[Blackstudies-l] How ritual chicken sacrifices in Miami helped halt Trump’s travel ban

Maria Lima lima at geneseo.edu
Sat Feb 11 06:27:33 EST 2017


lisaparavisini posted: " A report by David Ovalle for the Miami Herald. In
ruling against President Donald Trump’s “Muslim travel ban,” a trio of
federal judges relied in part on a distinctly South Florida court case —
one that granted religious protections for the ritual sacr"
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New post on *Repeating Islands*
<http://repeatingislands.com/author/lisaparavisini/> How ritual chicken
sacrifices in Miami helped halt Trump’s travel ban
<http://repeatingislands.com/2017/02/11/how-ritual-chicken-sacrifices-in-miami-helped-halt-trumps-travel-ban/>
by
lisaparavisini <http://repeatingislands.com/author/lisaparavisini/>

[image: Screen Shot 2017-02-10 at 11.57.21 PM.png]

A report by David Ovalle for the *Miami Herald*.

In ruling against President Donald Trump’s “Muslim travel ban,” a trio of
federal judges relied in part on a distinctly South Florida court case —
one that granted religious protections for the ritual sacrifice of chickens
and goats.

The unanimous ruling Thursday night
<http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/article131809049.html>
upholding a halt to the White House executive order cited a famous 1993
U.S. Supreme Court decision that overturned a Hialeah law banning Santería
animal sacrifices. Justices found that the city ordinance infringed on
constitutionally protected freedoms.

The ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals
<https://www.law.cornell.edu/supremecourt/text/508/520>for the Ninth
Circuit court made clear that judges can consider outside statements made
by elected leaders — in this case, President Donald Trump himself — in
trying to figure out if the intent of a government action was to
discriminate against a religious group.

“In Hialeah in the 1990s, it was Santería. With Trump, it’s Muslims,” said
University of Virginia law professor Douglas Laycock, an expert on
religious liberties who successfully argued the Hialeah case.

Decades ago, the city of Hialeah — a large blue-collar city of mostly
Cuban-American immigrants outside Miami — was sued by the Church of the
Lukumi Babalu Aye, which wanted to operate a place of worship in an old
used-car lot.

The city of Hialeah argued that a 1987 law banning animal killings, which
was passed after the church opening, did not target practitioners of the
Afro-Cuban religion, which ritually kills chickens and goats as offerings
to its deities, ensuring good fortune. Instead, city lawyers argued, the
strict reading of the law was just that Hialeah wanted to curb health
hazards from animal carcasses left on the streets.

But Supreme Court justices, in a unanimous decision, pointed out that city
leaders — in numerous public statements before the law was passed — singled
out the religious minority, even if Santería was not mentioned in the
ordinance.

As proof, Justice Anthony Kennedy (who is still on the court) said that a
Hialeah City Council president, at an emergency meeting asked: “What can we
do to prevent the church from opening?” The city also passed a separate
resolution that declared: “This community will not tolerate religious
practices which are abhorrent to its citizens.”

Fast forward more than two decades, Trump issued an executive order
temporarily banning refugees from seven Muslim-majority countries,
including Iraq, Iran and Somalia, from coming to the United States. The
controversial Jan. 27 order immediately sowed chaos and confusion at
airports across the world as officials struggled to figure out who should
be denied entry to the United States.

Critics across the nation decried the order as flouting the Constitution
and American values by targeting a whole religion. The executive order also
spurred widespread protests, including in Miami.
<http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/article129446859.html>

Administration officials insisted Trump was only trying to stop potential
terrorists hellbent on causing violence, and the order itself did not
target the whole religion of Islam. After the latest court defeat, Trump
tweeted, “SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!”

But the state of Washington, in suing to stop the ban, pointed to Trump’s
own campaign promise of a “total and complete shutdown on Muslims entering
the United States.”
<https://www.donaldjtrump.com/press-releases/donald-j.-trump-statement-on-preventing-muslim-immigration>
They also referenced a recent interview by former New York City Mayor Rudy
Guliani, who revealed that Trump asked him for advice on making his “Muslim
ban” legal.

The three-judge appellate panel agreed those outside statements should at
least be considered, just as they had been in the Hialeah case. “It is well
established that evidence of purpose beyond the face of the challenged law
may be considered in evaluating” whether religious freedoms were violated,
the judges ruled Thursday.

The ruling by the San Francisco-based appeals court upheld a temporary
restraining order
<http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/white-house/article130700214.html>that
a trial judge placed on the president’s action. More litigation will unfold
in the coming weeks.

The Trump administration can appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, or ask the
entire appeals court to reconsider the decision to allow further
exploration of the legal dispute.

As for South Florida’s Santería community*, *the religion — which derived
from African faith brought to Cuba and the Americas by slaves and infused
with Catholicism — has become more mainstream
<http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article2687248.html>since
the U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1993.

Particularly in the digital age, in which information on the religion is
available with just a click, the faith has spawned a cottage industry
selling paraphernalia and drawing increasing study from religious scholars.

The religion has also blossomed in countries such as Mexico and Venezuela.
Groups of local practitioners have also begun flocking to Nigeria
<http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article1962047.html>
to embrace what some believe is a more pure strain of the ancient Yoruba
religion — sometimes spurring tension and clashes with Miami Santería
leaders.
*lisaparavisini <http://repeatingislands.com/author/lisaparavisini/>* |
February 11, 2017 at 12:01 am | Categories: News
<http://repeatingislands.com/category/news/> | URL: http://wp.me/psnTa-tAi

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