An Apology to Muslims for President Trump

We Americans should condemn our extremist.

Comments: 246

  1. The white male mainstream media of a certain age is still clinging to the false narrative that the mostly white trump voters were expressing anger about jobs and wage decline (never mind the fact that they continually vote against their interest here). How much more glaring does the proof need to be that trump supporters love trump because they share his racist, hateful and vindictive world outlook? His supporters love this new Muslim ban. They are thrilled that Muslims (and in a recent NPR piece derogatory descriptions of Muslims were used) are being kept out - regardless of whether it's a surgeon or a sick child - so long as Muslims are being banned they are giddy. There is a streak of nasty, mean hate among millions of people in this country embodied by trump that I never knew existed. The cruelty of the trump supporter, disingenuously disguised as "safety concerns" is truly heartbreaking. What has gone so wrong in our culture that hate and spite is the new normal? And if trumpsters really want to keep America safe than they would ban guns in schools and in houses with small children while demanding grip locks on hand guns - as good old American gun owners are who is killing Americans the most.

  2. Dana -- I very much agree, especially with your point about guns in our country, a far greater danger than any outside force. I must take exception, however, to an ageist comment -- "the white male mainstream media of a certain age" -- to whom you refer in your first sentence. I have read many an embarrassing piece by the younger white male mainstream media. In this paper alone, e.g., there was Hillary bashing when she ran against Barack Obama, Bernie bashing when he ran against Hillary, and the relentless boomers bashing articles (one is boldly posted on the front page of the digital NY Times as I write this). Nearly all were written by younger and young-middle age white male staffers.

  3. How "thrilled" were they when the last President did the same thing, twelve times over? Do you realize that each of the areas covered under this temporary moratorium was identified by the previous administration because they are failed states, and have no centralized government? Did you know that there are also Christians and other faiths affected? Do you even care that "Muslim" isn't a race?

    No, of course not. You are safely ensconced in your liberal elitist bubble that gives you a sense that you are on some kind of moral high ground. Bashing our current President and calling him and his supporters racist gives you some sick satisfaction. You are intellectually lazy enough to ignore facts, believe anything you are told that adds a layer to your little bubble, and because you don't actually have to develop your own opinion, safe in knowing that you don't have to defend it, and glad that you don't knowing that you can't.

  4. @Resonance
    He did not do the same thing "twelve times over". There was one slowdown of the processing of Iraqi refugees in 2011 as sharper procedures were put into place after two Iraqi refugees in the U.S. were implicated in a terrorist plot.

    Likewise, the seven countries in Obama's list refers to a visa waiver program applies to the residents of 38 other foreign countries who would, in fact, require a visa to visit if they have traveled to those countries. It didn't deal with citizens of those countries and didn't bar their travel to the U.S.

    "ou are intellectually lazy enough to ignore facts, believe anything you are told that adds a layer to your little bubble, and because you don't actually have to develop your own opinion, safe in knowing that you don't have to defend it, and glad that you don't knowing that you can't."
    And now you're just projecting.

  5. When extremism comes directly and forcefully from the White House, it's a sure sign that Americans have lost their way, their moral compass. The president was hailed as a savior last year when he demonized Islam and immigrants, which was an effective broadstroke of ethnic cleansing that played very well to the red heartland and fruited plain.

    Let's face it, Muslims worship differently, dress differently and in many cases, look very different from the president's alt-right support base. Their mosques are structures of immense beauty around the world, especially in Andalucia of southern Spain. One has only to visit the Alhambra in Granada to witness the brilliance and creative genius and innovation of Muslim culture. Their scientists and engineers were and are without peer. And yes, their military ferocity, in its day, was fierce and powerful enough to have conquered and ruled Spain for 700 years.

    Islam is not a religion to be feared and neither are its worshipers. People of the Muslim faith have much to offer to America and around the world. They fear terrorism as much as we do so let's not assume that they are all evil and wish to destroy "infidels", which is what their radical militants really are.

  6. I ask, and not in any snide way, when did Americans have a moral compass? When we fill our prisons with minorities? When we interned Japanese? When we turned away a ship-load of Jewish refugees? When we worked Chinese laborers to death in railroad construction but refused them the right to live in America? When we were oblivious to the nastiness of Joe McCarthy? When we tolerated Jim Crow? And tolerated lynchings? Or when we bought and sold people from Africa? Perhaps there was always another face to America, the public face of patriotism and apple-pie. But behind that face, the reality grew until it finally broke the dam and took over Nov 2016.

  7. "In effect, Trump took a real problem, inflated it with hysteria, handled it with incompetence and created an unjust policy that targets seven mostly impoverished Muslim countries that haven’t produced a single person involved in a lethal terrorist attack in America since before 9/11."

    Thank you, that captured the whole Trump phenomena and leadership in one sentence.

  8. No, Mr. Trump is not beheading people, at least not yet. But it is as insulting to Muslims to accept terrorists as representing them as it is insulting to Christians to accept that Trump & Pence have anything to do with Christianity. What would Jesus do? He is at the airports, comforting the rejected Muslims.

  9. Well, many of us have just plain given up on Christianity. Period.
    Even the Pope is commenting, shaking his head, and figuratively shaking his fist.

  10. So much ignorance in one post. It physically hurts those of us who actually know what's going on. I wonder, how did you feel when the last President barred people from these same areas from entering this country TWELVE TIMES during his tenure?

    Wait, what? You didn't know? I wonder why that is? When you figure it out, you may well be on a path to learning why this country is fractured so completely.

  11. @Resonance
    We didn't know that "fact" because it's an "alternative fact".

  12. Mr. Kristof, what has struck me by its deafening silence since last weekend's Muslim Wall went up on our shores is the protest of the Evangelical Right. You know, those self-righteous "Christians" who bear that ole rugged cross of suffering in the name of their Savior, the very same who, in perhaps His most famous parable, The Good Samaritan, urged us all to succor the stranger, the kicked and beaten, the wounded and helpless. The Other.

    The vice-president, for example, has told the world that "I'm a Christian, a Conservative and a Republican in that order." Yet this "Christian" man stood silent as his boss trotted out America's second-most pernicious cancellation of American citizenship since FDR caved in to fear and rounded up patriotic Japanese-Americans after Pearl Harbor.

    It continues to amaze me, Mr. Kristof, how people who go out of their way to beat their chests proudly about their faith--the "born again" and those with "a personal relationship with Jesus Christ" inhabit the same swamp that has never been drained of its decidedly un-Christian animosities against people who are (a) not white; (b) not male; (c) not wealthy or (d) all of the above.

    Christianity, as seen from the ISIS viewpoint, is rank hypocrisy. This new president and his administration have inscribed, on the frontispiece of the ISIS manual, their blessings and approval, a foreword, if you will, for how to attack America.

    "We hate!," shrills Trump, "and we hear you! Wipe out your enemies! We did!"

  13. How has the Religious Right managed to hijack the term "Christian"? The flout every one of the teachings of Jesus, and they do it proudly and on principle.

  14. Hypocracy? Muslims in general are anti-Semitic, and also you say, in the guise of ISIS, that Christianity is rank hypocracy. You should be focusing on the elements of a religion, called Radical Islam, that actively supports global jihad, instead of Christians who don't slaughter people.

  15. "President Trump is not America"

    Unfortunately for you, Mr. Kristof, he is.

    "My dream is of the day when Jews protest Islamophobia, Muslims denounce the persecution of Christians and Christians stand against anti-Semitism."

    You have it wrong, Mr. Kristof. Plenty of Jews denounce Islamophobia, you mention this in your article, and plenty of Christians denounce anti-Semitism. What I am waiting for is for Muslims to denounce anti-Semitism when unfortunately many are the source of anti-Semitism (does that make me Islamophobic? Call me what you want, but facts cannot be changed and a good deal of anti-Semitism in the US and world-wide has its origins in this or that corner of the Muslim world).

  16. You're evidently not well-versed in history. Anti-Semitism, far from having its origins in "this or that corner of the Muslim world" has been for 2,000 years a particularly Christian phenomenon. Jews have been safer in Islamic countries than in most Christian countries until relatively recently. Ironically, it's only since the establishment of Israel in 1948 that Jews have seen a rapid increase in anti-Semitism, a point that supporters of Zionism might want to take note of.

  17. While there are certainly strains of anti-Jewish bigotry in many Muslim communities, it is ridiculous to look for the roots of American anti-Semitism in the Islamic world. Just look at the 19th and 20th century European heritage (and its Christian, medieval, and early modern roots) of anti-Semitism, and the well-documented anti-Semitism in early 20th century America where Muslims were nowhere to be found. Evangelical Christians who today embrace Israel as part of their own bizarre millenarian ideology were, not so long ago, virulently anti-Semitic, like other Christian churches in the not-so-distant past. Of course, it's fair to criticize the rabid anti-Jewish propaganda that comes from certain Muslim outlets, but don't turn it into a scapegoat for our own ignoble Christian heritage of anti-Semitism.

  18. To Felipe:
    As a professional historian for well over 40 years I would be the first to admit, as Socrates taught us, that we know very little, or as Sir Fergas Millar pointed out in the Journal of Roman Studies some decades ago that those of us who engage in the study of the ancient world "do not know what we are talking about". Fair enough.
    That being said, your claim re the Islamic world is legend. The Jews suffered plenty in countries under Islamic rule. I do not give grades to anti-Semites. There was and is Christian anti-Semitism as well Muslim in the past and in the present. And in the present the Muslims have it hands down. And I for one am not willing to remain in dhimmi status in order to maintain your skewered version of history. Jews too are entitled to a state whether this is to the liking of the Muslim world or not.

  19. Noble sentiment and I agree with the principle.
    But although Trump is not America, he represents us. And millions of Americans either share his views or a more extreme version of them. And millions more simply don't care enough one way or the other to try to stop them.
    It's not just one person. It's a sickness which runs deep and wide.

  20. When your goal is to control the populace, the easiest
    way is to create enemies and instill fear, which is the
    goal of the Trump administration. Demonize a group,
    whether Jews of Muslims or Mexican busboys, take your
    pick. The underlying motif is your life is not good
    and it's somebody else's fault. If we just get rid of all
    those " others" then life will be good.
    Then ask yourself how does that work out?
    Meanwhile 30,000 people a year die in US due to gun violence but I don't see any movement to ban Christians.
    Or the NRA which is our own homegrown
    terrorist organization.

  21. Seems to me liberals in this country have been controlling their followers with fear for quite a while now. Have you already forgotten? Seriously? Romney pushing a lady in a wheelchair off a cliff? The Hitler references to Trump? All of it fear mongering of the highest order.

    Where was your outrage when the last President did exactly what Trump has done TWELVE TIMES over the course of his tenure?

    Yeah, that's what I thought. No real excuse for your hypocrisy other than "Trump's not my President", or "All my friends are saying we're doomed".

  22. @Resonance
    "Where was your outrage when the last President did exactly what Trump has done TWELVE TIMES over the course of his tenure?"
    You keep repeating that alternative fact but have provided no substantiation for it.

  23. Wonderful column. My only quibble is with your description of the executive order as "handled with incompetence". Faced with the danger of President Trump and his extremist advisors, I believe we should always assume calculation and intent, unless proven wrong. Don't allow these people (so adept as lies, as we have repeatedly seen) to cover their tracks with the excuse of incompetence. There are good arguments that Trump sows confusion intentionally and the chaotic implementation of orders augments fear and uncertainty. This is a strategy. It's a dangerous one, but I believe that is the point. Trump and his advisors are acting in ways that will provoke violence, at home and abroad, as a means to justify authoritarian measures including severe repression and war. Assuming incompetence or impulsiveness will lead us to tragically underestimate the threat this administration poses to our institutions, laws, values, and way of life.

