Author Topic: Syrian Refugees  (Read 23076 times)

TheOldestYoungMan

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Syrian Refugees
« on: November 20, 2015, 12:06:21 PM »
I just finished writing this letter to my congressman:
------------------------------------
I have never been ashamed of my country before.  The next elections will be the first time I ever cast a vote for a Democrat.

There is a place in the world where the basic fabric of society has broken down.  The people there have lost everything and have no hope of any kind of a life or future.  The ones most like us, the ones that care about their families, are fleeing, seeking refuge anywhere that will take them.

To stand up and deny them access because some among them may seek to do us harm is morally wrong.  You have made a decision to allow fear to steer your actions.  Leadership is standing up and doing the right thing.

If every single refugee turned out to be a terrorist, and millions of them succeeded in tearing down this country, that would be tragic.  A great nation would be lost.  By denying them entry we do not protect our great nation, we prove that it was never great at all.

What have we to fear from these refugees?  Nothing.  Should some among them prove violent and dangerous, the United States will weather that storm as we have every other, with compassion and strength.

You should be ashamed of your vote.  Your constituents certainly are.
-------------------------

Feel free to send something similar to your own.  I'm going to take some time this weekend and write something similar to my governor and Senator as well.

I looked into volunteering to take in a refugee family in my own home, but the local infrastructure apparently can't support someone so far from the city center, but if you live close to a refugee center/resettlement coordinator you can probably help.

To find someone to talk to about what I could do, I ended up on the White House website here:

https://www.whitehouse.gov/campaign/aidrefugees

There's a place to put in your zip code, and it has the phone number of nearby agencies.  The closest to me was the YMCA in Houston, which got back to me right away but couldn't really make use of what I have to offer, as the distance would be too great.  The people there were super excited by the inquiry though, so I think the media coverage may be getting to them, warping how they view their fellow citizens.

Refugees are required to attend English language classes (depending on their current capacity) regularly as well as some job training/cultural integration type stuff.  Particularly if you speak any European or Middle Eastern languages and live near a center there's a great opportunity to help out.
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yyc-phil

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2015, 12:30:07 PM »
Bravo. I had to flee my country 53 years ago as a child, after a bloody civil war. Some of my family members died during the conflict but those who made it without apparent harm are still, to this day and despite the passing of time, in pain from the mental wounds. So I know first-hand what these people, and especially the children, are going through. These people could be us, and we could be them. We must not fear them and whatever we think they represent, but embrace them, and give them the opportunity to start a new life within our communities. Their wounds will never heal, but most will without a doubt become upstanding citizens of the countries who welcome them, if we give them the chance.
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gillstone

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2015, 12:55:33 PM »
Good for you.  Fear-mongering is part of our history, but its not a part we look back on with pride.  Whether its turning back Jewish refugees for fear a Nazi might be hiding among them (MS St. Louis in 1939) or anger at Irish immigrants fleeing famine (the Know-Nothings) the long arc of history is such that we look back on these points with shame.

Saying we are a nation of immigrants misses the mark.  Many of us are also descended from refugees.  Our grandparents, great grandparents and even further back fled religious persecution, endless war and political repression.  If we had been there when they came would we have been the ones who welcomed them as brothers and sisters or the ones screaming for them to go home. 

Parts of the poem on the Statue of Liberty are getting a lot of attention lately, the full reading is below.

The New Colossus - Emma Lazarus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2015, 12:58:53 PM »
Well done.

My congresspeople, thankfully, are not immoral asshats.  But I will still write them and thank them for taking the right stance on this.
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

Matumba

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2015, 01:45:17 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

Sailor Sam

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2015, 01:46:58 PM »
I am happy and grateful to be living in a state that is accepting refugees from Syria. I'm horrified that states are being allowed to choose, and displeased with the low US quota.

Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2015, 01:49:27 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

Sooo. I am assuming that you have fulfilled these criteria in every country that you've emigrated to?

