By Charles Sercombe
Hamtramck’s City Council joined the growing opposition to President Trump’s travel ban.
At a special meeting on Monday evening, called by Councilmember Ian Perrotta, the council unanimously condemned the ban, which affects seven nations with majority Muslim populations.
(Mayor Karen Majewski and Councilmember Abu Musa were absent from the meeting. In an email to Councilmember Anam Miah, Majewski said she supported the council’s opposition to the ban.)
On his Facebook page, Perrotta said he proposed the resolution “to condemn the un-American actions taken by the president and to offer an alternative example of responsible governance.”
He continued, saying:
“It is simply a resolution stating that the Council, as representatives of Hamtramck, rejects the notion that people should be banned from traveling to the US simply because they are from a country that is predominantly Muslim.
“Politically it is an exercise of our power as a local government to inject our perspective on a national issue. Socially it is an example of doing the right thing. Economically it is a way to advocate Hamtramck as a welcoming place to do business and hopefully bring in new business/customers to the city.”
Councilmember Saad Almasmari, who also supported Perrotta’s request for a special meeting, echoed what many have said about the ban: It’s really about banning Muslims – something Trump promised to do when he campaigned.
“You can’t say Muslims can’t come in,” said Almasmari, who is a Yemeni-American.
Yemen is one of the countries included in the travel ban.
“We’re going to fight for our rights,” Almasmari added.
Hamtramck has not gone as far as designating itself as a “sanctuary city.” About 300 other cities nationwide have adopted this designation. Trump is now threatening to cut off federal funding to sanctuary cities, which are cities that have agreed to not help federal authorities detain illegal immigrants.
But Hamtramck is a “Welcoming” city, which is a statewide designation that says the city simply welcomes immigrants to live and work here.