  24. Assuming incompetence or impulsiveness also plays into the hands of propagandists who exploit American anti-intellectualism by pointing fingers at liberal snobbishness.

  25. I am a French citizen. I was born in Iran and therefore, I also have an Iranian passport although I never use it. I have a PhD in theoretical physics from Canada (where I lived for a decade) and now live and work in Germany. I am an atheist. Just because I was born in Iran, I am now banned from entering the US. I highly doubt the Trump administration will ever allow my entry to the US even after the temporary ban. I feel in the chaos that this new law created, and in the protests that followed, people like me are never mentioned. People like me, are pure products of globalization. We move often, carrying our life in our luggage. Not having a place to call home isn't easy, so we try to find a home in the world of ideas, in the beliefs we stand for. The founding principles of the United States and what America has always stood for, played an important role in the formation of my ideas. I may not be American, but I have often felt American at heart. This is why this law affected me so much. I view this as one small element in the war between enemies and friends of globalization, I am afraid balanced voices of those who aren't blind to globalization's shortcomings but want to keep and open world and focus their efforts on overcoming those shortcomings are not heard. I live with the fear that tomorrow, the world will not have a place for people like me.

  26. F.K.
    We who have been born here and call ourselves Americans are feeling displaced too about now. This president does not in any way exemplify who many of us are. It has become very sad in a matter of days.
    We can't even begin to wrap our heads around it. We apologize, we really do.

  27. beautifully stated and a necessary voice in the conversation, thank you for sharing...

  28. @FK: You are a "model citizen" of a progressive and humane world, cheers! Globalization is, however, at this stage, more aptly called "neo-liberalism". A true globalization would mean that workers, "blue" and "white" collar alike, would have both the freedom and incentive to travel and work in places like Shanghai, Santiago, Tehran, Lagos, Ho Chi Minh City, Mumbai, etc., not just the usual western capitals of money: New York, London, Paris, Toronto, Barcelona, Hamburg, etc. It would mean a standard of governance across a majority of the planet that creates a welcoming atmosphere for all. The nightmare of Trump and his followers (leaders?) aside, we need our "global elites" to begin putting people first, not profits. Until now, they have used their influence not so much to encourage progressive change but more to insure a supply of cheap labor.

  29. How about - we apologize to the world for the president you see in the United States of America.

    When I hear about the children of other lands who have been in the midst of medical treatment here, but now cannot continue that treatment, I see Donald Trump as a monster.

  30. How about Mr Kristof apologize to everyone for his part in giving us Trump. He, and the New York Times praised Clinton as the only Democratic candidate and would not listen when we told them, over and over, that Clinton would not win over Trump. Her failure was assured when Wikkileaks published the content of some of those stolen e-mails -- the DNC was using dirty Republican tactics to bury the candidacy of Bernie Sanders. Now you are whining that having a private e-mail server was not a crime, well that wasn't the problem -- the problems were the tactics identified in those e-mails, and the sell out to Wall Street and Big Pharma. Now we are expected to blame Russia. We don't. They took advantage of the NY Times' stupidity in supporting a badly flawed candidate.

  31. Who is this god the new president prays to? My God preaches love of all, no exceptions.

  32. I think you have answered your own question.

  33. Mine too.

  34. So, are you ready to take an unvetted Somali refugee into your home for an indeterminate amount of time? Maybe from Syria or Iraq?

    Didn't think so. Stop denouncing others under the guise of piety. It's disgusting. Borders and home protection are referred to in the Bible. Need me to direct you to the scripture?

  35. Kristof seems to already miss President Obama's routine globetrotting "apology tours." Americans have apologized enough over the years for various offenses, real and imagined. Kristof's liberal use of the word "extremism" leaves a bit to be desired, though, since not all extremisms are equal. It was the late, great Senator Barry Goldwater who said that "extremism in defense of liberty is no vice; moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue.” I am thankful that President Trump has pledged to do whatever it takes to protect the liberty of my kith and kin, the "posterity" defined in the Constitution.

  36. I think your president should ban men to buy guns so freely in your country if he really wants to protect your family ...

  37. Really? Whatever it takes? Would that include nuclear war? Concentration camps?

    And when did apologizing for wrong-doing go out of style?

    Doing "whatever it takes" to protect us from danger implies a level of amorality that I don't think you really subscribe to -at least I hope not.

  38. Please show me those alleged "apology tour" quotes where Obama apologized for America. You may be surprised to find how elusive they are.

    As for protecting your kith and kin, you may not believe us liberals but perhaps you might believe David Petraeus:

  39. I apologize for being silent when I should have spoken. No more. No ban; no wall.

  40. So, you support what is happening in your own state? Are you a shut-in?

  41. Thank you. We still need you. Do not be silent again. speak up against ALL tyranny. We can. we will, WE MUST.

  42. Good for you! Democracy is always better when the spectators get off the bleachers and join the game.

  43. As ever, Mr. Kristof has reminded us that to honor our democracy and our decency, we need to raise our voices instead of just appreciating our privileges. Lady Liberty has no voice of her own, and Justice only works when we remove OUR blindfolds to keep the scales balanced. I a mortified that so many citizens voted for a leader who is contrary to our national moral ethic. But I am also energized and hopeful because the majority seem to be coming to the frontlines in the battle to save the values our nation purports to represent. A special gratitude to the media who have, whether as a consistent awareness, as in the case of Mr. Kristof, and others who have found their courage, are speaking out for the true moral America.

  44. I wonder, did Kristof write a column about Obama's bans on Muslims? No? Must be because it wasn't, and it was EXACTLY the same kind of moratorium in place right now. Oh, wait, that's right, he was your President, and this one, obviously, is not. None of you have any idea the depth of hypocrisy and ignorance you show with every post that agrees that this is a "Muslim" ban, or that this kind of thing is somehow unusual for a President to do, under full Constitutional support.

    Do some research.

  45. There have always been people who resisted. When I lived in LA, I heard about a man whose next door neighbor, a Japanese man, had to go to one of the internment camps. He bought the Japanese man's house, kept it up while his neighbor was gone, and GAVE it back to him when he returned.

    Some of us have always been better than the cruel cowards who sometimes come to power. I hope that many of us will rise to the needed decency and courage to resist this time, in the spirit of this anonymous man who knew what was right.

  46. Wow! Where are the internment camps now? Are you ready to buy your neighbor's house and keep it up for him?

    Delusional and histrionic much?

  47. Thank you for reminding us that President Roosevelt used his power as President to place Japanese-Americans into internment camps. Do you feel Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a 'cruel coward'?

  48. I have never met you.

    You are of a different religion and from a faraway land, but you are still family. If you go back far enough we are all brothers and sisters, so let me offer an apology as well. You deserve to be treated with respect and as a human being, just like we all deserve to be.

    We shall fight this racism, bigotry and hatred hand in hand, you and I.

  49. @Resonance

    Just to let you know up front that I have flagged your comment as a personal attack ( so it might disappear )

    Having said that, I will deign to give you a response, even though unwarranted vitriol is exactly why my comment seems to resonate.

    I am sorry to hear that you have been injured.

    I am also sorry to inform you that if you indeed fought for your country in the military or otherwise, then you should know, or at least acknowledge, that you fought for the founding fathers' principles.

    Those principles, of course, being that we are all to be treated equally and fairly. ( regardless )

    If you have a belief that the previous administration was racist or otherwise, then you are free to offer an opinion and back it up with actual facts or anecdotes.

    Please be specific. I will wait.

  50. You claim President Trump is not America but sadly, he is. With 49% of those polled agreeing with the order, it is clear who has placed this man in the White House. Yes, many who are going along with this turn toward scapegoating may one day snap out of their self-righteous and cruel delusion, but the fact is that today--right now--half of us are not apologetic for this Executive Order. Trump is doing exactly what he said he would. The responsibility lies with the American voter and my apology to the Muslim community is for them,

  51. 3 million more Americans voted for Secretary Clinton Kellyann, nothing is going to change that fact.
    And that 49% is another lie.
    The real percentage is like 29%.
    Even some of draft dodger trump's base have hearts.
    No brains but apparently some hearts.

  52. What gives you the right to apologize for the actions of anyone but yourself? A vicarious apology ("I apologize for that lot") is not an apology at all, but condemnation at best, sanctimonious self-promotion at worst. If you deplore Trump and his supporters, condemn them, but don't set yourself up as the conscience of the nation uttering a pseudo apology on behalf of your unrepentant political adversaries.

  53. Who was it that came-up with this list of failed states for special scrutiny? Oh yeah, the last administration. Who used the exact same order twelve times during their Presidency? Oh yeah, the last guy did.

    Your feigned outrage is laughably hollow and without merit. Your veiled disgust for America not so thin.

    You may now send your apologies, retroactively, to all the Muslims affected by twelve temporary bans on immigration used by the last President.

  54. Thank you again, Mr. Kristof.

    I suggest the Democrats buy newspaper ads several days a week in swing states where Republican senators will come up for re-election in 2018. The ads should show photographs of various accomplished people being excluded from our country by Mr. Trump, his cheerleader, Mr. Pence and the Republicans in Congress. Perhaps the ads could each have a short bio of one person, including their struggle and time spent in the US vetting process. The NYTimes could run a compendium of the photos each month as a show of what our country has lost and the cruelty of the order. In a few months the compendium would have thousands of photos measuring our policy failure.

    It is clear rational argument and facts do not sway some voters. The Dems should appeal to those voters on a visceral level.

    My understanding is that half of the people targeted by the ban are children under 14. If true, I suggest "The Ban" be called the US Crusade against children to make sure we are clear who "the Bad Guys" are in this action.

  55. What a novel way to make a point. A picture is worth a thousand words.

  56. 2018 is too late, we need to call for immediate recalls of all Republicans who support Trump.

  57. An excellent idea! Taking a page from the "profiles in courage" that ran after 9/11.

  58. ...and let's not let Trumps next spectacle make this yesterday's news. We must be relentless, on all fronts, to challenge the idiocy of Trump's actions!

  59. Unfortunately for your state, you will soon be forced to purchase your prayer rug.

  60. Hold on! We need to apologize for our extremists. Millions of Americans voted and support Trump. We have millions of extremists not just one.

  61. Leaders set the tone -- whether people listen to their better angels, or not. Trump creates racism. In critical moments of his administration, George W. Bush did not. That's because Bush is a paragon of mental stability compared with Trump. Leadership is everything.

  62. Right now, I see more danger for Americans in Trump's policies than I would think possible in the Muslim community. He has opened the door to the bigots and racists who did not, before Trump, dare be so public with their behavior. Now they believe it is okay and are making up for lost time.
    What I fear is Trump trying to make a registry for Muslims having to sign. If he does, every female in my family will learn to wear the hijab and will sign. We are not Muslims, but believe that we must stand for what America stands for, even if the man in the White House is trying to destroy that.

  63. Exactly. People get the leaders they deserve. Democracy in decline.

  64. Simply stated, Trump is a racist.

    His supporters are too.

    He got selected, so racist policies will now rule the day.

