SACRAMENTO — Shortly after the Supreme Court’s ruling came down Tuesday, Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg stood with local leaders reacting to President Donald Trump’s travel ban, calling it religious and ethnic discrimination.
Every day Muslims gather at an Islamic center in South Sacramento. Every day they bow their heads in prayer. But on Tuesday, their community is reacting after the Supreme Court upheld the travel ban affecting mostly Muslim countries.
It will have a direct impact on Basim Elkarra’s family. He is the executive director of Sacramento’s chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations.
“My mother-in-law is Syrian American, so this means she can’t bring… her sisters can’t visit her, her family members can’t visit her,” Elkarra told FOX40. “So it was personal to us and our family.”
The ruling is a victory for President Trump, who reacted on Twitter by writing, “SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS TRUMP TRAVEL BAN. Wow!”
SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS TRUMP TRAVEL BAN. Wow!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 26, 2018
The ban applies to Syria, Libya, Somalia and Yemen, as well as some people from North Korea and Venezuela.
The president touts the ruling as a victory for Americans and the Constitution, saying it will make America safer.
At a news conference, Mayor Steinberg had a strong message for the president.
“You don’t stand with us. You don’t stand for the better parts of American history,” he told the crowd.
Steinberg encouraged those opposed to the ban to fight back.
“There’s only one response — get more engaged. Get mad, get involved, vote and change this country. That’s what we have to do,” Steinberg said.
At the press conference speakers also acknowledged how this ruling comes as families are being separated at the southern border.
As the Muslim community prays, local leaders vow to defend them.
“It’s pretty dark days for our nation’s history but we’re gonna continue pushing back,” Elkarra said.
CAIR Sacramento plans to lobby elected officials to push legislation to try and block the ban and encourage people to go out and vote.