Monday, January 30, 2017

"A government of laws, not of men"

This weekend has shown us both the worst and the best of America, with Trump's racist Muslim-ban, followed by mass-protests at major airports and cities against it and lawyer flash-mobs to help its victims, and US courts stepping in to bar the deportation of those detained so far. But its also shown us just how tenuous the rule of law is in the USA - because when push comes to shove, Trump's border guards are ignoring those court orders:

Customs and Border Protection agents defied the orders of federal judges regarding Donald Trump’s travel bans on Sunday, according to attorneys who rallied popular protests around the country in support of detained refugees and travellers from seven Muslim-majority countries.

“Rogue customs and Border Patrol agents continue to try to get people on to planes,” Becca Heller, director of the International Refugee Assistance Project, told reporters on Sunday. “A lot of people have been handcuffed, a lot of people who don’t speak English are being coerced into taking involuntary departures.”


“We continue to face Border Patrol’s noncompliance and chaos at airports around the country,” said Marielena Hincapie, director of the National Immigration Law Center. Officials, she said, were “kafkaesque” in their confused responses, and Trump’s order “has already caused irrevocable harm, it has already caused chaos”.

At its birth, the USA proudly proclaimed itself to be "a government of laws, not of men" - that the law was more important than the will of the king. Clearly that is no longer true anymore. The "world's greatest democracy" is fast turning into the world's biggest despotism.