  65. Do you really believe that the 46.1% of Americans who voted for Trump are racist? Do you really believe that not a single person who voted for Hillary (48.2%) and Others (5.7%) is racist? Your analysis is no analysis. It is a nonsense.

  66. Islam is NOT a race.
    Taking control of borders of a country and controlling who comes into our country is NOT racist.
    All countries in the world do that.

  67. Prove it.

  68. Trump solves problems which don't exist: Mexican illegals overrunning the country, terrorism from refugees. He's also promised to save the economy after Obama already did it.

  69. It is confusing and irresponsible to make statements of extreme divisiness. If you read the EO, it only mentions "countires of concern" , it does not call for a Muslim ban. These countires of concern were named by the Obama Adminstrarion , not by Trump. And where is the distiction made in your opinion piece of immigrants vs. refugees? And could you check your archives for any outrage in 2011 when Obama ban Iraqi refugees for 6 months? With all due respect, a few of us actually read the EO. Perhaps someone has the courage to write accurately about what the president said. Perhaps you could quote American Muslim leaders who support such increased verting. Perhaps you could site the carnage from jihadists here in the USA who are hiding beneath the cloak of Islam to deliver horrific deaths on our soil. We all know the president's motives are to tighten the verting.....something Hillary campaigned on occasionally. No hate written here, just trying to understand the proliferation of hystrical rheotic that is not found in the EO.

  70. Superb, Orange Nightmare.

  71. Well said!

    The call for "extreme vetting" is simply a smoke screen. These people already go through many interviews, security and background checks by our various intelligence agencies, searches of their social media accounts etc., etc. It takes 18-24 months. What more does the Trump administration think it can do? My guess is that it is all tough talk geared to eventually make permanent bans.

    Trump & Co have convinced their fans that this makes them "safer." Some apparently already feel safer, yet they are not protected from home-grown, but radicalized folks or from the small % of the mentally ill who lash out (Newtown, Aurora) or from radicals whose ideology is not ISIS at all (the Uni-bomber, David Koresh, Dylan Root). These groups have perpetrated most of the violence on US soil in recent decades, along with folks from non-banned countries (Saudi, Egypt for 9/11). It is all delusion. It is generated in no small part by xenophobia and a desire to keep "the other," those who are not like "us," out.

  72. Anne-Marie, you do realize that 1.4 billion "others" from countries not affected by these temporary travel restrictions are still welcomed with open arms in this country, don't you?

  73. "In effect, Trump took a real problem, inflated it with hysteria, handled it with incompetence and created an unjust policy that targets seven mostly impoverished Muslim countries that haven’t produced a single person involved in a lethal terrorist attack in America since before 9/11."

    Trump needed a narrative to get elected. Jobs weren't enough--so let's scapegoat terrorists. Let's do "extreme vetting" which to me, sounds like taking an already competent multiyear vetting process and making it cruel.

    In America, a potential felon is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Now an entire religion is excoriated and presumed guilty before doing anything.

    When I was growing up and learning US history, I read about injustices that were stains on the democracy we're so proud of. The internment of Japanese after Pearl Harbor. Certain forms of extreme anti-Semitism, a strain of which is going strong within the Bannon-Trump Axis--when Jared Kusher is not in the room, clearly. I always thought to myself, America is good and just, we learn from prejudices, and try to do the right thing.

    We fought a world war to stop, among other things, the murder of innocents for their religion.

    So now our president launches a war against a major world religion? Note, he never offered condolences for the Quebec murder of Musllims simply praying.

    Trump's view of terrorism is highly selective: fine against Islam, unspeakable here.

    And not the only thing that's unspeakable.

  74. Great summation, NK, and good counsel. We are in a dark place, where the White House is turned into a cookie jar and every extreme faction is accommodated--from war-hawks to medieval Evangelicals to spiteful welfare cutters. Don't let's get all stupid as many did when their purity drove them to reject Hillary Clinton. Let's not expect that Chuck Schumer, much as I admire him, can solve this dilemma constructed for us by the most sophisticated propaganda machine the world has ever seen. The web of support for Trump runs through board rooms, FBI HQ, the Kremlin. and TV and radio studios all over America. To all the backbone and guts we're advised to have, let's add some canny planning and collegial unity.

  75. The usual "plan" for apologists of terror, apologists for religious extremism, apologists for infiltration - all supported by this delusional surrender bunny and many of his editorial page fellow travelers - is to sit by idly as the carnage rages and then construct a memorial for candles and flowers. Thankfully, the serious-minded are now in charge and this supine acceptance of all thing muslim is over. We have demanded forceful expectoration of this foul tasting anathema and despite these sheep in our midst, we will have it. One way or the other.

  76. Dang. You are awesome! Weave in a few more adjectives and adverbs, while you're at it.

  77. I do not apologize for Donald Trump. He is owed nothing but scorn.

    He is a deranged, hypocritical psychopath with no ideological core and no commitment to the rule of law and the Constitution.

    However, I do apologize for the American culture, it's political institutions, and media which allowed this ogrish man to ride a wave of discontent into the most powerful political position in the world. He has quickly proven incompetent in all diplomatic efforts and will surely be damaging to American foreign relations.

    I apologize, therefore, that Trump supporters have gotten the President they wanted, and that the Trump opposition has gotten the President they let happen.

  78. During the Japanese internment, the only religious group to stand up against it with any effect were the Quakers, with actions taken by their "liberal wing", the American Friends Service Committee. This is one of many occasions that the Quakers, who were an important progressive political presence in early America, struggled on the right side of history against darker and more powerful forces.

    As someone who was raised a Quaker, and marched as a child against the war in Vietnam and for civil rights, it is extremely disheartening to see my country again descend into the politics of fear and bigotry. People don't really change, but our culture and the rules of civilization must.

    The United States bears most of the responsibility for disrupting the relative stability in the mid-east. GW destroyed a relative balance between the Shea and Sunni sects with truly horrific consequences to millions of civilians. Most of the Iraqi middle class that haven't been killed have lost everything and been forced to flee their country and worse is occurring in Syria.

    It is appalling to see our nation turn its back on this horrific tragedy that is so much our responsibility, but a president devoid of empathy is incapable of seeing the world as it is and feeling the suffering of the innocent.

  79. Unfortunately, what Trump is fomenting will have to be allowed to run its course. At some point, when the train can no longer slow down, it will smash. Then some people, though certainly not all, will begin to question why they climbed on board. "Same as it ever was, same as it ever was."

  80. I believe that the time for apology is later, after those of us who repudiate what Trump has done and his America has sanctioned have taken action.

    Action to bring America out of its fear-tinged xenophobia, its security-obsessed indifference to suffering, and its greed-induced lack of generosity towards people in need. Action to tear down walls and welcome refugees, action to show our Muslim neighbors that we will defend their rights as Americans under the US Constitution, and that they need not fear the knock on the door.

    Action to rectify the wrongs we have done to refugees and immigrants must come first, or any apologies we make are just empty words.

  81. Each of my Muslim friends and colleagues has been made to apologize for the behavior of murderers -- not once or twice, but regularly. Each has countless stories of being treated as the "spokesman for Islam," as if they, their religion, or their place of origin made them responsible for the actions of strangers.

    I was born in Connecticut, but no one has ever asked me to apologize for the Sandy Hook Massacre. I'm American, but no one has blamed me, personally, for American gun violence.

    Mr. Kristin, some commenters here are insulting to you, and mock your efforts, but I appreciate your attempt not just to show the incompetence and unintended consequences of the travel ban, but to hold up to the light the tendency to hold all Muslims responsible for the crimes of any one Muslim. The travel ban is the logical culmination of such thinking.

  82. Donald Trump and Stephen Bannon don't have the power (much less the subtlety and agility) to make us safer. But they do have the power to launch a global, existential religious war that will last for centuries and kill many millions of people.

    For those who believe we're already in such a war: if that were true, we would already be facing mass terrorist attacks at home every single day.

  83. "Trump took a real problem, inflated it with hysteria, handled it with incompetence and created an unjust policy..." This can describe just about everything coming out of DC these days, overrun with extremists. Self interest extremists. Greed saturated extremists. Republicans. As horrifying as this ban is, it's just bait and switch for them.

  84. As the 75th anniversary of FDR's Executive Order 9066 approaches, let us not forget that 2/3 of the Japanese Americans who were incarcerated were American citizens. The racism then is underscoring the racism now.

  85. First, I know no matter how trump sugarcoats this it was a raciest ban to single out Muslims. That said, I am in favor of improving the security of the US, however all I have heard is how they are putting in this extreme vetting process. I would love to know what was wrong with the two year long one President Obama had in place and how is trump improving it?

  86. I think that America is showing again its best face with all the protests on the street, so no need to apologize. The day that the Arab and the Muslim world will become civilized, where women are not treated worse than animals (which is almost impossible...), able to drive, decide and go to school, not cover their head or face for a man's made religion, then the West in its entirety will be more sympathetic.

  87. It's amazing to watch small children curious and playing without thought of color, nation, gender, or environment. We would never want our children to be bullies. It's an affront to our children to have our government rhetoric and propaganda be so toxic that they need to be protected from it. This propaganda will and is filtering down into our schools, and neighborhoods. We are not finding more inspiration to grow together, only to shut down the progress toward equality. These times are like a tidal wave, flooding our thoughts with bitterness. It's up to each of us not to let that happen.

  88. I do not think Donald Trump should be our president; his election is and will forever be tarnished due to the roles played by Vladimir Putin and James Comey to influence its outcome. That opinion pales in comparison to the scorn I have for the republican party.

    That said, and it must be said whenever writing an opinion to these pages otherwise to be labeled as a racist or worse, President Trump's travel ban appears legal; we'll see if any challenges to it succeed. The ban does not make him a racist. It has him wrongly conflating genuine and well vetted refugees with economic migrants or tourists. The two are different no matter how much some columnists conflate them.

    Personally, I believe the Islamic theocracies need to be quarantined from the rest of the civilized world. Their cultures contribute zero value to the rest of us and at best, breeds intolerance of the non conformist or the designated inferior, especially women or other religions. At worst, in the Wahhabist view, non-believers are less than human and, in the judgement of clerics and ideologues, must either submit or be punished. Americans need not welcome people into our midst from those cultures. We neither need nor welcome what Islamic migration has done to Europe.

    Americans do not owe the Muslim world an apology for President Trump.

    The Muslim world owes the civilized world an apology for Wahhabist doctrine even before one factors in theocratic use of terror as a method of foreign policy.

  89. Humans are pre-programmed to find "otherness" and marginalize, discriminate, reduce the "other" to something lesser, something that can be eliminated.

    Civilization is the process that supersedes our programming and makes us better than savages. The planet seems to be moving backwards.

    I don't have a solution that increases the overall level of humanity in humanity. But I know for sure that what we are doing in this country, right now, isn't it.

  90. I often think of those 3000 innocent people at the World Trade Center, their deaths the result of a plot so diabolical that no one was able to predict it. If Mr. Kristof can give us assurance that something like that won't happen again he might have a point.

  91. Of course he can't give that assurance. Neither can Trump. A blunderbuss comic opera bit of "reality show" theater to reward his adoring fan base has in fact just made such an event much more likely.
    We already vet immigrants rigorously.
    The best defense is the moderate Muslim community.
    Their defense of our shared values has just been made much more difficult.

