Quarantine ill will

DACA decision shows Trump’s true color(s)

When President Trump announced Tuesday (Sept. 5) that the federal government would discontinue Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which had removed fear of deportation from young undocumented immigrants, he sent a clear message that his politics of divisiveness will continue unabated.

Sure, his administration couched the decision as a legal issue, stating that his predecessor had made an end-run around the Constitution by allowing the “Dreamers” a legal avenue not prescribed by the legislative branch—and that delays in Trump’s order give Congress time to remedy the situation. But let’s be real: The president’s motivation is tribal, not legal.

Trump has telegraphed sympathy for white nationalists since the campaign. His “America First” sloganeering echoes the America First Committee pre-World War II—isolationist, with pro-fascist and anti-Semitic elements. He equates white-power marchers in Charlottesville with protesters alarmed by such demonstrations; witness his statements declaring “violence on many sides, on many sides” after the one-sided attack and excusing “very fine people” amid the torchbearers.

Prejudice—hate—is a slippery slope. The Healthlines article this week (“Extremist mentality,” page 12) details how ordinary people can do extraordinarily bad things when empowered in a group that shifts their morality. Unchecked, words turn to action.

That’s where we are with the White House. POTUS sought to add English-language and job-skills provisions to immigration applications. He pardoned Joe Arpaio, the Arizona sheriff convicted of ordering his department to stop people merely on suspicion of being illegal immigrants. Now, while holding firm on his border wall, he’s gone after DACA.

Trump’s acts have drawn firm opposition from congressional Democrats and some Republicans as well. More need to get on board.

United we must stand and contain discrimination, whether from white nationalists or the White House.