Chilling implications of immigrant ban

January 30, 2017

The Cornell Alliance for Science is deeply troubled by President Donald Trump’s recent executive order imposing a 90-day ban on entry to the United States from seven mainly Muslim countries and a total ban on refugees from Syria. We share the sentiments and concerns of academic institutions and governments around the globe that have united in calling upon the President to reverse this directive.

We draw attention to the clear and unambiguous condemnation stated by Cornell’s interim President Hunter R. Rawlings III, and are grateful for the support offered to Cornell students and staff affected by this new policy, which has generated uncertainty and chaos around the world.

As with the wider Cornell community, the Cornell Alliance for Science strongly holds to values emphasizing our mutual respect for religious, cultural, and other diversity, and our belief in tolerance and global cooperation. Singling out people on the basis of their religious beliefs or countries of origin is un-American and insults our shared values. We reject it completely.

The Cornell Alliance for Science has a global mission to act to reduce poverty and food insecurity through the use of science, and to defend the scientific method more generally in this worrying time of so-called “post-truth.” We believe that the values of the Enlightenment period are still worth fighting for, both in the United States and around the world.

On a practical level, the Alliance for Science has a global collaborative model that depends on working closely with partners in multiple countries, irrespective of their religious stances. President Trump’s policy on immigration threatens academic freedom and solidarity across the board by undermining trust and the ability to travel into and out of the United States. It also sends the false signal that America is not committed to basic norms and civilized values, which can only harm our work and that of our allies.

At the Alliance for Science, we believe in bringing people together to solve our shared problems, not dividing the world behind walls and absolutist religious categorizations.

This is a time for all of us who share the free world s longstanding civic and democratic values to work together and remember how much we have in common. We welcome all allies in this effort and pledge to stand together with you to defend these values at a time when they are under attack by the most powerful office-holder in the world.

Please join us in adding your name to this statement via likes, shares and re-Tweets on Facebook and Twitter, or by emailing us at

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