NEXT WEDNESDAY VOL. CXVI ... ISSUE 38
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
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2 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
DAILY NEBRASKAN SPECIAL EDITION When The Daily Nebraskan started reporting this project, President Donald Trump had just signed an executive order which shut down immigration from seven primarily Muslim countries. Our goal, just as in any story, was to speak to students, faculty, administrators and other people to see how this application of executive power could affect the University of Nebraska-Lincoln community. What we didn’t expect was the roller coaster of events that followed. On Jan. 27, Trump signed an executive order which prevented citizens from Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia and Yemen from obtaining visas or other immigration benefits for 90 days. It also suspended the admission of all refugees for 120 days under the United States Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP). The order was meant to be a temporary fix while Trump’s administration created a better vetting process to counteract terrorism. Immediately, the order faced criticism from multiple angles, finally landing on the desk of Federal Judge James Robart in Seattle. There, after only a week since its inaction, the controversial order was temporarily halted by Robart on Feb. 3, effectively freezing it nationwide. In response, the Depart-
ment of Homeland Security announced that it suspended “any and all actions” related to the order. In addition, the State Department announced that 60,000 visas cancelled under the executive order would be reversed. Trump took to Twitter to vent his frustration, saying the ruling would be overturned. Early Feb. 5, the Department of Justice filed a request to immediately reinstate the order with a federal appeals court. That was denied, and the court asked both sides to file arguments by Feb. 6. All of this is to say it’s been a hectic rush to figure out how to keep up with this developing story as journalists, as I’m sure it’s been for readers. So instead of presenting you, our reader, with stories specifically about an executive order, these stories are about an issue that can’t be remedied by a Seattle judge. As we move forward in this ever-changing political and social climate, we hope these stories can reflect a motivation to stop and listen. That taking a second to read each side of a discussion is vital in moving forward as a UNL community and as a country.
julian tirtadjaja | dn Veronica Riepe, the director of UNL Student Involvement, writes a message – “Our doors are open to you” – in Kinyarwanda and English in front of the Nebraska Union Plaza on Friday, February 3, 2017.
front page photo by shane anderson, carter knopik and araya santo | dn Of the seven countries named in President Donald Trump’s executive order, the University of Nebraska system has students and faculty from each – about 150 total according to a statement released by the university. In considering the impact this order might have, the first place the Daily Nebraskan thought to look was with these people. These are stories of fear, anger, confusion and hope that we hope can illustrate the human effect of this ban through a few members of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln community.
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN editor-in-chief managing editor
Founded in 1901, the Daily Nebraskan is the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s only independent daily newspaper written, edited and produced entirely by UNL students. The Daily Nebraskan is published by the UNL Publications Board, 20 Nebraska Union, 1400 R St., Lincoln, NE 68588-0448. The board holds public meetings monthly. © 2017 DAILY NEBRASKAN
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MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017 DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
UNL community responds to immigration ban
Ally Sargus, Christa Rahl and Zoe De Grande dn staff writers
After President Donald Trump signed an executive order barring immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries, feelings of indignation, accomplishment and confusion swept across the nation. While the order has hit a road bump after a Washington federal district court judge stayed and effectively froze it on Feb. 3, Trump and the Justice Department have made it clear the issue is not dead. Following the ruling, Trump tweeted his determination to overturn the decision, and just after midnight on Feb. 5, the Justice Department filed an appeal to the judge’s decision. These are the latest developments in what’s been a tumultuous journey for many across the United States, including the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of Nebraska system. Some have heralded the order as a step forward in fighting terrorism, while others saw it as a strong message of xenophobia. Officials throughout the University of Nebraska system were quick to respond in a statement made on Jan. 27 that echoed the Statue of Liberty’s inscription. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…” The statement promised NU officials would always work to create a place where students feel welcome, valued and safe. It went on to say that about 150 members of the NU system, both faculty and students, are from the affected countries and administrators were working to offer support and guidance. The statement highlighted diversity as a cornerstone of NU’s success, whether that be in faith, ethnicity, academic disciplines or other backgrounds. “We are unanimous in our view that this executive order is disturbing and disruptive to our students and employees,” the statement read. “It does not represent the values of the University of Nebraska. And we join leaders of universities around the country in urging that it be promptly reconsidered.” The statement was signed by NU President Hank Bounds, University of Nebraska Omaha Chancellor John Christensen, University of Nebraska Medical Center Chancellor Jeffrey Gold, UNL Chancellor Ronnie Green and University of Nebraska at Kearney Chan-
cellor Doug Kristensen. The university has not released a statement since the Feb. 3 ruling. Those sentiments were reflected by the Lincoln community in a vigil held on Jan. 29, as well as by many students and faculty at UNL through chalk drawings, banners and other peaceful protests. The UNL Department of English dis-
these executive orders and acknowledge how they damage students and learning.” Faculty of the department want students to know all are accepted regardless of their nation of origin, race, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, economic class or social or cultural background. “We thought it important to have a visual so that all our students could see it and be re-
