Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has found what seems to be a winning strategy: when a poll shows that he might be losing his lead, he makes an outrageous statement. His poll numbers then rise. On December 7, 2015 Trump said that the United States should forbid all Muslims from entering the country.
In making his statement, Trump asserted that “…the hatred is beyond comprehension” and that the ban must last “…until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses…” He apparently thinks that Muslims “…believe only in jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life.” Since Trump is the leading Republican candidate, his remarks carry significant weight. As such, they demand serious consideration.
There are three main areas in which Trump’s proposal needs to be assessed. These are the legal, the moral and the practical. I will start with the legal.
While I am not a constitutional scholar or a lawyer, Trump’s proposal seems to be unconstitutional. There is no legal precedent for applying a religious test for admission to the United States and, most importantly, it would violate the equal protection clause in the 14th Amendment. As such, even if such a law were passed by Congress, it would almost certainly be struck down by the Supreme Court. Since I am not an expert in this area, I would certainly defer to those who know this field.
As might be expected, the morality of Trump’s proposal depends on what sort of moral theory is used to assess it. Those who hold that morality is based on Christianity would presumably accept the command of Leviticus: “The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God.” This would seem to forbid such exclusion. Naturally, it could be objected that this command does not apply to Muslims—the challenge is providing the scriptural support for this claim. It could also be pointed out that the text is about the foreigner residing among us and, as such, does not forbid preventing the foreigner from coming here to reside. This sort of loophole is best debated by religious scholars.
For those who prefer ethics not based on religion, one standard approach is to consider the matter from the utilitarian standpoint. This would involve considering the harms and benefits of such a ban, weighing them, arguing that morality is a matter of consequences and then drawing the appropriate conclusion. This also brings in the practical assessment of the plan by considering its effectiveness or lack thereof.
Given what Trump says, he seems to think that the ban would protect Americans from harm. In one sense, he is right: if no Muslims are allowed into the country, then the Muslims that are kept out cannot harm Americans here. Americans would just face the usual dangers from everyone else and each other—and the leading cause of violent deaths of Americans is, of course, other Americans. As such, the increase in safety would be incredibly small.
There are numerous negative consequences to consider, such as the harm that would be done to refugees fleeing wars as well as the many Muslims who come to the United States to engage in peaceful, productive and beneficial activities such as working, learning, teaching, and being tourists. There is also the harm that would be done to the Americans who benefit from these activities. In practical terms, this could be measured in dollars lost. In moral terms, it could be measured in harms done.
In addition to the domestic harms, there is also the harm to America’s reputation. To impose such a ban on Muslims would be to throw down and stomp upon our claims of religious tolerance and religious liberty. We have claimed that we will take in the tired, the poor, the huddled masses that yearn to breathe free. To refuse to allow people into the country would repudiate these words. This is said to be the home of the brave. To impose such a ban would be to make this the home of the fearful and the intolerant. The harm to our reputation in the world would, I believe, be quite serious and would greatly offset any alleged gain in safety from the ban. This can, of course be countered by arguing that either the impact to our reputation would be insignificant or that it would be outweighed by the alleged gain in safety.
Finally, this sort of ban would be a propaganda gold mine for groups like Daesh. It would serve as excellent evidence for the claim that the West is at war with Islam and would serve as a powerful recruiting tool. Those banned from entering the United States would also have resentment against America, resentment that could in some cases be fanned into the flames of radicalization. This would, ironically, put Americans at greater risk. This could also be countered by arguing that such a ban would not have the claimed effect or that the positive impact of the ban on safety would outweigh the negative.
Given that the proposed ban is unconstitutional, immoral and would be ineffective as a means of providing protection (but very effective as Daesh propaganda) it should be evident it is an awful idea. In fact, its mere proposal is already harming the United States.
Trump is working for Hillary. Have you not figured that out yet?
Michael LaBossiere says
An interesting hypothesis.
If Trump were working for Hillary, would he be doing anything different?
If he is working for Hillary then what would happen if he actually won?
Also, he is shifting the conversation away from Hillary…and is making her look like a tired old lying bitch, no?