  92. i often think of the 300,000 killed and the 30,000,000 innocent iraqi's who's country was destroyed and are still suffering from an attack by an american criminal vice president who has gone unpunished and unrepentant! who has caused the death of 4,500 and maiming 32,000 of my fellow american citizens, who squandered $3Trillion of our hard earned tax payer dollars on an illegal war to enrich himself andd his cronies in the oil+defense business!

    and by the way not one of the 1.6 Billion muslims voted for any of those hijackers or other terrorists, unlike those that elected cheney and trump!

    in fact the approximately 90% of the victims of those radical jihadists are true muslims!

    and those radical jihadists have blossomed because of american elected officals yeah i think you and all americans do owe muslims an apology at the very least!

  93. As I recall there were no Christian or Jewish or Buddhist terrorists among the nineteen perpetrators of the 9/11 world trade center attack, only Muslims. The first attempt to blow up the World Trade Center in 1993 killed 6 people and injured 1000 and again seems the terrorists were Muslims. Couple that with attacks on our embassies earlier and I feel it is fully justified to apply extreme vetting procedures.

  94. My America has gone terribly astray with the election of Trump and the elevation of people like Stephen Bannon. But we must understand that Trump's ascendance came in a context -- one in which misinformation and outright lies designed to stir up hate and bigotry was served up to millions of working class folks by right-wing talk radio for more than two decades. Rush Limbaugh, who I believe has almost single-handedly breathed his combative and non-compromising persona into the GOP, burst on the scene in 1988 after the Fairness Doctrine (designed to regulate broadcasting) was scrapped by the Reagan Administration. The airwaves belong to the public. They should never be used to spread information harmful to the civic order that is so important for social cohesion. The next Democratic administration should seek to restore sanity by bringing back the Fairness Doctrine which, I am sure, will be strongly opposed by the "rats" who have gotten used to the anarchy.

  95. Germany iis about to change it's immigration policy regarding muslims entering their country. For what good it's going to do. Call it extreme vetting but how do you investigate thousands? But for better or worse they are taking the threat seriously and as always don't think it's going to be fair. Like the German people we lacked leadership regarding Jihad. Trump and the people supporting this however is taking a hysterical approach. Typical of how everything is handled today, think global warming, Trump is at full alert when a more rational approach would help. It's called lesdership.

    Can I ask what is your reaction to the Crusades? Every college educated person I've ever known was willing to condemn Europeans over it. Did they ever look at any historic maps of the spread of Islam prior to Crusades with continous incursions into Europe? No I'm saying we should get even for things that happened 1000 years ago. Just that most people lack a historical perspective on what we are and how we got here.

  96. I meant shouldn't get even.

  97. Ah, we support it out of fear? All that carnage scaring us, I suppose. Because all those country banned, taken together, have produce exactly zero terrorist attacks in the US. So sure, that must be it, we were scared into religious intolerance and a violation of the constitution by those zero attacks.

    We don't just ask fellow Muslims to condemn the extremists, we ask them to do something about them. So what are we doing about our two-headed presidential threat Bannon-Trump? Racism and greed make ugly bedfellows.

  98. I hope President Trump succeeds. I do. Bear with me. I hope Trump increases import taxes. I hope thousands of the most talented immigrants working in Silicon Valley leave the country. I hope the economy stalls, multinational profits dwindle and politics get gridlocked. Why? Because the multinationals and their billionaire owners who created this mess (Koch Brothers, Thiel et al) or looked the other way (Silicon Valley) are the only ones who can fix it now.
    They forgot one important history lesson or foolishly thought it didn't apply to them: Noblesse Oblige. People will gladly let elites rule the country, as long as they take reasonably well care of them. But it was/is never enough. Higher profits/income warranted compromising everything else: environment, climate, education, infrastructure, banking rules, you name it. And any means justified the cause: even hate speech and dividing people by religion.
    To those I want to say in a few years: YOU pushed it too far, YOU fix it. Now use campaign financing to push responsible politicians instead of useful idiots or anti-government puppets. To Zuckerberg, Brin et al: You know exactly who is in the market for which products, and precisely who wants to hear/read what messages.
    Now, tell people what they need to hear instead of what they want to hear. Expose people who need to hear is to inconvenient truths. Do something. Be on the right side of history.

  99. The problem is inflexible, willfully-ignorant orthodoxy and conservatism. It does not matter if it is the Church of Greed, the Church of Misogyny, the Church of Xenophobia or the hyper-Orthodox branches one of the name brand Religions.

    People unwilling to be open minded, able to listen to and consider the viewpoints of others, willing to compromise for a mutually agreeable outcome are incompatible with democracy in anything other than a monoculture. It does not matter who, whom or what they bend their knee to as they are inflexible and unwilling to process anything that disagrees with their worldview.

    The problem is that our world, our nation and humanity are not monocultures. Tolerance is the price of a peaceful world and peaceful communities and where there is no tolerance there eventually will not be peace.

    E pluribus unum is the traditional motto of the United States- not "in God We Trust". Remember the howl over that with President Obama a couple of years back? Yes I know of HJ Res 396 (, but E Pluribus Unum dates to the earliest times of our nation.

    E pluribus unum - out of many, one. We are many colors, many ethnicities, many faiths or non-beliefs, many social and economic backgrounds, different sexual preferences and gender identities- but we are one people. The only way this experiment works is if we are welcoming and tolerant of all willing to live together in peace.

  100. There have been few Muslims in my life but as a teacher, there were Muslim students that I did know. Never did any of those students represent anything but the most positive characteristics so vital to our democracy. Respect, courtesy, integrity and willingness to study and work hard were principles that all of these students displayed. And just in passing discussions, whenever negative comments about Muslims were mentioned at any time recently: My response was... How many Muslims have you known? You could predict the answer always..."NONE"

    Now we have fed the very bedrock of any terrorist organization by making the "other" into the "enemy". Whenever we do this... we create more enemies. And when we use this word, we are not simply using it as our President has. "Someone who did not vote for me." We are looking at people who have lost hope and have had that hope ripped out from under them. The absolute horror of thoroughly vetted immigrants sent back to where they came from or separated from their family on a plane paid for at their own (or our) expense is a horror that no single person on this planet should ever experience.

    We can only hope that some of the future Presidential orders are thought out more carefully and reflect more than campaign rhetoric. We are dealing with the world now... not just a few states that surprised us all in the electoral vote.

  101. If we were able to go back into history and met Hitler, we would have a moral obligation to stop him. Trump and Bannon are the modern Hitler and his Nazi strategist. We have a moral obligation to stop them before they take us into another war, this time with nukes. Their tactic of sowing fear (what American carnage is he talking about?) and provoking terrorists (with a Muslim ban) is to force the US population to move toward a strong, central, fascist government. We cannot fall for it. For the love of our country and values, we must resist this pathological deviant.

  102. When we type cast, we are blind to the individual. When we are blind to the individual, we become killers to ourselves and God no longer knows us.

  103. When (not if) the Muslim registry begins, I pledge to be first in line despite never entering a mosque or holding a Koran in my life. We need to flood the registrars to the point their lists are as pointless as they would be heartless.

  104. There are 57 Muslim-majority counties in the world desperately in need of talented Muslim immigrants. By siphoning off their talent, Western brain drain will hurt, not help the Islamic world. It is therefore our duty to ensure that their best and brightest not abandon their culture merely to pursue material gain in the secular, Islamophobic West. Let these fine people remain in their troubled homelands, where they can employ their remarkable skills saving their own people.

  105. If that idea had been followed over the past 200 years. The US would be an empty country, while our families would be stuck in Germany, Russia, Ireland, England and Scotland. You can't keep the best from wanting the best for their families and children. And we only allow in the best. If we were truly honest, we would admit that many of our grandparents would not have met the very high standards that current immigrants have to meet. We only let in the best.

  106. I keep seeing this same nonsensical comment after other articles, so can only assume that it is the the new script your handlers have written for you. How much do you get paid to get this drivel published?

  107. This is not Trumps' war, it was started by GW and made much worst by Obama.

    It will get more ugly before it gets better. Destroying the regime in Libya and funneling arms to Syria is on the last President. Removing the last 20,000 troops from Iraq as well. Obama created the refugee crisis, not Trump. The last two Presidents have a very high body count of civilians.

    And now his job is to keep us safe. If a few thousand people will be held up in customs, so be it.

  108. G-d help you if you think you think he will keep up safe. It's just the opposite, but his propaganda of creating paranoia is working. That's how demagogues come to power, that's how Bush got elected for the second term. "I will keep you safe", and unleashed ISIS. This one is looking to unleash nuclear weapons, just listen to him. He gets a sexual arousal out of imagining a nuclear mushroom. An "eruption" that he hasn't been able to perform for a while.

  109. Just as the right wing has always beseeched moderate muslims to condemn the radicals within their midst, it is incumbent on all of us to squelch this madman we have elected. We must do more and pressure our elected representatives to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove this sick little man

  110. Yes, Mr. Kristof, it is a nice dream what you wish for. But the reality is that Muslims do not share our values and do not believe in your dream. The current representative of our country has the wrong approach. But Western cultures are in fear that the values that we uphold in the search for freedom and equality are in danger of disappearing with the increasing number of immigrants who have a different world view and only want to take advantage of the benefits our stable structure has to offer, nothing else. Previous immigrants to this country were not a danger to those values. Current immigrants are.

  111. To "Arne, New York, NY," who is comfortable stereotyping 2.2 billion human beings: how many Muslims or refugees have you met? How many do you count among your friends? My Muslim-immigrant friends feed between 300 & 600 people in need every week. Check out to learn more. (I happen to be an atheist Jew and my Muslim friends have only supported me, expressed regret and remorse that they were not taught about the Holocaust growing up, and defended me from the anti-Semitic attacks of a Christian colleague.) You seem to understand "nuance" about as well as our president, who could have focused on suspected terrorists, or the countries whose citizens have committed acts of terror in the U.S. (Trump could even have read his intelligence reports) but he does none of these; instead, he issues a blanket decree that keeps out sick children, a woman visiting a dying mother, a Muslim translator who risked his life to support U.S. troops, etc. Are these your values?

  112. Benjamin Franklin said the same thing about my German and German-Swiss ancestors in the mid-18th century. I assume you don't personally know many Muslims and are making this foolish statement out of ignorance.

  113. According to you?

  114. If you fortunate enough to know any Muslims personally, you will know that they are a peaceful, loving and kind people. They live for their families and friends.

    I am a lucky person to know many as there is a fairly large Muslim population in my neck of the woods. Trump and his minion's recent actions have these good people now frightened about the present and the future.

    'Real' Americans appear to be fighting this evil nonsense. The Democratic party may even be waking up as a force against the darkness Trump represents. How long will this evil plague us? What follows if he is impeached? Pence is like a robot. Programmed by his Christian faith. Will he be any better? Will he attempt to turn the US into a theocracy?

    Summing all this up. The GOP needs to be soundly resisted and then defeated in the mid-terms. I mean aggressive resistance and tooth and nail efforts to expose them for what they are, a mafia like mob - day after day after day.

  115. I truly feel sorry for people who are so frightened of something that is not a problem. They need to do some research on the facts, not what they've heard somewhere. Yes we have had some terrorist attacks on our soil, by radicalized Muslims. starting of course on 9/11. That was an event to scar anyone's soul. The other attacks were by American citizens. Most of them born here. And by the way, for your edification, the majority of terrorists attacks in this country have been committed by White men who in most cases were radicalized Christians. Again, do your research in more than one place. And especially not on black (fake) sites. Tho you may not trust the media, but hey are still the best place for good information. They are reporting facts, not opinions. They are keeping us free.