julian tirtadjaja | dn Two UNL students write a message – “It is always a pleasure to greet a friend from afar” – in Chinese and English in front of the Nebraska Union Plaza on Friday, February 3, 2017. played banners that read “No ban,” “No wall” and “It’s not 1984” from the windows of Andrews Hall. The banners reference the dystopian novel “1984” by George Orwell. Faculty who hung the banners hoped students who walked by would see them and know they are welcomed on campus. This action was organized by multiple faculty members who were alarmed by the impact this regulation had on students as well its implications of discrimination. Amanda Gailey, an associate professor in the Department of English, was one of the faculty members who participated in this display. “I think it makes an important ethical statement,” Gailey said. “That we, as teachers, reject the racism and xenophobia of
minded that all are welcome here,” said Amelia Montes, an associate professor of English and ethnic studies. Throughout Andrews Hall, flyers are taped outside of classrooms acknowledging the First Amendment, as well as a quote by author Toni Morrison: “There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence and no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.” The Department of English hoped this action would lead to more demonstrations on campus rejecting racism and accepting inclusivity. “Our job is invested in student success,” Montes said. “When students succeed, we all benefit.” On Friday, several students met outside
the union to write encouraging messages in chalk to promote inclusivity in the wake of Trump’s executive order. “All are welcome,” “Love wins” and “We are a nation indivisible” were among the phrases scrawled in pinks, greens, blues and whites. However, not all felt the executive order was a sign of racism and one that would inhibit the advancement of the university’s mission. Many felt the ban, and the reasoning behind it, was a necessary step to counteract a growing problem. “We’re not targeting the religion, we’re targeting the terrorism,” UNL College Republicans President Kyle Upp said. Upp said he represented the College Republicans’ view that Trump’s executive order was a matter of national security. However, Upp said he and other conservatives only see it as a temporary caution while a better vetting process is considered by the Trump administration. While Allison Brockman, a freshman agricultural economics major, thought the order’s signing could have been handled with more care and finesse, she said it was overall a positive step in Trump keeping his promise on immigration. “Our country needs to establish better boundaries. As long as it stays temporary and they assess the situation for what it is, I think it’s a good idea,” she said. “There’s a lot of people that are in the Middle East that have a religion that is violent in nature and needs to be addressed.” Upp and Brockman both said they hope the American people give Trump a chance to change this country. They, and others, feel Trump is demonstrating his ability to keep his promises and follow through by pushing for this executive order. “Trump has proven that he is not full of empty promises,” Upp said. “[This is] real action that is taking place, and I think the Trump administration is doing great.” Following the staying of the executive order and subsequent administrations falling back into normal immigration practices, Brockman was surprised. “It was supposed to be a temporary ban in the first place,” she said. “[The Trump administration] were just reevaluating. What harm was it doing?” NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
4 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
‘American values will not change’ Noah Johnson DN STAFF WRITER
Ramin Hosseinabad was born in Arak, Iran, in 1989, one year after the end of the Iran-Iraq War. When he was 5, Hosseinabad moved to the city of Nowshahr in northern Iran, growing up in a city that neighbors both the Caspian Sea and Alborz Mountains. It’s one of the most beautiful places in Iran, Hosseinabad said. Immediately after Hosseinabad completed high school, he applied for college, but found that he didn’t score high enough on his university entrance exam. From there, he had two choices: either join the military and serve a mandatory military service or stay home and study for the exam once more. Through family support and studying 14 hours a day for almost 10 months, Hosseinabad said he ranked in the top 1,000 in the country in his college entrance exam and was accepted into the University of Tehran. In 2013, Hosseinabad received his undergraduate degree in polymer engineering from the university. Later that year, Hosseinabad began graduate school for his Ph.D.
in materials engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. One of the main reasons Hosseinabad came to UNL was to stabilize his professional and personal life. According to Hosseinabad, the economical, political and cultural pressures back home were beginning to cast a shadow on his future. “I have dreams and consider myself an ambitious person,” he said. In addition to the many goals Hosseinabad set for himself, he also sought stability in the United States. “I want a life in a stable structure where I am not judged on anything but hard work,” Hosseinabad said. “I want to live in a country where I can achieve my dreams.” When Hosseinabad witnessed President Donald Trump’s executive order barring him from travelling between his two homes, the stable ground he had sought after in the U.S. was shaken. Hosseinabad is a brother and a son. An avid bicyclist and a passionate music listener. But now, Hosseinabad said he defines himself differently.
HOSSEINABAD: PAGE 11
araya santo | dn Ramin Hosseinabad, from Iran, is earning his Ph.D. in materials engineering. Hosseinabad came to the U.S. to live in a stable environment. “I have dreams and consider myself an ambitious person,” Hosseinabad said.
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017 • 5
‘I don’t know what is going to happen to me’
shane anderson | dn Mohammed Sadraddin recounts his many moves--from Iraq, to Jordan, and finally to UNL. Noah Johnson dn staff writer
When Mohammed Sadraddin was eight years old, his family was in search of a new home. Living a normal life in Iraq was becoming increasingly dangerous. Sadraddin’s father and both of his sisters were threatened to
be kidnapped, so his family decided it would be better to move. But it was still difficult for Sadraddin to leave his home country. “I remember leaving my home, my friends, family and grandparents behind,” he said. “It wasn’t the easiest thing to do.” Sadraddin’s family moved to Jordan, a
country on the western border of Iraq, in 2006. His family applied for the resettlement program in Jordan and was given the chance to choose which state they would live in. Sadraddin’s father decided Nebraska was the best choice for his family, and they settled in Nebraska in 2014. When Sadraddin moved to Jordan, he felt as though he didn’t have a home anymore. Now, reflecting on that feeling he had a decade ago, Sadraddin said he still doesn’t believe he has a home. Sadraddin said if he was forced to leave the U.S., he and his family would have nowhere to go. Since the implementation of Trump’s new policy, which was overturned Saturday by a federal district court judge but will be challenged by the administration, the idea of leaving the country has become a legitimate concern for Sadraddin. “Seeing the President do stuff that is not lawful worries me because I don’t know what is going to happen to me,” Sadraddin said. “I have the right to stay here at this moment, but I might not have that right in the next moment.” When Sadraddin first heard the rumors of Trump’s executive order, he said he didn’t believe it. He only found out through a friend who informed him the rumored policy banning travel to seven Muslim-majority countries had become a reality. What made Sadraddin most anxious was the fact that the policy initially affected those travelling from the seven countries. It even applied to green card holders, which means