Because if not, then I am pretty sure you are just calling yourself a raging hypocrite.
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

yyc-phil

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2015, 02:02:57 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

I am curious to know what you propose to do with those who do not meet your very generous criteria. Internment or work camps, maybe Guantanamo? Or better, send them back "home", la Trump? Or best, just put them on boats and let them float their way back?
No matter where you go, there you are...

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Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2015, 02:05:58 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

I am curious to know what you propose to do with those who do not meet your very generous criteria. Internment or work camps, maybe Guantanamo? Or better, send them back "home", la Trump? Or best, just put them on boats and let them float their way back?

I guess political refugees fleeing wars don't deserve human rights unless they are smart and wealthy.
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

Matumba

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2015, 02:07:59 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

I am curious to know what you propose to do with those who do not meet your very generous criteria. Internment or work camps, maybe Guantanamo? Or better, send them back "home", la Trump? Or best, just put them on boats and let them float their way back?

I was referring to accepting new people. It's understood that there are millions who are already here and don't meet these criteria. What to do with them is a much more difficult question, but of course I wouldn't just send everybody home.

tjalexander

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2015, 02:11:06 PM »
ISIS is a jv team and contained. Why do they need to leave?

Matumba

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #11 on: November 20, 2015, 02:11:42 PM »

I guess political refugees fleeing wars don't deserve human rights unless they are smart and wealthy.

I have met genuine refugees in my home country. They crossed the border to the first safe country. The refugees who want to come to the US (or, say, Germany), will cross the borders of several safe countries on the way. To me, they are not genuine refugees, they are economic migrants and should be evaluated and admitted (or refused) as such.

Matumba

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2015, 02:14:57 PM »

Sooo. I am assuming that you have fulfilled these criteria in every country that you've emigrated to?

Because if not, then I am pretty sure you are just calling yourself a raging hypocrite.

I act in my own self interest. If opportunities present themselves, I take them. This has nothing to do with my political opinions.

To answer your question, I don't have millions or earn 200K+, so unless I manage to score in the top 1% on an IQ test, I won't qualify. I have never taken a formal IQ test in my life.

Goldielocks

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #13 on: November 20, 2015, 02:40:03 PM »
What is the stated us quota? For refugees?

We are at 25000 in the short term for canada, government sponsored, plus privately sponsored ones.

This will be harder than in the 80's because canada now prioritized those who are less likely to be successful as economic migrants. A lot of single moms are coming, in other words.

I just signed up for our regions volunteer committee. Will learn more next week.

ncornilsen

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #14 on: November 20, 2015, 02:44:06 PM »

I guess political refugees fleeing wars don't deserve human rights unless they are smart and wealthy.

I have met genuine refugees in my home country. They crossed the border to the first safe country. The refugees who want to come to the US (or, say, Germany), will cross the borders of several safe countries on the way. To me, they are not genuine refugees, they are economic migrants and should be evaluated and admitted (or refused) as such.

I don't know if I buy this... seems like to minimize the strain on any one country, the refugees ought to be dispersed among them.

As for these particular refugees, I can't say I'm comfortable with them coming to the US, but that's my problem, and as long as they're subject to screening, are made to assimilate to US culture (we have failed on this for other immigrant populations), then I suppose I can deal with it. They also ought to be subject to a plan to have them return home or elsewhere after a period of time.

It also seems like, to disrupt any efforts of organized terrorists to infiltrate a particular country, we ought not tell the refugees where they're going. They want out of their war torn country? OK... but you'll be relocated where there's room, not to wherever they 'want' to go.

Sailor Sam

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #15 on: November 20, 2015, 02:56:50 PM »
What is the stated us quota? For refugees?

We are at 25000 in the short term for canada, government sponsored, plus privately sponsored ones.

This will be harder than in the 80's because canada now prioritized those who are less likely to be successful as economic migrants. A lot of single moms are coming, in other words.

