In a December 13 Slate article which is infinitely more important for immigration advocates than news stories about what word or words Nancy Pelosi might have used to express her opinion of Donald Trump's behavior at a recent Oval Office meeting about his Border Wall obsession, but which has received nowhere near as much media attention, Sarah Gardiner, a recently resigned US visa officer at a consulate in Western Europe (she doesn't say which one) minces no words in telling the truth, as she saw it, about the "horrors" of Donald Trump's "racist immigration agenda".


I worked in a U.S. Embassy and saw the stage set for Trump's immigration horrors.


"My experiences implementing this administration's immigration policy have led me to believe that the travel ban paved the way for the separation of families and the current attempts to restrict individuals from exercising their legal right to claim asylum."

She continues:

"Since day one of the Trump presidency, the administration's individual immigration policies have been part of a well-thought out, coordinated strategy of escalation, with the end goal of keeping black and brown immigrants out and keeping America white. This would not have been possible without the collective, gradual normalization of the Trump administration's racist administration agenda over nearly two years of it careening from one shocking policy to the next."

Elsewhere in her article, Gardiner makes clear that she is not writing as some outside polemicist, but as a US visa officer who was compelled by Trump's Muslim ban order to refuse visas to "frantic" applicants by enforcing a policy that, in her words: "...runs counter to core American values".

Gardiner concludes:

"At the end of this year, I am worried fro what comes next. What comes after tear-gassing children in diapers? As we move into 2019 and prepare for the swearing in of a new Congress, we need to take stock of the lessons we have learned. We must not allow cosmetic changes to racist policies to distract us from their underlying animus or their continued harm to vulnerable populations. We must view the treatment of migrant, refugees and asylum-seekers attempting to enter the United States as the human rights issue that it is."

And, finally:

"Critically, we must hold our elected officials accountable for their actions - or inaction- on challenging the Trump administration's racist, xenophobic zero tolerance agenda. Immigration is this administration's chosen vehicle to advance white supremacy, and we must respond to it as such."

One can only add that, while Gardiner focuses on the Trump administration's actions against Muslims, childrenand asylum-seekers, her words are equally applicable to many other aspects of Trump's anti-immigrant agenda as well.

The same motivation, or "animus" against non-white immigrants that caused the Trump administration to lock immigrant children in dog cages and ICE boxes, and douse them with tear gas, is also behind the rule changes that have made it easier to deny all types of legal immigration petitions and applications, including those for highly skilled an educated professionals, without providing a chance to respond to RFE's;; and that could well lead to the mass denial of lawful family immigrant application on wildly skewed. "Trumped up" Public Charge grounds.

It is not enough simply to appose Trump's immigration agenda piecemeal, rule by rule, policy memo by by policy memo, executive order by executive order, demagogic speech by demagogic speech. Each of these actions is part of a larger white supremacist whole, one which could not only destroy our legal immigration system as we know it, but could, ultimately deprive millions of Latino, Asian and other non-white US born Americans of their citizenship, and aqll American of our democracy.

Now is the time for immigration advocates, and all Americans who believe in democracy and human rights for everyone, not just a privileged few, to be more vigilant than ever before.

Roger Algase
Attorney at Law