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We Do It Anyway

As you’re probably aware, Republican Party governors across the United States are declaring that they don’t want any Syrian refugees coming into their states because there might be a secret terrorist sneaking in among them, posing as a refugee.

It’s tempting to try to find empirical evidence to the contrary, to consult profiles of refugees to demonstrate their worthiness, or to point out that it seems most of the attackers came from within Europe.

But I’m not going to do that.  Instead, I’ll agree with the Republican governors on one point: it’s possible that terrorists might sneak into the country posing as refugees.  They might also sneak across the border.  They might also immigrate as students. Terrorists might slip into the United States by filing for a green card as a family member of a citizen of resident.  Sneaky bombers certainly could get into the USA by getting a work visa.

Most Americans, unlike these closed-minded Republican governors, welcome refugees despite some risks because we care about helping vulnerable, threatened people.  We offer to help even though we could in a remotely likely sense be hurt.  We are willing to take in victims of war not because it will benefit us without cost, but because we believe the benefit of a world in which people help one another is worth the cost.

That is what makes the decision to welcome refugees a moral one, and not strictly a strategic one. You’d think that a Republican Party that claims the territory of “moral values” and tries to push manger scenes onto government land would better understand.  But to the contrary, the GOP seems more intent on turning away the likes of Mary and Joseph, erecting signs that declare “the least among us are not welcome here.”

54 thoughts on “We Do It Anyway”

  1. ella says:

    There are some practical issues to consider when offering refugees from a basically unrestricted area, that is now a war zone. 180 cities, it has been said, have offered to take refugees. They must have housing, programs to feed and cloth the men, women, and children, arrangements with utility companies to provide needed gas, power, and water. Many of these people have never seen a toilet or running water inside a home, or been in a home above ground level. Of course in transit the amenities will have been introduced. Also, where, what part of these cities will be absorbing the refugees. They will have been told they will be cared for, and they will expect respect as in their homeland. Those are the only customs they know. Will they have guns and knives? Will people in the neighborhoods they move into have guns and knives? In the past, few of those who are poor, of refugee status have the financial means to move into better neighborhoods, pay rent, or buy a home. It is nice to say, ‘oh, I will take in a family! And another to have some idea what you are agreeing to accept into your home.

  2. Korky Day says:

    When people go to the USA and Canada and see that these countries are NOT solving the problems of war, imperialism, poverty, crime, inequality, racism, and destruction of the environment, they are going to rebel, just as the native born do. The solutions are based on love and peace. So I am tolerated because my solutions are always peaceful. The violent rebel (immigrant or ghetto criminal) is seen by the shallow thinker as the only problem–if they don’t want to fix the root problems. I do. It’s easy, if we unite. The problem is most people are complacent or ignorant.
    But I’m preaching to the converted, I think, here.

  3. J Clare Peteet says:

    We, in the USA, do not need anymore immigrants PERIOD. We need to clear our country of the illegal immigrants first. We certainly do not need to bloat our welfare system further. Let these people stay in their own countries and settle their own problems within their own cultures. If so many thousands of people are dissatisfied with their government, that should be enough to effect the changes they want. Charity begins at home and they should stay at home. Why should we risk our health and safety, not to mention our economy to accommodate them?

    People all over the world seek to use the USA as some kind of rehabilitation center.

    1. Jim Cook says:

      …”do not need anymore immigrants PERIOD.”

      Au contraire, mon frere: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/29/world/americas/29iht-letter29.html?_r=0

      1. Dave says:

        Jim, it is about demographics, but demographics are not always quantifiable using numbers. Once a Western nation turns its social structure over to non-assimilated (pardon the offensive term) “third worlders” it may not remain viable anyway. The Euro-people in the U.S. who created the Social Security and Medicare marvels think one way, the equatorials and Middle Easterners think another way. In another generation we will find out how the majority demographic thinks, that’s for sure, and that majority will not be European/American. The way social programs are done in the West is just as anthropological and cultural as anything else we do. With big cultural changes on the horizon, there is no guarantee for the status quo.

        How many national parks are there in Syria? Bike paths? Recycling centers, nature preserves? I don’t know, but I hope we have the sense to pack our population with people who love or will learn to love these things because they and their children, and not we nor our children, will decide such things. Demographics, you know.

        Apologies for the them/us context but I don’t know how else to frame the point I’m trying to make.

