March against Muslim travel ban planned for Tuesday outside Bovee UC

Students and members of the Central Michigan University community will stand up to President Donald Trump's ongoing travel ban on some Arab and Muslim nations with a march planned on Tuesday, Jan. 31.

The march is scheduled from noon to 2 p.m. It is being hosted by the CMU Muslim Student Association. Students, activist groups and Christian church members plan to march with MSA beginning at the Bovee University Center to the Dow Science building corridor.

Organizers wrote on Facebook that the march is a way to "speak against the recent new regulations which are tearing us apart."

"We wish to unite the people of the United States of America, in a peaceful and orderly manner," the event page reads.

Ann Arbor senior Hesham Tanbour is a member of MSA. He said the march's mission is to protest the new immigration policies of the U.S. under Trump, but also to bring awareness to the plight of Muslim families affected by the ban.

"We've seen a trend in the news with regard to the other rallies at airports, where immigrants and visitors are landing at airports to see their loved ones and cannot do so," Tanbour said. "This is a statement, toward the current policies, but also a march for awareness.

"So people can get to know what's going on and how the MSA is feeling about it."

Tanbour, 22, said the new CMU Black Lives Matter chapter and congregants of the local Wesleyan Christian church are also participating in the march.

Tanbour is of Palestinian descent, but was born and raised in the U.S. He attended Pioneer High School in Ann Arbor and chose to stay in Michigan to attend CMU. His father immigrated to the U.S. in the 1990s while working toward a doctorate at the University of Iowa.

He is a devout Muslim and is active in the Muslim community, along with other members of MSA.

For Tanbour, the ban on immigration from a handful of Arab and Muslim countries is a contradiction of foreign interests. One point of contention for he and other Muslims is the focus of the ban itself: Arab nations with ties to Trump's business empire are not on the no entry list.

"It's frustrating and alarming to see that well educated Americans (voted for Trump and agree with the ban), knowing the consequences of such decision making can have on other Americans," he said. "We've seen that with the killings and mosque burnings in Texas and now in Canada."

Tanbour hopes the march on Tuesday will show those Americans another side of the story.

Universities presidents across the country are issuing statements against the ban, including the University of Michigan and Michigan State University.

University President George Ross will issue a similar statement in the afternoon on Monday, Jan. 30.

For more information, visit the CMU Muslim Student Association Facebook page.


About Ben Solis

Ben Solis is the Managing Editor of Central Michigan Life. He has served as a city and university ...

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