USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fwd: Statement from the ASA Board of Directors

The ASA position is highly commendable.
As a student of refugee issues, I #StandWithRefugees everywhere.

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Sco-125,Second Floor,

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Sector-46,Gurgaon-122002, Haryana.

chaahathomes1harish@gmail.com

Residential    II    Commercial    II    Industrial    II    Retail    II   

Leasing, Sale, Purchase, Investments, Pre-leased, Interiors


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Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fwd: Statement from the ASA Board of Directors

Bravo for the courageous stand of the ASA

It is always a courageous thing to stand against abusive authority

ken

 

Kenneth Harrow

Dept of English and Film Studies

Michigan State University

619 Red Cedar Rd

East Lansing, MI 48824

517-803-8839

harrow@msu.edu

http://www.english.msu.edu/people/faculty/kenneth-harrow/

 

From: usaafricadialogue <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com> on behalf of Toyin Falola <toyinfalola@austin.utexas.edu>
Reply-To: usaafricadialogue <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com>
Date: Tuesday 31 January 2017 at 20:52
To: usaafricadialogue <USAAfricaDialogue@googlegroups.com>
Subject: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fwd: Statement from the ASA Board of Directors

 



Sent from my iPhone


Begin forwarded message:

From: African Studies Association <secretariat@africanstudies.org>
Date: January 31, 2017 at 10:13:04 AM CST
To: <toyinfalola@austin.utexas.edu>
Subject: Statement from the ASA Board of Directors
Reply-To: African Studies Association <secretariat@africanstudies.org>

Statement from the ASA Board of Directors

View this email in your browser

On behalf of its members, the Board of Directors of the African Studies Association demands immediate reversal of the recent Executive Order barring citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen entry for 90 days into the United States; prohibiting all refugees from entering the United States for 120 days; and banning Syrian refugees for an indefinite period of time. This order and its draconian enforcement are an affront to the ethical principles of our organization, to constitutionalism and the rule of law of the United States, and to basic tenets of international law.

For the past 60 years, the African Studies Association, the premier academic organization for scholars of Africa, has been committed to fostering greater knowledge and understanding of the African continent through encouraging the study of Africa, supporting research by Africans, and promoting collaboration among Africanists within the United States and abroad. Our ethical guidelines include a commitment to defending academic freedom and drawing attention to acts and events that violate the rights of people and their communities. As an association whose central mission is dedicated to understanding the complexity of the African continent and promoting academic exchange between scholars of the African continent and the United States, we deplore the arbitrary and unwarranted application of the executive order, which has a significant impact on the people of Africa and scholars who study the continent.

We are particularly concerned about the attack on academic freedom resulting from the travel limitations imposed on foreign nationals from the seven named countries. This ban directly impacts students and faculty at our universities, scholarly partners from these countries and ASA members who conduct research there. The fact that all seven are majority Muslim countries and that the rhetoric preceding the exclusion specifically talked about a ban of Muslims suggest that US policy is targeting Muslims. This creates an image of bias and hostility that undermines efforts to build understanding and cooperation. It also blatantly disregards constitutional protections of freedom of religion enshrined in the Bill of Rights, and makes those of us who work abroad less safe.

The four-month ban on all refugees is inexcusable. A large portion of the world’s 21.3 million refugees comes from Africa, and African countries themselves host over 26 percent of the world’s refugees. The decision of the US to reject all refugees adds to the already disproportionate burden on African countries struggling to support the millions of refugees in their territories. Particularly offensive has been the equation of refugees with terrorism in much of the rhetoric surrounding this executive order. Refugees are by definition individuals escaping war and persecution. Over half of refugees are under the age of 18, and many have themselves been the victims of terrorism.

The ASA includes many scholars who have worked in countries with autocratic governments, and who conduct research on authoritarianism, and we are particularly troubled by the signs of emerging authoritarian practices in the United States. We are alarmed by the administration’s attacks on the free press and the harassment of civil society. This executive order targets people based on race, religion, and national origin and is a form of scapegoating commonly associated with authoritarian regimes. The failure to adequately consult with Congress on this order and the disregard for court rulings limiting its impact represent an overreach of executive authority that undermines democracy.

We implore representatives of the US government to respect the diversity that is America’s strength and to protect the principles of democratic governance that are currently under attack. History shows that early opposition to scapegoating and exclusion are essential to preventing dangerous and violent violations of human rights.

For all of these reasons, we demand that this executive order be rescinded immediately.  


 

 

 

Copyright © 2017 African Studies Association, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email because you have been a member of the ASA in the past five years.

Our mailing address is:

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Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - NIGERIANS AND THE WORLD: THE ENEMY WITHIN

Thank you, Gloria.

