The Writers Guild of America calls Donald Trump’s Muslim ban is “profoundly un-American.”
“It is both unconstitutional and deeply wrong to say that you cannot enter our country because of where you were born or what religion you were born into,” Michael Winship, president of Writers Guild of America East (WGAE), and Howard A. Rodman, president of Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW), said in a joint statement. “The Writers Guilds of America, East and West condemn Donald Trump’s profoundly un-American ‘Muslim ban,’ and applaud the Federal Court’s decision to grant a stay that will keep those being held at American airports from being forcibly returned to their countries. Human rights – including the freedoms of speech and religion – are essential to all Americans and to all who come here to build better lives.”
On Friday, Trump signed an executive order calling for a 90-day ban on the admission of any citizen of Iran or six other Muslim-majority countries even if they have valid visas. Trump’s executive order does allow for exceptions, noting that “the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security may, on a case-by-case basis, and when in the national interest, issue visas or other immigration benefits to nationals of countries for which visas and benefits are otherwise blocked.”
In a tweet sent late Friday, Trita Parsi of the National Iranian American Council said he “confirmed” that “The Salesman” director Asghar Farhadi, whose film is nominated for an Oscar, “won’t be let into the US to attend Oscar’s” due to the new order.
The Writers Guild continued, “We are especially troubled by reports that Asghar Farhadi, director of ‘The Salesman,’ which won Best Screenplay at Cannes and is now nominated for an Oscar, may together with his cast and crew be prevented from entering our country. From its early days, the entertainment industry has been built by the imagination of immigrants. Our guilds are unions of storytellers who have always welcomed those from other nations, and of varying beliefs, who wish to share their creativity with America. We are grateful to them, we stand with them, we will fight for them.”
On Sunday, the director decided not to attend next month’s Academy Award ceremony, even if granted permission.
On Friday, a federal judge blocked the government from deporting citizens detained at U.S. airports as a result of the executive order to ban those coming in from seven Muslim countries. The ruling does not ensure that those detained will be released, but it does keep them from deportation, at least for the time being.