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  1. Why Was Trump so Reluctant to Condemn the White Nationalists in Virginia? Is it Because He Shares Their Europeans-Only Immigration Goal? Roger Algase

    The following comment has been expanded as of August 15 at 12.35 pm.

    The latest news report shows that the White House has finally clarified his comments on the Charlottesville rally to condemn explicitly the "extremist groups" including white supremacists, KKK and neo-Nazis, who instigated the rally which has taken three lives so far.

    Any indication that the Trump administration shares the outrage against the neo-nazi hatred and violence in Charlottesville that every decent American, including many of Trump's strongest supporters in the Republican leadership who have openly expressed their condemnation of this white supremacist rally, must feel, is surely welcome.

    But why did the White House take so long to issue that statement, which did not come out until the afternoon of August 13, the following day?

    Why has the president still not spoken out directly to condemn the neo-nazis and white supremacists who caused the deaths of three people related to the rally?

    Could it just possibly be because he shares their objectives of limiting US immigration to people from mainly white areas of the world, which is also the obvious purpose of the RAISE Act that the president has praised so highly?

    Is it because, like the white nationalists and neo-nazis eho demonstrated in Virginia, Trump also wants to engage in ethnic cleansing of black and brown immigrants already in the United States through mass arrests, incarceration, deportation and violation of basic due process and human rights?

    My earlier comments follow:

    The following has been updated as of 8:23 am on August 13:

    America is now experiencing even more serious effects from the relentless campaign of defamation, exclusion, deportation and fear against Latino, Muslim and other non-white immigrants that Donald Trump has been carrying out as candidate and president for the past two years. The Guardian reports that at least one person has been killed in the course of violence that took place in the wake of a horrifying rally of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12. (The death toll has now risen to 3, according to later reports.)

    The same paper also reports that Trump issued a statement condemning bigotry and hatred in general "on many sides", but he did not condemn the white nationalists (who used to be known has neo-Nazis in the days when journalists had more courage and were more direct than seems to be the case now) who organized the rally in particular. This failure has led to widespread criticism from other Republican leaders.

    To what extent were the same white supremacists in Charlottesville whom Trump refused to criticize specifically inspired by Trump's numerous speeches as a candidate condemning Latino immigrants as "criminals", "rapists" and drug dealers who are destroying America, and labeling most or all of the world's Muslims as potential terrorists, while demonizing highly skilled South Asian and East Asian immigrants as "stealing" jobs from Americans; as well as his actions as president in seeking to ban almost 200 million Muslims from six different countries from entering the US, widening the deportation dragnet for non-criminal immigrants and, mot recently of all, promoting the RAISE Act, which would make drastic cuts in legal immigration from Latin America, Africa and Asia?

    David Duke, former KKK leader and one of the Charlottesville rally's strongest supporters, directly attributed the inspiration for the rally to the president in the following tweet:

    "This represents a turning point for the people of this country. We are determined to take our country back...We are going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump. That's what [we] believed in. That's why we voted for Donald Trump."

    Just in case anyone missed the reference, "Taking Back America" was a hallmark of Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric during the campaign and is still arguably one of his hallmark slogans as president: See, Breitbart News (July 30):

    Seven Ways Trump is Taking Back America's Culture

    It is also at least implied in some of Trump's "America First" immigration executive orders.

    But why should there be any surprise that Trump initially failed to condemn the neo-nazi white supremacist rally in Charlottesville?

    His entire campaign, followed by his entire presidency to date, has been imbued with the spirit of hate toward people of color and other racial/religious minorities. In his ideology, his glorification of white "civilization" and the supposed need to protect America's borders against people belonging to other enthicities and non-Christian religions such as Islam, something that formed the cornerstone of Trump's Warsaw speech, Trump was not only supporting the white nationalists, but was clearly identifying himself as one of them, as POLITICO explained right after the speech:

    See also, writing shortly after Trump's inauguration:

    Trump's Muslim ban is no surprise: Our new president's agenda is fueled by white nationalism

    Moreover, Trump has not only brought the white nationalists' racism to Washington with him, but also its proto-fascist, anti-democratic agenda, as so obviously apparent in his attacks on the press and the courts during his campaign, and his calls to rough up protesters at his own violent rallies; not to mention his horrifying incitement to police brutality against immigrants at his recent Brentwood NY speech.

    (And don't forget the centerpiece of Trump's entire immigration agenda - his Border Wall of anti-Mexican, anti-Latino hate and humiliation.)

    For an in-depth analysis of the white nationalists whom Trump brought to Washington, or tried to bring, after his election, see POLITICO.

    No wonder that Trump was so hesitant to speak out against the white supremacists and neo-nazis who caused the deaths of three innocent people in Charlottesville. At bottom, the people who organized this violent, racist, proto-fascist rally were Trump's people. In his most basic instincts of authoritarian white supremacy, of which Trump's goals of persecution and exclusion of non-white immigrants are an essential part, Trump has been showing himself to be an ally and supporter of the rally's leaders, if not actually one of them himself.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards.

