Rally Held In Nashville Against Immigration Order

Posted at 4:40 PM, Jan 29, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-29 23:33:50-05

A large group rallied outside the offices of Senator Bob Corker and Senator Lamar Alexander in Nashville in opposition to President Donald Trump’s immigration order.

Those with the group said they were showing support to immigrants and refugees. They added they wanted to “tell our senators ‘NO’ to executive orders that essentially ban Muslims from entering the country.”

Those who rallied on Sunday in front of the senators' offices in the 3300 block of West End Avenue said Nashville has been a city that welcomes refugees and immigrants. They were asking their representatives to reject President Trump’s executive orders.





The group chanted “No ban, no wall!” They also said Nashville has been a place for “sanctuary for all.”

“The executive orders recently signed are a show of administrative power. Our response to them is a show of people power,” said Drost Kokoye, Board Member with the American Muslim Advisory Council and Nashville resident. “History has shown time and again that the power of the people doesn't stop. We are here today as they try to ban Muslims. We’ll be here tomorrow when they come after DACA. And we will be here the next day when they target poor folks. Together. Because there ain’t no power like the power of the people cause the power of the people don't stop.”

Mayor Megan Barry also spoke at the rally, along with Vice-Mayor David Briley, in support of the city’s immigrant and refugee community.





Rallies were held in many cities across the country on Sunday. President Trump released the following statement:

“America is a proud nation of immigrants and we will continue to show compassion to those fleeing oppression, but we will do so while protecting our own citizens and border. America has always been the land of the free and home of the brave. We will keep it free and keep it safe, as the media knows, but refuses to say. My policy is similar to what President Obama did in 2011 when he banned visas for refugees from Iraq for six months. The seven countries named in the Executive Order are the same countries previously identified by the Obama administration as sources of terror. To be clear, this is not a Muslim ban, as the media is falsely reporting. This is not about religion - this is about terror and keeping our country safe. There are over 40 different countries worldwide that are majority Muslim that are not affected by this order. We will again be issuing visas to all countries once we are sure we have reviewed and implemented the most secure policies over the next 90 days. I have tremendous feeling for the people involved in this horrific humanitarian crisis in Syria. My first priority will always be to protect and serve our country, but as President I will find ways to help all those who are suffering.”

Senator Corker released the following statement following the rally:

"We all share a desire to protect the American people, but this executive order has been poorly implemented, especially with respect to green card holders. The administration should immediately make appropriate revisions, and it is my hope that following a thorough review and implementation of security enhancements that many of these programs will be improved and reinstated.”

Those with Senator Corker's office confirmed the office was closed during the rally, but they added they "appreciate input from all Tennesseans and support their right to publicly express their views."

The following statement came from Senator Alexander:

"This vetting proposal itself needed more vetting. More scrutiny of those traveling from war-torn countries to the United States is wise. But this broad and confusing order seems to ban legal, permanent residents with ‘green cards,’ and might turn away Iraqis, for example, who were translators and helped save lives of American troops and who could be killed if they stay in Iraq. And while not explicitly a religious test, it comes close to one which is inconsistent with our American character.”

The rally in Nashville began at 3 p.m. Sunday and was attended by Nashvillians, students, immigrants, and many others.

Following multiple speeches, the crowd then moved onto West End Avenue where they sat in the street. Police were on hand at the scene.