He can’t win. That’s the point. He’s unelectable.
By the time the conversation gets back to Hillary, the GOP will be considered the racist xenophobe party (in fact, it already is considered the racist xenophobe party).
The racist xenophobe party cannot win the general election.
Also, if Trump runs independent, he will divide the GOP vote and hand the presidency to Hillary.
Three Reasons Why Donald Trump is Probably Working for Hillary Clinton – http://www.chicagonow.com/chicago-strange-haunted-history/2015/08/three-reasons-why-donald-trump-is-probably-working-for-hillary-clinton/
Is Donald Trump running a false flag campaign to help Hillary Clinton? – http://blackbag.gawker.com/is-donald-trump-running-a-false-flag-campaign-to-help-h-1723925057
Actually, Trump’s role is to make Ted Cruz look like a moderate.
Michael LaBossiere says
I think the argument can be cast a little differently. Mike, do you remember the “prime directive” in Star Trek?
Let say that as a nation we decide that we will not interfere with Islamic civilization and we don’t want them to interfere with our civilization. Why would this be unethical?
Michael LaBossiere says
There is nothing inherently unethical about adopting a non-interference policy; although it could run afoul of any moral obligations we would have to each other (this would be analogous to having a non-interference policy as an individual that would involve walking past people who are drowning, starving, being assaulted and so on).
There would be many practical problems as well. We would need to define Islamic civilization and then separate it from the non-Islamic. This would presumably involve removing all Western oil companies, banks, and so on from any connection with Islam. It would also require removing all non-Muslims from Islamic lands and vice versa. This would require deporting American citizens, which might involve some legal problems. The damage to the world economy would be significant, but perhaps you would see this as a good policy.
It is not clear that the world economy would be damaged unless you don’t believe Muslims are capable of pumping their own oil out of the ground. Non-interference means we will not meddle in their affairs and they will not meddle in our affairs. This does not preclude sending humanitarian aid in the event of a disaster.
unless you don’t believe Muslims are capable of pumping their own oil out of the ground
TJ, do you believe Arabs are capable of pumping their own oil out of the ground?
Yes, of course. But only if they have to.
Have you ever talked with anyone who has worked in Saudi Arabia in the oil production business? Or worked in any other technically challenging endeavor?
Here, read this link (as an example) about Saudi Air Force pilots. This is very typical of what I have heard from other endeavors. I can vouch for the basic point in this specific comment in regard to RSAF as a guy who used to sit right next to me at work was engaged in working with them and creating a system for training them. They kept rejecting the training system because it kept rejecting their pilots. The pilots could never be at fault, the insistence was that the training system was flawed. Only when I pointed him to a WSJ (IIRC) or something similar in the general media that explained essentially what is in this comment did he understand the true nature of the problem he was dealing with.
No, but I understand that the Saudis outsource all real work.
heh…and this from that very same comments section:
“It would serve as excellent evidence for the claim that the West is at war with Islam and would serve as a powerful recruiting tool.”
It is funny that the same people who claim that ISIS has nothing to do with Islam also claim that Muslims will flock to ISIS if we criticize Islam. It is hard to take such people seriously.
Michael LaBossiere says
I certainly don’t claim that Daesh has nothing to do with Islam. They see themselves as Islamic and operate within the framework that they regard as true Islam.
Since I do not believe that Mohammad was a prophet of God, I think that Islam is fundamentally in error. But, I also recognize that I could be mistaken about this, so I am willing to accept a policy of religious freedom for everyone on the basis that no one really knows who (if anyone) has got the one true view. Now, if some folks want to kill me because they think God has told them to do so, then we have issues that can probably only be settled by their deaths (or mine) or their modifying their views.
Obama: “ISIL is not Islamic.”
But what would he know? Is he an islamic scholar or lying poitician?
Interestingly, if Trump were in France or the Netherlands he would probably face charges for “inciting religious hatred,” or something along those lines.
Here is the US–for now at least–we have the 1st Amendment so that we can discuss these issues openly.
