The Hindu Editorial :

Hate bubbles over :  27/07/2017

The murder of an Indian in a hate crime poses uncomfortable questions to Team Trump

News of the killing of Indian national Srinivas Kuchibhotla in Kansas has shocked India, and raised fears about the safety of foreigners and immigrants(a person who comes to live permanently in a foreign country) in America. The term “hate crime” is writ (legal document issued by a court or judicial officer) large in the minds of the Indian diaspora(Distribution) in the U.S. and their anxious families back home, even as law enforcement officials piece together the tragic (Very sad) events at a bar in Kansas City. That prior to the attack the shooter, U.S. military veteran Adam Purinton, reportedly asked Kuchibhotla and his co-worker and fellow Indian, Alok Madasani, whether they were residing in the U.S. illegally hints at the possible motivation for the violent encounter. Eyewitness reports confirming that the killer yelled, “Get out of my country,” moments before unleashing (Release) a hail of bullets on the two Indians, also injuring a white man who sought to intervene(Interfere) on their behalf, suggests a xenophobic (afraid) racism. While this may be an isolated (Keep Apart, Isolated in Time) instance (The Occurrence of Something) of hate crime, given the political climate in the U.S., it cannot but shine a spotlight on President Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant actions. Especially after Mr. Trump’s executive order banning entry into the U.S. of travellers from seven Muslim-majority countries and refugees from Syria and indefinitely putting on hold the country’s refugee asylum (A shelter from danger or hardship) programme — even if implementation of the order has been limited, so far.

Fear-mongering (the action of deliberately arousing public fear or alarm about a particular issue) about America’s weak borders allowing the unconstrained (Free) entry of “illegal aliens” into the country has a much older provenance (Birth Place). Throughout the bruising (Injuring) two-year election campaign that culminated(Climaxed, reach a climax or point of highest development) in the November presidential election, Mr. Trump’s provocative(Exciting) arguments about building a wall along the Mexican border and banning Muslims from entering the U.S went largely unchallenged by the Republican Party. Last week, around the same time as the attack in Kansas City, Mr. Trump tweeted about seven people shot dead in Chicago, pointing an unsubtle (Clumsy)  finger at violence in inner cities associated with African-Americans in poverty. He did not tweet on the Kansas attack. The White House was quick to dismiss as “absurd” any link between the Kansas City shooting and the rhetoric on undocumented immigrants. That may well be, but the selective social media outrage of Mr. Trump on violent acts across the U.S. is disturbing. Why, for instance, did his administration not condemn that act of violence more explicitly?(Precisely or clearly Communicated) Given Republican obstructionism (Deliberate Interference) on enacting common-sense gun control reforms to curb(Control) the proliferation (Growth by the Rapid multiplication of Parts) of deadly weapons, this intensifying (Increasing in strength) trend of racist xenophobia may make the U.S. a far more dangerous emigration destination than it has been so far. Srinivas Kuchibhotla’s career was the stuff of the American dream. Mr. Trump’s politics risks alienating not just immigrants, but also native-born Americans from that dream.