    Roger's email address is

    Updated 08-15-2017 at 11:36 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  2. Trump's Demonizing of Immigrants is Only the First Step on a Road That Could Lead to Dictatorship (and Nuclear War). Roger Algase

    Update: August 12, 1:03 pm:

    The Hill
    reports on August 12 that a Charlottesville, Virginia Newspaper has used the same phrase "fire and fury" that Donald Trump used to threaten North Korea with retaliation in describing a white nationalist rally which took place in that state.

    Obviously, Trump did not write that headline and is not responsible for anything which that newspaper says.

    But it is not entirely a surprise that the same president who used the above phrase in a patently irresponsible and absurd attempt to intimidate North Korea (while at the same time risking nuclear war and the extinction of life on this planet) has also distinguished himself for making hostile comments about minority immigrants (whom he called "animals" in his recent Brentwood, New York speech) throughout his campaign and presidency.

    This is in the same venomous spirit of hatred and prejudice that the white nationalists (many of whom are also Trump supporters) have also been showing at their rallies toward all people of color.

    My original comment follows:

    Much of the commentary on Trump's immigration speeches and actions, both as candidate and president, has tended to look at each element of his policies in isolation. The implied assumption has, all too often, been that none of the issues raised by Trump's approach to immigration has had any relation to the rest of his immigration policies, let alone to his broader agenda of cutting back on or eliminating the basic rights that the American people are used to taking for granted, such as freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the right to vote and separation of powers with an independent judiciary.

    There has been even less discussion of how any given detail of immigration policy could affect even broader issues involving America's place in the world, our relations with other countries, or the survival of the human race itself. Instead, each piece of Trump's immigration agenda has been looked at as if it were part of a larger jigsaw puzzle, but a puzzle in which there were no other pieces except the one at hand; or, or there were any other pieces, none of them had any significance.

    To give only the most recent example, Trump's support for the RAISE Act, which would make one of the biggest changes in our entire immigration history by making drastic cuts in immigration from non-white areas of the world and take this country a very long way on the road leading back toward the infamous "Nordics"-only Immigration Act of 1924 (which Adolf Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf that he had drawn inspiration from because of the law's racial assumptions), is being trivialized in much of today's discussion as only a theoretical debate over whether an immigration point system is better than one based on invitation.

    This tendency toward isolation, "slicing and dicing" each piece of the immigration picture and focusing on that issue exclusively has been apparent in many other areas of the discussion:

    Are grandparents of US citizens close enough relatives so as to be exempt from Trump's ban on immigrants from six almost 100 per cent Muslim countries?

    How long does an immigrant have to have been in the United States for, or how far from the border does he or she have to be apprehended, before losing the right to a due process deportation hearing and being subjected to expedited removal?

    Should a Wall with Mexico be a real for a virtual one, or a combination of both, and where should the funding come from?

    In determining the real intent and purpose of Trump's Muslim ban orders, how far back in time (if at all) should the federal courts go in looking at his various statements and actions showing what the US 4th Circuit Court of Appeals recently referred to as the president's "animus" against Muslims and the Muslim religion in an overwhelming 10-3 en banc decision which is now under review by the Supreme Court?

    Even more absurdly, as I have mentioned in a recent comment, is it acceptable in a free and democratic society to arrest immigrants seeking justice, or at least self-protection by reporting crimes, inside a courthouse (as long as the arrest doesn't take place in the courtroom itself!), or should the arrests take place only outside the court house door - or across the street?

    At the risk that some readers may find the following comment offensive (though it is not intended to compare Trump in any way with Hitler's anti-semitism or genocide, neither of which Trump has ever shown the slightest scintilla of sympathy or support for), arguing over issues such as these is at least faintly reminiscent of the debate in 1930's Germany over how many Jewish grandparents would define someone as a Jew under the notorious Nuremberg Laws.

    Admittedly, many people, immigration lawyers and policy analysts included, are very fond of arguing over trivia and minute detail instead of focusing on the larger picture. But in view of Donald Trump's latest wild threats to launch a first strike on another unpredictable and irresponsible leader, North Korea's Kim Jong Un (see the following link for the latest, as of this writing)

    something that could lead to a nuclear holocaust and the extinction of humanity, it is no longer possible to avoid looking at the larger implications of Trump's autocratic, bellicose policies against immigrants from non-white areas of the world.

    As two respected analysts, Colin Kahl and Hal Brands, wrote in Foreign Policy some six months ago, on January 31, Trump's obsession with the alleged dangers presented by non-white immigrants, needs to be looked at a part of a grand strategy, a world view, (Weltanschauung, if you will) that may have catastrophic consequences for America and the entire world.

