Making her voice heard. Angelina Jolie took President Donald Trump’s newly instated immigration policy to task in a new essay for The New York Times published on Thursday, February 2, noting that “acting out of fear is not our way.”
“Refugees are men, women and children caught in the fury of war, or the cross hairs of persecution,” the 41-year-old actress and UN Special Envoy began her piece. “Far from being terrorists, they are often the victims of terrorism themselves.”
Jolie, who is the mother of six children with estranged husband Brad Pitt, further argued that Trump’s proposal to block all Syrian refugees and deny entry to citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries will send the wrong message to other nations. (Three of the former couple’s children — Maddox, 15, Pax, 13, and Zahara, 11, were adopted internationally. Jolie has not otherwise weighed in on politics during the election cycle despite her father, actor Jon Voight’s vocal support of Trump.)
“The global refugee crisis and the threat from terrorism make it entirely justifiable that we consider how best to secure our borders,” she continued. “Every government must balance the needs of its citizens with its international responsibilities. But our response must be measured and should be based on facts, not fear. As the mother of six children, who were all born in foreign lands and are proud American citizens, I very much want our country to be safe for them, and all our nation’s children. But I also want to know that refugee children who qualify for asylum will always have a chance to plead their case to a compassionate America.”
At present, Trump’s so-called Muslim ban includes an exam that all immigrants will be required to take upon entering the country, with a heavy advantage for non-Muslim immigrants.
The Oscar-winning actress further stressed the misconstrued facts of how “our borders are overrun or that refugees are admitted to the United States without close scrutiny.”
“… only the most vulnerable people are put forward for resettlement in the first place: survivors of torture, and women and children at risk or who might not survive without urgent, specialized medical assistance,” she wrote. “I have visited countless camps and cities where hundreds of thousands of refugees are barely surviving and every family has suffered. … And in fact only a minuscule fraction — less than 1 percent — of all refugees in the world are ever resettled in the United States or any other country.”
Trump’s executive orders last Friday, January 27, sparked outcry and protests throughout the world, with many celebs weighing in on his unprecedented ban. In her essay, Jolie admonished Trump’s policy, which she described as un-American in its sentiments.
“We must never allow our values to become the collateral damage of a search for greater security,” she wrote. “Shutting our door to refugees or discriminating among them is not our way, and does not make us safer. Acting out of fear is not our way. Targeting the weakest does not show strength. … We have to make common cause with people of all faiths and backgrounds fighting the same threat and seeking the same security. This is where I would hope any president of our great nation would lead on behalf of all Americans.”
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