The internet has been taken by storm since the US President Donald J. Trump passed an ‘executive order’ announcing the travel ban on Muslim nationals from across 7 Muslim majority countries entering the US for a period of 90 days. A lot of people including Hollywood stars at the Screen Actors Guild Awards protested against this ban. It also suspends the United States’ refugee system for a period of 120 days. Trump says his “extreme vetting” system will help “keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the US”. The order itself does not name the countries whose citizens are banned from entering the US. Instead, it refers to a statute which applies to seven Muslim-majority nations, namely Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Iraq.
Now Bollywood film director, producer and screenwriter Vivek Agnihotri has come out in protest of the Muslim ban. The filmmaker took to Facebook to post a message. He posted “I have an idea for all the creative people of Hollywood who are upset with Trump’s #MuslimBan – hold this year’s Oscars in one of the banned Muslim country to show their solidarity with Muslim brothers. Let the hosts be actors from those muslim countries and let the language be Arabic. Let all the men wear robes and women hijabs. Follow Islamic principles of no alcohol and no songs and dances as a symbol of acceptance.
I think speeches are just lip services to please your own fanbase and end up doing more harm to the real cause as it exposes the hypocrisy of speakers who are selective in their outrage. Let the real issues be fought with real actions.
How many of you will support such a move and how?
Give your concrete ideas to fight #MuslimBan and discuss.”
The Slumdog Millionaire star Dev Patel also stood up against this, saying “At times like this, you’re constantly questioning what you’re doing at awards like this or promoting a movie. It feels so pointless. I look to the people around me and they remind me the message of this film, of the art we’re trying to inject into the world right now. It’s about unification. When I think about that, it makes me have a little bit more strength.”
Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher also spoke out against the “Muslim ban” on Twitter, citing wife Mila Kunis’s own path to the US. “My wife came to this country on a refugee visa in the middle of the Cold War! My blood is boiling right now,” Kutcher said in a series of tweets. “We have never been a nation built on fear. Compassion that is the root ethic of the US. Our differences are fundamental to our sustainability,” he added.