    The reality is none of these attacks came from any the the 7 countries that have committed terrorist attacks on our country. On the other hand the citizens of countries that have committed attacks on this country came from Saudi Arabia, UAE and Egypt. The reason, staring all of us in the face is that Mr. Trump has business interests there. So it appears on the face of it, that Mr. Trump has a Foreign Policy that at least in some cases, enriches him, rather than keeping us safe. I'm sorry but babies coming here for heart surgery is not a threat, and neither are his parents. Do you really think that parents whose child is saved by Americans is going to commit a terrorist attack?

  116. Maybe we should just stop with the religion thing altogether. It's not real, and just provides a way for people to label each other and then hate.

  117. Your dream is my dream as well, Mr. Kristof: Someday humanity will collectively denounce bigotry in all its forms. The photo of the Jewish protestor and the Muslim protestor, marching side by side with children perched on their shoulders, should be displayed prominently in our White House (in place of the portrait of Andrew Jackson, perhaps? Just a thought). And I’ll go one further: The two men could replace the current occupant of our White House, since their united stance against the travesty of Trumpism shows the wisdom and compassion so sorely missing from the darkness spewing forth from our new leaders.

  118. I love our land dearly. I wish to see the day when our flag "still" flies over "the home of the brave and the land of the free."

  119. In the midst of so much Islamaphobia from Washington there is an understandable tendency to try and humanize people from Arab countries. But when was the last time we humanized ourselves?

    There is a strain of racism, imperial hubris and chauvinism that has been driving American policy in the Middle East and it's past time that it be called out. Since 1992 we have acted as if "they" needed to be brought to heal under American domination. Does anyone remember that prior to 92 and the first Gulf War that no one was worried about terrorist bombers?

    But since 92 we have invaded and occupied Iraq, virtually destroying the country, we've dismantled Libya, steadily bombed Somalia, looked the other way as the military took over in Egypt and waged proxy wars against Syria and Yemen.

    At least a million people have died, probably more. Schools, hospitals and Mosques have been destroyed. Some five million refugees are fleeing the violence we unleashed and radical Islamic groups, once under control of admittedly harsh dictators have been unleashed all over the region.

    We have created a human rights nightmare. While we should apologize for our discrimination here at home, the real apology should be made to the people of the region for wrecking and destroying an entire generation.

    Who are we that we think that we can and should rule over others? And when they resists, they are the terrorists? Then who are we?

  120. The unintended consequences of the Iraq invasion. Everything has emanated from that. Plus, as long as the US is perceived to favor Israel re: The Palestine question the US has no credibility in the Mid-East

  121. I think Syria should manage it own destiny. Manage your country and keep your refugees!

  122. God gave us the ability to reason, to love, to forgive and to empathize. When we turn our backs on the best of ourselves, we defy God's will. We were also given hate, jealousy, selfishness and anger, but I do not believe those came from God. I think when we give into the worst of ourselves we do the work of the devil. We need to use reason and understanding to figure out this world, not strict adherence to perverted readings of ancient texts. God doesn't write with a pen...God wrote our story when he created us and through our best selves we bring God's hopes to life in this world.

  123. wow....I'm not even sure what you're trying to say through all the religious blabbering. I'm Catholic myself and I'm all for strong faith, BUT you can talk and express your point like a normal human being, right? ....sorry, but it makes you sound like a religious nutjob.

  124. God is said to be the creator of all things. Did he not also create hate, jealousy,selfishness and anger in all men? Please don't give me that "free will" excuse. What kind of god would create men who could then do whatever they please?

  125. Wow liberals scream when the right includes religious justification for public policy. They cry SEPARATION of CHURCH and STATE and they believe it, except when it is their religion.

  126. When is someone going to apologize for Sharia law? I can't speak for anyone else, but for me this is a violent, barbaric, sexist, homophobic code of conduct that can not be tolerated anywhere in the civilized world.

  127. I agree. Pence should be ashamed of his attempt at Christian "Sharia" law. We should condemn his homophobia and literal interpretation of the Bible.

  128. Rob;
    How about we cut a deal; I will apologize for Sharia law the minute my Catholic church apologizes for canon law.

  129. and the christian right isnt sexist and homophobic? does that make all christians sexists and homophobes? why do you choose to bucket 1.7 BILLION people around the world with a few sick individuals? if it really was the religion and ideology that was the problem and not some sick mentally disturbed people distorting the world's view of the faith they claim to adhere to, don't you think there would be a lot more violence and fighting? if all 1.7 billion adherents were supposedly followers of an intolerant and violent ideology, why isnt the world a much more dangerous place than it currently is?

  130. We see what happened in Europe and do not want to see that happen here. Why is that unreasonable?

  131. This is not the same as what happened in Europe. Do you know how lengthy a process it is to get a visa from most countries especially these? It can take years. How would you feel to leave a country you lived in legally for decades, have valid residency permits (green cards) and then all of a sudden not be allowed on an airplane at an airport in the middle of your trip home. What about the people who have lived here for decades and cannot go to their former homes to visit aging relatives - mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers. Is that going to make you safe. I doubt it and even if this poorly executed ban lasted a week it would still be devastating for people. Do you know they had to pay for their travel anyway. I hope on your next trip you are not allowed to go to your intended destination; are sent "home" and then have to pay for the privilege. Then you might recognize how unreasonable all of this is.

  132. So why not ban immigrants from Saudi Arabia where most of the 9/11 hijackers originated? Trump's ban is a sop to his analytically-challenged base.

  133. Hank, if you don't like refugees, then would you please address the mess that motivates them? Talk about unreasonable. Bush goes into Iraq to win an election here based in fear. What's Trump going to do to keep the WH in 2020?

    If you don't see the connection, you are part of the problem.

  134. Kristof equates the temporary restriction of travel from seven terror-racked nations to the terrorist actions themselves. This includes internet videos of non-believers getting their heads chopped off. There is little wonder why journalists have the lowest approval rating of any group and their credibility is null.

  135. I made the same point, look for it if published. There seems a kind of extreme liberal guilt, and/or fear factor, which produces statements of such cinematic falsity. The entire article is built on such an artifice, and produces ... bathos.

    But so many buy into it, as the comments reveal...

  136. He actually explicitly does the opposite.

    "I don’t want to take Trump-as-an-extremist too far: He’s not beheading anyone, and the security challenge is real."

    If you do nothing but shoot the messenger, you might want to think about what you are willing to hear.

  137. Lower than Congress?

    What Terrorist "Actions" do you reference from the "terror-racked" nations?

  138. Baloney.

    The only thing that has happened, is that some visa applicants will now see a delayed and longer process, while new methods for vetting applicants are put in place.

    This article is just propaganda.

  139. No, Your comments are "baloney." The current vetting practices have never been shown to not work. It takes longer to gain entry to the US as a refugee than to get a national security clearance (Secret or Top Secret). This is totally for show. And its not a very good show.

  140. The" only" thing that has happened is that Trump is refusing to recognize possesors of Green Cards and previously issued visas, all issued after a rigorous vetting process. As an aside; his implementation of the ban was more than not well thought out, it was down right stupid. Refusing entry to people already in transit?

  141. Because this, like voter ID laws, is a solution without a problem. I have heard nothing about any problems with the current vetting process, which certainly seems to work - after all, we have had no terrorist acts committed by anyone from any of those countries, nor have we had any attacks from refugees. This is incompetence at best and bigoted at worst. Finally, in the context of a week where the President, a certified racist, issues an insensitive Holocaust remembrance statement, and humiliates himself with his ignorance commemorating Black History Month, we know who we're dealing with and what drives policy. Denying racism is racism.

  142. While the accounts of the harm inflicted on various individuals who have been approved for entry into the US are saddening, I think we may have something more important at stake. Is the United States going to continue to have "a government of laws and not of men"? The vetting process which approved the visas of these foreign nationals, who were apparently later denied entry, or worse, detained and turned back, was to my understanding, a rigorous, lengthy procedure, carried out under the laws of the United States. Once a visa has been granted under the laws of the United States, then it should be honored, presumed valid, and not overturned because a new president is suspicious of the procedures established under previous presidents. With each passing day, we may be showing the world, by our words and actions, that we are on a path to having a government of men and not of laws.

  143. This is monumental overreach … even arrogance. Not in the eight years of the Obama administration, during which fully two-thirds of my related comments in this forum were critical of BOTH the president’s motivations AND his tactics, did I EVER have the unmitigated gall to presume to “apologize” to vast numbers of people for those actions, on BEHALF of the American people.

    Trump took necessary action in a way that ripped off the Band-Aid, causing a squawk of momentary pain but accomplishing the necessary task of exposing to the open air a wound he was resolved to heal; and avoiding months of useless palaver that did nothing to further his objective of better protecting America and Americans. We had a policy of not ethnically profiling precisely the people from whose global communities a deadly threat had been emanating for YEARS. We now have a policy of heightened surveillance of those communities in aid of exercising our rights of self-protection.

    Is it unfortunate that the legitimate threat is tightly bound to ethnicity? Yep. Wish it were otherwise, but fill one hand with Kumbaya wishes and the other with the dead and dreadfully injured bodies in Orlando, San Bernardino and the Boston Marathon, and see which hand fills up first.

    I don’t offer apologies but well-meaning counsel to global Islamic communities: get your social acts together and cease tolerating the growth of cancers among you. In the end, it’s the host that cancers kill, not everyone around them.

  144. The utter blindness of this diatribe is very hard to believe. It's very hard to write a response when there is so little substance to the argument. As an immigrant son of immigrant parents (1951, Latvians who couldn't go back to their homeland because dad had fought against the Russians for a free Latvia), I take great offense at the mistreatment of green card holding people being stranded, far from home, just because they happened to be traveling when this incompetently planned, poorly executed ban went into effect. If this is the kind of action we can expect from this administration, we've got at least four years of misery coming up.

  145. Wow, Richard Luettgen, I'm impressed. You sound almost Trumpian in your comment. I do hope you understand what his actions mean in terms of humane treatment for us abroad. Just remember, what goes around comes around.

  146. In the US, we have 33K gun fatalities every year. The latest count of deaths by opioid overdoes (2015) is also at the 33K mark. Since 1900, over 3 million people have died on American roads in car crashes. Where's your indignation on these issues? Make no mistake, focusing on one population in an ongoing broad crisis is bigotry. Ask the people of Quebec.

  147. Nick,I'm pretty sure it isn't your job to apologize for the president. Moreover, his order was legal and did not target muslims, but rather, seven countries. One, Iran (despite Obama's delusional thinking) is clearly our enemy. Of the other 6, many are both considered too dangerous for American tourists to travel to and a dangerous posting for state dept officials. From all these countries, because of chaos at best and rebellion at worst, it is very difficult to know that we are going accurate documentation on people. We also know that these countries are hotbeds for radical jihad, many sworn to kill western infidels - if they can get to them.

    I'm also certain that many in these countries are good people, but at this point it may be extremely difficult to tell who.

    A few people were inconvenienced (Too bad we couldn't have inconvenienced Mohammed Atta and his crew a little more severely back in 2001). No one wants people with a legitimate right to travel here inconvenienced. However, the president's job is to defend the country. You may not like the way this was implemented, but no one was beheaded, sent to concentration camps, lined up and shot, etc. And all those who need further vetting will have that opportunity.