they have the right to permanently live and work in the U.S., like Sadraddin and his family. Caught in the middle of the controversy was Sadraddin’s mother, who planned to return from Iraq on Jan. 29. “I had no idea if she was going to be able to come here or not, so I started to freak out,” Sadraddin said. The next day, Sadraddin contacted Delta Airlines, the airline his mother was travelling on, to ask if she would be boarded on the plane. Sadraddin was informed that, at that moment, his mother could not board or return to the U.S. “They told me the only thing they could do was refund me the airplane ticket,” Sadraddin said. Delta also informed Sadraddin that those with diplomatic visas were to be given a waiver. Because those with diplomatic visas were granted entry to the country, Sadraddin said he concluded the policy was aimed toward the people from these countries rather than the country itself. “I don’t understand what Trump’s problem is with us,” Sadraddin said. Luckily, Sadraddin’s mother was able to return to the U.S. on Feb. 2 but had to undergo additional investigations upon arrival. Sadraddin was unable to elaborate on what the investigations his mother went through upon entry into the U.S. NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
‘You can change something that is wrong’ Noah Johnson dn staff writer
When President Trump signed his executive order barring immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries, Abdullah Almisbahi, a sophomore electrical engineering major from Saudi Arabia, began to think about his friends from the banned countries who are now stuck in the U.S. As a Muslim and active volunteer in the Muslim Student Association, Almisbahi said he was concerned that the travel ban seemed to exclusively target Muslims from the affected countries. “It’s bad that you only let in people from a certain religion,” he said. “We are all human.” Almisbahi said he was pleased to hear about the suspension to the ban, which was
enacted on Feb. 4 by a federal district court judge. Almisbahi said he was glad there was someone who would say no to Trump. “You can change something that is wrong,” Almisbahi said. “The court will stand for the people.” It’s a reflection of the rocky journey Almisbahi said he’s seen the United States take over the past couple of weeks. When Trump signed the order into action, Almisbahi wasn’t sure how the U.S. felt about Muslims. Now, after seeing the dozens of protests staged across the country, Almisbahi knows he is welcome. “I’m so happy to see those standing for Muslim people,” he said. “I’m so proud of them. At the same time I feel sorry for getting a President who doesn’t listen to them.” NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
carter knopik | dn
6 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
CAPS welcomes students concerned about ban Natasya Ong dn staff writer
Many students - both international and domestic - have been affected by a recent executive order of President Donald Trump that barred people from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States. The order is on stay after a ruling by a federal district court judge, but the Trump administration is determined to overturn the judge’s decision. The impact of the order, however, still has a wide impact on University of Nebraska-Lincoln students. Many students expressed their concerns over the recent order during individual counseling sessions at Counseling and Psychological Services this past week. The main concerns these students have is whether they will be able to leave the country or when they will be able to see their parents again. Since the order, there has also been an in-
crease in the number of patient visits. “CAPS had 299 patient visits last week and 327 this week,” said Aimee Grindstaff, a communications and marketing senior analyst with Nebraska Medicine. “This is a 9.4 percent increase over last week.” However, the center is unclear whether this increase is specifically due to the recent executive order. “Students are discussing the executive order, however, on my caseload, all were existing clients,” said Belinda Hinojos, a provisionally licensed psychologist at CAPS. “I had more new clients come in after the election and inauguration, with concerns directly related to those events.” She noticed a heightened sense of fear and uncertainty among both of those who are directly affected and not directly affected. This could be leading to an increase in anxiety. The main concern of those who are affected is what the recent executive order means for their future. On the other hand, those
alanna johnson | dn
not directly affected can feel helpless, which could lead to a drop in mood, Hinojos said. “The current political climate has created distress on an individual level, but we are also seeing it impact relationships between friends, within families and in the classroom,” Hinojos said. “That is why it is important for any student experiencing distress due to the recent executive order or related to the election in general know that CAPS is here for them.” The staff of CAPS is working closely with the Jackie Gaughan Multicultural Center and the International Student and Scholar Office to provide students direct referrals if needed. CAPS has not changed any of their processes or services due to the recent executive order because they already have readily available services that can aid students amidst the situation, such as their open crisis slots and Drop-in Support Groups. The staff of CAPS encourages students who may be experiencing an increase in anxi-
ety or distress due to the order to come in. UNL released a statement of disagreement regarding the executive order. “We are unanimous in our view that this executive order is disturbing and disruptive to our students and employees. It does not represent the values of the University of Nebraska,” the Office of the President said in the official statement. The staff at CAPS also released a statement on their official blog that they “stand with the statement issued by NU President Hank Bounds and the Nebraska University system chancellors.” If you would like to meet with a counselor, please call 402-472-7450 to schedule an appointment, or stop by the CAPS office free Drop-in Support Group, which meets Tuesdays 3-4 p.m. in the University Health Center, Room 213. NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017 • 7
‘They are banning me from living my life’ Sarah Wontorcik dn staff writer
