Saturday, January 28, 2017

Temporary Protected Status: Something Concerned Muslims Should Think About

The following is from a June 29, 2010, posting on the National Immigration Forum's website. The policies may have been amended since they were published, so contact the organization for additional information and/or updates. 

Temporary Protected Status

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is sometimes granted to nationals of countries in crisis who are presently in the U.S. The Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may designate a country for TPS if the people from that country who are currently in the U.S. would face “on-going armed conflict,” natural disaster, or “extraordinary temporary conditions” that would place them in danger if they were to be returned to their home country. People are granted TPS if they can prove they are from a designated country and that they were present in the U.S. on or before the date the DHS Secretary made the designation. A country’s designation for Temporary Protected Status may last for 6, 12, or 18 months. Persons with TPS will not be deported, and may live and work legally in the U.S. until the designated period expires. TPS can be renewed if the Secretary of DHS determines that unsafe conditions in the country persist. As of June 2010, nationals of six designated countries were protected by TPS. Those countries were: El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Somalia, and Sudan. 

Deferred Enforced Departure

Similar to Temporary Protected Status, Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) is a humanitarian designation to delay the deportation of groups of individuals who would otherwise be placed in danger should they be deported to countries where there is instability for political or other reasons. DED is designated by the President, and is generally granted to nationals of a country for 12 or 18 months. During this time, persons are allowed to work in the U.S. if they obtain employment authorization, for which a fee is charged. First used in 1990, DED has been used only five times thus far. As of June 2010, nationals of Liberia have a grant of DED.

Click here to read the "ABC's of U.S. Immigration". 

Source: The National Immigration Forum

SUNY Student Leaders Oppose Executive Orders

Student Assembly President Marc Cohen, the Executive Committee of the Student Assembly, and campus student government presidents came together to speak out against the discriminatory executive order issued by the President of the United States.

“The President's Executive Order halting the legal immigration and free movement of refugees and citizens of several Muslim-majority countries to enter our own, a country of immigrants, is discriminatory and wrong. We, the elected leaders from across the 64 campuses of largest system of public colleges and universities in the country, stand united in our shame of this hateful decision.

“The President's decision will stall progress on critical research, will prevent students from pursuing their education, and will forever leave a stain on the reputation of the values held dearly by this nation. Let us remind you, Mr. President, of the inscription on the Statue of Liberty: ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.’

“Let us assure you, Mr. President, that these words are not empty. We will fight for justice and equality, and for the most fundamental freedoms that define American greatness. If you try to divide us, you will fail. If you attempt to discriminate, you will fail. If you seek to portray our incredible diversity as anything other than a strength, you will fail. Progress will always prevail.” 

Source: SUNY SA

Judge Grants Temporary Stay in Trump Refugee Order

A federal judge in New York has granted a stay order on President Donald Trump's executive order temporarily restricting entry to the U.S. by those from several predominantly Muslim countries, the American Civil Liberties Union said.

The stay blocks anyone with a valid visa being detained or stranded at airports from being deported, lawyers for the group said. They do not have to be released from detention.

"Stay is granted," ACLU Voting Rights Project Director Dale Ho said on Twitter. "Stay is national."

Crowds outside federal court in Brooklyn cheered the news. The ACLU said the judge ordered a list of detainees to be provided, and said it would go through the names and ensure they are released. 

Click here for the full article. 

Port Authority Ordered to Reverse Decision on JFK AirTrain

Statement from Governor Andrew Cuomo

"One of the fundamental rights that is granted to the people of this country is the right to peacefully protest. I have ordered the Port Authority to reverse its decision regarding the JFK AirTrain. I have also directed the MTA and the New York State Police to assist with transportation and security needs to ensure the safety of all those participating. The people of New York will have their voices heard." 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo 

Note: The governor's statement was submitted to From The G-Man at 8:06 p.m (EST).

Republicans Nervous About Trump's 'Emotional Stability'?

This video was published on YouTube on January 27, 2017. 

Are the Republicans getting worried that Donald Trump is unstable? John Iadarola, Michael Shure, and Jimmy Dore, the hosts of The Young Turks, tell you why they’re concerned. 

