Thursday, February 9, 2017

Just chatted with someone impacted by the travel ban

I just had a conversation with a fellow Amazon employee about the Trump Travel Ban.

As part of my job, I get to highlight stories of people at Amazon.  It's one of my favorite parts.  Interacting with employees and learning about how they got where they are and what they're most excited for next.

One question I always ask is, "What is something that makes you proud to work at Amazon."

Her answer to that invoked the travel ban.

Her highlight was the number of people from the company that reached out to her to offer their support.  People she hasn't worked with in years.  Her boss's boss from 2013, for example.

She says that, because of this ban, she is unable to see her family.  She can't return to Iran (she doesn't yet have her Green Card, but she's working on it) and her family can't come to the United States.  Oh, she also has a 2 year old son (an American citizen).

I live in Washington.  My family is in Arizona.  My mom visits about twice a year to see Desmond (and soon Owen).  It hard for me to imagine what it would be like if we were told we can't do that.

I know the people that agree with this ban say it's for safety.  I know that, deep down, they're intentions are good (although, I think Trump is a bigot and his intentions are to show off the fact that he is the most powerful person in the world).  But, it's clear to me that this isn't the way to do it.

We have just told 7 predominantly Muslim countries that they are not welcome here.  7 countries that haven't actually produced terrorists that have hurt us.  It seems to me that we're giving ISIS exactly what they want.  Another reason to hate us.  Another reason to rally young impressionable Muslims to their cause.  It seems like we are killing some of the freedoms we are supposed to love and cherish in the name of supposed safety.  Will this actually make us safer?  Or are we just adding fuel to the fire?
Either way...we're hurting our own people with this.  We're hurting our own friends, our own coworkers.  Our neighbors.  Personally...I think it sucks.  

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