Letter to the Editor: Edwin F. Begg

Moorestown resident Edwin Begg weighs in on the meaning of family in light of recent travel bans in his letter to the editor.

Throughout the world, grandparents are considered to be one of the cornerstones of the family. Not so with Attorney General Jeff Sessions. He is appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court to forbid entry of Muslim grandparents separated from their families, who are fortunate enough to have already immigrated to the United States.

Since January of this year, there has been a hard-fought ping-pong set of legal maneuvers. The Trump White House issued a total immigration ban against residents of six Muslim nations. Judge Derrick K. Watson of Federal District Court in Honolulu ruled that the ban is discriminatory and issued a hold against the ban’s implementation. Sessions applied to the Supreme Court for a hearing. In June, the Supreme Court ruled that the Trump administration could enforce its immigration ban against certain categories of family members, while it would hear the case in their upcoming fall session.

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However, there is a problem in defining family members allowed to immigrate. The Trump administration permits parents, parents-in-law, children, son-in-laws, daughters-in-law and siblings of those already in the United States. The Trump administration would not include grandparents, grandchildren, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces and cousins.

Judge Watson of Hawaii challenged the Trump administration’s interpretation of what constitutes a close family relationship. He said common sense dictates that close family members be defined to include grandparents. Sessions is asking for a new Supreme Court ruling.

Sessions said the Supreme Court has had to correct a lower court once and will return to the Supreme Court to “again vindicate the rule of law and the executive branch’s duty to protect the nation.”

Protect the nation against grandma? Really?

Edwin F. Begg

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