Naturally, the Dems are trying to undermine the 1st Amendment. They are Dems. That is what they do.
Or St. Petersburg….The Florida, USA one…
Michael LaBossiere says
Fortunately for Trump, he is in the United States were free speech is protected.
Most Democrats are staunch supporters of the 1st Amendment as are most Republicans. I am certainly opposed to proposals to restrict speech and have consistently stuck to a principle of real harm. That is, there must be clear evidence that the speech will cause real harm. Offending people and even riling them up does not do real harm. Now, if Trump started calling for the murder of Muslim-Americans, then this would be a different matter.
Dems used to support the first amendment, but nowadays not so much.
He has had his honourary degree revoked by a scottish university…
He is also no longer the global business ambassador for Scotland either…that’s gone too.
My god these leftists are nasty people yet they pride themselves on their ‘tolerance’..lol
For whatever reason, as soon as you denote an ideology a “religion” it gets a free pass.
Personally, I give no free passes.
Eh…could say the same about education. Take any sort of racist, sexist, or other-ist bullshit and create a “studies” course for it at a University or fill a syllabus with polemics and sophistry and it gets a free pass as well. At least religion doesn’t take money out of my pocket.
Michael LaBossiere says
What do you mean?
It means that once something is declared as a religion, criticizing it becomes racist.
Oh dear….let’s not bring logic and consistancy into it….
“He apparently thinks that Muslims “…believe only in jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life.” Since Trump is the leading Republican candidate, his remarks carry significant weight. As such, they demand serious consideration.”
Insofar as moslems are in good standing then they must believe in jihad.
etc etc…..so it would pay to ascertain the truth of Trumps statement rather than just assuming he is wrong.
“While I am not a constitutional scholar or a lawyer, Trump’s proposal seems to be unconstitutional. There is no legal precedent for applying a religious test for admission to the United States and, most importantly, it would violate the equal protection clause in the 14th Amendment. ”
Moslems cannot sincerely make the pledge of allegiance AND still be moslems…..therefore they cannot logically become US citizens.
“Americans would just face the usual dangers from everyone else and each other—and the leading cause of violent deaths of Americans is, of course, other Americans. As such, the increase in safety would be incredibly small.”
Yeah. but the same applies anywhere, if one is going to be assaulted or killed then the assaulter or killer has to be in close proximity to the victim.
That is different to the question of additional increases of risk. Import 1 million Finnish or (white) Scandinavians or Dutch or Germans and you have lowered your risk of crime for the US population. Bring in 1 million Somalians or similar and you have raised the risk to the US population.
So what course does a responsible government take?
“In addition to the domestic harms, there is also the harm to America’s reputation.”
Au contraire….the reputation of the US would improve. It would show the world that political correctness is dead, that ethnostates are back, and that multicult was a silly idea to begin with.
“There are numerous negative consequences to consider, such as the harm that would be done to refugees fleeing wars as well as the many Muslims who come to the United States to engage in peaceful, productive and beneficial activities such as working, learning, teaching, and being tourists. ”
Do refugees have an actual claim on a potential host nation? And is that claim, even if it exists a perpetual claim or merely till their home country situation improves? In other words, is it a backdoor migration scheme?
And for every moslem that comes to do the above there is probably an american that has been edged out.
What obligations do you have to look after your own before foreigners?
“To impose such a ban on Muslims would be to throw down and stomp upon our claims of religious tolerance and religious liberty. We have claimed that we will take in the tired, the poor, the huddled masses that yearn to breathe free. ”
Your BFF, Israel has no problems in that regard. They just do it…..So can you!
Anyhow, why should you show tolerance for people, insofar as they are moslem and therefore believe in Sharia law, that are incapable of being civilized? Not today or tomorrow, but when their numbers are such that they can impose their values on you they will.
“This is said to be the home of the brave. To impose such a ban would be to make this the home of the fearful and the intolerant. ”
That’s just marketing shit….there are brave people everywhere, it just depends on the circumstances.
And brave doesn’t mean foolhardy either.
