Committed Immigration Lawyers Remain On Call 24/7 at JFK's Terminal 4

Image via Getty.
Image via Getty.

Last Friday, on Holocaust Remembrance Day, America’s Dick-in-Chief signed an executive order that banned all Syrian refugees from entry, blocked immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries for 90 days, and barred all other refugees for 120 days (with a religious exception made for Christians). Overnight, men, women and children holding valid visas, green cards, and even dual citizenships, became suspects and aliens in the eyes of the law. Airports fell into chaos as law enforcement upheld the strictest interpretation of the order, which is now being challenged by multiple states and organizations across the country.


In this week’s episode of Big Time Dicks, features editor Joanna Rothkopf and I catch you up on the details of the egregious Muslim ban, hear from Jezebel readers who are affected by it, and talk to immigration and civil rights attorney Tahanie Aboushi. Aboushi is one of the organizers of No Ban JFK, the lawyers working pro-bono 24/7 at JFK’s Terminal 4 on behalf of detainees and concerned immigrants.

Aboushi describes Terminal 4 as “organized chaos,” where translators, lawyers, activists, and others are on call all day and all night to help those who have been detained or fear they might be detained.

The detainees exist in a sort of legal purgatory with few rights. “They’re not suspects. It’s not a criminal matter where they have a right to counsel,” she explains. “It’s simply: you came to this country and we’re sending you on a flight back because we have the discretion to do that.”

Because the Trump administration continues to make updates on the order, Aboushi advises any concerned immigrant or dual citizen to consult a lawyer for the latest information and, if flying, “make sure you get your information to an attorney who can be on standby.”

And yes, despite what Trump’s administration says, the executive order “absolutely discriminates against Muslims,” she says. “You are preferring non-Muslims over Muslims. You are creating religious exemptions. This is like constitutional law 101, you just don’t do it.”

This is only week two of Donald Trump’s presidency. If another big dick is terrorizing your life and you want to rage about it, email us at And, remember to rate and subscribe to the podcast, and recommend it to your friends, so we can all be the best-rested, most educated members of the resistance.


The podcast is produced by Levi Sharpe with editorial oversight from Deputy Editor Kate Dries. Our Executive Director of Audio is Mandana Mofidi.

Prachi Gupta is a senior reporter at Jezebel.



You know what would be awesome?

If the Obamas, when they get back from vacation, since they’re both attorneys, go to JFK and set up a table to give free legal advice to people who come into the US with valid visas and are told they have to leave or are detained.