By Jason Taylor
Sally Yates is a far greater patriot to the USA with a loyalty and integrity than Trump and his minions will never achieve. She’s in a different league than this President. Ms. Yates will be remembered as the victims of Trump’s bullying, but who had enough guts and integrity to stand up to the crass, racist chauvinist pig in the White House. She has more courage than the members of Congress who are brown nosing this certifiable lunatic.
Americans have a hard time remembering history. Many remember movies. Do Trump supporters remember the movie Judgement at Nuremberg? It was about a trial concerning war crimes committed by an enemy. The victors tried all those associated with the losing country’s leader and discovered that the leader had corrupted his justice department by changing laws. Earlier judges were dismissed for not kowtowing to this leader. Many Americans were portrayed in the movie and they decided that these acts were war crimes and acts against humanity. In the movie, the Americans said this type of thing never should or would be committed again. But I guess that was just a movie.
By the way, as it turns out, Friday’s executive order had a few elements that largely went unnoticed because of the uproar about refugees and green card holders. In addition to the entry ban, it suspends a visa interview waiver program that was in place at U.S. consulates worldwide. The waiver exempted many eligible visa renewal applicants from an in-person consular interview. The suspension of the interview waiver applies to all U.S. visa applicants regardless of country of nationality or citizenship and means that wait times for visa interviews are likely to increase significantly.
This is particularly detrimental to foreign students who travel back to their home countries during school breaks, or to foreign academic researchers who often go to research conferences abroad while working at US institutions. To understand that this is not just a minor inconvenience, just imagine having to appear for an interview at a US consular office in a less developed country, where it may take a day just to get there, and then another couple of days to stand in line because of limited processing capacity. So, how soon before many of the bright young people who contribute to the excellence of US research institutions (and money to the economy) decide they’ve had enough and leave for Canada, Europe, or Australia?
This is a moment of truth for the State Department officials: either they stand up for their values and principles and what they believe in. Or, they can cave and quietly enjoy their paychecks.
Things aren’t going to change with the Trump Administration. They will not get better. It’s my way or the highway for this man-child. He hasn’t changed one bit from his campaign, as the ostriches had hoped. This will be just the first of authoritarian measures Trump will take that will go in the face of decades of US policy and principles. He came in with the stated goal of taking on Washington. He’s going to do just that.
Trump didn’t even consult John Kelly, his own appointed DHS Secretary while rolling the executive action out. That’s just his management style. He’s running a family business.
If you need an example of an institutional power base he has neutered, just look at the Republican Party. They have mostly lined up behind him setting aside their decades-old principles around Russia, spending, trade barriers, government by executive decree… Look at Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House: now reduced to endorsing Trump’s executive actions.
What exactly is “the program” Mr. Spicer. Please illuminate those of us who are too ignorant to decode the Trump/Bannon/Spicer ingeniousness of “the program”. Is “the program” a mechanism to purge Washington of all thinking people or merely those who do not agree with alternative facts (or “alt facts”).
Is “the program” an effort to leave families and children fleeing death out in the cold because America “the Great” is too fearful to behave as the founding fathers would have expected? Or is “the program” just a simple attempt to alienate every country and every person outside of our borders who have sided with us and fought with us against terror, drugs, and thuggishness?
And what part of “the program” will address the massive number of gun deaths in America that have nothing at all to do with immigrants or religion. Tens of thousands of people killed by native-born, white-bread Americans is OK, but let’s stop a starving child from breaching our hallowed walls.
Sorry, Trump. The United States is not your personal enterprise. We are a multi-tiered democracy, right down to the citizenry. Kellyanne Conway flippantly warned that you were “just getting started” and said, “get used to it.” Well, we too are just getting started, so get used to it.
Ms. Yates may have somehow “betrayed” the administration, but she didn’t betray the Constitution. And that is the only thing that really matters.