“Finally, this sort of ban would be a propaganda gold mine for groups like Daesh. It would serve as excellent evidence for the claim that the West is at war with Islam and would serve as a powerful recruiting tool. ”
Well, the west and islam are at war. As for ISIS, that is just a US/UK/Israel/Turkey/Saudi/Qatar financed and supported destabilization group formed for geopolitical reasons. That is why the US was allegedly bombing them for 18 months and they only got bigger, whereas Russia bombed them for 1 month and they not only got smaller but the US was very upset about Russia bombing their terrorists…..says it all..
One other thing that is relevant to this discussion is that of ‘hijrah’ or jihad by colonization.
So the gamble is that moslem ‘immigrants’ will be worth the risk of accepting them…..what if it goes pearshaped in 50 years time? What payoff is enough to compensate for the risk of accepting people whose religion has a concept of conquest by colonization……or is everyone so stupid they cannot conceive that others may despise them?
And a character reference of your new friends entitled ‘Islam, the greatest murder machine in history’
Trump is spot on….and all the anti Trump hate only confirms it.
And the 4 stages of moslem conquest if anyone is interested.
STAGE 1: INFILTRATION
Muslims begin moving to non-Muslim countries in increasing numbers and the beginning of cultural conflicts are visible, though often subtle.
First migration wave to non-Muslim “host” country.
Appeal for humanitarian tolerance from the host society.
Attempts to portray Islam as a peaceful & Muslims as victims of misunderstanding and racism (even though Islam is not a ‘race’).
High Muslim birth rate in host country increase Muslim population.
Mosques used to spread Islam and dislike of host country & culture.
Calls to criminalize “Islamophobia” as a hate crime.
Threatened legal action for perceived discrimination.
Offers of “interfaith dialogue” to indoctrinate non-Muslims.
How many nations are suffering from Islamic infiltration? One? A handful? Nearly every nation? The Islamic ‘leadership” of the Muslim Brotherhood and others wish to dissolve each nation’s sovereignty and replace it with the global imposition of Islamic sharia law. Sharia law, based on the koran, sira and hadith, condemns liberty and forbids equality and is inconsistent with the laws of all Western nations. As the author and historian Serge Trifkovic states:
“The refusal of the Western elite class to protect their nations from jihadist infiltration is the biggest betrayal in history.”
The rest at https://civilusdefendus.wordpress.com/civil-defense/4-stages-of-islamic-conquest/
Another interesting view on this topic, by Prof Kevin MacDonald..(luckily he has tenure)…who basically backs up what The Donster says re moslems. So it’s not all just crazy talk regardless of loudly leftists squeal.
An interesting statistic in the article is that 51% of polled US moslems say that they should have the choice of being ruled by Sharia law instead of US law and only 39% say that they should be compulsorily be subject to US law.
What I would find quite amusing if it weren’t such a serious issue is how strenuously many will defend the rights of people who do not respect out culture or laws or even us (though that is in some ways understandable as many of us are in fact cucks unworthy of respect).
A petition has been tarted in the UK ban Donald Trump from entering the UK as he supposedly has committed a thoughtcrime.
So another aspect of multicult, as we have found out in Oz, is the loss of freedoms. We have all sorts of Orwellian laws to shut us up. God i wish we had a first amendment…but when our constituton was drawn up around 1900 some of it was lifted from the US constitution. The idea of free speech was deemed to be so inherent in British legal trdition as to not warrant specific protection……ha, didn’t stop scumbag politicians 75 years later from starting to whittle it away.
Turns out that during the hostage crisis President Carter banned all travel from Iran. Mike, any problem there?
Michael LaBossiere says
Interesting point. On the one hand, he could be defended on the grounds that the ban is from a specific country that was engaged in hostilities as a country against the United States. Carter did not impose a ban on a religion though. We were, in effect, at war with Iran and not allowing people from an enemy nation to come visit could be seen as a good idea.
On the other hand, it could be argued that the same logic could be squeezed to be used against entire belief systems and not just specific countries. So, if a bad self-proclaimed Christian murdered some people, Christians could be banned from the US. Or Buddhists or whatever.
