Here’s Why Over A Million People Are Trying To Stop Donald Trump’s UK State Visit
Why do people want to put a stop to Trump’s state visit? Could it actually happen?
But why do people want to put a stop to Trump’s state visit? Could it actually happen?
First of all, let’s be clear. This is not a petition demanding that Trump is banned from entering the UK at all, although a petition asking for exactly that did circulate back in 2015, gaining over 500,000 signatures.
Instead, this petition calls for an official state visit from Trump (the date of which is yet to be confirmed) to be called off “because it would cause embarrassment to Her Majesty the Queen.”
What’s so special about a state visit?
State visits usually occur only once or twice a year, and are grand occasions – comprising of banquets, red carpets and hella horses - requiring an invite from the Queen.
Previous heads of state to be invited include Nelson Mandela, Barack Obama and even Vladimir Putin. (Michael Bates, who inherited the Principality of Sealand, a micronation just off the coast of Suffolk, is still waiting for his invite.)
So why do people want to put a stop to Trump’s state visit?
“Donald Trump’s well-documented misogyny and vulgarity disqualifies him from being received by the Queen or the Prince of Wales,” the petition’s creators said. “Therefore during the term of his presidency Donald Trump should not be invited to the United Kingdom for an official state visit.”
The petition was launched following Trump’s decision to sign an executive order initiating a travel ban, which has halted the US refugee programme for 120 days, banning all Syrian refugees from entering America, as well as halting the entry of nationals from seven majority-Muslim countries – hence the hashtag #Muslimban - causing widespread anger and protest across the world.
Could Trump’s state visit be called off?
The row over Trump’s state visit is on-going, and is deepening as time passes.
Leaders in Scotland, France, Germany and Canada were quick to condemn the ban. Theresa May, our Prime Minister, failed to do the same, and Buckingham Palace have declined to comment on the matter.
Downing Street has insisted that Trump’s state visit will go ahead despite the mounting opposition. Indeed, a Downing Street source told The Guardian: “To scrap the visit would undo everything following Mrs May’s visit. America is a huge and important ally we have to think long term.”
The petition, which has 1,389,040 at the time of writing, is the second largest on the government’s website, sitting behind the petition calling for a second EU referendum.
Protests against Trump’s travel ban are expected to take place all over the UK this evening. We hope to see you down there.
For more on the petition, head over here.
What are your thoughts on Donald Trump’s travel ban? Let us know over on Twitter @MTVUK.
You can find Lucas Fothergill on Twitter here.
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