Scott Walker Gave Way To Fear About Syrian Refugees
It is the time of year when many families put one more plate at the holiday table for the extra person who may be far from home or have no where else to go and therefore is invited to our table. I strongly suspect that has played out in most homes. Such acts are signs that we all share a common path in life and where help can be given to lighten a load an attempt is made to do so.
This is also the time of year when we again focus on two young parents who sought shelter at an inn but after being turned away found a stable where a birth took place. An entire narrative for a most Christian holiday is structured around the lowly place where Christ was ultimately born.
With that mood already underway in the hearts and homes of many across the state it was most disheartening to hear Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker announce that Syrian refuges will not be permitted into our state.
There was no way not to hear that news–even though the legality of any such move is highly suspect–and not at once consider it purely xenophobic and lacking in humanity. As the news events gathered steam over the course of the day it was even more disgusting to hear or read online or through social media that perhaps there should be cherry-picking and special care given to the Christians who have been attacked by jihadists. The lack of appreciation that all the refugees regardless of their faith were in harms way as they left Syria and needed assistance was not important.
I understand that due to the extreme partisan nature of how politics is now played the narrative about nothing in government working resonates with a large segment of our nation. The drumbeat about our health care law, the lack of timely attention from the Veterans Administration, and even lapses in procedures at the Secret Service all play into the themes pushed by some that government can not work.
But many people with a solid background in government are most assured that the vetting process when it comes to Syrian refugees will be effective and will prevent people who wish to harm this nation from having the ability to do so. While there is no such thing as being certain about anything–after all it is possible that a person could choke and die from their homemade lunch at work today–there is great confidence from those who know the inner workings that Homeland Security can and will keep our nation safe. If we as a people have given up all trust in our national government then we have a much larger problem to face than homeless refugees.
When we submit ourselves to the fear that the jihadists want us to feel then we have allowed them to win.
When actions are taken that we know in our heart and gut runs counter to everything we have learned from childhood about the way we should treat others in time of need than that can be called an immoral act.
When those in our nation turn away from the words and purpose of the Statue Of Liberty and pretend that we all are not part of an immigrant background then there is only one word to sum up such thinking, and that is “un-American.”
Over 250,000 Syrians have died in the current war and strife and it is estimated that roughly 2 million are seeking refugee. Nothing like this has been seen since the last world wars. All those seeking help need a place to settle that is warm, dry, and safe.
President Obama is staying strong about his belief this nation needs to be a part of the international community that lends a hand. Even his numbers need to be increased and this nation has every ability to handle the numbers and do so to make sure that national security is maintained as human needs are met.
I am not sure what goes through the mind of Walker. But when I saw the news footage months ago of the refugees being tricked to get on trains, and hounded by police for trying to move to places of safety, or spread out on the sand after drowning there was no way to not feel the pain and wonder what can I do–what can we do? What must be done?
I opt for the best in people and know we can make a difference if we try at this time to help the Syrian refugees.
Sadly, it appears that Walker has given in to the fear that terrorists have worked to instill in the world. For the sake of those in need let us hope people of faith and reason do not follow suit.