Something I conceived of 30 years ago, but damn if some guy who actually did the actual real-world work to write, publish, and publicize the idea gets all the credit. Mike’s right, life just ain’t fair.
Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/428200/donald-trump-overton-window-american-political-debate
I have thought something similar for awhile. The Donald has permanently changed the debate. He deserves a knighthood or your equivalent for his efforts.
London cops agree with Trump’s comments about no go zones. they say that in some areas of London they cannot wear their uniforms even in their own cars.
Do you americans want that?
Trump has annoyed the jews by telling them he is not for sale. They find that quite offensive as they own the rest of the political system….what’s so special about Trump that he thinks he is above being bought by them. Jews are also extremely annoyed with their goyim because after all their work conditioning them their support of Trump just increases.
Many in the UK want to ban Trump from entering their country because they don’t like his beliefs.
Is the irony of this position totally lost on them?
The proponents of this ban would no doubt see themselves in favour of free speech but would exclude anything that hurts their feels on the grounds that it is rather ‘hate speech’. One irony there is the amount of hate directed at Trump by people allegedly against ‘hate’..
The British government tried to stop Geert Wilders, the Dutch anti moslem politician, from entering Britain though from memory that was somehow overturned. Amazing that they try to stop his free speech while rolling out the red carpet to thousands who do not believe in free speech whatsoever.
There’s no irony shortage in this topic…lol
Radio talk show host Michael Savage (full disclosure, I’m definitely not a fan) was banned from the UK several years ago as well. And his ban was sustained by the “Conservative” party when Cameron became PM. Yet they have a problem with jihadi leaning imams. But hey, denial is just a river in Egypt. See our host’s comment “While I am no fan of what can justly be considered mere political correctness, I do agree that there are moral problems with what is often designated as cultural appropriation.” Dream until your dreams come true.
We would have to be approaching narrative collapse, don’t you think? It is just getting all too silly….
As for your reference to ‘cultural appropriation’, I just try to ask the simplest questions first. Cuts through a lot of BS, though it does make one look like an ignorant redneck. Better that than making absurd assumptions for fear of looking like an ignorant redneck…lol
And for Britain’s censorship of Michael Savage…once you start down the road of needing to protect people’s feelings from any possible upset it is a slippery slope(fallacy or not) to the censoring the Michael Savages of this world.
Michael LaBossiere says
I think their point is to be ironic.
Get a load of this one:
A Depression-era Lebanon Valley College leader with the last name Lynch has found himself thrust into the middle of a roiling 21st-century debate on campus civil rights.
Students at the private college in Annville have demanded administrators remove or modify Dr. Clyde A. Lynch’s last name, as it appears on a campus hall, due to the associated racial connotations.
Is it really fair to ask hard working people to support this nonsense with their taxes?
I know it is a private college, but tax dollars are still used to subsidize the students, etc.
Exactly. Stupid is as academia does.
Remember, back to my point a couple days ago paralleling religion, these are educated people so either they get a free pass or, should you attempt to defund such from a taxpayer perspective, you are an ignoramus who fears education.
Perhaps there is no fundamental difference between religion and ideology. At least when everyone gave at least lip service to one religion everyone was somewhat on the same page….now with that gone it has been replaced with a myriad of sub-ideologies. now everyone gets to quarrel with everyone else ad infinitum.
WTP makes a good point. Education does often get a free pass.
It seems the only reason that they are trying this stuff on in the example you gave about a Mr Lynch, is that the students know that the school admin will roll over. No question at all. One microtrigger trumps(so to speak) history and reality.
I just noticed an article headline makes an interesting point. That Hillary voted to invade Iraq and kill however many moslems but Trump didn’t(as of course he was in no position to do so).
Therefore , why is Trump getting hammered for alleged anti moslem bigotry yet Hillary isn’t getting any flak for her role in killing tens of thousands of moslems? Media bias?…..nah, couldn’t be…
Michael LaBossiere says
She should certainly be docked points for voting for the Iraq war. But voting for a war against Iraq is not a clear indicator someone is anti-Muslim. When we fought wars against other nominally Christian countries, we were not anti-Christian bigots.