    The roll out could have been better. I agree. But, Trump's promised to do what he did. And it isn't illegal.

  148. To Ralphie in CT: You wish the travel ban had been in place in 2001 for Mohamed Atta.

    He was from Egypt, so the ban would have had no effect on him, or on his Saudi co-conspirators.

  149. Wrong - five out of five federal judges think it's illegal and unconstitutional. Thankfully, Trump cannot fire them.

  150. Many make the point that these 7 travel-banned countries are "our enemies."

    So where's the logic in grouping all those who fought these regimes, & are endangered as a result, "our enemies," too?

    Then locking our borders against them?

  151. Never forget the original genocide in which white European settlers uprooted the Indians, seized their land and farms (!), introduced scalping as a parallel to animal-bounty-hunting, and broke every single North American colonial, state, provincial, and national treaty. We owe the remaining tribal members recognition, apologies, and a step up the ladder to recognition as "First Nations" and as Americans, not "Redskins". We have much to make up for if others are to feel proud of being American.
    Racism is as American (and Canadian) as apple pie. After all, who built our railroads but Chinese disallowed wives? Who built cotton exports but Africans enslaved by whites.
    And whose boats were turned back in the Holocaust to die because we refused Jews life and sanctuary? Who watched behind barbed wires when their citizen sons of the wrong descent went off to fight in Italy and win more medals than any others? Who dressed as "Indians" in the "Gangs of New York" to kill Irish Catholic refugees? "The land of the free"has had to learn terrible lessons.
    We owe. We owe.
    Now it's time to start over yet again and support the huddled masses yearning to breathe free. Say it aloud, sing it, America: I am Muslim. I am Catholic. I am Jew. I am Blood Indian. I am Serb. I am Croat. I am Frederick Douglass. And, yes, I am the uninsured, the homeless, the weak, the confused, the
    pregnant woman, the closeted LGBT. Hold my hand.

  152. Thank you for this lovely comment. It should be shared far and wide!

  153. The cheerleading for religion in this comment is just too much to stomach. I agree that no one should be mistreated or abused simply because of their declared affiliation with some religion or other. But I will not treat a religious affiliation as an "identity." The claim by some religious types that it is an identity is a poorly disguised demand for respect on the basis of declared religious affiliation alone. I have zero respect for religious beliefs. I also have no respect for anyone simply on the basis of their religious affiliation. I may respect them for other reasons, but not for that.

  154. Dr. Bob,

    Ah, no, American Indians "scalped" fellow Indians before the arrival
    of the "White Man", you might ask the unfortunate victims of the
    Aztecs how it felt to have your heart cut out while still alive and then
    offered to the "Sun god".

  155. "seven mostly impoverished Muslim countries"
    That is the incorrect view.

    Six of those countries do not have a functioning government, or it is woefully incomplete (Iraq). Iran is in violation of UN resolutions against nuclear proliferation. Notice the ballistic missiles they were testing with a re-entry vehicle? Apparently, Mr. Kristof doesn't know what a re-entry vehicle is designed to carry.

    The US may not have had people from those countries commit terrorism lately, but Europe has.

    It is rational and proper that a hold on all people from those defunct countries be put in place until the vetting system be reviewed and modified if necessary. We know for a fact that the US State Department has given visas to terrorists, including those seeking asylum, being refugees from where they came from.

    So hold on. Be patient. See what the review turns up.

  156. If we were to apply your logic universally, we would ban all people from driving cars until we understood why there are accidents. We would order people to stay home until we understood why they trip and fall. We would ban the use of all guns until we understood why people shoot other people. The logic you provide is that of marshal law. It is NOT liberty.

  157. Dear Son, etc.

    1. Are you familiar with the vetting process or refugees? I thought not. I you were, you would realize that ant adjustments it needs are so minor that the process could remain in situ without interruption.

    2. Are aware that 75% of refugees are women and children?

    3. You need a new handle. Not only is yours inappropriate given your views, it is obnoxious. Perhaps you should call yourself "Son of the Russian Revolution."

  158. I guess if legal means setting Giuliani groupees to find a 'work around' to ban Muslims...similar to the dirty tricks of Trump's hero and mentor...Joe McCarthy's henchman . Cohn.

    You bought it and now you broke it. Powell's warning put on its head. Deja vu Orwellian feelings abound. As Republican actions led to the Great Recession, Democrats - small and large D, will be tasked with sweeping up after Trump's mess.

    Lemmings with short memories seem a large voting block these days. Sigh. Any wonder dystopian books are on the most read list today?

  159. Part of the refrain against Islam is that 'they don't share our values' or 'they hate our freedoms.' I have even read posts here saying they have no art. When I saw Asghar Farhadi's A Separation a few years ago, I thought it was one of the most moving and accomplished films I had ever watched. It told the story of an Iranian couple. The wife wants to leave the country with her young teenage daughter. The father feels he has to stay behind as his own father slips into dementia .The moral and human equations are complex and involving. It was the foreign-language Oscar that year and now Fahadi has been nominated for The Salesman, which has had wonderful reviews. He won't be coming, of course, and has decided against the indignity of pleading to attend. So the fear mongers are in charge and we are all at the mercy of the dark forces of ignorance, And Trump, of course, will find the film over-rated.

  160. For those who say Islam has no art, I would recommend Hagia Sophia in Istanbul or the Alhambra in Granada, Spain, both stunning examples of seminal architecture. To appreciate them, however, travel would be necessary to a foreign country, anathema to most Trump supporters. The internet could help bridge the gap but only in those with an open mind.

    Other Arabic contributions are legion in mathematics (algebra, geometry) and astronomy (nadir, azimuth, the stars Deneb, Altair are all Arabic terms).

    We also have them to thank for the concept of zero, something Mr. Trump has or soon will learn much more about.

  161. "A Separation" was a profoundly "human" film, executed such that one might think it a documentary, but it was all scripted and acted - brilliantly. Moreover, the main characters are often surrounded by nondescript others, so that we see them as not different, not a special case; that bureaucracy, misunderstandings, accidents can lead us into a downward spiral. Like all great films, it goes well beyond the specifics of its provenance and circumstances.

  162. Geoffrey--trump is so inadequate, in so many ways. Some ways, we can only surmise.

  163. Never again. That's what the world seems to say after each outburst of intolerance kills innocent people. And then we go on to do it again. By we, I mean the world. We know about the Armenian Massacre, the Holocaust, the Killing Fields, the starvation in China that was created by the Communist Party, how Stalin allowed thousands to die and killed others. Each time we're sorry. Then, as the memories fade and the survivors die we start it up again.

    Even worse, we let in Nazis like Werner von Braun because he had useful skills. We penalize the people who help us. Then we wonder why our country is vilified or used as a call to arms by extremists. Refugees goes through extreme vetting already. People who want to emigrate here and settle down go through a process that is cumbersome. What Trump did was unnecessary, cruel and inhumane. Then again, he's simply mirroring the views of a population that has been trained to react to the words Muslim or Islam with extreme fear.

    Most of us want the same things in life no matter what our religion, country of origin, or economic status. We want to be able to live in peace, safety, leave the world a better place than it was, have a decent retirement, be able to support ourselves and our families, to have some small happinesses. To ruin the lives of thousands because ten or twenty may be radicals or to imply that all Muslims are radicals is unjust. Are all Christians radicals? Do we keep them out if one blows up a mosque?

  164. Having read many of the critical comments to this column, I begin to see the American problem. You have a president who loudly underscores your fears of Islam, which justifies and sets free much of the dislike bordering on hatred expressed in these letters. To be afraid clouds judgment, especially when inspired by an unstable demagogue. Thankfully, most Americans are against such cowardly rhetoric and good sense will prevail in the long run, even if it takes four years.

  165. "Fear" is only being used as an Excuse.

    There's entirely TOO many other tragedies that have been executed by Non-Muslims with even more destruction and casualties,..yet no "Fear" Campaign.

    The #s are there, if you're a female with a Male (husband or boyfriend) and there's a gun in the home, should be sleeping wearing a Kevlar Helmet and Bullet Proof Pajamas.

  166. A beautiful, much needed column. I cried last night when the news reported that people had banded together in record time to contribute to the building of a new mosque.

    Donald Trump, Steve Bannon, Milo, and the foot soldiers of their army of hate mongering are having one positive effect. Their revolting behavior makes the rest of us dust off our inertia and inaction, get into the streets and make it clear that we and our country, are so much better than this.

    We have met the enemy, and he is us, as Pogo once said. Or we can meet our neighbor, and see that we is him. As Pogo would say. Namaste, Nick.

  167. Mr. Kristoff, please stop the polemics. This is a temporary restriction based on political realities, not a permanent ban based on intolerance. ISIS is a genuine threat that needs containment and understanding or an entire religion is hijacked and irreparably damaged. To ignore this is to continue a politically correct charade that is merely interested in shaming, not comprehending and solving.

    Join the solution and end the echo chamber of this guilt-laden division.

  168. Nick, in your email, roll over for Gorsuch?!?! No, so many reasons, level of constitutional support to how we live as a nation. His seat being vacant is an affront to the constitution. He's got no respect for separation of church and state, "Originalists" ignore the wisdom of Jefferson, “I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and Constitutions. But laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors.”

  169. I almost speyed my moring coffee all over the train whne I read this: “It would be wise for the Trump administration to develop a strong outreach to the Muslim world. We need their support to defeat the jihad. We don’t want to tarnish the message the Statue of Liberty sends. Also, the administration must be willing to grant exceptions. And, above all, should help refugees survive in the terror zones abroad. We should do that. Protecting Americans is obviously priority number one, but the nobility of our nation demands we help suffering, helpless people if we can.” Bill O Reilly

    Even that pontificating windbag O Reilly gets it. Trump? Not as long as Bannon is pulling the strings.

  170. Prove even one incident of celebrated Muslim offenses against Americans or Europeans with physical evidence and corroborated and analyzed. Such evidence does not exist and which places said offenses squarely in the realm of mythology along with the existence of the said Jesus the god-man who never existed.

  171. mr. Kristof,
    Timely article. I agree with all what you said. There is another dimension of this extremism by our new administration - political alienation from world's leaders as well. In just less than two weeks we have almost alienated three leaders - Australia, Iran, Mexico. UK may be next. our popularity and respect has gone down in the GOP administration of Bush era. Obama administration has restored some but it is going down again. Majority of world's population hate us for different reasons (prosperity, freedom, power, and resources). Power and extreme policies with alienation of leaders alone will not keep us safe. how do we prepare to apologize to those world leaders who still have some respects for us?

  172. Every President has the right to determine for themselves the requirements need to allow immigration. Congress and the Constitution allow a wide latitude in this area to the executive. A three to four month period is not unreasonable, and people, not citizens, have no right to entry. They are allowed entry. It is the countries that are banned, not Muslims. The countries are basically failed states with a lack of effective government. The populace of these countries are mostly Muslim, but it is the failed state status which makes the moratorium entirely reasonable. Claiming it to be an action against Muslims, instead of areas with radicals and no effective government does our country a disservice, and hurts the status of the US.

  173. You are sending people who have been carefully screened back to starve, freeze and/or die for no reason.
    Remember the SS St. Louis

  174. It is also a President's minimum duty to learn all he can, first, about the world he is acting upon. That would mean NOT turning away intelligence briefings, for starters, and not demoting Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff or the CIA from the NSC, for follow-up. It horrifies me that he can imagine a functioning National Security Council without these security experts on it! This poor excuse for a President doesn't match the understanding of a 5th grader about the world and the people in it. When he's done anything remotely approaching due diligence about the world, then let him muck around with an immigration policy that is not broken.

