Here’s How Celebrities Reacted to Donald Trump’s Executive Order
“You are a part of the fabric of who we are, and we love you, and we welcome you.”
Perhaps President Donald Trump made a mistake announcing his de facto Muslim ban on a Friday evening. The response from concerned citizens and celebrities alike over the weekend was swift and powerful.
On Saturday, protesters gathered at major airports across the country in support of the refugees from seven majority Muslim countries, including Syria, who found themselves stuck in a state of diplomatic limbo.
Celebrity influencers — some of whom were not born in the United States — were quick to post on their social media channels in support of immigrants and refugees.
My wife came to this country on a refugee visa in the middle of the Cold War! My blood is boiling right now!— ashton kutcher (@aplusk) January 29, 2017
Love is the only answer. We must continue to stand together during these trying times ❤️ pic.twitter.com/XhdsnsSH8S— Usher Raymond IV (@Usher) January 29, 2017
Disgusted! The news is devastating! America is being ruined right before our eyes! What an immoral pig you have to be to implement such BS!!— Rihanna (@rihanna) January 29, 2017
Amplifying words of one of my favorite filmmakers, Asghar Farhadi, who like too many others will be turned away from the Land of the Free. pic.twitter.com/CcskcFueuo— Ava DuVernay (@ava) January 28, 2017
At Sunday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards, winners, including “Moonlight” star Mahershala Ali and the casts of “Stranger Things” and “Hidden Figures,” as well as host Ashton Kutcher, delivered powerful speeches highlighting the contributions of immigrants to the United States.
"We see what happens when we persecute people: they fold into themselves." - Mahershala Ali
“Good evening SAG-AFTRA members, and everyone at home, and everyone at airports who belong in my America,” Kutcher said, pointing to his chest. “You are a part of the fabric of who we are, and we love you, and we welcome you.”
Ali, who was raised by an ordained Christian minister, converted to Islam 17 years ago. He used that experience to stress unity amid difference.
“I’m able to see her, she’s able to see me,” he said of his relationship with his mother. “We love each other, the love has grown.”
All the rest, he added, is “minutiae.”
His speech also considered the effect persecution can have on an individual.
“What I’ve learned from working on ‘Moonlight’ is we see what happens when we persecute people,” he said. “They fold into themselves.”
Dev Patel, star of the movie "Lion" and a UK citizen, told PEOPLE magazine that he was "utterly devastated" to hear the news of Trump's refugee ban.
"We will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no homes." - David Harbour
Also vocal at the SAG awards were David Harbour of “Stranger Things,” Taraji Henson of “Hidden Figures,” along with actresses Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Sarah Paulson.
“We are united in that we are all human beings and we are all together on this horrible, painful, joyous, exciting, and mysterious ride that is being alive,” Harbour said. “We will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no homes.”
Louis-Dreyfus used her own family history as an example of the importance of welcoming refugees to the United States:
“I want you all to know that I’m the daughter of an immigrant. My father fled religious persecution in Nazi-occupied France. And I’m an American patriot and I love this country. And because I love this country, I am horrified by its blemishes. And this immigrant ban is its blemish and it’s un-American.”
Paulson encouraged viewers to donate to organizations like the ACLU, which raised over $20 million in the past weekend.
She was joined by musicians Grimes and Sia, who both called for their Twitter followers to donate to civil rights organizations, and offered to match donations.
hey, i'll match all donations to CAIR up to $10,000. tweet a screencap of your receipt to me <3 anything helps <3 https://t.co/tNaqrxOm7a— Grimes (@Grimezsz) January 28, 2017
Other celebrities and public figures showed up at marches in support of immigrants and refugees, including Chelsea Clinton, actor Mark Ruffalo, and models Gigi and Bella Hadid.
The day the music died... ⚡️ “Protestors gather at New York's JFK Airport over refugee detainment”https://t.co/h8eyFmbAOs— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) January 28, 2017
Actress Kerry Washington wore a safety pin to the SAG Awards in solidarity with refugees, saying, “We will not stop fighting for our safety & the safety of our fellow citizens and human beings.”
Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne were even more outspoken in their support of refugees.
“Let them in,” Towne wrote in capital letters above her chest, while appearing on the red carpet.
Kim Kardashian, whose husband Kanye West has professed to support Trump, tweeted just one word: “statistics.” She accompanied this message with an image taken from the libertarian think-tank, the Cato Institute, which shows the infrequency of terrorist attacks in the US committed by refugees and immigrants.
Statistics pic.twitter.com/aSpyFuabct— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) January 29, 2017
Actor Kal Penn responded to an anti-immigrant tweet directed at him by setting up a donation page in the name of his online aggressor.
“We are better than the hateful people who tell us we don't belong in our own country, that America can't be a beacon of freedom and hope for refugees from around the world,” he wrote.
J.K. Rowling tweeted at Vice President Mike Pence, who has previously rejected banning Muslims from entering the country, with a bible verse.
'For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul?'— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) January 29, 2017
Matthew 16:26 https://t.co/cYFglX3yRW
And John Legend, speaking at the Producer's Guild of America Awards on Saturday, welcomed refugees and immigrants into the country in a powerful speech that challenged the Trump administration directly:
“We are the voice, we are the face of America. Our America is big, it is free, and it is open to dreamers of all races, all countries, all religions. Our vision of America is directly antithetical to that of President Trump. I want to specifically tonight reject his vision and affirm that America has to be better than that.”
Global Citizen will update this article as more celebrities add their voices to the discussion.