Simin Akbariyeh has called the United States home for six years. An international student from Iran, she is working toward a Ph.D. in civil engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. When Akbariyeh heard the news about President Donald Trump’s executive order banning people from her home country, along with six others, from entering the United States, she said she was shocked. Akbariyeh said this isn’t something that’s supposed to happen in the U.S. “In other countries, it’s possible, but as we know, United States has principles. They have rules; they say that human rights are required here,” Akbariyeh said. “We cannot believe that it’s going to happen, but then it just happens in one night.” Akbariyeh was expecting to see her sister in the near future; it’s been four years since they last saw each other. With the student visa Akbariyeh has, she would have to reapply for a new visa to get back in the U.S. if she leaves the country,
which could take anywhere from a month to more than a year. This is the case with many international students who enter the U.S. on F1 student visas. After the order, Akbariyeh’s sister received a notice saying her visa interview at the embassy was cancelled and she would not receive a refund. Now, Akbariyeh will have to wait even longer to see her sister. “This is not the right way to do it,” Akbariyeh said. “I’m sure that there are smart ways to do it. This is a developed country. There are other ways to build a solution.” Akbariyeh heard stories of her friends who went home to visit their families and are unable to return because they were not able to get a visa in time. “So many people are living here. We are not citizens; we are living here,” Akbariyeh said. “Here is our home. It doesn’t matter which country you were born in. My home is here. If I am banned from getting into this country, they are banning me from living my life.” Akbariyeh chose to come to the U.S. to study is because she heard the country was open to international students, international
people and immigrants. The U.S. is multicultural and diverse, she said, while many other countries are not. “We feel like if we come here, we can feel it’s our home,” Akbariyeh said. “We are not going to see the differences in culture because there are so many other people like us.” Because of this image and reputation, Akbariyeh said she still has trouble believing this order is what the American people want. Akbariyeh said she hasn’t noticed a difference on campus - her American friends have been supportive and understanding. Where she does see views favoring the order is in posts and comments on social media. “I go through their reasons, and I cannot believe that these are the reasons they think this order is correct,” Akbariyeh said. “I think they just don’t know what’s going on. They don’t have information about immigration, about refugees. They just see people from other countries, but they don’t know how they came through or what process they came through.” Akbariyeh said she has hope in the American system to work in international people’s favor but also fears what may happen if poli-
cies like this continue to be put in place. Universities will see less and less diversity if it becomes more difficult for international students to enter the country, she said. Akbariyeh said she worries about whether she will be able to get a job after she graduates or have to return to Iran. If international students can’t find jobs after graduating, they can’t contribute to the country that provided them with the resources to learn in the first place, Akbariyeh said. Coming from Iran, she said she knows what it looks like when the government has power it doesn’t deserve or know how to use. “Life will be a disaster for everyone,” Akbariyeh said. “We are the first group, this is our turn, but the person that doesn’t care about that 90-year-old man at the airport that is crying, begging for his grandchild if someone doesn’t care about him, he’s not going to care about citizens as well. If someone is going to be against him, he’s just going to fire or kill someone just to say that ‘this is my power.’”
shane anderson | dn Simin Akbariyeh chose to come to the U.S. because she heard the country was so open to international students. She is originally from Iran.
8 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
‘What else can we do besides be hopeful?’ Sarah Wontorcik dn staff writer
Delaram Rahimighazi, a native of Iran, is the first person in her family to come to the U.S. She always thought of the U.S. as the best country in the world, a place where she could have a better life—a place where dreams come true. As she works for a Ph.D. in modern languages at UNL, studying in the U.S. has lived up to its reputation. That is,until last week’s executive order made by Trump, which was subsequently stayed by a federal district court judge Saturday, while Trump administration aims to fight and restore it. Now, Rahimighazi said she’s left thinking maybe the U.S. isn’t what she had dreamed of and maybe it isn’t that great. “The meaning of this order, for me, is ‘We
don’t want you here. Go back home,’” Rahimighazi said. Rahimighazi said she knows many people who have valid visas, ready to come to the U.S. They went through the process, the background check, the interview and have received their visas, but were told they could not enter. Her parents wanted to be at Rahimighazi’s graduation in May. They applied for visas and were on track to make the trip. Now, Rahimighazi said they’re still waiting, and she doesn’t think they’ll ever get their visas because of the order. “Imagine that you have waited more than six months, seven months, to get your visa,” Rahimighazi said. “Then once you get your visa, suddenly you find out that you cannot come to the United States because of this order. It’s just unbelievable.” Rahimighazi said serving this country with
what she’s learned here is her ultimate goal. Getting a Ph.D. isn’t easy, she said, and she wants to use that knowledge to contribute to American society. “That’s why [I] just cannot believe why the president is doing this to us,” Rahimighazi said. “In his campaign he mentioned that he was going to make life difficult for immigrants and refugees, but I personally never thought that he was going to do something like this.” Rahimighazi said her American friends have shown her a lot of support, and she was comforted by the university’s reaction to the order. Last week, NU President Hank Bounds sent a university-wide email in response to the executive order. Bounds said the university should continue to be diverse and inclusive, and cited the famous inscription on the Statue of Liberty. Rahimighazi said the response by Bounds was courageous.
“We don’t want to lose our hope,” Rahimighazi said. “We’ve done a lot and we are not going to give up easily. We are also very worried. We are going to graduate soon and we are worried that we are going to have problems finding a job. But what else can we do besides be hopeful.” After the order was reversed Saturday, Rahimighazi is feeling even more hopeful. “A number of my friends packed their things in a night, took a flight and now they are here,” she said. “I hope it remains this way, and other friends, parents and people whose visas got rejected could also come to start their new lives or to visit their loved ones.” NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
shane anderson | dn Delaram Rahimighazi, a native of Iran, will likely not be able to see her parents at graduation. She doesn’t know if they’ll be able to make it from Iran due to the ban.