    2. ella says:

      More like the global sponge. Go to America and get on welfare and social security. They will give you everything they have! It is an old story and why people were told the streets of New York were paved with gold. They will go back to dirt if we let the infrastructure go long enough. American people are, literally, losing their homes so illegal immigrants can have a home – or some cases live on the street – in a country that will give them shelter, food, heat and cooling, fresh water (well, there isn’t so much of that anymore), and clothing, and if they want to work, jobs. Now are we inviting ‘the Huns in to sack Rome’. What is Obama thinking? They are Muslims. Lebanon used to be a Christian nation. They took in Muslim refugees. The Muslim refugees ( not all, because only the Jihadists are needed) subsequently massacred a great deal of the population of Beirut and took over the country. They have a history of it. It was difficult to believe that Germany actually said (or the EU Parliament) let them in. Of course at the time, they were saying ‘into YOUR’ countries, but wound up with them as well. It is another move to conquer the world. After all world domination is their goal – and see how many have so much they feel sorry for every sad story they hear. Have you looked at the clothes they wear? Are they in rags? Are they dirty? Are they starving. No – and for a good reason.

      1. Jim Cook says:

        Ella, don’t just say things like that without evidence. Did you know that immigrants to the United States actually have a higher employment rate than American citizens? Source: http://irregulartimes.com/2015/08/29/do-native-born-americans-work-more-than-immigrants-do-white-anglo-immigrants-work-more-than-non-white-and-hispanic-immigrants/

      2. Leroy says:

        Lebanon was never a fully Christian country. What was it before Christianity?

        Over the centuries since the beginning of the Ottoman Empire, the population and governing authority of Lebanon has swung back and forth.

        For decades (between WW1 and the early 1970s) had a Christian controlled government because the colonial power that owned Lebanon (France) favored the Christian population (with the overall population divided between the Maronites – Christians, the Sunni and Shia Muslims, and the hybrid Druze.

        When the PLO were expelled from Jordan (Black September), they retreated into southern Lebanon which was then invaded by Israel with the PLO eventually being ousted from Lebanon and exiled to Tunisia.

        There NEVER was a flooding of “jihadist refugees” into Lebanon.

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lebanon

        1. Leroy says:

          Currently there ARE over 600,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan… because of ISIS as well as anti Assad fighting. Those that are due to ISIS can thank GWB / Cheney for having established the groundwork for the rise of ISIS. Along with seven hundred thousand in Jordan. Not 18,000. Not 20,000. But hundreds of thousands. And they are in those locations because all they want is to return home…. to Syria.

          And if we are going to use Wiki links, why not use them all?

          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_ancient_Lebanon

          1. ella says:

            That is partially why I selected Lebanon, it is the oldest of the sites that can attest to the fluctuation in governing types. It is also an ancient site of battles between Muhammad and Jesus followers. The reason behind the Christian government was to attempt to keep the Muslims from once again mas murdering the followers of Jesus.

          1. Leroy says:

            https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/October_13_massacre

            Sound like “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”, eh?

  4. Dave says:

    The alligators down here are multiplying and occasionally they hurt somebody. Not all alligators do this, just some of them. The folks who live on Sanibel Island have made a refuge for rogue alligators who are deemed a threat to humans by the Game and Freshwater Fish Commission, and they take them into the refuge there in large numbers rather than see them destroyed. Two deaths by alligator to date on beautiful Sanibel Island, and at present they are rethinking this policy.

    When the buildings stop collapsing and pipe bombs cease, that is the time to take up again the idea of bringing yet more thousands of people from the Middle East into our “refuges.” I keep reading that it’s “un-American” not to take in all comers, but until changes in immigration law in the mid sixties it certainly was American. A stroke of the pen does not make millions of Americans into “UnAmericans”, neither does it make large numbers of Middle Eastern UnAmericans into Americans.

    These things take time, caution, reflection, and proceeding with one’s eyes open. The Right is being handed a golden platform plank every time there’s another radical Muslim bloodbath; the Left may be perceived as unconcerned for the safety of citizens because of its desire for open borders. A political football in a game the Right can only win at this point, as national security is one of the few populist concerns that play out to their favor.

  5. J Clare Peteet says:

    Well said, Dave. As it is now, some bad apples are spoiling the whole bunch and we can ill afford to trust the luck of the draw. We will have to deprive some innocent people through refusing asylum to refugees, but we need to protect our own innocent citizens first and foremost.

    1. Jim Cook says:

      Why can we ill afford to trust the luck of the draw? We’ve had the “luck of the draw” with refugees for many years, J. Clare. What’s been the death rate per 100,000 population from terrorist attacks by refugees?

