There are total five paragraphs, including introduction, supporters, opponents, impact on international politics and impact on business. One paragraph in English and one in Chinese. The blog is a personal note to help me understand the issue better. Happy to discuss!
Introduction of Trump’s Immigration Ban
Trump signed the executive order (EO) to temporarily bar Syrian refugees and citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries, including Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen from entering the U.S. Around 60,000 U.S. VISA holders were affected, and protests against the EO broke out in airports and cities in the States. Although some regions have judicial orders to temporarily block the EO and let people detained at airports enter the U.S., it is unclear whether Trump administration will enforce and expand the ban or not.
Supporters (slightly more than 50% Americans support the ban)
- This is a security issue. Terrorist organizations are active and receiving funding and training in these countries. America should cut the connection between terrorist organizations in these countries and in the States to avoid terrorist attacks.
- This is a temporary ban. It is good to pause for a while and have thorough investigation on the refugee program and screening process to improve national security.
- This is not a Muslim ban. Only 8% Muslim in the world are affected by this EO, so there is no discrimination on religion.
- American is prioritized. After we are sure that our beloved friends and families are safe, we can have compassion for refugees and support people in need. In addition, though most refugees are good people, only a few bad people can threaten Americans’ safety.
- Bad execution on a good idea. There is a huge gap between the language Trump used and the words in the EO. We support the idea to improve security, but we also agree that the execution is poor, like the abrupt implementation without good communication in advance and random insulting comments on Muslim.
- It is possible to expand. Trump administration mentioned the possibility to expand the list, and the States does feel the threats from other countries, including Russia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and so on.
Opponents (slightly less than 50% Americans oppose the ban)
- This is an ethical issue. Improving the safety level of Americans by barring refugees to enter the States means that Americans are more important than refugees. Are we?
- This is fear mongering of Islamophobia. Since 911, 13k people are killed by guns while only 9 people are killed by terrorists annually in the States. If we do not ban guns, why are we so terrified by Muslim? In addition, for the past 40 years, no one from these countries has killed any American in a terror attack in the States.
- This cannot improve national security. For 911, all the terrorists were not from these countries. In addition, the ban might increase hate and help terrorist organizations recruit more people.
- American values are in danger. Inclusiveness and humanity are the basic values in America, and without immigrants, we would have not been able to achieve so much in past centuries. In addition, America exports its culture to the world a lot, and the ban will increase the Islamophobia around the world without enough communication and fact-based analysis.
- Trump has personal preference in the selection of countries. It is suspected that Trump avoids putting Muslim countries he personally invests in on the list (e.g. Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Egypt.)
Impact on International Politics
- Presidential elections in Europe: after several terrorist attacks in Europe, the ban might further strengthen the xenophobia and help far-right candidates gain more support in the upcoming presidential elections (e.g. France.)
- Global ripple effect of Islamophobia: though several countries condemned the ban immediately, the ripple effect might be more serious than people expected. For example, a far-right Canadian killed 6 Muslims in an attack to a mosque in Quebec.
- Other travel bans: since Trump’s immigration ban, Kuwait also announced a travel ban to bar citizens from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan to enter Kuwait. It is possible to be a serious chain effect and increase the tension among the middle east and the western world.
Impact of Business
- Uber: while the taxi companies supported the protest in New York, Uber announced to temporarily shut down surge pricing to avoid making profits from the protest. However, some people perceived it as a way to get more deals during the protest and started the #DeleteUber action. Soon after, Uber apologized for the confusion, and the CEO resigned from Trump’s advisory council. (Personal comment: once a company’s brand image is damaged, it would be criticized more easily than other companies. In addition, resignation from Trump’s advisory council means losing the power to help the president make right choices. I am not sure if it is a good move for people who want to make a good impact.)
- Tech companies: As the industry hiring the most immigrants, the tech industry has an active role in the protest, and big techs like Facebook, Google and Airbnb all condemned the ban and supported immigrants in public.
- Starbucks: since the ban, Starbucks announced to hire 10k more refugees internationally in next 5 years. While some republicans boycotted Starbucks, there is no evidence that this has a notable impact on its revenue.
- 科技公司：一向為移民的主要就業產業的科技業，在這次抗議中扮演相當積極的角色，例如Facebook, Google, Airbnb等都陸續發表聲明譴責禁令、支持難民
- Interviews with Americans and Muslims (Protest in Boston, Jan. 29, 2017; Harvard Business School, Feb. 2, 2017)
- Harvard Kennedy School JFK Forum (Perspectives on the Trump Executive Order on Immigration, Feb. 3, 2017)
- Harvard Islamic Society (Anti-Islamophobia Network meeting, Feb. 1, 2017)