Muslim Student Union at UCI Stands Against the “Muslim Ban”
As a student organization representing both Muslim and refugee students at UCI, we condemn President Trump’s recent executive orders to construct a wall and to ban legal immigration from several Muslim-majority countries.
Islamophobia is real and rampant in the United States. The Muslim ban is the manifestation of the US government’s xenophobia and has spurred hatred and violence towards the Muslim community. Most recently, the Islamic Center of Victoria in Texas was burned down and the Islamic Center of Davis in California was vandalized; these attacks are just a couple of many that have been incurred against the Muslim community. Despite the disturbing nature of these attacks, the violence does not end there.
Muslims and those perceived to be Muslim are enduring vitriolic, frightening levels of hate and violence throughout the country: being spit on, verbally harassed and abused, physically assaulted, and even shot. This hate and violence does not exist in a vacuum. It takes place in the context of ongoing and systemic Islamophobia and racism that are pervasive and deep within our society.
The Muslim Student Union stands against the many ways in which anti-Muslim and xenophobic hatred manifests itself, including hate speech and hate crimes; institutionalized racism and state-sanctioned violence; racial and religious profiling in all its forms; and prejudice that targets refugees and immigrants of all backgrounds.
Refugees have fled their home country to protect their families and escape violence, only to be confronted with more violence at the end of their journey. These refugees saw no other option besides abandoning their homes to move to another country. For Americans to build a wall between us and them, to say that they are not welcome here, and to refuse to offer them protection is beyond despicable.
Ever since Trump became the president of the United States of America, he has been inciting more hatred against many minority groups. However, the recent protests at airports nationwide serve as a reminder that there is still hope and unity amongst this division. While the Trump administration’s executive order was put on hold by a federal judge, it is important to not stop fighting.
We, the Muslim Student Union, urge the University of California, Irvine administration and University of California Regents to stand up for the rights of international students to study in the United States, to ensure the physical and mental safety of our Muslim students, and to defend the student visa program so that we can continue to provide opportunities and refuge to scholars and students around the world.
The Muslim Student Union of the University of California, Irvine