J Street is outraged by the Trump administration’s plans to cap the number of refugees that can be resettled in the United States at 30,000, a new low since 1980. This is just the latest in a disgraceful series of moves intended to choke off the vast majority of immigration to this country.
This decision is a betrayal of our nation’s responsibilities, values and history as a place of refuge, freedom and opportunity for those fleeing violence and persecution. There is only one real reason why a global superpower with the world’s largest economy would accept such a paltry number of refugees: prejudice.
The Secretary of State’s claim that this decision is justified by the need for the US to process a separate pool of asylum-seekers at our southern border simply does not hold up. These asylum-seekers are a different group and are processed differently, and should in no way impact the refugee resettlement program. Moreover, far from prioritizing their compassionate resettlement, the administration continues to persecute many of those same asylum-seekers, subjecting them in many cases to ugly and discriminatory treatment.
Our values as American Jews compel us to welcome the stranger — to stand up for refugees and to speak out against the cruel and xenophobic immigration policies of President Trump and Stephen Miller. We will continue to do all we can to support the groups and activists working on the frontlines of this battle.