  175. He has the right to do that, and if he believes US citizens are in danger if he doesn't the President has a duty to choose the US citizens. I do not favor the program. I think the ill will will cause more problems than the program solves, but the President has every right to do it if he thinks it is necessary. I am sure there are those freezing and dying, but I doubt seriously the ones that have been screen and were on their way are among them.

  176. Why are you apologizing to Muslims, Nick? It's the duty of our Republican administration under a demented President to apologize for his immigration schemes, for his xenophobia and psychological shortcomings. Muslims and other people despised and loathed by alt-right extremists like our President are the people who should but won't apologize for inflicting psychic wounds on their enemies. We hope the bullying elementary school behaviour of our Leader of Promises and Lies, and his Presidency will be over sooner rather than later. Your apologies notwithstanding, Nick, it is sad to see executive orders re immigration issuing from our Oval Office and cabal of malign government advisers.

  177. I want to share my emotion on reading Mr. Kristof's column, not my thoughts. I was overcome by such a clear drawing of the line between Good and Evil. Mr is not evil, but he is sociopathically full of himself, a victim of thinking he has to carry out his ill-conceived and "ill-advised" promises.

  178. Amazing how people can look at the same thing and come up with two completely different explanations.
    The people that believed the sun revolved the earth and those that believed the opposite both pointed to the same phenomena: In the morning the sun appears in the East and at night it's in the west. How else can you explain its path except to understand that the sun is traveling across the sky. And then there were those who stated correctly: that's because the earth is the object that is moving.
    Mr Kristoff how do we convince those who believe that the earth does revolve that it does?

  179. As I invariably do, I join my voice to that of Mr Kristof. This man's model of intelligence, gravitas, sophistication, scholarship and experience -- and did I mention human decency? -- is as typical of Kristof as it is alien to the monstrosities now inhabiting the West Wing.
    My country (for which my immigrant Ph.D father built three atomic bombs) is rapidly falling into the abyss. Each morning's news displays this. The velocity increases. I think that we are past the point of return. But the only hope --underscore only -- of survival as a republic, much less a respected one, is to cleanse ourselves of this preposterous gasbag as quickly as possible and by any means necessary, and to resign ourselves for 3 years to having to circumvent the medieval evangelical who would replace him. Then our apology to the face of the world may mean something.

  180. what exactly are you advocating?

  181. It's a refugee pause from 7 war-torn countries four of which are stateless and none of which can be vetted. Muslims aren't banned.

    And it is quite refreshing to see the only Democrats left on the playing field - the press - losing the propaganda war at every turn.

    The Republican Establishment scoffed and smirked then PC sloganeered in the primaries, much like the publicly-traded firms had to do for the past eight years.

    How many times did the press, and the Left laugh and write him off? And the DNC believed the fake news. So did the Bernies and Hillary. Witness the shock of loss.

    But the press was hooked. Fixated on each "outlandish claims and accusations", declaring at each stage he was dead. Busted by the PC police. Nuking him time after time but he found the key. They couldn't STOP covering him - for free.

    His polls jumped every time the press declared him room temperature. The Silent Majority may be cowed but not their admiration, then their vote because they saw it.

    That the country was being horse-whipped over the cliff by a voodoo majority who is now relegated to wearing pink fauxphallic receiving units and singing 'we shall overcome' like drunken sailors.

    God Bless President Trump for decloaking the press.

  182. On January 7, 2016, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab was indicted on March 17, 2016 for attempting to provide material support to acts of violence overseas. Al-Jayab – a Palestinian born in Iraq – was admitted to the United States as a refugee in 2012.

    On January 7, 2016, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Omar Faraj Saeed Al Hardan was charged in an indictment with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization, making false statements, and attempting to procure citizenship or naturalization unlawfully. Al Hardan – a Palestinian born in Iraq – was admitted to the United States as a refugee in 2009. According to media accounts, Al Hardan told his wife “I will go to Syria. I want to blow myself up. . . . I am against America.”

    On August 12, 2015, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho, Fazliddin Kurbanov was found guilty of conspiring and attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization and possessing an unregistered destructive device. Kurbanov is a native of Uzbekistan who came to the United States as a refugee in 2009. U.S. Assistant Attorney General John Carlin stated that he “conspired to provide material support to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and procured bomb-making materials in the interest of perpetrating a terrorist attack on American soil.”

    Shall I go on?

  183. I don't know where you get your alt-facts, but Obama civilly shut down immigration from those nations to close the gaps left between the EU and those traveling fpr six months. Because it addressed an actual flaw that was corrected, there was no outrage. They also had the decency to advise people not to show up at the airport. Even tipped off our own staff!!

    We already know this is Trump's Alt-Muslim Ban because Rudy told us so.

  184. Using words many sanctimonious liberals here are fond of saying, Mr. Kristoff, your examples are "false equivalencies." Has Mr. Trump and other lone or groups of Americans gone to other countries to slaughter innocent people. Have material segments of Christian Americans declared a global jihad resulting in ghastly murders? Mr. Kristoff, keep living in your bubble and pandering to your superiorly arrogant sanctimonious left wing base.

  185. There is very simple formula. "Damascus will never be like Paris. However, Paris quite soon will be like Damascus", That's it.

  186. Kristof would replace an eye for an eye with turn the other cheek. Too bad Muslims do not believe as he does. What then are we supposed to do? Not protect our borders?

  187. You only seem familiar with the perversions of Islam proffered by terrorists. You gotta get off their social sites before you get listed.

    Hey, since Trump's jumping all over Australia like a kangaroo on crank, perhaps they and New Zealand will close their Fifth Eyes and not share what the Chinese are up to, like offering them better deals.

  188. While condemning Islamophobia, Mr Kristof seems to fall in the same trap of mistaking religion with those who practise it. He says: "I have seen the worst of Islam, but also the best." No, Mr Kristof, you have seen the worst of Muslims and the best of Muslims. There are good and bad people in every religion. We are people first, then practitioners of our religion, or of no particular religion.

  189. Well, let's total the apologies:

    New York liberals: 1
    Muslims: 0

    Would it be bad form to also note Trump hasn't killed anyone?

  190. Apparently he ordered a strike in Yemen that others thought ill-advised. Many people died, including a young American girl and one American Navy Seal died in the ill-fated operation. So these days it seems, it's not considered bad form to tell an uninformed untruth, but you would be wrong. Trump is off to a quick start killing people, and we'll probably never know the numbers who have had their visas canceled and died in countries they were trying to escape.

  191. Actually the first, and only apology should go to the good people of Syria. We botched that effort six years ago which created this mess. If we really cared about the Muslims, we would have helped save their country instead of bailing out on millions of people.
    All of the sudden everyone cares about the Muslims...where were those people 6 years ago?

  192. I see your point and agree, but you may only apologize for yourself, not for others. You disagree with Mr. Trump, but you may not apologize on his behalf. It is not your right. His position, right or wrong, is his alone. Clearly he believes his own view. State your opinion and make your own apology.

  193. I'm not apologizing. I pledge to get more progressive people registered to vote and then to do what I can to help them get to the polls on election days. I have nothing to apologize for. And the people who need to apologize--the misguided ones who voted for Trump--will never apologize. They're really pleased with what Trump is doing. They love his sabre-rattling with Iran. They love his toughness. They've never heard of Frederick Douglass either. They refuse to read an in-depth story that might explain that what they heard on Fox is a distortion. They think anybody who would apologize to a Muslim is putting them in danger. And they don't understand that the opposite is true. There's no getting through to these people. Especially when reporters for papers like this one and the Washington Post regularly visit them to interview them, but fail each time to ask a single challenging question. Instead we just get the parroting back of how they still support Trump and he's doing everything he promised. Let's stop interviewing them. Let's start arguing with them and OUTVOTING THEM.

    I don't love Muslims. I don't know very many. I don't love whole groups of people indiscriminately. But Muslims are no worse than we are, that's for sure.

  194. I apologize to the American people. I apologize that I voted for Obama in 2008 before voting for Trump. Lesson learned.

  195. New York Times as pro-Muslim has become un-American. Every Group favors their own, except you.

  196. You really are clueless. Let me start by asking what country you live in. Then I might ask where your ancestors came from. And then I might ask what makes your ancestors different from the current crop of immigrants/regugees? A small reminder: You live in America. Meaning you live in a country that was taken from its prior inhabitants by force and deception, but after that became a beacon for those seeking a better life from all over the world, whether they need to (i.e. refugees) or they don't (i.e. immigrants). This country is not yours, or mine. Get over yourself.

  197. Yes his voters are at their core racist. They can deny it till the cows come home but there is no appeal to him beyond this.

  198. You mean the folks who elected Obama twice before electing Trump? Those racists?

  199. I respectfully disagree with Kristof. Thank you.

  200. Hopefully by the mid terms in 2018 buyers remorse will have settled in... Democracies, as stated by JFK some time ago are not perfect! Besides apologizing we need to shame this huge minority into buyers remorse...working toward the goal of a more perfect union, hence a working democracy!

  201. Sickness knows no boundaries based on religious affiliation. One can find Christians around who essentially blaspheme with a pretty sick view of other traditions in God's name. On the other hand one can know Muslims who are the epitome of love for neighbor.

  202. Ask what a mob boss or gang leader would do and you can reliably predict Trump's behavior. Religious extremism is the enemy of peace everywhere – the religion matters not

  203. "An apology to Muslims" fails the test of parallelism. A white, male, liberal American columnist apologizing for Donald Trump's behavior has no moral force, because none of those categories (white, male, liberal, American) is incompatible with Islam, and the columnist (Kristof) never cared for Mr. Trump in the first place.

    To fulfill the mission, you would need a bigoted nationalist driven by hubris to apologize for Trump's anti-Muslim behavior. An "ugly American" like the Grand Wizard or Newt or Rudi. The feeling has to be that "he used to be one of us, but has stooped so low that we no longer wish to be associated with him."

  204. Doesn’t make sense: just as Trump identifies all Muslims as potential Terrorists the world identifies all Americans as potential Muslim-haters, personified by their (alleged) democratically elected prime representative.

  205. A Muslim doing something "crazy" (euphemism for mindless, often sadistic killing) in the name of Islam is not to be compared to "our own extremist", Trump. You denature the meaning of extremist when you do that. Same thing for the concluding part that every religion should apologize to every every other, when no part of Christianity or Judaism today officially sanctions wanton murder and conquest, as radical Islam does.

    I think it is common sense that people adhering to a religion in the name of which enormities are committed have a responsibility to restrain extreme elements. I have read a number of articles by Muslim observers in which they state the same thing.

    To paint a whole belief-system as evil on account of the sins of a few is wrong and to make that argument in a responsible way is unobjectionable, even salutary, but this article ludicrously overreaches in its frantic attempt at solidarity.

