The Short Version: Immigration Executive Order

The Short Version: Immigration Executive Order

The point of it all is to break down the headlines, the week’s most controversial issues, determine why a particular issue is important to you, and reveal the best arguments on each side of the story.

By reading Cleo Abram’s The Short Version, you join a vibrant group of people with two simple beliefs: 1) Every important issue can and should be discussed in a way we all can understand; 2) Understanding both sides makes us more thoughtful and our views more informed.

In some of the most recent iterations of The Short Version, Cleo Abram examined “The Trump Dossier,”considering both sides of the argument as to whether or not BuzzFeed should have released as yet unsubstantiated allegations about our new president. Two weeks ago, she considered the implications of the Women’s March on Washington, asking if  “society should do more to promote equal pay.” This week, Cleo explores the controversy around the immigration executive order.

Note: In general, if you have missed any of Cleo’s blogs, just go to our Home Page, type “The Short Version” into Search (magnifying glass icon) and poof, like magic, all her blogs will appear.

“I love getting feedback every week—thank you! If you want come hang out, debate a thing or two, and meet other Shorties, check out Short Events,” says Cleo. “Or if you have a topic you’d be interested in guest writing, just let me know! Let’s make it happen.”

Cleo Constantine Abrams of the “Short Form,” offering densely packed spins on issues of national and global importance.

Cleo Constantine Abram of the “Short Form,” offering densely packed spins on issues of national and global importance.

What’s happening?

On January 27th, President Trump issued an executive order that could drastically change U.S. immigration standards and the lives of hundreds of thousands of people.

Titled “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States,” the order takes 4 major actions:

  1. Suspends the U.S. refugee admissions program for 120 days.
  2. Bans all refugees from Syria indefinitely.
  3. Limits the total number of refugees to 50,000 for fiscal year 2017, around half what it was under President Obama.
  4. Bans all travel from seven Muslim-majority countries for 90 days. Those countries are Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

The order sparked protests across the country, particularly at major airports in which travelers from these countries were being detained.

On February 3rd, a federal judge in Washington issued a temporary restraining order (a “TRO”) which effectively stops Trump’s executive order in its tracks. While the TRO is in effect, the federal government may not enforce the ban on travelers from those seven countries or deny them visas based on the executive order. Government officials are complying, though the Trump administration is expected to appeal the decision.

Why is it important?

Among the many executive actions President Trump has signed so far, this is one of the most controversial. Here’s why:

The order immediately affects hundreds of thousands of people—refugees, visa holders, green card holders and permanent residents, and even American citizens with dual citizenship from one of the banned countries.

The order calls up concerns about serious conflicts of interest, because it excludes countries in which President Trump has business dealings. There are other reasons these countries were excluded, but the unsolved problem of Trump’s conflicts of interest continues to be a major issue for the country.

The order may violate the Constitution, on the grounds that it amounts to religious discrimination and that it prevents due process in some cases. It has been called a Muslim “ban”—a disputed term used repeatedly by Trump himself on Twitter. It may also violate immigration law (namely the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act) and U.N. treaties for the same reasons.

Data from Cato Institute 2016 and the FEC. Map from Slate

Debate it!

Is this executive order legal?

 Continue reading here.


 Why “The Short Version” on TIO:

Nine+ ago, Telluride Inside…and Out began as a lifestyle webzine. Today, in the full knowledge that Telluride is a window on the world, we continue to bring the “zazz” (short for “pizzazz) of the region to a local, national, and global audience by covering everything from Telluride’s robust cultural economy – major events and festivals – to health and fitness and outdoor adventure. When Telluride travels, we write about places to go, people to meet too. (That’s part of the “Out” part of our handle, the other, obviously, Outdoors.)

And now, this new weekly column, “The Short Version,” which offers simple summaries of issues of national and global importance. (Though we won’t go political, or rather we won’t show bias.)

“The Short Version” is written by Cleo Constantine Abram, the daughter of Telluride locals Eleni Constantine and Jonathan Abram (and therefore an honorary local and regular visitor) and a digital strategist.

Why “The Short Version”? Because, though we live in Shangri-La, our bubble is not impermeable and the rest of the world is only a click away. Because there is no inconsequential action; only consequential inaction. And because information is power in a moment so many of us are feeling powerless.

More about Cleo Constantine Abram:

Cleo Abram 2

Cleo grew up in Washington D.C., lives in New York City, and loves to visit her parents in Telluride. She authors “The Short Version,” a newsletter that explains each week’s most important issue and both sides of the debate around it.

Cleo is a digital strategist now working at Vox, a general interest news site for the 21st century. Its mission is simple: Explain the news. Politics, public policy, world affairs, pop culture, science, business, and more.

Cleo’s work focuses on ways to share, educate, and inform using online platforms. While in college at Columbia University, she guided the school’s entrance into online education through her role as the youngest elected representative to the Columbia Senate, which makes university-wide policy.

She continued her work on online education at TED-Ed, the educational branch of the nonprofit, building new programs and online tools to support high school teachers worldwide.

Continuing her work with TED, Cleo founded and led an early TEDx conference, the organization’s community-specific series.

Most importantly, Cleo loves to ski.

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