Op-Ed: Trump’s travel ban is breaking apart my family


President Donald Trump signs an Executive Order that prevents citizens from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States. Image Source: Whitehouse.org/facebook

Anger. Sadness. Shock. Heartbreak.

These are some emotions I felt when I saw that President Donald Trump signed the January executive order that suspended entry to the United States for citizens from seven predominantly Muslim countries: Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.

I am an Iranian-American and have family in Iran, one of the seven countries, so I couldn’t help but feel personally attacked.

I knew that all throughout Trump’s election campaign he promised “extreme vetting,” but I never assumed that it would happen this quickly. I could not believe how Trump could just lump all of the people from one country together and label them as terrorists — it’s unjust and unfair. Most are innocent and are trying to escape to America to be free — however, now they can not.

The idea of innocent families trying to come to America took me back to my family — how is my family going to be free? What did this mean for my grandma who currently lives there? Or my grandfather? Would they still be able to come visit me?

The last time I saw my grandma was about a year ago and I always talk to her over the phone and Skype, but I haven’t seen my grandfather since I was seven. I am 17 — that’s 10 years, and I worry that I might never see him again.

As I sat on my bed in shock and disbelief that something like this would happen in America, my other grandma, who lives in Los Angeles, couldn’t wrap her head around the idea that she might never be able to see her friends from Iran anymore.

I have a cousin who is also 17 who lives in Iran. Even though we always FaceTime, I’ve never had a chance to meet her in person. After I heard the news it left me wondering, would I ever be able to see my cousin?

A full month after Trump signed the order, the Washington Post released an article about a man from Missouri, Adam Purinton, who is being charged with first-degree murder. He reportedly yelled “get out of my country” before opening fire and killing one Indian man and injuring two others.

According to the article, the FBI is investigating this shooting as a “hate crime.”

His actions show the impact that Donald Trump’s words have on others can be harmful.

Millions of families have been affected by Trump’s immigration ban, and so President Trump — I would like to let you know that you will not divide the country. Immigrants are the backbone of this country and they are here to stay. Not all terrorists are Muslims, and not all Muslims are terrorists.

As of March 6, Donald Trump signed a revised executive order where he removed Iraq from the travel ban. Yes, this may be progress — but it doesn’t help my family or other families like mine.

And don’t worry, I will find a way to see my family.