U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) released a policy alert on Oct. 2 that prohibits members of the Communist Party or any other totalitarian party from entering the country.
“In general, unless otherwise exempt, any immigrant who is or has been a member of or affiliated with the communist or any other totalitarian party (or subdivision or affiliate), domestic or foreign, is inadmissible to the United States,” USCIS said in a policy alert.
The agency explained, “This ground of inadmissibility only applies to aliens seeking immigrant status, such as aliens inside the United States applying to adjust status to that of a lawful permanent resident.”
Individuals who have a membership or affiliation with the Communist Party or other totalitarian parties are inconsistent and incompatible with the Naturalization Oath of Allegiance to the United States of America, which includes a commitment to “support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States,” the agency said in a statement.
USCIS also explained in its Policy Manual that the policy is part of a broader set of laws passed by Congress between World War I and the 1950s—and later amended several times—to address “threats to the safety and security of the United States.”
The original purpose was “to protect the United States against un-American and subversive activities that were considered threats to national security,” the Handbook states.
The laws grant an exemption to aliens whose affiliation or membership “is or was involuntary, or is or was solely when under sixteen years of age, by operation of law, or for purposes of obtaining employment, food rations, or other essentials of living and where necessary for such purposes.”
Aliens who have ceased to be members or affiliates at least five years prior to the date of application and those who actively oppose the doctrine, program, principles, and ideology may also be eligible for the exemption.
USCIS defines as a “totalitarian dictatorship” or “totalitarianism” the existence of a single political party, with the forced suppression of political opposition, organized on a dictatorial basis and with such a close identity between the policies of the party and the government of the country, that “the party and the government constitute an indistinguishable unit.”
The Chinese Communist Party, the most affected
As the world’s largest Communist Party, members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) are expected to be the most affected by the new policy.
According to official data published by the CCP, it has more than 90 million members.
In the contemporary history of CCP membership, there was a break from November 2004 when the book Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party was published in Chinese.
According to the book’s introduction, the extensive research it presents states “that those who are still deceived by the CCP will now see its nature clearly, purge its poison from their spirits, extricate their minds from its evil control, free themselves from the shackles of terror, and abandon for good all illusions about it.”
From that moment on, a mass movement to renounce the CCP, called “Tuidang” (“Quit the Party” in Chinese), was launched throughout China.
According to data published by the Tuidang Global Center, a nonprofit organization registered in the United States in June 2005, almost 365 million Chinese have quit the CCP and its two partner organizations, the Young Communist League of China and Young Pioneers of China.
In 2007, the Tuidang Center was established in Flushing, New York, home to one of the fastest growing Chinese communities in the United States.
“At its very core, Tuidang goes beyond political activism; it is the process of Chinese people clearing their conscience of years of Party culture indoctrinated in them through revolutionary campaigns, propaganda, media censorship, imprisonment, and mass killings over the past 65 years,” the organization explains.
“It finally gives Chinese people a chance to reflect on their own lives without the CCP and to envision a free China,” it adds.
Seventy-one years after the CCP took power, more than 150 groups in some 60 cities around the world demonstrated on Oct. 1 to protest the Chinese Communist Party’s human rights abuses.
The Tuidang Center said that the certificate it issues functions as proof for former members of the CCP who resigned from the Party and denounced its ideology. The certificates are fully accepted by the U.S. immigration agency.