In President Trump’s First Week, ACLU Hands Him First Stinging Rebuke

This is a remarkable day. When Donald Trump was elected president, we promised that if he tried to implement his unconstitutional and un-American policies that we would take him to court. We did that today. And we won.

Yesterday President Trump signed an executive order that suspended resettlement of Syrian refugees indefinitely, suspended all other refugee resettlement for 120 days, and banned the entry of nationals from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen for 90 days. All seven countries are predominately Muslim countries. We have no doubt that the motivation behind the executive order was discriminatory. This was a Muslim ban wrapped in a paper-thin national security rationale.

The executive order went into effect immediately and so did its destructive intent. At John F. Kennedy International Airport last night, Hameed Khalid Darweesh arrived and was immediately detained. Darweesh worked as interpreter for the Army’s 101st Airborne Division and, according to Brandon Friedman, a platoon leader in Iraq, saved countless U.S. service members’ lives. We don’t know how many other refugees and foreign nationals with green cards or visas might have been detained when they tried to make their way into the United States today, but we intend to find out. We are asking anyone with any information to get in touch with the ACLU.

The ACLU with other organizations immediately sprang into action and challenged Trump’s executive order in court as violating the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the U.S. Constitution. We immediately got a hearing and argued our case. At around 9 p.m., Federal District Court Judge Ann M. Donnelly issued a stay, blocking President Trump’s discriminatory policy from taking effect and preventing refugees and immigrants from being deported. She did not rule on the constitutionality of the order, but for now, the men and women who would have been deported are safe. When I and staff attorney Lee Gelernt emerged from the courthouse, we were met with a sea of people cheering and chanting.

I cannot express how humbling and inspiring this moment is.

The United States is a nation governed by the rule of law and not the iron will of one man. President Trump now has learned that we are democratic republic where the powers of government are not dictatorial. They are limited. The courts are the bulwark of our democracy that protects individual rights and guards against the overreaching of an administration that confuses its will for the American public’s.

Tonight was one of the most incredible experiences of my life, one that demonstrates that the people united will never be divided. This is only the beginning. This is merely the first skirmish in a long battle to vigorously defend the Bill of Rights from the authoritarian designs of the Trump administration.

Savor this victory tonight, but prepare to fight on. 

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this reminds me of Neil Armstrong's small step for man, giant step for mankind quote - keep resisting!


Well put!


I thought the A in ACLU stood for American. We have problems in this country where the ACLU would benefit, but yet you choose deportation. When will you do what you were initially intended to do! America must be strong internally first before we can help everyone else. Our court systems need help and ACLU should be assisting and ensuring the American people rights have not been forgotten everyday in our current court systems.
We have American people being jailed if they Dont pay toll charges, or being jailed for a crime they didn't commit but since they have no $, are forced to stay in jail until they take a plea and sign for something they didn't do and this is just a small portion of the problems. But yet ACLU fights for a stay for non Americans.
I'm so tired of organizations calling themselves defender for the American people and yet they do nothing for Americans!
The very least you could is correct your name and remove the A. The majority if the American people applauded Trumps decision. It is only for 120 days until he has time to look into thus matter further. Each one of us would do the same, first protect the country then handle each issue, giving time to for his Advisors to research. He has been in office for a little more than 8 days and was given a country that is in a total mess.
ACLU if you really are for America, then look into issues that would benefit and improve America! Not someone's personal interest or just to be in the lime light.
I am stopping all of my donations to this organization and I will advise everyone I speak with to do the same. This stay and its effect I promise you will be much greater than 120 days.
If ACLU will not do what they were initially intended to do then my hopes & my contacts hopes is the closure of ACLU!
Support American people and their rights or close your doors!
Past Donor


What about the specific example listed in the story about a Muslim who helped America being hurt by this order? Do you divide only by birth? I would imagine that Americans value that man over white American-born men like Timothy McVeigh. But according to your tirade above, McVeigh counts for more? I understand your point, but we are all in this together. We are all humans first, Americans second.

Mike Hong

Mr. Anonymous, Mr. "CLU", as you probably know by now the ACLU doesn't need your donations.

And by the way, when I say something I put my name, I don't hide behind "Anonymous"


Mr. Anonymous 2. You must understand that the ACLU was founded to protect CIVIL liberties. It was founded to make certain the rights detailed in the American Bill of Rights are NEVER weakened. I'm sorry you didn't have this information. You make very good and valid points about the problems in our justice system (how about all those people convicted on false - positive results from lousy chemical tests used by most police!?!) Perhaps someone here at the ACLU can tell us how you can best support change on those issues. But please understand, the ACLU's main mission is prohibit government over-reach. The most prevalent areas of government over-reach are abuse of power by any governmental entity (from the president down to law enforcement); and discrimination and/or abuse of minorities or dissidents. Therefore a Executive Order that singles out one religious group is a prime example of the governmental "over-reach" the ACLU was founded to defend against. Always remember; today it's Muslims and journalists; tomorrow it could easily be YOU. Peace.


Congratulations ACLU on receiving over $20M in donations in just one day after the "ban" was issued. Your actions are awakening the tiger in all of us and for that I am truly grateful.

Leslie Mattesich

Thank you so much for all your hard work.


Thank you.

Andi H

Well done! So proud of the ACLU! Keep fighting the good fight and I'll keep donating. : )


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