Is Banning Muslim Entry to America Unconstitutional?
By Ali Sina
Donald Trump’s proposal for a shutdown of Muslims entering the United States has caused a lot of uproars. Almost all politicians from both parties and other countries condemned him, and 67% of Americans think denying entry to a certain group of people on the basis of their religion violates their constitutional rights. Even his friend Bibi Netanyahu felt the need to chime in when there was no reason for him to do so.
I am not going to dwell on the legality of Trump’s statement because it is already established. Apart from the fact that the American Constitution does not give any rights to foreigners, according to the federal Immigration and Nationality Act, “Whenever the president finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he deems necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens.”
The point I want to make is that by allowing Muslims to enter the country and granting them citizenship and naturalization the American government is violating the Constitution.
Let us read the 45 words that constitute The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and see how not only it does not protect Islam, it actually requires its total ban.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances“.
This amendment protects freedom of speech, press, religion, assembly and petition. These are inalienable rights of the citizens and it is the responsibility of the government to protect them.
Islam is opposed to all the above. Not only no Islamic country tolerates freedom of speech and press, Muslims, even when they are a minority in a non-Muslim majority country, demand to curtail the freedom of speech of others and want the death penalty for those who criticize Islam and its inhumane teachings.
In Iran, several members of the Bahai community are rotting in jail for the crime of assembling to discuss their religious matters and Christian pastors are jailed for preaching the Gospels to Muslims. In Saudi Arabia, Christians can be put to jail if they meet in each other’s homes to pray. Under Islam religious minorities have little rights, and sometimes they don’t even have the right to live. This is the religion Muslims want to bring to America and impose on others through terror.
Coming to the United States is not a right of the seven billion inhabitants of this planet. It is a privilege that can be given only by the government of the United State. And the government must exert due diligence that those who enter the country pose no threat to the people and the Constitution.
There have been dozens of terrorist attacks on the Americans by people who call themselves Muslims, resulting in thousands of death and injuries. So it is undeniable that a certain percentage of Muslims do pose a threat to the lives of Americans.
Islam is also a belief system that opposes the American Constitution and strives to overthrow it. If a Muslim wishes to be faithful to his or her religion he must not accept the rule of non-believers (Q.9:23). They are ordered to “not obey the disbelievers and strive against them with the utmost strenuousness (Q. 25:52) because Muslims are made an exalted nation that they may rule over others (Q.2:143). Muslims are, therefore, required to “fight the unbelievers, and kill them wherever you find them until there is no more fitnah (dissension, resistance, disbelief) and until religion is for Allah” i.e. Islam and “unbelievers desist in their unbelief.” (Q. 2:191-193)
It is clear that Islam is not just incompatible with the American Constitution, but antithetical to it and it is the duty of every Muslim to strive, with their words, wealth and body to overthrow any system of government that is not Islamic and establish the Islamic rule.
Consequently, it is the responsibility of the US government to ban Islam altogether. The government is obliged to protect the Constitution and the lives of the Americans, not the sensitivity of a foreign group of people who wants to destroy the constitution and kill Americans. Why is this not clear to everyone?
The point that is often raised is that not all Muslims want to kill us and we must not discriminate against all of them just because some of them want to kill us. That is a fair argument, but is it valid? We know what Islam teaches and what true Muslims are supposed to do. How can we know which Muslims are true believers and which ones are not? There is no way for us to know. We can’t even know if Muslim children will not turn terrorists. The Tsarnaev brothers, who converted two pressure cookers into bombs and detonated them during the Boston marathon, killing three people and injuring 264, some losing their limbs, came to America as refugees when they were children. The Chattanooga shooter, who staged a suicide attack on a recruiting center at a strip mall and killed five people, came to America when he was two years old. The terrorists in UK, France, and other European countries were mostly homegrown and sometimes they had their roots in the country where they perpetrated their terrorist acts. So how can we know who will become a terrorist and who will not?
Furthermore, if these “peaceful” Muslims don’t want to kill us why do they subscribe to a religion that orders them to kill the unbelievers? Is it wise for us to gamble our lives and the lives of our children with the hope that Muslims among us will not take their religion too seriously like this possibly Somali or Kenyan Muslim refugee who wields his knives promising to kill Trump and his family?
While there is no way to know who will become a terrorist we know how they become one. To make this clear, let me first make an example. Suppose you decide to become a killer. You need three things. First you need a gun. But unless it is loaded a gun is just a piece of metal, no more dangerous than a stapler. So you need to load your gun. Then again a loaded gun can do no harm unless someone pulls the trigger. There needs to be someone with motivation and intention. All these three requirements must be met before you can kill someone.
