Tuesday, December 15, 2015

To Allow Refugees Or Not To Allow Refugees...That Is The Question

By D. DiFrancesco

Just like most of you, I too have been pondering the refugee crisis occurring in the Middle East, specifically Syria in light of the “terrorist” attack in San Bernadino as well as the statement by Republican front-runner Donald Trump, that he will stop all immigration of Muslims into the U.S….”temporarily”.

I have come to the conclusion that just as I believe with all of my heart that you have the right under
Syrian Refugees
Image: theguardian.com
the first amendment to say what you please, I don’t necessarily think that you always should.  This same logic can be applied to the discussion of Muslim refugees, in that although there is nothing constitutionally that binds us to accepting refugees or immigrants, it does not mean that we shouldn’t.  

Accepting refugees should be contingent on us vetting them the most thoroughly that we can.  This means that we should not make our borders so porous that just anyone can get through.  What it also means is that we need to take a sensible approach to immigration, tightening up policies where they need to be tightened, such as they relate to our visa programs, but not broadly saying that no Muslims will be permitted to enter the U.S.  Never in our nation’s history have we broadly used religion as a reason for denying refugees entrance.  With Trump’s statement we are excluding more than 1.6 billion people from a multitude of countries entrance all because we are afraid of the Muslim faith.

In the immediate aftermath of this shooting Anderson Cooper of CNN asked a federal official if we should have asked Tashfeen Malik, the Pakistani born wife of Syed Rizwan Farook and co-gunman in this terrorist act whether she had been radicalized (I’m paraphrasing).  Does anyone in their right mind think that that question would have been answered honestly by someone wishing to do harm to America, I don’t think so.

What it comes down to is that if Donald Trump or anyone else believes that the halting of all Muslim immigration will be only “temporary” they are fooling themselves.  If they believe that 100 percent accuracy is possible in the screening process or that there will never be another terrorist act committed on American soil then they are again fooling themselves.  Nothing in this life is guaranteed and immigration is certainly no exception to the rule.

The fact that Syed Rizwan Farook was an American born citizen is concrete proof of that.