The news of the discovery of seven Earth-sized planets orbiting around a dwarf star 235 trillion miles away rattled the scientific world on Wednesday, as it provides us with the best opportunity to possibly discover alien life outside of our solar system.
Within minutes of the announcement, Donald Trump proposed a travel ban from the seven exoplanets, declaring that they would only send us their rapists and their terrorists.
OK, that didn’t actually happen. But does it honestly seem that far-fetched?
The 235 trillion miles is equal to about 40 light-years, meaning we have to learn to travel at the speed of light to one day get there.
Whether we hear about this again anytime soon, who knows. But sometimes it’s nice to remind ourselves that in the grand scheme of things, our planet is an infinitesimal speck in the endless universe. Meaning all the chaos and disorder we are currently experiencing is simply a flash in the pan on a cosmic level.
Unfortunately, we are currently right smack in the middle of that pan, and Donald Trump is taking a giant shit in it.
On Tuesday, his administration laid out an outline to target and deport illegal immigrants, giving very wide and broad lattitude to border agents and other immigration agencies that undoubtedly will raise constitutional concerns.
Yes, in theory, this is a lot less disgusting then the travel ban, which we all knew the true intent of.
These directives target illegal immigrants, a faction of people that countries across the world are trying to expel from their borders. So Trump’s goal is nothing new or evil. And yes, mass deportations occurred under Obama. We know that.
But this time, the context is totally different. Immigrants – legal or illegal – are barricading themselves in their homes, fearful at who will come knocking. The priorities for who is to be targeted for deportation have been erased. Under Obama, illegal immigrants who committed serious crimes were the clear primary focus. Under Trump, it’s the Wild West.
Does anybody fully expect that Homeland Security will execute a peaceful, systematic process for identifying illegal immigrants and removing them?
It’s doesn’t take a genius to predict that this wide dragnet is going to result in hundreds, if not thousands, of legal citizens who fit the physical description of an immigrant being stopped and frisked, and that ugly stories are going to come to light in droves.
More than 2.5 illegal immigrants were thrown out under Obama, under his specific guidelines. That’s more than any other president.
Trump is acting on the ridiculous and unpopular campaign promises he made to pander to his most fervent supporters, and it’s putting political action over common human decency.
It’s easy to sit back, grab some popcorn and watch as it continues to implode in his face. But while that happens, millions of people, including all those who immigrated here legally, are living in fear. That’s what’s happening right now as you read this.
Unexpectedly (and thankfully), the orders have motivated activists throughout the country. So much so that someone actually found a way to unfurl a giant banner on the Statue of Liberty that reads in big capital letters: “REFUGEES WELCOME.”
The banner has since been removed.
But for a short while, for the first time in the last 33 days, the Statue of Liberty lived up to its creed.