Tomorrow the Anaheim City Council will consider a resolution requested by District 3 Councilman Jose F. Moreno opposing the Trump Administration’s post-inauguration Executive Order #13769 establishing a 90-day pause on entry into the US by foreign nationals from seven turbulent, jihadist terrorism-torn countries with Muslim majorities. It’s a resolution born of progressive multiculturalism that regurgitates left-wing talking points and incorporates Sanctuary City sentiments for good measure.
The staff report claims EO #13769 “seeks to disparately ban Muslims from entry into” the United States, and goes on to state that Moreno’s resolution also vaguely “affirm[s] our values of kindness and compassion in supporting policies that affirm constitutionally protected civil and legal rights” – without ever specifying he policies it is supporting or which “civil and legal rights” it seeks to protect.
The staff report’s claim of seeking to “disparately ban Muslims” is false. It applies to all foreign nationals – Muslim and non-Muslim alike – from the seven designated countries “of particular interest” – Sudan, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen – are Muslim-majority. It’s true those countries have populations that are Muslim-majority – but so do 43 other Muslim-majority countries which are not affected by the travel pause. It’s a real stretch – an untruth, really – for the staff report to claim it singles out Muslims.
Furthermore, Executive Order #13769 was not only blocked by federal judges (in what many consider absurd instances of judicial overreach), but was rescinded and replaced by Executive Order # 13780 on March 16 – an event the resolution alludes to in its seventh “whereas.” EO #13780 itself is mired in judicial restraining orders.
In other words, Moreno’s resolution condemns an executive order that is no longer in effect and a successor EO whose implementation can be charitably descried as problematic. Still, it’s useful to compare the reality of these executive orders to the progressive hysteria embodied in Moreno’s resolution.
EO 13769’s stated intent was to “protect its citizens from foreign nationals who intend to commit terrorist attacks in the United States; and to prevent the admission of foreign nationals who intend to exploit United States immigration laws for malevolent purposes.”
It placed a temporary 90-day suspension of the “issuance of visas and other immigration benefits” to nationals from seven “countries of particular concern” while the pertinent federal agencies conducted a review to determine what information was needed from “any country to adjudicate any visa, admission, or other benefit” in order to determine whether nationals from those seven countries are who they “claim to be” and “not a security or public-safety threat.” It caps at 50,000 the number of refugees to be admitted in 2017,and suspends the US Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days.
However, if Councilman Moreno’s resolution is to be believed, this limited travel pause is an assault on the Constitution that designed to marginalize and instill fear in the people of Anaheim.
The reality is this resolution is an illogical hodge-podge of non-sequiturs, progressive pieties and multicultural mumbo-jumbo, and it deserves to be voted down.
The resolution begins on a note of intellectual confusion, reminding us that the First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
That is absolutely correct – and neither here nor there.
The executive order neither establishes a religion nor prohibits any American or legal resident from the free exercise of their faith. It is the Constitution of the United States and does not apply to people in other countries. 1st Amendment guarantees of religious liberty aren’t being infringed and aren’t germane to this issue, which falls within the realm of national security and immigration.
Here again, Councilman Moreno and his allies attempt to turn everything into an issue of identity politics – of which the resolution reeks.
Moreno’s resolution asserts Anaheim’s “solidarity” – a favorite buzzword of the Left – with “immigrants, refugees, and Muslims who have been targeted because of their national origin, ethnicity, race and/or religion.”
Targeted by whom? Does this refer to the targeting of Shiites by Sunnis, and vice-versa? Jihad being waged by Islamist terrorists against the ancient Christian communities of the Middle East? ISIS enslavement of women and children? If yes, then every right-minded person is on the side of those so oppressed.
The resolution curiously omits any mention of the Islamist cleansing of Christians in the Levant, or recent Palm Sunday massacre of Egyptian Copts by Islamist terrorists. Or any mention of anti-Christian terrorism, at all. The travel pause applies to terrified Christians seeking to escape jihadist killings, as well.
Given the progressive identity politics provenance of the resolution, however, the “targeting” could well refer to Administration efforts to secure the country against jihadist terror attacks.
The resolution calls on the Trump Administration to rescind “Executive Order that have a disparate impact on local communities because they marginalize groups based on their national origin, ethnicity, race and/or religion and run contrary to the United States Constitution and our American values.”
Come again? Pausing entry by foreign nationals from six Islamist terrorism-plagued countries for 90-days while vetting procedures are reviewed “marginalizes” people and is contrary to the Constitution? This is an example of how disordered progressive thought has become – how thoroughly it has been captured by political correctness. The Constitution was ordained and established, in part, “to provide for the common defence” – yet Councilman Moreno believes a policy intended entirely for that purpose is contrary to the Constitution?
Moreno’s resolution would put the city on record as “Oppos[ing] laws and policies designed to instill a rhetoric of fear in residents of Anaheim.” That’s a nonsensical statement. Does the councilman from District 3 really believe either travel pause executive orders – or any other laws and policies – are “designed” to “instill a rhetoric of fear” in Anaheim residents? How does one even “instill” rhetoric into people?
Next section incorporates some sanctuary city-ish language:
“Reaffirms its support for local measures and policies that affirm constitutionally protected civil and legal rights, and ensure that those targeted on the basis of religion, national origin, ethnicity, race or immigration status can turn to their local government without fear of recrimination.”
Employing vague, imprecise language is a hallmark of progressives. What “local measures and policies”? What does it mean to be “targeted” for the above reasons, and by whom? What is entailed in turning to City Hall “without fear of recrimination” if one if being “targeted” by someone? Given Councilman Moreno’s support for making Anaheim a sanctuary city, it’s reasonable to suspect this is sub rosa sanctuary city language being slipped in to make this resolution a more potent sop to his core progressive supporters. The language can be reasonably construed to forbid any cooperation between Anaheim police and federal immigration or counter-terror agencies.
Some additional context as to what might be included in this part of the resolution how then-candidate Moreno responded at a progressive council candidates forum last year in answer to a question about the Homeland Security Department’s Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) program, which provide grants to local government and NGOs to counter the radicalization that produces lone wolf jihadist terrorist attacks.
The panelist called the program as discriminatory and asked if candidates would oppose Anaheim’s participation in the program. Moreno said he would:
“Based on what evidence has already been presented about the program, it has already shown to be discriminatory on its face and in its practice, so yes I would say ‘no’ to it on those grounds.”
Again, a program intended to prevent radicalization that could lead to terrorist violence is run through the identity politics filter and stamped “discriminatory.” Anaheim has not, to our knowledge, applied for CVE grants, nor is OC Daily aware of any plans by Anaheim to do so. However, Moreno’s resolution could be reasonably construed to forbid Anaheim’s participation in any counter-terrorism partnerships that the ACLUor the Council on Islamic American Relations or Moreno’s Muslim-Latino Collaborative complain are “discriminatory.”
Councilman Jose Moreno’s resolution targets an Administration executive order that has been rescinded; the successor EO is crippled by judicial injunctions and already 39 days into its 90 day duration. It’s a rhetorical red-meat to shore up Moreno’s standing with his progressive core supporters grown impatient with Councilman Moreno’s tepidness compared to candidate Moreno’s leftist fire-breathing. If this resolution was being presented to progressive hothouses like the Berkeley or Los Angeles or Santa Ana city councils, its approval would be a foregone conclusion.
A majority of the Anaheim City Council is – ostensibly, at least – are conservative Republicans who should treat this resolution to a swift defeat.