Update, September 12, 11:25 am:

To be sure, as has been pointed out by some, Trump has never claimed that all immigrants, or all immigrants from any particular ethnic or religious group or groups, are criminals. Even when he made his notorious campaign speech labeling Mexican immigrants as mainly "criminals" and "rapists", he qualified this by saying that he assumed that some were "good people".

I will leave it up to readers to decide for themselves whether this makes any difference.


My original comment follows:

At a recent rally in North Carolina, Donald Trump once again repeated his favorite Big LIe against immigrants, namely that "undocumented" immigrants are all "horrible criminals".

See, Greg Sargent, Washington Post, September 10:


As Trump dials up the hate, a new poll shows he's in trouble

This ignores independent studies which have shown that overall crime rates among immigrants in general, including both those with and without legal status, are lower than among native born US citizens. See, Alex Nowrasteh, Cato Institute, March 4:

Illegal immigrants and Crime: Assessing the Evidence

Another Big Lie frequently heard from the Trump administration, is that the cruelties, if not outright sadism, of Trump's mass deportation agenda, the terror raids that leave children crying in the streets fro their missing parents - the denial of soap, toothbrushes , sleeping space, clean food and other basic necessities of life to young children in immigration jails which resemble concentration camps in many respects - are only part of "enforcing the immigration laws" against "illegal immigrants."

The reasoning behind this use of the Big Lie seems to be that unless an immigrant has legal status in the US, that individual doe not deserve to be treated as a human being. But these are not the only Big LIes being promoted by Trump and his top officials.

There is a third Big Lie, even more widespread and pernicious than the first two. This is he Big LIe that the Trump administration is only opposed to "illegal " immigration - i.e. immigration by people who are breaking the law. The reality is that nothing could be further from the truth.

Within only a few days after taking office Trump issued two major executive orders aimed directly at stopping legal immigration. The first was the infamous Muslim Ban order, which was euphemistically referred to as a "Travel Ban" in the media, as if religion somehow had nothing to do with it.

This religiously motivated ban was ultimately upheld in what Trump himself complained was a "watered-down " version by the usual 5-4 Supreme Court decision divided along party lines. This was not a ban against "illegal aliens" to use the pejorative, dehumanizing terminology of immigration opponents.

It was a ban on legal immigration - by people applying for legal visas according to the laws, but who were barred from doing so by the Trump administration's Islamophobia.

But at the same time that Trump issued this religiously inspired attack on legal immigration, he issued another executive order attacking another group of legal immigrants, including skilled workers. This assault on legal immigration, also of highly doubtful legality even though it has not yet been challenged in court,, is known as "Buy American - Hire American" ("BAHA").

Form the very title of this order, it is clear that it conflicts with the purpose of the Congressionally enacted laws allowing immigrants to obtain visas to work in the US without requiring that preference be given to Americans, except in certain limited and , clearly defines circumstances.set by law.

Just as the Muslim Ban was based on the Big LIe that all Muslims are terrorists, BAHA was based on the Big Lie that legal immigrants, both skilled and unskilled (such as those working at Trump's resorts) steal jobs from Americans.

Based on this premise, which had never been backed up by any solid proof and which conflicts with independent studies of this issue, Trump next went on the attack against family-based immigration, which he branded with the racist and pejorative term "chain migration ", again using the false argument that it leads to "horrible crime"..

https://www.univision.com/univision-news/immigration/what-does-trump-mean-when-he-talks-about-chain-migration

At the same time, Trump called for abolishing the Diversity lottery green card . Both family immigration and the Diversity green card have been major sources of non-European immigration in the past few decades, even though, of course, neither visa excludes immigrants from Europe or discriminates against them in any way.

Indeed, it has been pointed out that Trump himself is the product of "chain migration", since his German grandfather immigrated to the US to join a sibling. More recently, his wife Melania sponsored her parents for green cards by the same mechanism that Trump now wants to abolish because it is used mainly by immigrants who are not from Trump's preferred "Countries like Norway."

However, knowing full well that there is no chance that Congress will approve the radical changes in legal immigration that Trump has been calling for in order to steer the system in favor of what he calls by the deceptive and meretricious term "Merit-Based" immigration, (by which he means Europeans only immigration) Trump is now trying to accomplish the same thing by administrative fiat through a radical distortion and expansion of the "Public Charge" grounds of exclusion.

Public Charge has a long history of being used as an instrument of racial and ethnic bigotry - first against Irish immigrants during the mid-19th century "Know Nothing" period, then later as part of the infamous Chinese exclusion laws beginning in 1882; then later, against Italian (and other Southern and Eastern European) immigrants, as Trump's USCIS director Ken Cuccinelli recently admitted.

Most shamefully and disgracefully of all, "Public Charge" was also frequently used against Jewish immigrants trying to escape the concentration camps and gas chambers of Europe in the 1930'w and early 1940's.

For more on the bigoted history and purpose of the "Public Charge" rule, see the article by State University of New York (SUNY) law professor Nermeen Arastu in Newsweek, August 21:

Trump's Public Charge Rule is a Cover-Up For Racism - With Disturbing Historical Origins/Opinion

https://www.newsweek.com/trumpa-public-charge-rule-cover-racism-disturbing-historical-origins-opinion-1455485

See also the writings of former City University of New York (CUNY) professor Hidetaka Hirota, a leading authority on the bigoted history of Public Charge. especially as used against Irish and, later on, Asian, immigrants

I will not even discuss Trump's attempt to subvert and dismantle the laws relating to asylum, which, even though one would never know this from hearing Trump's speeches, is another from of legal immigration which he and Miller are trying to render ineffective as much as the courts will let them get away with doing.

Miller has also proposed to reduce the legal refugee admissions quota for 2020 to zero! While no one disputes the president's power to set legal refugee admissions at any level he wants, refugee admissions are already at the lowest level in decades under Trump, and banning refugees entirely would be a betrayal f everything America stands for.

The ere is nothing in the immigration laws that requires the president to ban legal refugees. Doing so is not "enforcing the immigration laws". It is imposing a racist, white supremacist policy on America as part of an effort to take this country back to a less diverse, less equal past, such as existed in the 1924 immigration law which reduced immigration quotas for all countries outside Europe (or the Western Hemisphere) to almost zero.


With all Trump's touting of "Merit Based" immigration, which is clearly designed to favor European, English-speaking immigrants when one looks at the details, one might think that his administration would be supporting H-1B specialty occupation worker visas, since those visas are the essence of what skilled worker immigration means, and only immigrants with at least a bachelor degree or the equivalent in a particular specialty are eligible for this category.

But the reality is that this visa has been a whipping boy of immigration restritionists for a long time, going back at least to the Clinton Administration if not long before that. The reason is that the H-1B visa is highly popular with educated and skilled workers from India, China and other non-European countries.

During his presidential campaign, Trump at one point supported the H-1B visa and then quickly changed his mind and called for its compete abolition. But since Congress has no interest whatsoever in cancelling this visa, USCIS, now dominated by an ardent Trump supporter, Ken Cuccinelli. is very arguably trying to do the same thing, through a hurricane (Category 5) of totally unfounded and in some cases openly biased RFE's and denial decisions.

I will discuss details, including from my own personal experience as an H-1 B lawyer, in my next comment on this topic.


Roger Algase
Attorney at Law