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017 • 9
Refugees flee ISIS, now face uncertainty in U.S. Elizabeth Rembert dn staff writer
When Ishmael arrived in the United States from Mosul, Iraq, almost four years ago with his wife and 18-month-old daughter, he looked out at New York City and thought, “This is a dream. This has got to be a dream.” It was a dream he’d earned by working for the U.S. Army as an interpreter. He’d spent four years risking his life and the lives of his family, but it earned him three tickets to America and placed his mother, brother and sister into the application process for a refugee status. Over the past four years, Ishmael and his family have found a new home in Lincoln. Ishmael and his wife have found opportunity for themselves and their daughters—Solara, who is now 5 years old, and 15-month-old Yarin. Back in Iraq, Ishmael’s mother, brother and sister have been working for their visas. After four years of interviews, medical exams and background checks, they were finally waiting for the travel information that would tell them when and how they would be arriving in the United States. Their four years of work and expectations were jeopardized at 4:43 p.m. on Jan. 27, when President Donald Trump signed the executive order banning entry from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Somalia. The fulfillment of four years hangs in the balance amid the fast-moving legal battle for and against the immigration ban, which is currently on hold after a federal judge essentially overturned the order Saturday. Ishmael said his family—both in the United States and in Iraq—have been crying every day since the executive order. His daughter, 5-year-old Solara, asks him every day, “Daddy, do you know when my cousins are coming?” During their weekly Skype sessions, his extended family asks if he’s talked to the embassy, if he’s found a lawyer, if he knows anything new. “But there is nothing for us to do,” Ishmael said. That powerlessness comes at the most crucial time for Ishmael’s family. “They have no other options,” Ishmael said. “They got attacked by ISIS, and ISIS took everything they had. Their last hope was to get to the states, and now someone is stopping them for no reason.” Ishmael’s job as an interpreter is seen as betrayal to the Islamic State. Translators are killed and their families are attacked, Ishmael said. Two of his cousins were killed by ISIS because of their army translator jobs. “We are the first ones ISIS targets,” Ishmael said. “Because we were helping the United States.”
courtesy photo by kelly kuwitsky The proposed executive order undermines that help, according to Jodi-Renee Giron, the Lutheran Family Services’ refugee support coordinator. “These people have counted on American promises, and now there’s a possibility that these families will never see each other again,” Giron said. “The man is attempting to sever families on a really intimate level.” Giron has seen the reaction of mothers learning they may never see their children again, and the ones of brothers, sisters, husbands and wives. Giron said the worst conversations are the ones with families like Ishmael’s, where the families were on the list to be arriving in the United States within the next year. “We’re the ones who have to go and explain these things to our clients,” Giron said. “And they’re awful because we don’t have any answers for them.” The only thing Giron can give is sympathy and assurance. She tells them, “You are welcome here. We want to help you. We are committed to supporting you.” But Giron admitted it may be hard for a
refugee to look past the negativity of the ban to see the sympathy and support. “How awful and shaming it is for us,” Giron said. “Refugees are willing to leave their homes and invest in new communities and relationships, and then they hear us talking about how ‘You and your people are so dangerous; we need to keep you out.’” Giron has seen refugees accomplish their American dream: parents earning GEDs, single mothers learning how to drive and getting jobs and women leaving behind their abusers to give better things to themselves and their children. But she wonders how the new rhetoric will affect a refugee’s perception of the American dream. “How does this not affect how people see us?” Giron asked. “How does this not give them fear that this place is not as safe or as reliable as we’ve made it out to be?” Giron and Lutheran Family Services have been working to make sure their clients know that Lincoln still is safe and reliable. Giron said other than one paranoid letter, she has only experienced warmth in Lincoln. “And that letter was really weird,” Giron
said. “It reinforced the notion that the only people we’re letting in are Muslim males, and they’re all dangerous. It was a lot of piecedtogether false bits of information to make a narrative that made sense to this person.” Giron said the proposed ban could mean change for refugee resettlement. It could call for new vetting rules, new documentation and possibly a new demographic for resettlement. “We’re fearful for our clients and we’re fearful for the future of refugee programs,” Giron said. “But we’re certainly not giving up on it.” NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
10 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
‘We want to make this country great with you’ Hana Muslic dn staff writer
For the last four years, Hossein Dehghani has called Lincoln home. Here, he has made lifelong friends and
has a successful academic career at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he studies biomedical engineering as a graduate. He is set to graduate in May. Dehghani came to UNL as an international student from Iran, seeking better opportuni-
shane anderson | dn Hossein Deghani, a student from Iran, expresses his anxiety about the immigration ban. “I can’t focus because I don’t know what will happen. It’s not fair,” he said.
ties for education and a future career, particularly in technology. The journey to get here was long, but worth it, he said. “A lot of us Iranians feel like we have talents, and we see potential in ourselves to contribute,” Dehghani said. “We see this as a better place to accomplish our goals.” Dehghani is currently a Ph.D. candidate - one among 3,000 Iranian Ph.D. candidates in the United States in the last three years and has already established a name for himself in academia. Last year, he invented and patented a robotic colonoscopy machine that detects some of the earliest signs of colon cancer. However, Dehghani has been distracted from his studies as of late. Dehghani was hit hard when President Trump signed an executive order banning travel to and from seven predominantly Muslim nations, including Iran. “It was shocking for us,” he said. “We feel confused and concerned about the future. I’m trying to write my dissertation, and I can’t focus because I don’t know what will happen. It’s not fair.” Dehghani’s entire family, including his parents and four siblings, still live in Iran. He is usually able to visit them once a year, on special holidays reserved for family in his culture. If the executive order were to be restored, he would not be able to go visit them and come back to the United States. The visa that took him three months to obtain to get here four years ago would be invalid. “It’s so sad knowing I have to be apart from them,” Dehghani said. “But I have no other option now. My parents told me to come here and have supported me in follow-
