The US Supreme Court has approved Donald Trump’s presumed dictatorial power to ban and imprison any would-be immigrant group he does not like.
The decision is ostensibly about banning Muslims coming into America from certain countries.
But the court’s ruling clearly grants the power to any US president to ban any immigrant group for any reason. And it, by default, approves their detention in concentration camps, as Trump is now doing along the Mexican border.
Trump supporters should understand that this and future presidents can now certainly use it against THEM.
The court’s 5-4 “conservative” majority made the expected fake genuflection against Franklin Roosevelt’s horrifying 1942 Executive Order #9066 forcing some 10,000 Japanese-Americans into concentration camps during World War 2. That decision has been widely denounced ever since, even by former right-wing Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, whose seat has been taken by Neil Gorsuch, who approved this ban. Trump cited FDR’s order in justifying his own.
During the war, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt actually visited those camps. She was not wearing a jacket that said “I Really Don’t Care, Do U?”
Trump’s Jewish supporters here in the US might well reflect that although this ban is currently aimed at Muslims, it could very well be applied to the next boatload of Jewish, Buddhist, Catholic, Methodist or other asylum seekers, depending on Trump’s latest tweet—or on the bigoted whim of any future president.
During WW2, FDR stopped the USS St. Louis from disembarking in Miami. The boat carried more than 900 Jewish refugees from Hitler’s Europe. It was turned away in Cuba, and then by the United States government. That action was clearly on par with Trump’s ban against Muslims, Hispanic asylum seekers and others.
The St. Louis took its refugees back to Europe. Nearly all of them died in Hitler’s death camps.
Our world today is awash in desperate human asylum seekers. in the aftermath of George W. Bush’s assault on Iraq, Obama’s civil war in Syria, American interventions in Afghanistan, Libya and Honduras, horrifying destruction in Yemen, Myanmar’s slaughter of the Rohingya, civil wars in Africa and so much more, millions of our fellow humans are desperately seeking a safe place for themselves and their families.
The United States once offered such asylum. Two of Trump’s three wives took advantage of immigration. So did virtually all of our ancestors here.
But this decision is about far more than that. It approves a president’s dictatorial power to single out any religious, ethnic, national or other group he or she does not like.
One such group—those coming to our southern border with Mexico—has been subjected to the horrifying separation of children from their families, a practice used against Indigenous peoples worldwide (including here in America) and by the Nazis against Jews, Jehovah Witnesses, Gypsies, Slavs, gays, those with infirmities, labor organizers, and many more.
Many thousands more at our southern border are now being herded into de facto concentration camps. They are very explicitly being denied any legal or human rights to which our nation is legally bound by the US Constitution and international treaty.
Trump is doing this. The Supreme Court has certified it. This power is now available to all future presidents.
And GET ACTIVE. YOU and yours are next.
Harvey Wasserman’s Life & Death Spiral of US History: From Deganawidah to the Donald can be ordered via www.solartopia.org. His California Solartopia Show is at KPFK-Pacifica, 90.7FM, Los Angeles; Green Power & Wellness podcasts at prn.fm.