      1. ella says:

        In the United States? Let’s see, the Twin Towers, and a few isolated incidents. We now have Homeland Security and a police force so jumpy it shoots first and asks questions later. A large part of the population that is living from day to day, except of course, for those fortunate ones who actually make a “living wage” (with one job). Depends on what you call “death rate”. Of course it is not immediately mortal, but there is a definite toll being taken on the population of America. The fighting in that area is thousands of years old, with periods of peace. Is that new? If a civil war breaks out in America, will, say Syria, take in thousands of Americans. Will there be a paid ‘train’ for transportation, made available to take those American refugees to Syria? No room left in the EU and Americans are accustomed to running water and indoor toilets nowadays. You might say that there “is no room let in the Inn”, especially if you are a Christian – and add to that an American. Really, do you want to invite even your enemies into your home? Because they are already here. Remember the Jihadists are the military of the Muslim religion, not a group of criminals who separated themselves from their families and friends back home. Their purpose is to conquer other lands and eliminate other religions – especially Christians. We have had conflicts over there in the past and they have not forgotten. Before the latest in Iraq and Afghanistan.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Hajji_Baba
        http://www.nmhtthornton.com/mehistorydatabase/arabisraeliwars.php
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maronite_Christianity_in_Lebanon

        1. Jim Cook says:

          Give me the numbers. Calculate the actual number and you will find the death rate by refugees is quite low compared to other causes of death. Go ahead.

          1. ella says:

            I am thinking about that Jim Cook. “Did you know that immigrants to the United States actually have a higher employment rate than American citizens?”

            Actually I didn’t, thank you for the information, it is good to know. Native born Americans, citizens, have the lowest rate of participation, compared to all but one: “The labor force participation rate of white non-Latino immigrants is only 59.5%.” from your link: “The facts, courtesy of the latest release from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:”

            All immigrant groups mentioned are higher than “native born American citizens.” No wonder citizen unemployment/underemployment is so low.

            “All of the net increase in employment went to immigrants in the last 14 years partly because, even before the Great Recession, immigrants were gaining a disproportionate share of jobs relative to their share of population growth. In addition, natives’ losses were somewhat greater during the recession and immigrants have recovered more quickly from it. With 58 million working-age natives not working, the Schumer-Rubio bill (S.744) and similar House measures that would substantially increase the number of foreign workers allowed in the country seem out of touch with the realities of the U.S. labor market.” http://cis.org/all-employment-growth-since-2000-went-to-immigrants

            A disturbing point I have noticed in this and another article, is that American citizens who are born in the U.S. and now referred to as the “natives”. It wasn’t that long ago that the Comanche, Arapaho, Seneca, Osage, and Creek, etc. were called Native Americans. So which is this referring to. The descendants of the European settlers who were the early developers of the United States, or the peoples who were inhabiting the land that was conquered by invaders?

          2. ella says:

            You people write so many very interesting and educational articles. Thank you. This may be a tad off the subject, but generally on it. I would like to invite you to join a forum if you are not already a member. For all who are interested in it. This is just one page that seems to fit the subject here and much more than I can relate. There is a great deal to support both sides of this issue and may give you (plural) some fodder for debate.

            http://www.meforum.org/2478/suicide-bombing-as-worship

          3. J Clare Peteet says:

            Thank you, Ella, for the forum link. I’m sure it will be quite interesting and informative, whether pro or con.

  6. J Clare Peteet says:

    Jim, we can ill afford the luck of the draw when the FBI admits there is no way to properly screen individual refugees. Why should we risk ANY American lives by allowing hordes of refugees to infiltrate and gather forces from among would-be terrorists that have already been here among us for years? Why should our comfort be sacrificed to those who oppose our way of life?

    1. J Clifford says:

      J Clare,

      I want you to name ONE Syrian refugee who has participated in a terrorist attack in the United States.

      If the situation is so dangerously out of control, there ought to be at least one, right?

  7. J Clare Peteet says:

    J Clifford: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

    1. J Clifford says:

      Okay, if that’s the case, J. Clare, why don’t we also ban all Russians? How about all Chinese?

      Also, let’s cut off everyone’s right hand. It’s harder to detonate a bomb with just one hand, right?

      I mean, I don’t have any evidence that Chinese or Russians are trying to set off bombs across America, but why not just panic right now?

      An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

      Arrest everybody and sort out the criminals later!

      Right?