ing my goals, but it’s still just really sad.” For Dehghani, the executive order has made him feel less American, despite his contributions and his love for the country. “In your Constitution, you have values that we really respect - the freedom of religion and the freedom of speech especially,” he said. “I want to stay here.” After seeing the massive outpouring of support for immigrants and refugees at the candlelight vigil in front of the Nebraska Capitol last week, Dehghani organized with several other international students to create an event that will occur on Feb. 9 at noon in front of the Nebraska Union. Iranian college students across the country have organized similar events for the same time at their campuses as part of a bigger protest. “It’s going to be a peaceful gathering,” Dehghani said. “We respect people with all religious and political views. We don’t want to change peoples’ opinions, we just want to show that this order is not fair to us.” When a federal judge reversed the decision on Feb. 4, Dehghani said he felt relief and hopes the temporary halt will become permanent. “Until then, the uncertainty hurts,” he said. Dehghani is hopeful that he will be able to remain here and that other Iranians will be able to join him in calling the United States home. “We are human like you,” he said. “We want to make this country great with you.” NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
HOSSEINABAD: FROM PAGE 4 “I’m a prisoner who is not allowed to go back and visit my family.,” he said. “Even my family is not allowed to come here and visit me.” Hosseinabad realized the gravity of the new policy when he received word that his grandmother passed away just a day after the executive order was implemented. He was not able to go to the funeral or be there to support his family. “I was not allowed to go home to say goodbye to the dearest person in my life,” Hosseinabad said. Hosseinabad currently holds an F-1 single entry visa. F-1 visas are given to internation-
al students who are attending an academic program at a U.S. college or university. Even without Trump’s order, which was stayed by a federal judge in Washington on Feb. 3, Hosseinabad would have to reapply for a visa if he left the country due to his single entry status. However, despite all this, Hosseinabad said he still feels welcome in the country. “People have always been welcoming,” he said. “The way the president treats me like this is contradictory to the views of the people.” In regard to how life on campus has been, Hosseinabad is very happy with how UNL responded to the executive order and
has received a plethora of support from his fellow students. “Nothing will change on campus,” Hosseinabad said. “American values will not change with the executive order.” Hosseinabad was shocked when he first heard that a federal judge in Washington had stayed the order, freezing it nationwide. He was hesitant to believe how effective the suspension would be, though. Once Hosseinabad was sure the travel ban had truly been suspended, he immediately contacted his mother to share the news. Now, Hosseinabad is working to get his mother a visa so she can travel to the United States and
visit her son for the first time in more than three years. “As the executive order immediately affected so many people, now I can see how the suspension has impacted the lives of many people,” Hosseinabad said. “It sent a very clear message that if someone messes up with true American values, people are going to stand up against it.” NEWS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017 DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
The Mez merges performance with visual art Sam Crisler dn staff writer
While talking over coffee in their house one morning, Gabriella Parsons and Joelle Sandfort conceived the idea of opening a performance and art hybrid venue in Lincoln. Through several discussions, the two roommates realized they each had a hunger for playing more important roles in the arts scene than just attending shows. By launching the venue, dubbed The Mez, they said they hope to provide a quality space for the musicians and artists of Lincoln’s vibrant arts community to display their work. The Mez, located on the mezzanine floor in the building that houses Timeless Treasures near 17th and O streets, is tentatively scheduled to open by the end of February. Parsons, a senior journalism major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, said there is a lively community of artists in Lincoln, but most people group them by their disciplines, segregating musicians and visual artists. A central focus of The Mez is to foster appreciation of both art and music in one room. “Usually when you go out to a concert, you’re there for the music,” Parsons said. “When you go out to First Friday, you’re there to look at visual art. But it’s always interesting when disciplines intersect.” And when they go to concerts and art displays, like the First Friday showings that exhibit art at multiple galleries in Lincoln on the first Friday of each month, Parsons said she and Sandfort have noticed an occasional disconnect between performers and audiences. With The Mez, Parsons and Sandfort aim to bridge that gap. “What we’re really hoping with this space is it becomes a place where people can let go and come in and open themselves up to having an intimate experience or intimate exchange with someone else’s art,” Parsons said. At other events, like First Friday, Sandfort said some audiences are more focused on socializing than appreciating the art. She and Parsons want to redirect that trend so audiences are fully connected to the art. “We want The Mez to be a place where artists are really recognized for their work,” Sandfort said. Adam D’Josey, frontman of Lincoln psychedelic rock band The Grand Poobah, has helped Sandfort and Parsons in renovating The Mez, which is one floor below The Grand
james l iu | dn Poobah’s practice space. He said The Mez has the potential to become a hub for likeminded artists. “I think it may help facilitate a collective of common artists,” D’Josey said. “Then all one needs to do is set an intention, and the rest will follow.” To allow for more groups of artists and audiences to participate in shows, The Mez will function as a drug-and-alcohol-free venue. Without the presence of drugs and alcohol, The Mez will be able to provide a safe space for all ages. “We’re expanding that community to be open to those people who might be missing out on shows that would otherwise happen at bars or music venues that serve alcohol,” Parsons said. Sandfort and Parsons said they envision
events at The Mez involving conversations between the audiences and the artists, along with collaboration between the two groups to the point where the audiences become artists as well. Parsons said she and Sandfort don’t want to be the only people deciding what will happen at each event. “Ideally, it’s people coming into the space and creating their own ideas for shows, where we’re just there kind of cheering them on and giving them feedback,” Parsons said. Parsons said that vision won’t be realized until they start regularly hosting shows. In the meantime, on Feb. 13, The Mez will throw a Valentine’s Day-themed party, which will serve as the venue’s soft opening. The event will encourage attendees to bring anything they love, Parsons said,