On Tue, Jan 31, 2017 at 3:56 AM, Emeagwali, Gloria (History) <emeagwali@ccsu.edu> wrote:

Kennedy,

               I thank you so much for this illuminating piece.  Please publicize it widely.



Professor Gloria Emeagwali


From: 'Kennedy Emetulu' via USA Africa Dialogue Series <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com>
Sent: Monday, January 30, 2017 8:36 AM
To: usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com
Subject: USA Africa Dialogue Series - NIGERIANS AND THE WORLD: THE ENEMY WITHIN
 

..







I am quite amused by a lot of Nigerians who see the world through the foggy prism of their national condition. Take the example of how they now view United States and its politics. They completely ignore the fact that the United States is a superpower with wide influence all over the world and that its policies, favourable or not to Nigeria (depending on whoever is interpreting them), should not be the basis or at least the only basis of judging her politics. 


With such a misguided view, you see them transport their local partisanship into world affairs. It's not uncommon to see people who supposedly supported Goodluck Jonathan during the election rail against Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and the Democrats while jubilating because Donald Trump and the Republicans won. Why, because to them, Obama, Clinton and the Republicans supported Muhammadu Buhari against Jonathan and it's God that has paid them back with a loss against Trump and the Republicans. The same mentality is exhibited by lot of those who supported Buhari and the APC. They think supporting Obama, Clinton and the Democrats is ideologically in line with their support for Buhari and the APC. So, you see them criticise the Republicans and Trump purely on that basis.


I have had to explain to people that they shouldn't be conflating issues. I have tried to explain the differences between national and international affairs and why it is imperative to intellectually step out there to take a full picture before expressing opinions about issues bordering on international affairs. But a lot of Nigerians are insularly ignorant and deliberately so - some because they are intellectually lazy and others because they simply cannot bring themselves to understand issues outside their self-created national circumscriptions because they erroneously think this is them being nationalistic or patriotic. They all seem unwilling to or incapable of leaving their comfort zone mentally. They jump on false news that supports their notions and try at every opportunity to shoehorn their prejudices into places where facts should be sacred with predictable consequences.


As we speak, we are seeing it all come to a head with this Donald Trump travel ban. People who believe that our government has been wickedly quiet over the Fulani herdsmen menace, including those who accuse the government of having a Muslim agenda, have suddenly found an ally in Trump. Apart from the spaced-out IPOB and Biafran activists who think Trump's rightwing, 'anti the other' politics will deliver for them a "Christian Biafra" away from 'Muslim Nigeria', there are those who now think Trump is the angel sent by God to save Christianity from the march of Islam. It's funny that Trump who has no idea of the Bible is the one they've cloaked with all these holy expectations. Of course, the man himself, playing to the gallery, has been talking in a pro-Christian way (while acting in very unchristian ways with his inhuman and inhumane policies), which though is dangerous to the world, serves his momentary political purpose with his base.


Now, having said all the above, I want to point out that my problem is not that people are mixed up with their views about American, Nigerian or world politics. I mean, people are entitled to their wilful ignorance, as far as it's at no cost to others or society. My problem is with the effect of all the misconceptions on our nation. Nigeria is in a very dangerous place at the moment, because of what we have been doing to ourselves over the years, things that have frayed our national fault-lines beyond our imagination. We have a very selfish political elite that's only thinking of draining the nation, an elite that has no compunction. They have driven the nation to the precipice of ethnic and religious tension that all it needs now for a mother of all conflagrations is a little ignition from somewhere, anywhere. In a world that is in chaos due to the great powers themselves going through political, social and economic turmoil in their polities and clearly with the instability in the international system, exacerbated now by the United States under Trump, what do we think will happen to Nigeria if we go the Rwanda route? Or is there anyone thinking we cannot go that route? Please, go read the history of the Rwandan genocide and you will know we are more than three-quarters of the way there already! We are close, very close and that is why I'm using this piece to call on people to simply step back, review their thinking and actions in public space and begin to work individually and collectively towards ensuring that the nation steps away from that precipice, no matter how hurt you feel and no matter how unjust you think you and your people have been treated.


I'm urging all young people to soberly begin to review the events of our world today and posit the country in its appropriate place. They should never allow themselves to become instruments in the hands of agenda-driven politicians and religious demagogues, local or foreign. They must understand that history is cyclical and that we have been here before leading to two World Wars at the end of which only countries and peoples who thought beyond themselves came out of it stronger and prosperous. Our nation depends on oil with massive environmental and ecological damage it's done to us so far in a world that climate change is no longer an esoteric concept. Desertification has stolen a march on development up North just as Boko Haram terrorism rules the roost. Despite the hoopla, globalisation is not going to go away, the world will keep on being smaller and Africa, the virgin continent, will become more open to international capital, no matter where it comes from. So, do you want to be slaves and strangers in your own land? Do you want to die fighting religious and ethnic wars when your mates elsewhere are looking to build on what Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Ma have built?


