Donald Trump’s extreme vetting plan of immigrants announced on Friday is truly irony defined.
How’s that, you ask? Because you don’t have to be a lawyer to see how the plain language of Trump’s executive order, if applied to Donald Trump himself, would preclude him from stepping even a foot on US soil.
Trump’s order states in part that, “in order to protect Americans, the United States must ensure that those admitted to this country” don’t bear “hostile attitudes” to our nation’s “founding principles.”
To that end, Trump’s order reads further:
“The United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred (including ‘honor’ killings, other forms of violence against women, or the persecution of those who practice religions different from their own) or those who would oppress Americans of any race, gender, or sexual orientation.”
OK, so let’s take a look at Trump’s past words and deeds and apply them to Trump’s own test. His order seeks to ban from entry into the United States those who:
1. Engage in “violence against women” or would “oppress Americans of any gender”: Trump has used his power to abuse and dominate women. He bragged in the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape that when he sees beautiful women he wants, “I don’t even wait” for their consent. Instead he not only “just starts kissing them” he would even “Grab ’em by the pussy.” That is clearly violence against women. And of course numerous women came forward after that tape was released and detailed how Trump had allegedly sexually assaulted them. Add to that Trump despicably publicly shaming those courageous women who spoke out against him, calling them “liars” as well as insultingly describing them as “unattractive.” If a person applying to come to America had a history of doing that very thing, would you want them in our country?
2. Engage in “persecution of those who practice religions different from their own”: Trump has clearly persecuted Muslims during his presidential campaign and first days in office. One of the worst examples was when Trump irresponsibly claimed, “Islam hates us.” When a leading American political figure makes a comment like this that demonizes a large portion of the world’s people, it dangerously validates the worst stereotypes about all Muslims. Trump also lied that “thousands” of Muslims cheered on 9/11 in New Jersey, which he had to realize would gin up further hatred toward all Muslims. And, of course, Trump called for (and is now trying to enact) a “total and complete shutdown” of Muslims entering the United States. How can these statements be seen as anything else than as “persecution of a religion different than their own”? If a public figure wanting to immigrate to America had publicly said these many hateful things about Christians or Jews, would you want them living in our country?
3. Would “oppress Americans of any … sexual orientation.” Trump very publicly opposes marriage equality, as does his new vice president. That means Trump believes that Americans who are gay should have fewer rights than straight Americans simply because of their sexual orientation. How can that be seen as anything other than oppression of Americans based on their “sexual orientation”? It’s simple. It can’t.
4. Would “oppress Americans of any race.” During his presidential campaign, Trump called for American-born federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel to be removed from presiding over the Trump University fraud case simply because of his Hispanic heritage. Even House Speaker Paul Ryan, a Republican who has so far not rejected Trump’s executive order, described this attack by Trump on Curiel as the “textbook definition of a racist comment.”
5. Engage “in acts of bigotry or hatred.” How can Trump’s false statement that Mexico is sending rapists to America be viewed as anything but bigotry? And Trump mocking the disability of New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski would be considered by most as an act of hatred.
You get the idea. Trump wouldn’t come close to passing his own ideological vetting test. In fact, I’d predict more Americans would prefer to accept the refugees and deport Trump. His is the very definition of a “hostile attitude” toward America’s “founding principles” of religious freedom and liberty and justice for all.
The reality is, however, Trump is neither subject to such a test nor can he be deported. What’s worse is that a man like Trump, who has spewed so much hate, bigotry and sexism into our public discourse, is the one deciding what are (and are not) “American values” for the purposes of his ideological test to determine who may live and work here. This would be hilarious irony if it weren’t so scary.