I just signed up for our regions volunteer committee. Will learn more next week.

For fiscal year 2015 (Oct-Sept), the US quota for refugees was 70,000, with no minimums for refugees from Syria. The year starting 1-Oct the refugee quota is 85,000, with a minimum of 10,000 refugees from Syria. Between Sept-2011 and Sept-2015, the United States has issued 1,500 refugee visas to Syrians.

arebelspy

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #16 on: November 20, 2015, 03:05:25 PM »

I just finished writing this letter to my congressman:
------------------------------------
I have never been ashamed of my country before.  The next elections will be the first time I ever cast a vote for a Democrat.

There is a place in the world where the basic fabric of society has broken down.  The people there have lost everything and have no hope of any kind of a life or future.  The ones most like us, the ones that care about their families, are fleeing, seeking refuge anywhere that will take them.

To stand up and deny them access because some among them may seek to do us harm is morally wrong.  You have made a decision to allow fear to steer your actions.  Leadership is standing up and doing the right thing.

If every single refugee turned out to be a terrorist, and millions of them succeeded in tearing down this country, that would be tragic.  A great nation would be lost.  By denying them entry we do not protect our great nation, we prove that it was never great at all.

What have we to fear from these refugees?  Nothing.  Should some among them prove violent and dangerous, the United States will weather that storm as we have every other, with compassion and strength.

You should be ashamed of your vote.  Your constituents certainly are.
-------------------------

I love it. I tip my hat to you, sir.
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brainfart

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #17 on: November 20, 2015, 03:10:27 PM »
1,854 Syrian refugees admitted to the U.S. 2012 to Sept. 2015

brainfart

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #18 on: November 20, 2015, 03:15:21 PM »
> We come from a life of freedom and to see more burquas walking around in our country makes me sick.
> Weather they call it equality or not, I don't want it.

I live in Germany. Which, as you might have heard, has taken up a few hundred thousand refugees.
I don't even remember when I last saw a woman in burqua on the street, it's been that long. The female Syrians don't walk around veiled, except in and around Rakka.

Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #19 on: November 20, 2015, 03:19:20 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

I am curious to know what you propose to do with those who do not meet your very generous criteria. Internment or work camps, maybe Guantanamo? Or better, send them back "home", la Trump? Or best, just put them on boats and let them float their way back?

I was referring to accepting new people. It's understood that there are millions who are already here and don't meet these criteria. What to do with them is a much more difficult question, but of course I wouldn't just send everybody home.


Uh-huh.  So, now you are doubly a hypocrite.  "I'm here now because of less lenient policies, but NOW that I'm here, other people should not be able to get in under the same circumstances."

Your arguments are not worth paying attention to.
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

Paul der Krake

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #20 on: November 20, 2015, 03:21:39 PM »
Great letter, OP. Refugees already are the most screened immigrants. The process is done in collaboration with the UN, takes months or years spent in refugee camps, and they must demonstrate real hardship/persecution to be granted refugee status. You don't get granted because you feel uncertain of your country's future.

All of these facts are publicly available to anyone with a computer. Representatives with research staff who chose to ignore them, and instead pandered to the racist and hot-headed wing of the GOP, have no excuse.

Shame, shame, shame.

Cookie78

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #21 on: November 20, 2015, 03:22:28 PM »
What is the stated us quota? For refugees?

We are at 25000 in the short term for canada, government sponsored, plus privately sponsored ones.

This will be harder than in the 80's because canada now prioritized those who are less likely to be successful as economic migrants. A lot of single moms are coming, in other words.

I just signed up for our regions volunteer committee. Will learn more next week.

Ooohh. Thanks for the nudge. I need to figure out how to volunteer too.

Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #22 on: November 20, 2015, 03:24:16 PM »
I'm not trying to sound like a jerk here.  I'm very grateful to have been born into this life of freedom. I wish we all were. The issue that concerns me with allowing refugees in has to do with their lifestyle. We come from a life of freedom and to see more burquas walking around in our country makes me sick. Weather they call it equality or not, I don't want it.