The world is facing a huge challenge with regional and international geopolitics at the moment, but nature has proved that challenges provide opportunities too. We must be looking at the opportunities. Becoming evangelists of alternative facts will not help us. We need to look behind the 'news', fish out the real facts, look at the real trends and begin to prepare ourselves for the future we see shaping up. In 2019, we will have another opportunity to redirect the course of our national history. I was reading a friend's page on Facebook and he said this:



"Come 2019, the 25-45 year old demographic will have the organisational tools, the numerical strength and access to funds to determine leadership in Nigeria!! As TD Jakes would say... Something's About to Happen!! #Organise" - Meekam Mgbenwelu


Maybe he's being overly optimistic, but the truth there should not be lost. You are the shapers of your own destiny. Your individual choice can direct your life amongst the many, but your collective choice is what will really take the nation to the next level. The question now is what are you going to do about it? You, young Nigerian, here is my advice: In a world where alternative facts are fast becoming the orthodoxy, strive with all your intellectual might to BE INFORMED, truly informed. This is important for your sake and the sake of your children, even if they are yet unborn.




….


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USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fwd: Statement from the ASA Board of Directors



Sent from my iPhone

Begin forwarded message:

From: African Studies Association <secretariat@africanstudies.org>
Date: January 31, 2017 at 10:13:04 AM CST
To: <toyinfalola@austin.utexas.edu>
Subject: Statement from the ASA Board of Directors
Reply-To: African Studies Association <secretariat@africanstudies.org>

Statement from the ASA Board of Directors
Statement from the ASA Board of Directors
View this email in your browser
On behalf of its members, the Board of Directors of the African Studies Association demands immediate reversal of the recent Executive Order barring citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen entry for 90 days into the United States; prohibiting all refugees from entering the United States for 120 days; and banning Syrian refugees for an indefinite period of time. This order and its draconian enforcement are an affront to the ethical principles of our organization, to constitutionalism and the rule of law of the United States, and to basic tenets of international law.

For the past 60 years, the African Studies Association, the premier academic organization for scholars of Africa, has been committed to fostering greater knowledge and understanding of the African continent through encouraging the study of Africa, supporting research by Africans, and promoting collaboration among Africanists within the United States and abroad. Our ethical guidelines include a commitment to defending academic freedom and drawing attention to acts and events that violate the rights of people and their communities. As an association whose central mission is dedicated to understanding the complexity of the African continent and promoting academic exchange between scholars of the African continent and the United States, we deplore the arbitrary and unwarranted application of the executive order, which has a significant impact on the people of Africa and scholars who study the continent.

We are particularly concerned about the attack on academic freedom resulting from the travel limitations imposed on foreign nationals from the seven named countries. This ban directly impacts students and faculty at our universities, scholarly partners from these countries and ASA members who conduct research there. The fact that all seven are majority Muslim countries and that the rhetoric preceding the exclusion specifically talked about a ban of Muslims suggest that US policy is targeting Muslims. This creates an image of bias and hostility that undermines efforts to build understanding and cooperation. It also blatantly disregards constitutional protections of freedom of religion enshrined in the Bill of Rights, and makes those of us who work abroad less safe.

The four-month ban on all refugees is inexcusable. A large portion of the world's 21.3 million refugees comes from Africa, and African countries themselves host over 26 percent of the world's refugees. The decision of the US to reject all refugees adds to the already disproportionate burden on African countries struggling to support the millions of refugees in their territories. Particularly offensive has been the equation of refugees with terrorism in much of the rhetoric surrounding this executive order. Refugees are by definition individuals escaping war and persecution. Over half of refugees are under the age of 18, and many have themselves been the victims of terrorism.

The ASA includes many scholars who have worked in countries with autocratic governments, and who conduct research on authoritarianism, and we are particularly troubled by the signs of emerging authoritarian practices in the United States. We are alarmed by the administration's attacks on the free press and the harassment of civil society. This executive order targets people based on race, religion, and national origin and is a form of scapegoating commonly associated with authoritarian regimes. The failure to adequately consult with Congress on this order and the disregard for court rulings limiting its impact represent an overreach of executive authority that undermines democracy.

We implore representatives of the US government to respect the diversity that is America's strength and to protect the principles of democratic governance that are currently under attack. History shows that early opposition to scapegoating and exclusion are essential to preventing dangerous and violent violations of human rights.

For all of these reasons, we demand that this executive order be rescinded immediately.  


 
Copyright © 2017 African Studies Association, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email because you have been a member of the ASA in the past five years.

Our mailing address is:
African Studies Association
54 Joyce Kilmer Avenue, Piscataway Township, NJ, United States
Piscataway Township, NJ 08854

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