Comment: First and Second
Harking back to some of the rhetoric of the Chinese Exclusion Acts of the 1880s, Republican front runner Donald Trump called "for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States." Of course, there is scant connection between what goes on under Mr. Trump's hair and what emanates from his mouth, not that it in any way impairs his overall verbal output. There is a good chance that even he doesn't believe most of what he says; nevertheless, there are those in America who do believe him. As to the regrettable situation that the electoral franchise extends to Mr. Trump's supporters, we are reminded that democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the alternatives (hat tip to Churchill). Our quarrel is not with Mr. Trump - clown that he is - leaders of the Republican Party have roundly condemned his outrageous and indefensible comments (see Mr. Priebus, Mr. Ryan and Mr. McConnell on CNN), our quarrel is with his supporters. We remind Mr. Trump's supporters of two things: (1) America is the country of liberty and freedom, as enshrined in the Bill of Rights and (2) the historical record shows that when freedom of religion has been abridged, matters have had to be settled by violence. Mr. Trump's supporters should be careful of what they wish for, they might get it: if they seek a fight over religion, they will get it. At this point, we believe that Mr. Trump cannot, on the record, stand for nomination as Republican candidate for President. He should either drop out of the race, as a Republican member of the House of Representatives called on him to do today, or withdraw his statements on Muslims. Mr. Trump's supporters are on notice that their seeking a fight over religion is contrary to the entire American tradition and that this is America - they can either love it (including her Muslims), or leave.

Erratum: In 12/7/2015 issue of Immigration Daily, a blog by Carl Shusterman was mistakenly attributed to Bruce Buchanan.

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