    See: Trump's Grand Strategic Train Wreck

    Professors Kahl and Brands see Trump's entire world view as dominated by three main threats to the United States:

    1) Radical Islam (which Trump tends to conflate with the entire Muslim religion worldwide)

    2) Trade competition from China (which Trump also blames for "failing" to contain North Korea);

    and, arguably the one he has tried to exploit most of all, in as many ways as he can:

    3) Illegal Immigration (by which Trump obviously means all immigration, including legal immigration from non-white areas of the world, as shown in his support for the RAISE act).

    How Trump is using all of these perceived threats, and especially the alleged threat of immigration from non-white parts of the world such as Latin America, the Middle East and South Asia, in order to amass as much uncontrolled power for himself as possible and divert public attention away from his own legal problems, chiefly relating to Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Trump's alleged Russia ties, even if this risks a possible nuclear war with North Korea and the extinction of the entire human race, will be discussed further in my next, forthcoming, comment on the above Foreign Policy article.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards.

    Roger's email address is

    Updated 08-12-2017 at 12:06 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. ICE Arrests at Courthouses are Creating More Fear Under Trump as America Comes Closer to Police State. Are Hospital Arrests Next? Roger Algase

    A news report from April shows that arrests of immigrants without proof of legal status in the US at courthouses throughout the United States are becoming more noticeable and creating more fear under the Trump administration, though this practice was hardly unknown under President Obama.

    Vox reports:

    "Police departments are reporting problems with getting victims and witnesses of crime to come in and testify, and noticing that fewer Latina women are seeking restraining orders from domestic abusers."

    Access to justice without fear of being arrested is one of the most essential features of a free society. The moment that anyone in America is put in fear of arrest, imprisonment or deportation for going to court to protect himself or herself, or to assert one's legal rights, we can no longer call ourselves democratic country, but we have moved one big step closer to a police state.

    Admittedly, I do not know the full extent to which this trend toward authoritarian rule and extinguishing the basic human right of access to justice may have increased under Trump or continued in the past four months since this report appeared.

    However, the latest news reports indicate that ICE arrests are still taking place inside courthouses, if not necessarily inside courtrooms themselves (at least in New York).

    In such a case, there is one further question which immediately comes up:

    Will ICE arrests at hospitals, churches and other places of medical treatment or religious worship be next?
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards.

    Roger's email address is

    Updated 08-14-2017 at 06:31 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. Democrats peddling 'false hope' act to immigrants. By Nolan Rappaport


    Late last month, Congressman Luis Gutiérrez (D-Ill.), introduced the American Hope Act, H.R. 3591, with 116 co-sponsors, all Democrats.

    The bill would provide conditional permanent resident status for undocumented aliens who were brought to the U.S. before their 18th birthday, which would permit them to live and work here legally for three years and put them on a path to Legal Permanent Resident status and citizenship.

    Such bills are referred to as “DREAM Acts,” an acronym for “Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act.”

    It might be more accurate, however, to call this bill “The False Hope Act.”

    Bills to provide lawful status for undocumented aliens who were brought here as children have been pending in Congress since 2001, and we are yet to see one enacted legislatively, rather than by executive action. And this one was introduced by Democrats in a Republican-controlled Congress. Moreover, it is out of step with President Donald Trump’s policies on legal immigration.

    What about DACA?


    First published on The Hill

    About the author.

    Nolan Rappaport was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an executive branch immigration law expert for three years; he subsequently served as an immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for 20 years.

    Updated 08-07-2017 at 01:39 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  5. Another Indication of Trump's Muslim Entry Ban's Effect on America: Minnesota Mosque is Attacked; FBI Reportedly Investigating. Roger Algase

    Yet another US mosque or Islamic center has reportedly been attacked, in the latest indication of the effect that Donald Trump's Muslim entry ban is having on America.

    In an August 6 update to the above story, The Guardian reports that the mosque serves the Somali community and that Minnesota has the largest such community in the US.

    The Guardian report also points out:

    "Saturday's bombing comes amid a rise in reports of anti-Muslim incidents in the US, including arson attacks and vandalism at mosques, harassment of women wearing head coverings and bullying of schoolchildren. Recently in Minnesota, an Islamic cemetery in Castle Rock Township reported it had been vandalized with spray pained profanities ans swastikas."

    It will also be remembered that on November 6, 2016, only two days before the election, Trump made a speech in Minnesota in which he accused Somali immigrants of supporting terrorism and attacked them as a "disaster" for Minnesota.

    Somalia is also on the list of six almost 100 per cent Muslim countries whose citizens are banned from entering the US purely because of their nationality according to Trump's executive order which is now before the US Supreme Court.

    Is this attack one more example of the law of cause and effect, and of the fact that words have consequences?
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants obtain work visas and green cards for more than 35 years.

    Roger's email address is

    Updated 08-06-2017 at 11:34 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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