  8. ella says:

    Hi, J Clifford, this is a quote from: “Where Is America’s ‘Force Protection’ from Refujihadis?
    A Commentary By Michelle Malkin” an article found on Rasmussen Reports at: http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/political_commentary/commentary_by_michelle_malkin/where_is_america_s_force_protection_from_refujihadis?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DailyNewsletter

    “Reminder: FBI agents admitted in 2013 that several dozen suspected terrorist bomb-builders may have mistakenly been allowed to move to the United States as Iraqi war refugees, including two al-Qaida in Iraq jihadists who were resettled as refugees in Bowling Green, Kentucky — and then later admitted in court that they had attacked U.S. soldiers in Iraq, according to ABC News.”

    It addresses your point.

    1. J Clifford says:

      “several dozen suspected terrorist bomb-builders MAY have mistakenly been allowed to move to the United States as Iraqi war refugees, including two al-Qaida IN IRAQ jihadists who were resettled as refugees in Bowling Green, Kentucky — and then later admitted in court that they had attacked U.S. soldiers IN IRAQ.”

      So, no, Ella, this doesn’t address my point at all, because:

      1. This MAY have happened, or it MAY have not
      2. IF it happened, then the refugees were from Iraq
      3. IF it happened, then the refugees did NOT engage in a terrorist attack in the United States
      4. IF it happened, then after the refugees went back to their own country without incident here, they only attacked soldiers of a foreign military occupying their country

      This information comes from Michelle Malkin a right-wing extremist ( http://mediamatters.org/blog/2012/06/07/10-of-the-worst-examples-of-michelle-malkins-in/186230 ) who writes that sending all Japanese-Americans to prison during World War II was a good idea ( http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Michelle_Malkin ).

      So, no, Ella, this doesn’t address in any single way my challenge to J. Claire to “name ONE Syrian refugee who has participated in a terrorist attack in the United States.”

      1. ella says:

        Can you name one of the terrorists on any of the airplanes that took down the Twin Towers?

        1. J Clifford says:

          Yes, I can name them. Khalid al-Mihdhar. There. That’s one of them. That’s a concrete fact.

          Did you know that not a single one of the terrorists of September 11, 2001 came from Syria?

          Not a single one claimed to be a refugee.

          Not one.

          Don’t conflate, Ella.

          1. ella says:

            What does conflate mean? 🙂 I know you are serious about not one Syrian having committed a terrorist act in the U.S.. Yet is the elephant in the room. When a man threatens to kill another man, it is ignored and the man is found dead the next day. But, you say, no crime was committed until the man was dead. That is the point. Not that no one we know or can name has already committed a crime. There are other reasons not to pump more people from other countries into the U.S. at a time when we are trying to resist immigrant population increases. Did you know that Syrians are trying to reach the U.S. through South America? https://thehornnews.com/breaking-terrorists-caught-at-texas-border/

            Do you know that there are already over 2000 Syrian refugees in America? http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/patrick-goodenough/syrian-christians-are-greatest-peril-least-likely-be-admitted

  9. J Clare Peteet says:

    J Clifford: Why are you pro-refugee? How can it be of benefit to the USA?

    As for the Syrians: I seriously doubt that all of these so-called refugees are necessarily Syrian.

    1. J Clifford says:

      You are right about one thing J. Clare: Because of the foolishness of sending the American military to fight wars in the Middle East for the last generation, these refugees are now necessarily NOT Syrian any more. They have become people without a nation, because of the regional destabilization triggered by the war in Iraq.

      Can you not identify any single Syrian refugee, or even a refugee claiming to be Syrian, that has participated in a terrorist attack within the United States, J. Clare?

      No, I thought not. That’s because it’s never happened.

      1. ella says:

        Ah, now we are getting down to it. J Clare: “J Clifford: Why are you pro-refugee? How can it be of benefit to the USA?
        As for the Syrians: I seriously doubt that all of these so-called refugees are necessarily Syrian.”

        “J Clifford: Why are you pro-refugee? How can it be of benefit to the USA?
        As for the Syrians: I seriously doubt that all of these so-called refugees are necessarily Syrian.”

        J Clifford, are you only for Syrian refugees because you perceive that No Syrian refugees/immigrants have Aready committed an act of violence in the Untied States, (and someone may have) or are you only against refugees that come from nations such are Arabia, Iraq, the Arab Emirates, etc., or do you believe that they should also be allowed to migrate to the United States?

        I wonder why, after many centuries, these people suddenly run to the EU and Western Nations who they have recently stated they abhor?

        1. J Clifford says:

          Ella, name one Syrian refugee who has applied for refugee status in the United States who has said that they abhor the United States. Name one.