Trump Sets 5-Year and Lifetime Lobbying Ban for Officials

Trump Speaks with Putin

President Trump received a congratulatory call today from Russian President Vladimir Putin. The call lasted approximately one hour and ranged in topics from mutual cooperation in defeating ISIS to efforts in working together to achieve more peace throughout the world including Syria. The positive call was a significant start to improving the relationship between the United States and Russia that is in need of repair. Both President Trump and President Putin are hopeful that after today's call the two sides can move quickly to tackle terrorism and other important issues of mutual concern. 

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary

Cuomo on Muslim Ban: 'This is Not Who We Are, And Not Who We Should Be'

“I never thought I'd see the day when refugees, who have fled war-torn countries in search of a better life, would be turned away at our doorstep. We are a nation of bridges, not walls, and a great many of us still believe in the words 'give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses...'

"This is not who we are, and not who we should be.

"I have directed the Port Authority, the Department of State, and my Counsel's Office to jointly explore all legal options to assist anyone detained at New York airports, and ensure that their rights are protected.

"America is a nation of laws and those laws provide rights that must be respected and followed regardless of political ideology." 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo 

Celebrities React To Trump’s #MuslimBan With Anger And Calls To Action

By Cole Delbyck

Hollywood reacted in horror to the news of President Donald Trump’s executive order blocking all refugees from Syria, as well as barring citizens from seven predominantly Muslim countries for the next 90 days. 

Many celebrities who have been actively challenging Trump’s presidency criticized the refugee ban by sharing personal anecdotes and calls to action on social media. 

Pakistani-born “Silicon Valley” star Kumail Nanjiani, who was accosted by Trump supporters in a Los Angeles bar last year, posted a series of tweets that highlighted the ban’s fundamental flaw and pointed to the damaging effects the policy will have on Muslims in and outside American borders.  

Click here for the full article. 

Source: The Huffington Post

Presidential Memorandum on the Plan to Defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria

SUBJECT:   Plan to Defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, is not the only threat from radical Islamic terrorism that the United States faces, but it is among the most vicious and aggressive.  It is also attempting to create its own state, which ISIS claims as a "caliphate."  But there can be no accommodation or negotiation with it.  For those reasons I am directing my Administration to develop a comprehensive plan to defeat ISIS. 

ISIS is responsible for the violent murder of American citizens in the Middle East, including the beheadings of James Foley, Steven Sotloff, and Peter Abdul-Rahman Kassig, as well as the death of Kayla Mueller.  In addition, ISIS has inspired attacks in the United States, including the December 2015 attack in San Bernardino, California, and the June 2016 attack in Orlando, Florida.  ISIS is complicit in a number of terrorist attacks on our allies in which Americans have been wounded or killed, such as the November 2015 attack in Paris, France, the March 2016 attack in Brussels, Belgium, the July 2016 attack in Nice, France, and the December 2016 attack in Berlin, Germany.

ISIS has engaged in a systematic campaign of persecution and extermination in those territories it enters or controls.  If ISIS is left in power, the threat that it poses will only grow.  We know it has attempted to develop chemical weapons capability.  It continues to radicalize our own citizens, and its attacks against our allies and partners continue to mount.  The United States must take decisive action to defeat ISIS. 

     Sec. 1Policy.  It is the policy of the United States that ISIS be defeated.
     Sec. 2Policy Coordination.  Policy coordination, guidance, dispute resolution, and periodic in-progress reviews for the functions and programs described and assigned in this memorandum shall be provided through the interagency process established in National Security Presidential Memorandum – 2 of January 28, 2017 (Organization of the National Security Council and the Homeland Security Council), or any successor.
     Sec. 3Plan to Defeat ISIS.  (a)  Scope and Timing.
(i)    Development of a new plan to defeat ISIS (the Plan) shall commence immediately.
(ii)   Within 30 days, a preliminary draft of the Plan to defeat ISIS shall be submitted to the President by the Secretary of Defense.
(iii)  The Plan shall include:
(A)  a comprehensive strategy and plans for the defeat of ISIS;
(B)  recommended changes to any United States rules of engagement and other United States policy restrictions that exceed the requirements of international law regarding the use of force against ISIS;
(C)  public diplomacy, information operations, and cyber strategies to isolate and delegitimize ISIS and its radical Islamist ideology;
(D)  identification of new coalition partners in the fight against ISIS and policies to empower coalition partners to fight ISIS and its affiliates;
(E)  mechanisms to cut off or seize ISIS's financial support, including financial transfers, money laundering, oil revenue, human trafficking, sales of looted art and historical artifacts, and other revenue sources; and
(F)  a detailed strategy to robustly fund the Plan.
     (b)  Participants.  The Secretary of Defense shall develop the Plan in collaboration with the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of National Intelligence, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, and the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism.
     (c)  Development of the Plan.  Consistent with applicable law, the Participants identified in subsection (b) of this section shall compile all information in the possession of the Federal Government relevant to the defeat of ISIS and its affiliates.  All executive departments and agencies shall, to the extent permitted by law, promptly comply with any request of the Participants to provide information in their possession or control pertaining to ISIS.  The Participants may seek further information relevant to the Plan from any appropriate source.
     (d)  The Secretary of Defense is hereby authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.
                                                            DONALD J. TRUMP

