With apologies to Gershwin, I’m not sure about the fish and the cotton, but you don’t have to sing along…nor will you want to.
Yesterday Attorney General Jeff Sessions prepared us all for the next Samantha Bee outburst by making it all but impossible for asylum seekers to gain entry into the United States even if they cited fears of domestic abuse or gang violence in their native country.
He reversed an immigration appeals court ruling that granted asylum to a Salvadoran woman who said she had been sexually, emotionally, and physically abused by her husband.
Sessions claimed that too many Central Americans are claiming “private violence” as rationale for being admitted to this country. As usual, he’s wrong. In truth, for every asylum seeker admitted, ten more are rejected, but it is true that the process can take months or years, and tens of thousands of people remain free here while their cases are adjudicated.
President Trump has long insisted that these become the violent gang members who are “pouring into the United States,” traveling by caravan from Central America. The data again says no, but Sessions, adhering to the fear mongering of his leader, will not succumb to data.
North America has bid to host the 2026 World Cup—it would be a joint effort with Canada and Mexico (if either of those countries is still speaking to us). But Morocco (not a misprint) has raised a serious host challenge of its own and awarding the bid to the U.S. is no longer a slam dunk.
Compounding the problem is the fact that a lot of these soccer players from foreign countries are foreigners, a group of people the president doesn’t like. These foreigners and the governments of the countries in which they dwell are eminently familiar with phrases like “travel ban” and “muslim extremism,” and “shithole countries.” Some of them live there.
On March 12, a promise came from former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson “to issue visas, subject to eligibility under U.S. law, without regard to race, skin color, ethnic, national or social origin, gender, language, religion, political opinion or any other opinion, disability, wealth, birth or any other status, or sexual orientation.”
America—a welcoming and nurturing country for athletes with great footwork and indefatigable energy and fans who will stay in hotels and dine in restaurants and boost the economy.
But for women and children fleeing abuse, Trump says nyet.