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Donald Trump: Nip the evil in the bud

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Donald Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric, unfortunately, evokes terrible memories of Adolf Hitler, a man whose hatred for Jews knew no bound, to the extent that he was on the verge of exterminating them. First the Jews were segregated and forced to live in ghettoes in horrible conditions in the 1930s and 40s. They were also required to wear an identifying mark under the threat of death.

Millions of Jews were allegedly killed in concentration camps set up on Hitler’s orders through most painful means like gassing them to death in groups. Horrible medical experiments were conducted on them as though they were lab rats.

The terrible part of this saga is that Hitler had clearly expounded on his hatred for Jews in his book ‘Mein Kampf’ in 1925, years before he implemented his appalling plans. Yet the international community did nothing about the man who would be responsible for so much death and destruction after being ‘elected’ to power by the Germans.

Here are some excerpts from Mein Kampf:

“And so he [the Jew] advances on his fatal road until another force comes forth to oppose him, and in a mighty struggle hurls the heaven-stormer back to Lucifer. Germany is today the next great war aim of Bolshevism. It requires all the force of a young missionary idea to raise our people up again, to free them from the snares of this international serpent…”

“Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: ‘By defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.”

Republican front-runner Donald Trump set the cat among pigeons when he suggested that there should be a temporary ban on all Muslims entering the United States until the country’s representatives could figure out, “what the hell is going on.”

Trump does not even try to hide his tremendous dislike for Muslims and minces no words in elucidating how to deal with ‘radical Islam’; the most worrying aspect is that with each of his controversial statement his poll numbers seem to be going north.

America does have issues, but the solutions offered by Trump to those problems are too radical and extreme in nature. For instance, he wants to build a ‘big wall’ on the US-Mexico border in a bid to prevent illegal immigration from their neighbor.

“We’re going to do a wall; we’re going to have a big, fat beautiful door on the wall; we’re going to have people come in, but they’re going to come in legally,” Trump vowed. 

Trump seeks surveillance of mosques and a national database to register all Muslims living in the US to protect the country against terrorism. He also wants a ban on entry of Muslim refugees fleeing violence and destruction in Syria because “we do not know who they are.”

What others call xenophobia, racism, bigotry and white supremacism, Trump considers ‘common sense’.

And when he’s confronted on his outrageous ideas, he brings people’s attention on huge, cheering crowds at “my rallies who gave me a standing ovation when I read out my statement.”

He has been excoriated by his own Republican colleagues, but their concerns roll off Trump like water of a duck’s back.

“I am not bothered because I believe I am doing the right thing. I have common sense,” he told a CNN anchor.

Islamaphobia has been there in the United States for a long time, especially after the 9/11 attacks it grew at a rapid pace among the citizens. Trump is apparently just speaking what’s there on many of the American minds; his growing popularity is a testament to this fact.

But Hitler was also ‘popular’ among Germans. In fact, he was democratically elected by his fellow countrymen despite being aware of his radical views and plans. They should have known who they were voting for, so should the Americans now. For what happens in the US will have ramifications for the whole world.

“One has to wonder what Donald Trump will say next as he ramps up his anti-Muslim bigotry,” Ibrahim Hooper, national communications director at the Council on American-Islamic Relations was quoted as saying by The Washington Post, adding that “Where is there left for him to go? Are we talking internment camps? Are we talking the final solution to the Muslim question? I feel like I’m back in the 1930s.”

The world cannot afford another Hitler, especially not in America. This evil should be nipped in the bud.

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Here’s What Can Happen if U.S. Declares Novel Coronavirus a National Emergency

The emergency measures raise constitutional questions

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Last year, Trump was criticized for declaring a national emergency in order to divert military funds to finance construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Pixabay

With the World Health Organization classifying the global coronavirus outbreak a pandemic, U.S. President Donald Trump announced late Wednesday a series of emergency measures, including an unprecedented 30-day suspension of all flights from Europe.

But Trump, who spoke from the Oval Office, stopped short of resorting to an even more dramatic measure urged by some members of Congress: a national emergency proclamation under the 1976 National Emergencies Act.

The administration already has declared the coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency, giving local health officials greater flexibility to respond to the crisis.  A national emergency declaration would put a vast reservoir of additional powers at the president’s disposal by triggering sweeping authorities contained in more than 100 statutes, according to Elizabeth Goitein, director of the Brennan Center for Justice’s Liberty & National Security Program.

“When a president declares an emergency declaration, he at that moment has access to all of the laws that say in a national emergency the president can do X, whether or not those powers relate to the emergency at hand,” Goitein said.

Some of the additional authorities allow for a “reasonable and very measured” response to an emergency, according to Goitein. For example, hospitals could receive regulatory waivers in order to set up off-site facilities.

At the same time, a national emergency declaration also empowers a president to take draconian measures in the name of national security. For example, a president could invoke a 1941 law to shut down the internet and even freeze people’s bank accounts.

Last year, Trump was criticized for declaring a national emergency in order to divert military funds to finance construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

A national emergency declaration can only be overturned by an act of Congress.   More than 30 national emergency declarations made over the past four decades remain in effect.

Although presidents often have a legitimate need to exercise emergency powers, they’ve also faced criticism for using emergencies to curtail civil liberties and civil rights.

History of Mational Emergencies 

During the American Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln famously suspended the writ of habeas corpus, a guarantee against unlawful detentions. During World War II, President Franklin Roosevelt put more than 100,000 Japanese Americans in internment camps. And after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, President George W. Bush expanded the government’s surveillance and other national security powers, some of which were later rolled back by Congress.

“The question will be in this moment, how far does the president go or the Congress go, and what is the fallout in the pushback,” said Kimberly Wehle, a visiting law professor at the American University Washington College of Law. “These are areas where the law isn’t clear.”

In addition to exercising emergency powers, the president has certain nonemergency powers he has used during the coronavirus crisis. For example, Trump invoked the Immigration and Nationality Act 1952 in suspending travel from Europe. Another non-emergency power Trump has exercised: the federal quarantine authority, which was last used in 1963.

“The president doesn’t have to declare an emergency in order to avail himself of that, but we know the president has already done that,” Goitein said.

Locking down communities or otherwise restricting the movements of large groups can conflict with constitutional rights of due process, according legal scholars.

“The due process clause basically says the government can’t restrict your liberty, which would be your ability to move around without some kind of process,” Wehle said. “That’s the first constitutional provision that will come to mind if we’re talking about quarantining people in their homes.”

As of Wednesday, 22 states representing 196 million Americans have declared some type of COVID-related emergency, according to James Hodge, director for public health law and policy, at Arizona State University.

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With the World Health Organization classifying the global coronavirus outbreak a pandemic, U.S. President Donald Trump announced late Wednesday a series of emergency measures, including an unprecedented 30-day suspension of all flights from Europe. Pixabay

New York state on Tuesday created a “containment zone” around the town of New Rochelle, the epicenter of the outbreak in the state. Schools, places of worship and other large public spaces within 1.6 kilometers of the town of nearly 80,000 residents will shut down for next two weeks, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced.

An emergency declaration allows federal and state authorities to put in place a host of so-called “social distancing measures,” including restricting travel, imposing curfews, dismissing schools, restricting public gatherings and implementing quarantines.

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The emergency measures raise constitutional questions. While quarantining individuals or groups suspected of exposure to COVID-19 is constitutional, creating “cordon sanitaire” or lockdown of groups of communities within or outside “hot zones,” is not, according to Hodge. (VOA)