Oval Office Chat: Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany

President Trump and Chancellor Merkel today held an extensive telephone conversation covering a range of issues, including NATO, the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, relations with Russia, and the Ukraine crisis. Both leaders affirmed the importance of close German-American cooperation to our countries' security and prosperity and expressed their desire to deepen already close German-American relations in the coming years. The President and Chancellor also agreed on the NATO Alliance's fundamental importance to the broader transatlantic relationship and its role in ensuring the peace and stability of our North Atlantic community.  In this vein, the leaders recognized that NATO must be capable of confronting 21st century threats and that our common defense requires appropriate investment in military capabilities to ensure all Allies are contributing their fair share to our collective security. The leaders agreed on the need to strengthen already robust cooperation in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism, and to work to stabilize conflict areas in the Middle East and North Africa. The President accepted the Chancellor's invitation to attend the G-20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany, in July, and said he looked forward to receiving the Chancellor in Washington soon. 

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary

Hawa Diallo Unveils Restored Amadou Diallo Mural in the Bronx

Click on the images to increase their size. 

BRONX, NY -- Emerging artist Ms. Hawa Diallo unveiled her new restorations to the famed Amadou Diallo mural in the Bronx today, the first updates to the mural since its creation in 2001.

The 18 foot mural honors the spot where Amadou Diallo, an African immigrant, died in a hail of 41 police bullets on February 4th, 1999. Since then, the mural has become a popular tourist attraction on Wheeler Ave. Hawa Diallo is renovating the mural to honor the life of Amadou Diallo and bring attention to the work of the Amadou Diallo Foundation.

“I’m honored to have had the responsibility to restore this mural and bring attention to an important moment in New York’s history. The fight is not over -- this mural is a reminder of the work our city and our nation needs to do, so that lives like Amadou’s are not lost in the future,” said painter Hawa Diallo.

“This beautiful mural commemorating the life and legacy of Amadou Diallo holds a dear spot in my heart, a reminder of where we have been since that fateful night on Wheeler Avenue, and where we want to go as we continue our fight for justice and equity. I want to thank The Amadou Diallo Foundation, which continues to find ways to improve the relations between residents and the police department while also honoring Amadou’s passion for education, raising money for scholarships that will support our city’s and borough’s future leaders,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. addresses the crowd. He was joined by
members of Amadou Diallo's family and Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner

Today’s unveiling leads up to the 2nd annual Amadou Diallo Foundation Benefit Dinner, taking place February 4, 2017.

The February event will take place at the Alhambra Ballroom, honoring former Congressman Rangel, former Mayor David Dinkins, and Rev. Al Sharpton. Emmy award-winning reporter and multimedia journalist AJ Ross will emcee the dinner.

Ms. Diallo’s latest exhibit will follow both of these events at a later date.

Hawa, a Fulani from West Africa, arrived in the United States as a refugee and as a survivor of genocide. After receiving political asylum in the U.S., Diallo began painting in her mid-40’s, using her near-photographic visual recall to produce paintings rich with the history of her childhood, as well as the pain and beauty of her experiences in Africa. Diallo’s paintings have received worldwide attention, and her work was recently featured in the February 2016 issue of O magazine.

To see more of Hawa Diallo’s work, visit

Source: Mercury