          I think you’re just making up the “recently stated they abhor” part up… something that sounds true.

  10. Leroy says:

    For a blog that is listed online as under the definition of “Progressive / Liberal”, I see more commentary than one would remotely imagine from possibly moderate Republicans and out to rightwing wingnuts and out then to outright antisemitic, racist Fascists.

    I have seen more postings arguing FOR the candidacies of Trump or Carson either one than for all the Democrat candidates combined! I am sure that an actual counting would show that Trump (or Carson) gets positively discussed by posters more frequently than the MOST progressive candidate (self-admitted socialist) Bernie Sanders!

    Maybe if banning (as in refugees) is acceptable practice (based on the ounce of prevention theory), that if you are a non liberal / non progressive poster – at least repeatedly – then, strictly as being an ounce of prevention, that site banning be established.

    Try trolling on a rightwing blog sometime… after a few “disagreements”, you’re out of there; which might have some validity as most viewers don’t come to a, for example, atheist blog to be, for example, bombarded by fundamentalist Christian posters constantly arguing. If this was a purely non partisan debating site, well, that would be one thing…

    http://web.feeddigest.com/irregulartimes.com

    (Category)

    I belong to several Progressive / Liberal blogs (all much bigger, most much better) and all with just a few non ideological Trolls.

    Weird that they get drawn here.

    1. Leroy says:

      It is strange what info you find in looking up domain info.

      Like the statistics in above link.

      Or…

      http://www.indexip.com/irregulartimes.com

      Which shows the IP address of course… And that a number of websites are shown using that same IP address.

      1. Leroy says:

        Now some of these show as dead links while others show as expired (but then so does Irregular Times), but several open websites.

        From the same IP address.

        Do we have a Sock Puppet situation here?

        Hmmm…

        1. Dave says:

          Larry, if your mind is closed and there is no room for other ideas and you just want someone to preach to the choir, you are right – there are plenty of websites where you won’t get your ruffles feathered. For some people, however, it’s far more interesting to engage others who have a different take on things.

          People here discuss all manner of topics, and there is more commonality among people than you may think. Yes, it’s a far left website, but informative even when one does not agree with all that is posted. The general attitude of those who present articles here is that their mind is made up and they are never wrong. So what? May I continue to comment here and learn more about why they believe what they believe? At the end of the day, Larry, people are just people.

          By the way, those who write articles on a website are posting. Those who remark on the post are commenters. You are not a poster. See how that works?

      2. J Clifford says:

        Leroy, I wouldn’t give too much credence to those stats. That site shows that our domain is going to be expired… ten months ago.

        Don’t presume that just because a source provides statistics that those statistics are accurate.

      3. Jim Cook says:

        Oh dear lack of god, Leroy. The IP address is shared, because Irregular Times uses shared hosting. Look up “shared hosting” on Google or something before you get conspiratorial.

        Would you like to look through my mother’s sock drawer for evidence of lint?

        Eyeroll.

        1. ella says:

          🙂 🙂 :), gasp!

  11. J Clare Peteet says:

    Mr Clifford: You failed to answer my question as to why you are so pro-refugee.

    And, no I cannot call any names for any of the terrorists who have committed atrocities on US soil or otherwise. However, I would like to also ask you if you know of a time in history in which large numbers of Muslims have willingly assimilated into a non-Muslim culture? They form their own enclaves and communities in which to preserve their culture and insulate themselves against the infidels.

    1. J Clifford says:

      The answer to your question is easy, J. Clare.

      I’m pro-human.

      You admit that there has been no instance of any Syrian refugee participating in any terrorist attack in the United States…

      … yet you want us to abandon our system of Constitutional rights in order to persecute Syrian refugees.

      That’s because of what, J. Clare? Because you have made a prophecy of the future, based on your prejudice?

  12. J Clare Peteet says:

    Mr Clifford, let’s not resort to name calling. I have no prejudice whatever toward the Syrian people, but I am quite prejudiced against the unknown facts about a horde of refugees slated to enter the USA. I am prejudice against that which could potentially threaten my safety.

    How can denying asylum in the US be considered “persecution”? Our forefathers stood and fought for their rights and freedoms as established by their culture. Let these refugees do the same.

    Being “pro-human” is a fine ethic, but it does not outweigh self-preservation. I do not wish to find myself sacrificed upon the altar of good intentions for the benefit of Muslims/Moslems. (If you don’t know the difference, look it up.)

    I am still hoping you will answer my question posed above regarding assimilation.

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