I think a reasonable case against Muslim immigration can be made based on the precautionary principle. So the real question becomes: how many American lives should be sacrificed so that we can indulge in moral preening about our magnanimity in letting Muslims immigrate to the US?
The precautionary principle or precautionary approach to risk management states that if an action or policy has a suspected risk of causing harm to the public or to the environment, in the absence of scientific consensus that the action or policy is not harmful, the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking an action.
The principle is used by policy makers to justify discretionary decisions in situations where there is the possibility of harm from making a certain decision (e.g. taking a particular course of action) when extensive scientific knowledge on the matter is lacking. The principle implies that there is a social responsibility to protect the public from exposure to harm, when scientific investigation has found a plausible risk. These protections can be relaxed only if further scientific findings emerge that provide sound evidence that no harm will result.
Michael LaBossiere says
You raise an excellent point about the importance of values. If we are just engaged in moral preening by accepting refugees, then it should be assessed in terms of the risk versus the value of such preening. However, if we are acting on values that we regard as significant, then the assessment should include the significance of those values. People have often argued that freedom is worth the risk of war. Perhaps kindness to those who have been robbed of home is worth some minuscule risk.
It is my view that we can help the refugees while they remain in the Middle East. As this is a perfectly workable solution, your insistence that they be brought to the US despite the risk and the objection of the majority of Americans can be fairly characterized as “moral preening.”
Not sure if I posted this here earlier or not, but the go-to answer for your Trump feelz:
Scott Adams on Trump:
According to my Moist Robot Hypothesis (that we are programmable meat) and paired with the Master Wizard view of the world, one can imagine a world in which all the big changes in society are engineered by a handful of living wizards at any given time. The wizards, in this context, have learned the rules of hypnosis and persuasion. This knowledge gives them access to the admin passwords for human beings. And they use it.
Today I will tell you how to spot a wizard, if such people actually exist. Look for these clues:
1. The wizard succeeds in a high-profile field without the benefit of as much talent as you would expect should be necessary. (This is the biggest tell.)
2. People seem to have an irrational hate for the wizard that is not entirely explained by the wizard’s actions. Regular readers already know these unusual reactions are signs of cognitive dissonance. Wizards induce cognitive dissonance often, without trying.
3. Look for an inflated ego combined with an unusually strong ability to withstand withering criticism. (Wizards get a lot of criticism.) The common view is that wizards are egomaniacs. In reality, the wizard works hard to remain ego-free, and hence can handle criticism well.
4. Wizards are often more ambitious, and often more aggressive, than you think is normal.
5. One or more major PR disasters define the wizard’s history.
6. The wizard has a gift for simplification.
7. Observers detect a reality distortion field.
8. Wizards have an ability to succeed where other fail by changing the entire game as opposed to winning at the existing one.
9. Wizards use words to create images and emotions in people’s minds.
10. Wizards seek public attention.
The wizard filter on the world isn’t necessarily true in some objective sense. The fun is seeing if the data and predictions fit the filter.
For example, I see the early history of America as a handful of wizards manipulating world events. And I believe they were aware of their powers.
And I see Trump as a modern wizard who is baffling the media because he is playing three-dimensional chess on their two-dimensional chess board. Trump is talking directly to people’s subconscious. Everything else he says is just a carrier signal.
Someone asked me about Kanye West and his hilarious statement that he would someday run for president.
Except that Kanye is a wizard.
I spotted him several years ago, and blogged about his genius then. He’s the real deal. And he absolutely has the tools to become president if he makes it a priority.
Consider the reaction you are having right now to the idea that Kanye West could be president. Your reaction (plus the fact that he is a legitimate genius) is what tells you he can do it. At least according to my filter.
Oh, and he’s a musical superstar who admits he can’t sing well. How did that happen, you ask?
Well Kanye definitely had Taylor Swift pegged. But then maybe she’s a wizard too. Either way, we’re doomed. Not necessarily to a hell, but to a mind numbing purgatory. Which for some of us is a fate worse than hell. An Idiocracy run by academics, perhaps.