whether it’s a love-themed record or playlist, a sketchbook for drawing or a pen and paper for making Valentines. A paper shredder will be supplied for guests to shred the memories of their lost loves. Inspired by a similar event that took place last year at Milk Run, an Omaha DIY music venue, Parsons said she wants to use Valentine’s Day as a way to bring people together. “As we know, that’s already happening so beautifully in Lincoln,” Parsons said. “And I think this space is just gonna be one more space to contribute to that.” ARTS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
12 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
Dave Hall composes to the beat of his own drum Will Roper dn staff writer
In true percussionist fashion, the stage was filled with a large variety of instruments ranging from timpani and snare drum to marimba and steel pan. University of Nebraska-Lincoln professor Dave Hall’s performance lasted roughly an hour as he navigated through his maze of instruments. On Feb. 4, he performed pieces that required both precision and vigor. The composers and pieces were carefully chosen for this recital, with some unique criteria. “This particular concert, I decided to feature composers that were all under 50 years of age,” Hall said. “A couple of them were written just in this past year. Actually, the composer of the first piece, Russell Wharton, was a former student of mine, and that was one of the first times I’ve played a piece by a former student. That was special for me.” Hall’s annual recitals serve to better his skills as a musician, as well as inspire his percussion students. Hall said it’s important for him to perform music for his students but performing also allows him to continue to grow as a musician by keeping him challenged and inspired. “I feel if I’m not working on my own projects then it is hard for me to teach my students,” Hall said. The piano is the instrument that turned Hall toward percussion. A big part of his musical training, he said, started at the piano, allowing him to learn basic music theory at a young age. He said he knew at an early age that he wanted to be a drummer, starting with the drum set as his main instrument in high school. From there, he began to explore other instruments, such as keyboard percussion, marching percussion, solo performance and percussion ensemble. Hall completed his doctorate at the University of North Texas, which houses the largest percussion program in the world. During his doctorate studies, Hall taught at both North Texas and Texas Christian University for four years. “In my doctorate I studied percussion
performance,” Hall said. “Both of those programs at North Texas and TCU are at the cutting edge of percussion education and performance, so it was really great to be around those programs for several years.” Along with being a teacher and performer, Dr. Hall is also a composer, whose work is played around the world. Hall’s recital featured one of his own compositions, titled “Apocalyptic Etude,” for marimba. This fastpaced, explosive marimba solo, composed and published by Hall in 2009, made its debut appearance at UNL. “I wanted to write something that would stretch the technique of the marimba and be really exciting and flashy,” Hall said. “It’s the second piece I wrote and published, and it’s become pretty popular at different competitions around the world. I’ve never actually played it here at UNL, so I thought this would be a good time to share it with people.” After being surrounded by music and percussion from an early age, and understanding music from the perspective of a player, Hall said composing came naturally to him. Learning how the music he was playing was created piece by piece was an integral part of learning to compose his own pieces. “Whenever you play a piece of music, you have to take it apart and figure out how it’s made,” Hall said. “The more you do that, the more you start to understand how you’ll make your own piece. I’ve always been someone who likes to tinker with things; I like to cook, I like to build things, and just do things that are creative. Composing music was a natural progression for me.” One of the challenges of composing and playing for percussion is the wide array of instruments. However, to Hall, variety in instrumentation is his favorite part about percussion. Each instrument has its own qualities and personality, and people tend to associate these with what the instrument is. When composing, Hall said he tries to break common perceptions about different instruments. “You might expect the marimba to play African music, or you might expect the snare drum to play something that sounds milita-
“I like to defy those conventions and write something for the snare drum that makes it sound new, interesting and different.”
julian tirtadjaja | dn ristic,” Hall said. “I like to defy those conventions, and write something for the snare drum that makes it sound new, interesting and different.” Commonly known for their warm, upbeat sound you might associate the steel drums with the Caribbean. But Hall found a different, softer sound. Composed by Dave Molk, “Azucar” turns the happy, jamming instrument on its head, producing long and soft chords before slowly rising at the end. World instruments, such as the steel drum, are a big part of Hall’s repertoire. “I’ve been playing steel drums for nine years now, and it’s one of my favorite instruments to play just because the sound is so unique.” Hall says he would love to see students more involved with world instruments like the steel drum, largely in part to how unique many of them are in comparison to traditional percussion instruments. A local steel drum group for middle and high school students, PANgea, has been incredibly popular, immersing both the students and audience in a culture of music not commonly heard in Nebraska. World instruments, Hall said, play an important role in educating students on many different styles of percussion. When it comes to education, Hall’s technique to teaching is praised by his students. Music students learning from Hall have only positive things to say about him as both a teacher and performer. “Dr. Hall’s approach to music is something truly unique to him,” Jack Kloecker, a junior music education major and percussionist studying under Hall, said. “His philosophy on
work ethic and life is one he communicates effectively to all of his students in ways that apply to all of our unique backgrounds. He just has a way of explaining music that makes it understandable for all.” When Hall first arrived at UNL, the entire percussion studio was comprised of in-state students. The studio has now boasted students from 10 different states alongside instate members. “His passion for music has continually transferred to me the more I work with him,” Kloecker said. “He’s pushed me to my limits on multiple occasions, but only in a positive way as it’s helped me realize my full potential as a musician and a person.” As the recital ended with a resounding fugue duet with organist Christopher Marks, faculty and students of Dr. Hall could be heard applauding the loudest as he took his bows. This performance was as much for them as it was for him. “My peers and colleagues are world-class, and it’s great being able to collaborate and perform with them,” Hall said. “I love my students, and I think they are remarkable people. They push me to be a better teacher and to make sure I’m giving them everything I can.” ARTS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017 DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
Tyronn Lue honored by Nebrasketball
Matt Hardesty dn staff writer
