POLITICO reported in July that Trump's Department of Justice, in an apparent effort to make sure that not one single more Muslim immigrant is allowed to enter the US than absolutely required by the courts, appealed to the Supreme Court from a ruling by a Honolulu federal judge that Muslim grandparents should be considered "close relatives" and therefore exempt from Trump's six Muslim country ban executive order.

Since grandparents are not in an age group generally associated with the danger of terrorist attacks, and, to the best of my knowledge, there have few if any reports of terror attacks by seniors in America, Europe, or anywhere else in the world, the "national security" pretext for barring Muslim grandparents from the US is so absurd that the whole dispute would verge on comedy - if there were not also a very dark historical precedent for obsession over grandparents in a legal enactment.

I refer to the 1936 Nazi Nuremberg laws. These laws, which were the prelude to the ultimate goal of total exterminations of the Jewish people, had very precise definitions of who was Jewish, and therefore subject to discrimination and eventual elimination.


One of the best known features of that law was determining how many Jewish grandparents a person needed to have in ordered to be considered Jewish.

This does not in any way imply that the Trump administration is anti-Semitic or supports genocide or extermination in any form. Of course it is not and does not. But using grandparents as means to advance an agenda of discrimination against any targeted minority group, whether German Jews nine decades ago or Muslim immigrants to America today, sets an unfortunate precedent and brings back memories of some of the world's darkest history.

My respectful suggestion to the president, and to his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, who already raised eyebrows less than three years ago by praising the same US Coolidge-era "Nordics" only 1924 immigration law in Sessions' January, 2015 immigration "Handbook" for Congressional Republicans that Adolf Hitler praised some 90 years earlier in Mein Kampf, would be to let Muslim grandparents well enough alone, and to focus on real national security issues instead.

The world has already been there about targeting grandparents of unpopular minorities. We do not need to go there again.

The POLITICO report is at:


Fortunately, on July 19, the Supreme Court rejected the DOJ's appeal and ruled that grandparents and other close relatives of US citizens are exempt from the Trump-Sessions Muslim entry ban.


The above month-old story (as of this writing) might seem like ancient history to some readers, but it is still very much relevant as Trump heads to Phoenix later today, August 22.

He will be leading a rally at which there is widespread fear by supporters of racial equality and justice in America that the president could inflame feelings of animosity and prejudice by his followers even further against another targeted immigrant minority, Latinos, by issuing a pardon to the notorious, anti-immigrant, former Sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona, Joe Arpaio.


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Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green without regard to ancestry, ethnic background or religion, in the true spirit of America.

Roger's email address is algaselex@gmail.com