If we really come from a life of freedom, then what other people choose to wear is their own business.
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

Matumba

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #23 on: November 20, 2015, 03:27:22 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

I am curious to know what you propose to do with those who do not meet your very generous criteria. Internment or work camps, maybe Guantanamo? Or better, send them back "home", la Trump? Or best, just put them on boats and let them float their way back?

I was referring to accepting new people. It's understood that there are millions who are already here and don't meet these criteria. What to do with them is a much more difficult question, but of course I wouldn't just send everybody home.


Uh-huh.  So, now you are doubly a hypocrite.  "I'm here now because of less lenient policies, but NOW that I'm here, other people should not be able to get in under the same circumstances."

Your arguments are not worth paying attention to.
Ok.  Keep in mind,  though,  that I lived in 3 countries and traveled to dozens.  Also,  most of my friends,  colleagues and acquaintances are migrants/expats.

Perhaps I know a little more about immigration than the average person does. 

Shane

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #24 on: November 20, 2015, 03:28:03 PM »
TOYM, You are my new hero! Your post just made my day. Thank you.

gillstone

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #25 on: November 20, 2015, 03:28:40 PM »
On burqas...

I lived for a time in Minnesota which hosted a large number Somali refugees, most of whom were Muslim.  Burqas were a rare site and were usually worn by those who were first generation immigrants.  Their daughters and granddaughters were more westernized and at most wore a hijab or no head covering at all. 

And if the concern is that it will allow some fundamentalists in, I'll also note that it wouldn't be the first time a group of folks in very conservative dress with very specific religious beliefs who were not welcome in their home country made their way here.

Happy Thanksgiving

Paul der Krake

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #26 on: November 20, 2015, 03:31:07 PM »
Ok.  Keep in mind,  though,  that I lived in 3 countries and traveled to dozens.  Also,  most of my friends,  colleagues and acquaintances are migrants/expats.

Perhaps I know a little more about immigration than the average person does.
I have lived in 5, does my opinion trump yours?

Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #27 on: November 20, 2015, 03:31:11 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

I am curious to know what you propose to do with those who do not meet your very generous criteria. Internment or work camps, maybe Guantanamo? Or better, send them back "home", la Trump? Or best, just put them on boats and let them float their way back?

I was referring to accepting new people. It's understood that there are millions who are already here and don't meet these criteria. What to do with them is a much more difficult question, but of course I wouldn't just send everybody home.


Uh-huh.  So, now you are doubly a hypocrite.  "I'm here now because of less lenient policies, but NOW that I'm here, other people should not be able to get in under the same circumstances."

Your arguments are not worth paying attention to.
Ok.  Keep in mind,  though,  that I lived in 3 countries and traveled to dozens.  Also,  most of my friends,  colleagues and acquaintances are migrants/expats.

Perhaps I know a little more about immigration than the average person does.

Having experience as an immigrant has nothing to do with it if you cannot think logically and non-hypocritically enough to espouse a rational plan for immigration. Which you seem not to be able to do.  Fortunately, as you are an immigrant, you are not responsible for creating the immigration policy of the country whose generosity you are taking advantage of. 
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

rockstache

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #28 on: November 20, 2015, 03:45:18 PM »
Great post OP! My husband and I have been talking about this too. He speaks some rudimentary Arabic and we just really feel for their plight. I am truly appalled by the people who feel otherwise, especially the ones who call themselves Christians.

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #29 on: November 20, 2015, 03:48:33 PM »
And if the concern is that it will allow some fundamentalists in, I'll also note that it wouldn't be the first time a group of folks in very conservative dress with very specific religious beliefs who were not welcome in their home country made their way here.

