Should the U.S. take in fewer refugees? | The Tylt
The global refugee crisis is likely to worsen over the next year for various reasons, as people are displaced by operations against ISIS, famine in the Sahel, and global instability. Anti-immigration hardliners argue immigrants and refugees should be denied until all Americans are taken care of. Some worry terrorists could sneak in by hiding among refugees. Others say America is strong and wealthy enough to take in the refugees. It's an important U.S. tradition and is part of what makes us special. What do you think?
Should the U.S. take in fewer refugees?
Refugee advocates say people's concerns about security are valid, but there's little evidence to show that refugees are any more dangerous than any other group. There's a strict process to get into the United States and to date, it's been working perfectly. Refugees are the exact people being targeted by ISIS and other extremists. That's why they left their homes.
If the U.S. truly wants to defeat ISIS and radical Islamic terror, it must embrace refugees and show the extremists are the wrong ones. Demonizing victims will only radicalize people.
Some say we should be as fearful of refugees today, especially in an era of terrorist attacks. Yet since 2001, more than 800,000 refugees have been resettled in the United States, and none have been convicted of an act of domestic terrorism. Compassion and security can coexist.
America was built by refugees and immigrants and it will be made stronger by refugees and immigrants. It's this commitment to the downtrodden and to freedom that makes America special. The U.S. has always been hesitant about taking in refugees and immigrants, but each and every time it did, America became better because of it. Refugees and immigrants make the fabric of this country. We're all immigrants and we're all refugees.
Virtually every day, in quiet corners of airports across the country, refugees are being welcomed and cared for by teams from churches and community groups. It is in scenes like these, unseen by most, where we recapture the spirit of which we as American citizens have been justifiably proud for most of our nation’s history.
This is our new Ellis Island. It is the expression of our faith and our humanity, and it is a worthy response to the legacy we have inherited.
Immigration hardliners think Muslim refugees are riskier to resettle because potential terrorists may be able to sneak past the process. They think the risk of an attack on Americans is not worth taking in what's realistically a negligible share of the refugees. Besides, the resources that would go to helping refugees resettle here could be spent on Americans who are suffering instead.
The American people voted Donald Trump in on the promise that he would put America first. When there's such a high security risk, accepting refugees is not prioritizing the needs of Americans. It's the opposite.
If the Democrats wish to maintain immigration from jihadist conflict zones, they need to rid their rhetoric of the language of “Islamophobia” and tell the truth. If they want to continue admitting refugees from jihad zones, they need to make the case that meeting the humanitarian needs of an an extremely small fraction of the world’s Muslim refugees is worth the cost of importing a small number of mass murderers. They must make the case that the human toll in America is the price we must pay for national compassion. Of course no Democrat wants a terror attack to occur, but Democrats must understand and acknowledge that under present policies, such attacks will occur — despite our best efforts to stop them.
Critics argue there are other ways to help refugees besides resettlement. The United States could find a middle ground between compassion and safety. Many European nations, like Poland, are refusing to take in more refugees over security fears. America is not alone in this. Resettlement is not the only way to help refugees.
Beyond this basic test, it is simply not in America’s national interest to admit refugees, visitors, or other immigrants from zones of jihadist activity unless they have a demonstrable record of loyalty to or cooperation with the United States or its allies. When we know that our enemy is seeking to infiltrate and indoctrinate these specific populations (and has greatest access to these populations), the burden of proof for immigration or entry should be squarely placed on the immigrant. If refugees need our aid, we should aid them in the Middle East.