  206. This article might have some actual meaning IF the moratorium was on "Muslims". Just another example of a fake news source that is irrelevant and out of touch with reality

  207. You don't have to dream Nick. The overwhelming majority of American Jews condem Islamaphobia. The overwhelming majority of American Muslims condem the persecution of Christians. The overwhelming majority of American Christians condem anti-semiticism. They stand shoulder to shoulder with their Muslim, Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Zoroastrian, Agnostic, Atheist sisters and brothers - millions of them at the Women's March. That's not just a dream, it's the American Dream that I believe in and we will have to fight for and take on the extremists in our country. Those extremists are jihadists who kill in the name of Islam, or right-wing terrorists who kill in the name of Christianity or white supremacy or Neo-Nazism, or minority right-wing Evangelicals who actively want Apocalypse so Jesus can return, or minority right-wing Jews who ally themselves with nut job Evangelicals (who have a vision of 2/3 Jews dying and 1/3 Jews finally accepting Jesus) to support Israeli extremists who yearn for a Jewish theocracy apartheid state. And Trump/Pence/Bannon/Flynn/Sessions/Gaffney/Geller/Spencer that want a full war with all Islam and want White nationalism/supremacy and who captured power with lies, demagoguery, propaganda, Putin, Comey, bigotry, hatred by exaggerating and exploiting fears of some legitimate and other totally contrived issues. Let's call out and take on these extremists.

  208. Christoff: "We should condemn... In that spirit I apologize".

    I'm sorry, Nicholas, but a condemnation and an apology are not at all in the same spirit. On the contrary, they are opposites. If you want to condemn Trump, that's fine. You and whose army. But you cannot apologize on anyone else's behalf. You can only apologize for your own wrongdoing. Your "apology" is really condemnation disguised as something nobler. It might be a just and welcome condemnation, but it is a condemnation nevertheless, not an apology. You rob the word "apology" of all meaning when you misuse it in this way. And it doesn't wash to reply "I'm apologizing for my country." No you're not. You're condemning your political opponents. Besides, who are you to apologize for a whole nation? Condemn by all means, but don't pretend to be doing something you're not.

  209. Of course can you apologize for the behavior of someone who (allegedly) represents you. Who are you wanting to deny this?

  210. You have to understand that leftists believe they are always right and always know what is best for other people. That is what enables Kristof to speak on behalf of all Americans. If he believes it, it must be right and any reasonable person would agree with him.

  211. Mr. Kristof: your column needs a fact check. Flynn did not refer to "Islam" as a cancer; he said "Islamism" is a cancer. Do you not the know the difference? Islam is a major religion with 1.7 million adherents. "Islamism" is the ideology that seeks to combine the state with religion and establish Sharia law. The Muslim Brotherhood is an example of a Islamist movement (so is ISIS). And if you're going to apologize to people, how about apologizing to Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the brave feminist critic of Islam who, because she dared to speak out against Islam's treatment of women, was branded an "extremist" by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Ali's treatment by the regressive left is despicable; how about a column about Ms. Ali, Mr. Kristof?

  212. Well now, that doesn't fit the narrative does it?

  213. R.P.: And I'm sure you are aware that Flynn believes Islam is NOT a religion, but a political movement. Do you agree with him?

  214. Apparently, that is called the art of the deal. And by the way, thank you for your editorial on Canada’s reaction to the shooting in Quebec City. Well said.

  215. I'm always proud to be a Canadian - but increasingly more thankful every day. I add my thanks for the article on my country's reaction to the shooting in Quebec City. We do have our demons, but we have far more angels. And I think the same thing is true in the USA too. More people voted against trump than for.

  216. I'm a US citizen who's been in this country since 1974. I volunteer at the Department of Veterans Affairs and I'm also a Refugee mentor. What gives me hope is the millions of fellow Americans of different faiths and ethnicity who are active in denouncing this racist travel ban on Muslims.
    Thank you Nick Kristof for the work you do. You're an American hero!

  217. For Trump and the GOP, I apologize to the Muslim doctor who saved my life.

  218. Nicholas: "Those men (always men!) 'otherize' infidels..."

    Nick, you forgot to apologize for being male. Naughty you. And you should smotherize "otherize" (Americans have long owed an apology to the rest of the English-speaking world for your acts of wanton violence on our language)

  219. Actually, Trump does take people's heads off, metaphorically, nearly every day on Twitter. Earlier this week he "beheaded" the Justice Department by firing its head after she rightly refused to defend his illegal travel ban. So you are right, Nicholas, that the POTUS is a mirror image of the Islamic extremists he condemns; he just uses rhetorical violence instead of a machete.

  220. We created ISIL with the insane shock and awe lies and war of aggression. That was what we got with the last thuggish far right Republicans in charge. I have no doubt we are headed for the same misery with our Orange Pharaoh and his gilded family running things.
    Hugh Massengill, Eugene Oregon

  221. Abrahamic religions are extremist by nature.

    Three thousand years of Abrahamic religion and we are still fighting for who controls Mesopotamia.

  222. Correction: Religion is extremist by nature. Or, at least, each religion - including CHRISTIANITY and JUDAISM - has it's extreme zealots. And no one religion has a monopoly on those. Just think how much better this world would be without ANY religion.

  223. Trump has a serious and frightening flaw: he lacks empathy.

  224. Add to that: common sense, tolerance, intelligence, vision.

  225. Narcissists are like that. Now, they will take up the pain of others and parade it around while the victims are denied any comfort. He needs them to demonstrate their distress because he's incapable of feeling it. It's just a prop for this compeller.

  226. And to the 1.4 billion Muslim folks from over 200 countries not affected by the temporary travel restrictions, the administration says "Welcome".

  227. This is how we get that bum on the Emoluments Clause. He's avoiding Muslim nations with money in his establishments there or in his future.

    Now, a "good" lawyer would suggest Trump's hot targets attest to his willingness to sacrifice his residents for us. Will we have to pay more for Trump international property security teams? Because I'd stay out of his establishments if I was serious about security. There have to be a lot of crazies out their fantasizing about taking down his towers. Trump's fault.

  228. The time has come for the American people to put President Trump on notice.

  229. I join the apology. We will fix this.
    But why is no one covering what Congress did yesterday? A national " right to work" law that will BREAK UNIONS? Please cover what is happening at home. Selling off millions of acres of federal BLM land that belong to all of us, our birthright???

  230. Fantastic idea.

    Mr. Kristof, "President Trump is not America!"

    Me, President Trump is not American!

    To be American is to be welcoming, inclusive, tolerant of diverse views even when we disagree. Trump is the antithesis of American. An embarrassment to real Americans.

    To Muslims everywhere: Trump does NOT speak for America. He was put in office by Putin and he speaks for Putin.

  231. While vetting can always be improved, you may recall Republican governors filing lawsuits demanding that the heads of DHS, FBI and the NSA personally guarantee that each refugee arriving will not commit a terrorist act. An impossible standard that no bureaucrat would accept. AKA--exclusion.

    Trump's move is not about improving the system--it is about fundamentally changing it with an eye toward discriminating against Muslims. As un-American as this is, the greater threat is what is coming next: a battle plan against ISIS that will draw us into a religious war with Islam. The key to defeating ISIS is through cooperating with moderates--many of whom have been fighting against ISIS for years.

    We should not expect Trump to deviate from the insanity he has already spewed: kill the terrorist's families, torture works, take "their" oil. His dystopian view of the world is about to become a reality and all of the world will suffer from this man's ignorance.

  232. RB, supportive comment: I grew up in Saudi Arabia. I read, write and speak Arabic. Few will appreciate the import of your comment, " . . . the greater threat is what is coming next: a battle plan against ISIS that will draw us into a religious war with Islam. "

    THE IMPORT: In all history no other nation has subdued Islam. You cannot win a battle against a people whose home is the dessert, and thereby, bone deep in deception, circumspect guerrilla warfare and infinite patience, never forgetting the enemy (us).

    There have always been powerful. sane and experienced Americans who know this. But will anyone listen?

  233. My family moved to Colorado from the DC area in 1972, and I lived there most of my life until emigrating to the UK in 2001. A Republican governor (YES, Republican!) Gov. Ralph Carr was the only governor in the US who stepped up and opposed the internment of the Japanese in America. 'If you harm them, you harm me,' he stated. There is a lovely memorial dedicated to him In Sakura Square in downtown Denver.

    Take note, Republicans, one of yours actually had a spine and wasn't afraid to stand up for what was, and still is, right. It no doubt cost him his political career, but he retained his dignity and is still viewed with respect and honour.

  234. Thank you, Mr. Kristof. May I please add my apology onto yours? All Americans who truly believe in the ideals of our country need to send the message that Prezident* Trump does not represent us.
    (* - not a real president, what with the Russian meddling and all ...)

  235. Mr TRUMP,since I can't get myself to say President,is a prepubescent boy who will stop at nothing to get his laundry list of promises accomplished only to appease his angry white blue collar worker's oh and I forgot his female disciples.
    I blame not only our inexperienced Mr TRUMP but all the member's of his team including Pence,Bannon as well as other Republican's who have gone along with and will continue to take the ultra-conservative ,extreme right approach ,if you will,to try and re-set world order. Mon Dieu! How innocent...
    As the president of Iran stated just the other day Mr Trump your ''NAIVE'' and you just don't get it.

    Let's hope for an early spring Impeachment and stop these maniacs.

    Everyone is my brother and sister regardless of race, creed, and religion.

  236. You don't speak for the majority of Americans Mr. Kristof and you do them a dis-service dismissing their valid concerns (and by extension labeling them as bigots). No matter how badly handled this travel ban has been, it is based on valid concerns - no country has open borders nor would long survive with open borders. Your argument is the worst type of moral preening - all feeling and no rational discourse.

  237. Do you even see the hypocrisy in what you are saying? As soon as Trump has a rational discourse in anything let me know.

  238. You need to read before you write. That demagogs with low information voters, the kind oif voters Trump loves and loves, can sell their racist cant is not a secret. We have seen the unspeakable in pursuit of the uneatable at other times and in other places.

  239. And I apologize for the 49 percent of Americans who support a Muslim ban. For shame!

  240. My House Rep emailed me to ask ONLY if I approve of strong vetting for refugees, or not. Nothing about this horrific roll out or it's questionable constitutionality. As a Air Force pilot, she was not pleased those how helped the military where rejected, but does she ask ME?

    I emailed her back that she's GOT to be kidding me. If I want to make some fake news for a government official to abuse, I'll manufacture my own consent, thank you.

  241. The best thing, perhaps really the only good thing, to come out of Trump's election is that his subsequent behavior has aroused millions of Americans to resist him. These Americans know something about and appreciate history, their ideals are from the Enlightenment, and they have said loudly and clearly, "Never again, not here, not now", when faced with discriminatory behavior.

    The photo of the Jewish man and the Muslim man protesting at O'Hare, each with a child on his shoulders, could, and perhaps should, become America's version of the famous French painting "Liberty Leading the People."

    I wasn't sure "it" could happen here. I hoped "it" couldn't. Well, now "it" has, and it must be stopped dead. It must be stopped and put back under the historical rock from which it crawled.

  242. Don't apologize for Trump. It's like suggesting we who did not vote for Trump need to apologize for those who did. I refuse to do so. If anything, I will hold them all accountable when the time comes.

    Honestly, though, when you have a self-proclaimed racist not only in your cabinet, but given a level of clearance that borders treason, what do you, what does the world expect? Open arms for non-whites?

    No. This country will become less tolerant due to a bona fide racist whispering into a megalomaniac's narcissist ear (if that's not a tad redundant). There is absolutely no good that can come out of Bannon's mouth, and the sooner he is removed from that position, the better.

    This would be a time to somewhat mirror Trump and say that if anyone, foreign or domestic, wanted to "punch him in the face," or whatever, please, feel free.