Islamophobia.” He told CNN: “The Supreme Court in the 1850s said that it was OK to own a black person. That was the Dred Scott decision. That decision hit the dust bin of history . . . and this one will, too.”
  • Senate Democratic whip Dick Durbin of Illinois told CNN that “the net result of” this policy “sadly was to suggest that when it came to countries with large Muslim populations, they weren’t welcome in the United States.”

Despite the Left’s now-yawn-inducing screams of “racism,” this policy has nothing to do with Islamophobia. And it never did. It concerns U.S. national security and counter-terrorism.

A genuine, hate-fueled Muslim ban would include all or most of Earth’s 51 majority-Muslim nations. In fact, a grand total of five majority-Muslim countries are restricted: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen.

The travel limit also includes North Korea, an officially atheist state with a pre-Communist history steeped in Confucianism, not Islam. Certain Venezuelan travelers also are proscribed. Like North Korea, Venezuela is neither Middle Eastern nor predominantly Islamic. Pew Research reports that it’s approximately 73 percent Catholic and 17 percent Protestant. Venezuela is 0.3 percent Muslim.

These travel restrictions have nothing to do with Islam and everything to do with shielding the United States from the citizens of terrorist-infested countries.

North Korea’s and Venezuela’s involvement in the “Muslim ban” suggests one of two things: Either President Trump hates Confucian-infused atheists and Catholics almost as much as he loathes Muslims, or, once again, these travel restrictions have nothing to do with Islam and everything to do with shielding the United States from the citizens of terrorist-infested countries that cannot or will not help U.S. officials vet their own nationals who want to enter America.

John Roberts’s majority opinion vanquishes the Left’s “anti-Muslim bigotry” narrative.

  • Trump’s “policy covers just 8 percent of the world’s Muslim population,” the chief justice observed. A truly Islamophobic reform surely would try harder. Neither Indonesia nor Pakistan is on this list. To detest Muslims yet exclude Islam’s two most populous countries is as absurd as hating Francophones and consequently restricting travelers from Haiti and Togo but welcoming Frenchmen and Canadians.
  • Roberts also recalled that “three Muslim-majority countries — Iraq, Sudan, and Chad — have been removed from the list of covered countries.” Indeed, they were unbanned after harmonizing their safety protocols with Washington’s.

“Iraq is an important ally in the fight to defeat ISIS, with their brave soldiers fighting in close coordination with America’s men and women in uniform,” then–Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in March 2017. “This intense review over the past month identified multiple security measures that the State Department and the government of Iraq will be implementing to achieve our shared objective of preventing those with criminal or terroristic intent from reaching the United States.”

“The Iraqi Foreign Ministry expresses deep relief regarding the executive order that was issued by the American President Donald Trump, which excludes the Iraqis from the travel ban to the United States,” foreign ministry spokesman Ahmad Jamal said. “This is considered an important step in the right direction that strengthens and reinforces the strategic alliance between Baghdad and Washington in many fields, in particular the fight against terrorism.”

Last April, the White House announced that “the Republic of Chad has improved its identity-management and information sharing practices sufficiently to meet the baseline security standard of the United States. Chad nationals will therefore again be able to receive visas for travel to the United States.”

These actions hardly smack of anti-Muslim hate.

  • Roberts added that “the entry restrictions on Muslim-majority nations are limited to countries that were previously designated by Congress or prior administrations as posing national security risks.” Such prior administrations include Obama’s, which selected seven majority-Islamic nations for heightened vigilance: Initially Iran, Iraq, Sudan, and Syria, and two months later, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen as well.

Individuals who traveled from or through these “countries of concern,” as they are known officially, have experienced increased scrutiny since December 2015. Donald J. Trump was not president back then. In fact, as anti-Trump CNN reported on January 30, 2017: “The seven Muslim-majority countries targeted in President Trump’s executive order on immigration were initially identified as ‘countries of concern’ under the Obama administration.” (Emphasis added.) By the Left’s logic, compiling this list of “countries of concern” would make Barack Hussein Obama an anti-Muslim bigot.

Once again, the fact that the Left went from zero to racism in just 10 seconds after Tuesday’s Supreme Court decision confirms that the Democrat choir has just one hymn in its missal. How sad. How ugly.

Deroy Murdock — Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor and a contributing editor of National Review Online.

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