Former Nebraska guard and current Cleveland Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue returned to his alma mater to see his jersey retired Thursday night, a moment that was five years in the making. For this generation of students, most know Lue for two things: coaching superstar forward LeBron James and overcoming a 3-1 deficit against the Golden State Warriors. He is known for being on the wrong end of one of the most humiliating moments in NBA Finals history. Former Philadelphia 76er guard and Hall of Famer Allen Iverson sent him to the ground with a crossover before stepping right over him in front of his own bench in the 2001 NBA Finals. Thursday night, however, Nebraska reminded fans across the nation there is more to Lue than his current occupation and one play over 15 years ago. A tribute video at halftime showed clips from his career. It included highlights from his NIT Championship and appearance in the 1998 NCAA Tournament for Nebraska. It also showed some highlights from his 11 year NBA career, including when he locked down the aforementioned Iverson on defense later in the series and helped the Lakers win back-to-back championships. “I’ve watched some old tape on Tyronn Lue, and he was so fun jacy to watch. I coulda got that guy a lot more points than Danny Nee did,” Nebraska coach Tim Miles said. “Some guys only know him from the Iverson clip. They should show the other clip when Tyronn kisses his ring. He kisses his ring and Iverson -- I don’t think they make a runner-up ring.” Not only did Nebraska do an outstanding job highlighting Lue’s achievements on the court, but it also gave him the platform to showcase parts of his personal side, specifically his family. Lue made this clear Thursday night: his family is more important than everything. Twenty of his family members were in attendance, and he brought his mother onto the court at halftime to be honored with him. He explained to fans and media the inspiration
for picking number 10 was from his uncle, Jay Graves, a former Harlem Globetrotter whose NBA dream was cut short by injury. “It’s great to have my family here,” Lue said. “Without my family here, I wouldn’t be in the position that I’m in today.” Throughout his professional career, Lue played with Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Michael Jordan, Tracy McGrady, Yao Ming
The first thing Lue did when he entered the media room for his press conference before the game was give a hug to Lee Barfknecht, who covered him at Nebraska for the Omaha World-Herald. Despite the busy schedule from his job, he has also accepted the role of a mentor to current Nebraska players if needed. When he visited the team in 2012, he
lewis | dn and Dirk Nowitzki. He was coached by legends like Phil Jackson and Doc Rivers. As a coach, he now leads a team featuring James, guard Kyrie Irving and forward Kevin Love. He has won three NBA Championships, and his team has the best record in the Eastern Conference. “I didn’t think I would ever coach,” Lue said. “It’s tough, especially on the NBA level, to deal with all the different egos and the personalities. But if you’re a good person and you treat people fair and treat people the right way, things work out.” Despite his massive successes in this professional career, Lue has not forgotten his roots.
gave each player his phone number and email address to reach out to him. When former Nebraska player Terran Petteway’s mother fell ill in 2014, Lue reached out to Miles asking for his number to speak to him. Lue’s own mother and grandmother have faced recent battles with cancer. “He really cares about Nebraska. He really cares about the success of our program, and we are very fortunate to include him,” Miles said. While the honor certainly means a lot to Lue, it could have greater impact on the Nebraska basketball program moving forward. To put things lightly, Nebraska’s history is not very storied, especially when compared to
other Big Ten programs. They still have yet to win an NCAA Tournament game and have finished in the bottom half of its conference in nine of the last 10 years. But by honoring someone who not many people remember played for them, Nebraska has brought attention to its history and has increased the appeal of playing for its team. “Any way I can help and be a part of this university, I’m always for it,” Lue said. “They could use me in any way they want to, and I’m here for them. And they know that.” Make no mistake, Nebraska has already used Lue as a recruiting tool. When one walks into Hendricks Training Facility, the first thing they see in the lobby is a giant cardboard cutout of NU’s former star. Now when recruits walk into Pinnacle Bank Arena, the first thing they will see is Lue’s name and jersey number hanging above them. Only a select few programs have active alumni who are world champion coaches, and none are as young as Lue. To have someone as invaluable as him, who actively follows and cares about his alma mater is a massive recruiting sell, could be very beneficial down the road. The ceremony itself featured some impressive guests. Both Doc Rivers, Lue’s coaching mentor, and James, the best basketball player in the world, gave messages to Tyronn on the video boards speaking of his achievements as well as his love for his family and Nebraska. Miles didn’t want Lue speaking to the team before the game. He was hoping his team would play well for him instead of him speaking to get them going. That part of the night didn’t work out so well. Nebraska was unable to stop Michigan State in the second half and suffered a 72-61 loss, its 12th of the season. The Huskers may not have won Thursday night, but putting Lue’s jersey in the rafters did more for their program than any recent win could have done. SPORTS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
14 • MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2017
THE DAILY NEBRASKAN
Nebraska struggles again, loses to Iowa Brett Nierengarten SENIOR SPORTS EDITOR
After a back-and-forth affair, Iowa was able to pull away from Nebraska to win 81-70. The loss is the Husker men’s second in a row, and the team is now 10-13 overall. The difference in the game came at the 3-point line. Iowa was 9-for-19 in the game, while Nebraska was 3-for-20. This is concerning because Nebraska has struggled mightily defending the 3-point shot recently. In its last three games, NU’s opponents have made a combined 34 triples and are shooting 56 percent. Leading the 3-point attack for Iowa was Jordan Bohannon, who was 4-for-6 from beyond the arc to finish with 15 points, which led the Hawkeyes balanced scoring attack. In his return from injury, Iowa’s leading scorer Peter Jok added 12 points. Tyler Cook and Brady Ellingson added 13 and 11 respectively, giving Iowa four players in double figures.
file photo | dn
Jok and Bohannon had back-to-back baskets in the final 1:06 of the half to erase a Nebraska lead and give the Hawkeyes a 38-36 halftime edge. Nebraska lead by as many as four at two separate moments of the first half, both were set up by Jack McVeigh jumpers. McVeigh continued his resurgence, finishing the game as Nebraska’s leading scorer with 16 points. The Hawkeyes slowly pulled away throughout the second half, but their longest run came with 8:28 to play when Iowa went on a 9-2 run over three minutes to turn a 58-57 lead into a 67-59 lead. An Evan Taylor and-1 made cut the Iowa lead to 67-64 with four minutes left, but NU would not get any closer than that. Tai Webster and Jordy Tshimanga joined McVeigh in double figures. Webster had 14 and Tshimanga added 10. SPORTS@DAILYNEBRASKAN.COM
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