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Father of Muslim-American soldier continues speaking out on Trump's immigration policies

Posted April 20

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— Since he blazed into the nation's consciousness last summer by shaking his finger and a copy of the Constitution at then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump for his anti-immigrant rhetoric on the campaign trail, Khizr Khan has continued to speak out against now-President Trump's immigration policies.

"When the leadership is so divisive by its announcements, by its policies, what can you do as an ordinary, law-abiding citizen? You continue to speak," Khan said Thursday before an appearance at Duke University's Trent Seamans Center.

Khan first rose to prominence at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia last July, when he and his wife took the stage to talk about their son, Army Capt. Humayun Khan, who died in Iraq in 2004 and was awarded a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart for his military service. Many Muslim-Americans have sacrificed for their country, Khizr Khan said, yet Trump wanted to ban Muslim immigrants from the U.S.

The Pakistani-born lawyer has spoken publicly more than 100 times since then, saying he believes he has a duty to keep fighting against what he sees as anti-democratic policies.

"We need to reconcile. We need to come together. That is the role of the leader that is lacking, that is missing. That concerns me," he said. "It's the ignorance that divides us."

On Wednesday, Khan filed a court brief in support of a federal judge's ruling to block enforcement of the Trump administration's Muslim travel ban. Even though he's been a U.S. citizen since 1988, he's afraid to travel out of the country.

"I was advised by experts that, up until those provisions are sorted out, you should refrain from traveling," he said.

Sometimes parents teach children, and sometimes it's the other way around, Khan said, noting that his son's bravery, patriotism and commitment to the U.S. continues to give him the strength to speak out about injustice, even if it means negative backlash.

"It is through his grace that we continue to get strength, continue to speak," he said. "Even to the last breath, he was protecting, he was being honorable."

12 Comments

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  • Red Baird Apr 21, 12:25 p.m.
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    Real simple there Ole Bud, had our founding fathers had that same spineless thought process we’d still be part of England.

  • Sean Creasy Apr 21, 8:33 a.m.
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    "Many Muslim-Americans have sacrificed for their country, Khizr Khan said, yet Trump wanted to ban Muslim immigrants from the U.S."... You could at least get it right!!! He doesn't want to BAN all Moslems. He wants to put a HOLD on Moslems coming to this country until a better vetting process is put in place. WRAL should quit printing misinformation and start actually reporting the news..

  • George Orwell Apr 21, 8:19 a.m.
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    Roger, you are using logic and common sense to talk to liberals. I applaud your attempts and hope you are successful, but based on past results, we won't hold our breath.

  • George Orwell Apr 21, 8:15 a.m.
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    Right on.

  • Roger Connor Apr 21, 5:04 a.m.
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    As a response to the above: 1) The travel ban is for those with FOREIGN passports attempting to enter the US. 2) the ban on Syrian Muslims in particular and the Muslims from the other 6 countries was due to the fact that there is currently NO method of properly doing a security background check on them. (NOTE: I had to go through a finger print and National Security Check to haul Hazardous Materials as a US Citizen.) 3) It was designed to be a temporary measure. 4) Apparently Liberals can't either read or understand the news, as this was explicitly stated several times. 5) As has been in the news, those Syrians entering the various European countries HAVE resulted in terrorist attacks therefore Trump is right to ban them.

  • Roger Connor Apr 21, 4:53 a.m.
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    As a Citizen of the United States, I welcome foreigners and immigrants of all religions and national origins.
    HOWEVER, there are conditions:
    First, that you enter my country legally.
    Second that you obey my country’s laws.
    Third, that if you are truly immigrating from your former country, and plan to make the United States your permanent residence, that you make every effort to become a citizen.
    Fourth, if you are a foreign alien, visiting the United States on a foreign passport, I would ask that when it is required that you leave my country, that you do so, maintaining your legal status and ultimately providing others the benefits of also visiting here.
    By following the above rules, the Citizens of the United States will welcome you, as another asset to our diverse population.

  • Quid Malmborg Apr 20, 9:55 p.m.
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    Really? Khan's son died in Iraq 13 years ago when Bush 2 was POTUS, and the purpose was to oust Saddam Hussein. Immigration had nothing to do with the US-led Invasion of Iraq. Miss that part or do you have trouble remembering that far back?

    "Illegal immigration of terrorists..."

    As opposed to the legal immigration of the 9-11 hijackers that occurred during Bush 2's tenure? Nearly all of them from Saudi Arabia, BTW- a Muslim-run country that still, for some reason(s) is not on Herr Twittler's Muslim Ban List.

    "Too bad Dad can't respect that [alternative] fact."

    Dad can't respect that "fact" because you just made that "fact" up. So the US invaded Iraq all "to stop the illegal immigration of terrorists." How's that working out so far, 14+ years down the road? Mission accomplished yet?

  • William Sherman Apr 20, 9:36 p.m.
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    Real simple there Ole Bud--if at anytime you feel that you just can't stand living under our government or in this nation--I suggest you pack your possibles and leave. Simple solution to your discontent.

  • Tim Orr Apr 20, 9:19 p.m.
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    His son gave his life to stop the illegal immigration of terrorists into this country. Too bad Dad can't respect that fact.

  • Thomas Williams Apr 20, 8:15 p.m.
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    Facist dictator in the WH? Sir, you have no idea what living under a Facist dictator is all about. You and most Americans have been living in a great society where freedom has been earned for us by blood sweat and tears, and great sacrifices. You speak like a spoiled x gen who has no clue of what he speaks when he speaks of dictatorial governments and their comparison to what we have here. You compare Trump to a Facist dictator? You sir are not worthy of the freedoms that have been given you by people you will never have the honor of knowing.

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