Likewise, to become a jihadi, you need three things. First you need to be a Muslim. That is the first requirement. All you need to become a Muslim is to believe Allah is the only god and Muhammad is his prophet. But there are 1.5 billion Muslims and not all of them are terrorists. These Muslims are like an unloaded gun. They are as harmless as any other person.
To convert ordinary Muslims into jihadis, you need to load them. You load guns with bullets and you load Muslims with knowledge of Islam. You read to them the Quran and the hadith and narrate to them the Sunnah (practices) of their prophet. The more they learn about their religion the more loaded they become. That is what we call radicalization – going to the root of their religion.
However, just as a loaded gun does not kill without someone pulling the trigger, radicalized Muslims are not all terrorists. There are hundreds of millions of Muslims who know their religion and what is required of them. They are radicalized, loaded and ready, but they don’t kill. Because the third factor is missing! They need to be triggered.
To trigger a loaded Muslim to become a killer can happen in a variety of ways. Sometimes it can be a life crisis. Everyone goes through hardships and it is often in these times that we turn to God. When that happens to a Muslim, especially a radicalized one, we have an instant jihadi, a suicide bomber. But more often it is not a life crisis that triggers an informed Muslim. When a Muslim’s faith grows, his hatred of non-Muslims also grows and so does his love for martyrdom.
There is a doctrine in Islam called al Wala’ wal Bara’. The gist of this doctrine is that Muslims must love everything that is Islamic and hate everything that is not. Explaining al Wala’ wal Bara’ one Islamic site laments that Muslims are “in the pit of darkness” because they “have adopted the ways of the enemy. They imitate the disbelievers and choose them as their friends and trustees.”
So while it is true that not all Muslims are terrorists, there is no way for us to know which one will be. A Muslim will become a terrorist when he or she deepens his knowledge of Islam and when his faith and love for Islam increases. The problem is that we cannot have any control over this process.
A certain group of people believes that the solution to gun violence is to ban guns. These people should understand the logic of banning Islam. An uninformed Muslim is like an unloaded gun. While they are not dangerous, we cannot know when they will deepen their knowledge of their faith and become dangerous. Banning guns to stop violent crime works only in theory. In practice, we can only disarm the law abiding people while the criminals will not surrender their guns. But it works in the case of ideologies. And there is a petition to ban Islam. Sign it if you agree.
While it might be impractical to ban the belief in Islam, we can ban mosques and Islamic books, which would be like banning bullets. And since Islamic books incite violence, we can ban them without passing any new law.
Islam is not just a religion. Muhammad said, al Islamo deenun wa dawlah (Islam is religion and government). The goal of Islam is to overthrow all governments and establish a worldwide caliphate. Therefore, it is incumbent on the government of the United State to ban it. Islam is an enemy state, a parallel government. If the U.S. government does not ban Islam it is failing its duty to the people and is in violation of the Constitution.
Banning ideologies that are hostile to the Constitution is not a novel idea. There have long been ideological restrictions on naturalization in U.S. law. Nativism and anti-anarchism at the turn of the 20th century, the red scare in the 1920s, and further communist fears in the 1950s each shaped United States nationality law. Though ideological exclusions on entry were largely eliminated in 1990, ideological bars arising from each of these time periods still exist in American naturalization law. This long history has resulted in a naturalization statute that requires naturalization applicants to be “attached to the principles of the Constitution of the United States” (a requirement that has existed since the earliest US immigration laws) and forbids them from adhering to several more specific ideological principles such as totalitarianism, communism, anarchism, advocacy of assassination, government overthrow by force, destruction of property, and sabotage.
Islam is a totalitarian ideology, its prophet practiced assassination of his critics and Muslims all over the world have adopted it as their preferred means to silence the critics of Islam. Islam advocates the overthrow of governments by force, through terror, destruction of property and sabotage. Consequently, Islam is in contravention of the American Constitution and far more dangerous than the communism and anarchism.
Not only books written by Muslims but under the U.S. law, the Quran itself can be banned and membership to Islam can be declared illegal.
Ali Sina is the founder of faithfreedom.org a site created to help Muslims leave Islam and the author of Understanding Muhammad and Muslims. He has also written a comprehensive biography of Muhammad and a script to make a biopic of him, awaiting financing. He can be reached @AliSinaOrg