Our Answer to The Muslim Ban—Freedom Of Movement, Equal Rights and Citizenship for All

Statement of Movement for Socialism

Feb. 28, 2017

“No Hate, No Fear, Everyone is Welcome Here!” This chant, popular at the many airport demonstrations against Trump’s Muslim ban, embodies the real alternative to the ban—Freedom of Movement, free immigration, for all. The alternative to Trump’s naked discrimination in immigration is not a return to the disguised discrimination of existing immigration law. The only way to protect the rights of all is to defend the freedom of movement of all—guaranteeing to all the right to chose where they live. That is the only policy that can protect the rights of working people everywhere.

When the Movement for Socialism demands ”Equal Rights and Citizenship for All who Live here” we don’t mean—just those living here today. We mean welcoming everyone who chooses to come here, in the past or in the future.

That was, after all, the original “immigration policy” of the United States. Up until 1879, it was the policy of the United States to, in the words of an 1868 treaty between the US and China, “recognize the inherent and inalienable right of man to change his home and allegiance, and also the mutual advantage of the free migration and emigration of their citizens and subjects, respectively, from the one country to the other for purposes of curiosity, of trade, or as permanent residents.”

Today, just as in 1868, nothing in the US Constitution allows the US government control over who moves here or who leaves. The present immigration laws are all unconstitutional.

The mass actions against this ban can be the first big step in building a unified movement for all our demands, not just against a particular executive order. Defending the right of all who live here and all who come here is part of defending the equal rights of all, whether they be immigrants, racial or ethnic minorities, women, gays, disabled , union members or whatever group Trump and the capitalist system singles out. The demand unifying all these struggles is “Equal Right and Citizenship for all who live here.!”

But to welcome all to live where they choose is to provide enough education, housing, transportation, medical services and energy for all. So our demand for a massive federal project to expand these vital services so that they can be free for all is vital to a coherent program that guarantees freedom of movement. Without such a demand, we can’t counter the virulent idea that we must fight each other over the crumbs left to us by the capitalists.

Since the only way to fund such a program is to take the money from those who have stolen it—the capitalists and the corporations—this demand makes clear as well who and where the real enemy we are fighting is—the Enemy is at Home!

So, to defend basic rights, we must demand that we all get—free- the housing, education, transportation, health service and energy that we need.