The Trump administration's justification for its barbaric and inhuman policy of separating Central American mothers seeking asylum from deadly gang violence in their countries from their traumatized, screaming young children, in order to cause as much anguish and pain as possible to people who commit the "crime" of "EWL" - Entry While Latino - has, up to now, been that the administration is, purportedly, upholding the Rule of Law by prosecuting the parents for illegal entry if they cross into the US at an unauthorized crossing point.

The administration's message to asylum-seekers, again up to now has been, in effect:

"Go to an authorized port of entry to present your asylum claim (under a 2008 statute allowing Central American asylum seekers to do so) and we will let you into the US in order to process your claim according to the law."

However, the Washington Post reports on June 13 that asylum seekers who follow this directive and attempt to comply with the law by going to an authorized border-crossing point to present their claims are now being turned away by CBP officers on the grounds that the authorized border crossing points have no room! Some asylum seekers, according to the Post, have been turned away repeatedly after waiting for several days.

Who are the lawless parties now? Central American asylum seekers trying to present their claims at a legal crossing point, exactly as they have the right to do under the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 ("Wilberforce Act") and have been directed to do by Trump's DHS officials, or those same DHS officials who are turning them away in direct violation of that same statute?

And what does this say about the rule of law in America? It is no secret that Donald Trump hates and despises the Wilberforce Act because it allows thousands of Latino and other non-European immigrants to enter the US legally every year in order to have asylum claims processed and decided one way or the other according to this nation's asylum laws (which AG Jeff Sessions is now desperately trying to rewrite by personal diktat in violation of every notion of fundamental fairness, due process and judicial independence - see my June 13 Immigration Daily comment, originally posted on June 12).

Trump has ranted that the United States has the "dumbest immigration laws" of any country in the world.

There can be no question that the Wilberforce Act is at or very near the top of his complaint list in this regard.

The Center for Immigration Studies, a leading anti-immigrant advocacy group with a long record of lobbying for more deportations and less legal immigration, just as Trump is fighting so hard for now, identifies the Wilberforce Act as one the "main impediments" to ending the border "catch and release" policy which Trump has been consistently lashing out against.

As he has also been accused of doing on many other occasions, Trump has totally shredded even the faintest idea of the truth by calling this law a"Democrat
Bill" , even though it was passed with the overwhelming support of both parties and signed by a Republican president, George W. Bush.

America's chief executive has also said, in the course of one of his frequent rants that Americans won't "have a country" because of all the (brown) people who are allegedly able to "pour into our country" because of the Democrats' purported "open borders" policies, that he may need to "close up our country" against asylum seekers (and, based on his previous, January 11 statements at a White House meeting, all other immigrants who don't come from "Countries like Norway").

Will America continue to be a country governed by the rule of law, or will it be governed according to the dictates of a single Strongman whose administration is doing everything in its power to seal our borders (with or without a Wall) against all non-white immigrants, regardless of what the laws of this country say, and which is now (according to the above WP report), openly defying and trashing a law which our nation's Highest Leader may not happen to like?

And the biggest question of all - if the Trump administration can engage in this kind of lawlessness and exercise in one-man rule against immigrants today, what will stop him from doing the same thing against American citizens tomorrow?
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 30 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards.

Roger's practice is primarily concentrated in H-1B specialty occupation, O-1 extraordinary ability and J-1 trainee work visas, and in green cards through Labor Certification (PERM) and through marriage and other family relationships. His email address is