Update, June 18, 9:40 am

In my original post below, after analyzing the June 15 federal court decision dismissing the bigoted lawsuit brought by the State of Texas seeking to exploit fear and hatred of Muslims by banning Syrian refugees, arguably the most innocent and vulnerable of all targets of Islamic extremist terror groups such as ISIS, from being resettled in that state after being admitted to the US on the basis of intensive and prolonged screening, I quoted some lines from the great Roman poet Lucretius which apply, more than 2,000 years after they were written, to Donald Trump's anti-immigrant madness and his authoritarian agenda for America.

I would like to quote one more line from Lucretius immortal philosophical poem De Rerum Natura ("On the Nature of Things") as follows:

nam neque nos agere hoc patriae tempore iniquo/possumus aequo animo...

("Neither, in this time of danger for our country, can I look on indifferently..." - my own translation - this quote and the quotations below are all from Book 1)

None of us who care about democracy in America can afford to be indifferent to the danger posed by Donald Trump's attempts to fan the flames of fear and hatred against Latino and Muslim immigrants in order to take away our freedoms.

My original post appears below:

On June 15, a US District Court dismissed the latest court action by Texas officials attempting to expel or bar minority immigrants from their state.


Texas Health and Human Services Commission v. U.S. Civil Action No. 3:15-CV-3851-N

A report on and link to the full text of the decision can be found at:


District Judge David C. Godbey of the District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division issued an order dismissing a lawsuit brought by the Texas Health and Human Services Committee against the federal government and a private organization. International Rescue Committee (IRC) claiming that the federal government had failed to consult adequately with the State as required by law before settling a tiny number of Syrian refugees - one or two hundred at most according to news reports.

The lawsuit also claimed breach of contract by the IRC in allegedly failing to provide information to the State about cash and other assistance it was providing to these refugees.

The Court did not reach the merits of either claim, much less deciding the issue of whether this small handful of people, all of whom had been screened by the federal government before being admitted to the United States, presented a "safety threat" to the people of Texas - an argument which the same Court had previously rejected when it refused to grant a preliminary injunction.against admission of the refugees.

Instead,Judge Godbey dismissed the lawsuit for failure to state a cause of action. With regard to the claim that the federal government had failed to consult with Texas adequately before admitting the refugees, the Judge ruled that the federal statute requiring such consultation did not confer a private right of action to enforce that provision, whether on the State of Texas or anyone else.

The Judge also ruled that the federal government did not violate the Administrative Procedure Act because consultation, or alleged failure to do so did not constitute "agency action" within the meaning of that statute.

Finally, Judge Godbey held that the State's breach of contract claim against the IRC must fail because the contract between the Texas and the IRC only related to providing information about services given by the IRC to refugees after resettlement. The complaint alleged that the IRC had failed to provide the IRC with information about assistance before resettlement, something that was not covered by the contract.

The issue of whether the State of Texas had a right to sue to enforce the provisions of the federal law requiring consultation is different from the question of whether Texas has standing to sue to block President Obama's DAPA/expanded DACA initiative in the case wich is now before the US Supreme Court.

But there is a common element in these two cases
.Just as it should have been clear to the Texas Attorney General and other officials who initiated the Syrian refugee lawsuit that the statutes they were relying on did not in fact provide any reasonable basis for suing the federal government in this case, there is also a strong argument that the contention by Texas that it has standing to sue in the DAPA/DACA case is based on an entirely manufactured (and inconsequential) "injury" to that State, namely higher drivers license costs which the state could easily have avoided by raising its drivers license fees.

In other words, the bases for both these lawsuits arguably show all the indications of being Trumped-up, if one will pardon the phrase. Both of these cases bear all the earmarks have having been brought purely for political reasons - as statements that neither Muslim immigrants (as in the Syrian refugee case) nor Latino immigrants (as in the DAPA/DACA are welcome in the State of Texas, at least as determined by that state's highest elected officials.

Speaking of Donald Trump, it is a relief that, while more than a,day has passed since the Syrian refugee decision, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, who has pledged to send all lawfully admitted Syrian refugees in America back to Syria, to be blown to bits by Assad or butchered by ISIS, has not issued any racial slurs against Judge Godbey, even though it is highly unlikely that Trump would agree with the Judge's decision.

This is no doubt because the name of the Judge, who is a George W. Bush appointee, does not appear to be either Latino or Middle Eastern in origin. One can only imagine what Trump would be saying if the Judge's name, instead of the Anglo-Saxon sounding Godbey, had been Gonzalez - or Ghazi.

Both the Syrian refugee lawsuit and the DAPA/DACA lawsuit are also reminders that Donald Trump, and his racial/religious attacks on Latinos and Muslims did not suddenly appear out of nowhere, but had their origins of at least two decades of Republican attempts to exploit prejudice against minority (or "third world") immigrants for political gain - beginning with IIRIRA, which was passed in 1996.

More than 2,000 years ago, in the tumultuous first half of the first century B.C., when Rome was being torn apart by civil wars and would be dictators, including Julius Caesar,, which ultimately led to the destruction of the Roman republic and its replacement by the emperor Augustus Caesar later in that century, one of the greatest of all Roman poets, Lucretius, wrote the following in his incredibly beautiful and profound philosophical poem De Rerum Natura ("On the Nature of Things"):

quas ob res ubi viderimus nil posse creari
de nilo..."

("For which reasons, when we perceive that nothing can be created from nothing...")

(Loeb Classical Library, Copyright (c) 1975, 1992 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College)

In the same way, Donald Trump's tirades and attempts to whip up fear and hysteria against minority immigrants because of race and religion did not arise out of nothing. They are part of an American tradition going back more than 150 years to the time of the anti-Irish, anti-Catholic Know Nothings.

They are the direct predecessor of today's anti-Latino, anti-Muslim, anti-Asian and anti-African and Caribbean immigrant Know Nothings.

Lucretius, in the same poem, also wrote the famous line that Voltaire, the great 18th Century French humanist philosopher, wrote would last as long as the human race:

tantum religio potuit suadere malorum

("Superstition was able to cause such great evil."
- the undersigned's translation)

Donald Trump's anti-Latino and anti-Muslim rants and his wild attacks on anyone who disagrees with them, including accusing the president of the United states (whose birth in Amerirca Trump has never accepted as a fact) of putting the interests of our enemies ahead of those of the American people, can well come onder the heading of the Latin word "religio" ("superstition") in the above passage.

Tump's racial/religious attacks or "superstition", also known as demagogy, aided and abetted by other politicians who are also trying to exploit hatred against immigrant minorities, such as the Texas officials who brought the two lawsuits discussed above, can also lead to malorum i.e. the evils of overturning America's fundamental values of racial and religious tolerance and equality, or even destroying the foundations of our democracy itself.
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School who has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants obtain work visas and green cards for more than 35 years.

Roger studied elementary/intermediate Latin at the Fieldston School, New York NY, and at Phillips Academy, Andover MA. His email address is algaselex@gmail.com

To be continued.