The 2017-2018 STAND Managing Committee has issued a formal statement in response to the Supreme Court decision on the most recent iteration of President Trump’s Muslim Ban. Please find the transcript below and the full PDF here.
Hours before the ban was to come into effect in October, a federal judge in Hawai’i found that the order “plainly discriminates based on nationality” and fails to show that the over 150 million nationals of these countries would have “detrimental” effects on U.S. national security. His ruling blocked the ban on the Muslim-majority countries, but not North Korea or Venezuelan officials.
Yesterday’s Supreme Court order suspended the injunctions of the lower courts, allowing the ban to take effect, and calling upon the Richmond and San Francisco appeals courts to swiftly rule on the legality of the ban. The orders were unsigned, however, and Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor said they would have denied the administration’s request for the latest ban to go into effect. This ruling does not mean that the Supreme Court has accepted the ban as constitutional—that battle is ongoing—but does mean that they agreed that an emergency injunction against the ban was unnecessary. The court is expected to make a ruling on constitutionality in the coming months.
Significantly, unlike earlier iterations of the ban, which had expiration periods for restrictions, the third version is indefinite. As lawyers for Hawai’i told the justices, this distinction “deepen[s] and prolong[s] the harms a stay would inflict”. Although the restrictions vary, most cases, as reported by the New York Times, permanently bar citizens of the listed countries from emigrating to the U.S. as well as working, studying, or vacationing in the country.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), stated immediately after the decision that “this is not a ruling on the merits, and we continue our fight. We are at the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday to argue that the Muslim ban should ultimately be struck down.” Additionally, they filed a letter to the Supreme Court regarding recent Islamophobic statements by President Trump that provide additional proof of the intent of the ban.
Karen Tumlin, the legal director of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), also stated the following on Twitter: “It’s important to remember that the Supreme Court has NOT addressed the legal merits of the Muslim Ban nor the human impacts w/its order today. Those will be before 2 federal courts of appeal this week.”
As ever, we at STAND oppose the Muslim ban in all its forms and support our partners fighting this battle in court. We oppose all actions targeting and scapegoating an entire religion, as recent statements and actions by President Trump have.
As an organization fighting against genocide and mass atrocities worldwide, we hold the lessons of history close to our heart as we reflect on recent events in our own country. We will never allow such discrimination and hatred to be directed at any religious group in our country—or anywhere in the world. We stand with individuals kept from their loved ones because of the ban, with those waiting to enter, and indeed with all Muslims in the United States who have been shown that U.S. policymakers are willing to put their well-being, and that of their family and friends, at risk.
As the situation and analysis develops, we will share actions STAND supporters can take to oppose the ban and support those affected by the ban. As ever, thank you for your support.