Happy Thanksgiving

Hear hear, and well stated.

galliver

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #30 on: November 20, 2015, 04:07:51 PM »
I'm not trying to sound like a jerk here.  I'm very grateful to have been born into this life of freedom. I wish we all were. The issue that concerns me with allowing refugees in has to do with their lifestyle. We come from a life of freedom and to see more burquas walking around in our country makes me sick. Weather they call it equality or not, I don't want it.

So...how do you feel about religious freedom? Should people be allowed to wear crosses to profess their Christian faith? What about kippahs for Jewish men? What about head coverings of all sorts (Orthodox Jewish women wear them; Orthodox Christianity mandates head coverings in church...) Should we persecute those who insist on covering up from ankle to neck to wrist due to their beliefs on modesty, for cultural or religious reasons?

Just because they continue wearing clothing that meets their ideals of modesty, does not mean they don't appreciate the freedom of this country as much as you do. There are full-fledged, many-generation Americans who follow similar tenets e.g. the Quiverfull/evangelical Christian movement, the Amish and some Mennonites.

The problem with freedom is that not everyone will take advantage of it the same way you will. You have to exist side-by-side with people you completely disagree with.

galliver

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #31 on: November 20, 2015, 04:12:52 PM »
I am an immigrant. The US is my 3rd country. I have never been a refugee or an illegal immigrant.

I am against accepting people without screening for potential contribution to the country (be it the US or any desirable country for immigrants).

If it were up to me, I would only accept:
-Top 1% of people by IQ.
-Those who are sponsored by businesses and offered jobs paying more than $200K/year in today's dollars.
-Those who are willing to invest several million dollars (given that they didn't steal it elsewhere).
-On top of that, everybody would have to go through medical screening and criminal history/background checks.

However, if you want the US to turn into a 3rd world country, go ahead and accept everybody.

Hmm...I wonder where the US would get farm workers in this scenario.

My argument in a nutshell? A country needs more than "alphas" (see Aldous Huxley's "Brand New World" for the reference). And historically, immigrants have come in from the bottom (think waves of: Irish, German, Italian, Eastern European, Chinese, etc immigrants throughout the 1850s-1950s) and they've built this country up, not dragged it down. It's not a zero-sum game.

brainfart

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #32 on: November 20, 2015, 04:24:00 PM »
NRA-Backed Legislator: We Cant Take Syrian Refugees Because Its Too Easy For Them To Buy Guns

http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2015/11/17/3722968/nra-texas-rep-no-syrians-gun-access/

(He and his colleagues in the state legislature have blocked mandatory background checks for all gun purchases.
While those applying for refugee status must complete the most stringent security process for anyone entering the United States, those attempting to purchase guns through private sales at gun shows in Texas and many other states are not required to undergo any background checks whatsoever.)

UnleashHell

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #33 on: November 20, 2015, 07:41:39 PM »
Good for you.  Fear-mongering is part of our history, but its not a part we look back on with pride.  Whether its turning back Jewish refugees for fear a Nazi might be hiding among them (MS St. Louis in 1939) or anger at Irish immigrants fleeing famine (the Know-Nothings) the long arc of history is such that we look back on these points with shame.

Saying we are a nation of immigrants misses the mark.  Many of us are also descended from refugees.  Our grandparents, great grandparents and even further back fled religious persecution, endless war and political repression.  If we had been there when they came would we have been the ones who welcomed them as brothers and sisters or the ones screaming for them to go home. 

Parts of the poem on the Statue of Liberty are getting a lot of attention lately, the full reading is below.

The New Colossus - Emma Lazarus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"


nice. thank you.
_____________
JTF 96

EarlyStart

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #34 on: November 20, 2015, 09:03:10 PM »
I don't have a problem with them coming here, going through whichever screening process, whatever. Generally speaking I'd like it if we could stop being the default country to lead every effort on every corner of the globe. Maybe countries with more directly related interests can step up to the plate too.

MerryMcQ

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #35 on: November 20, 2015, 09:35:53 PM »
My great-grand parents fled the Russian revolution and took refuge in the US. They lived in a small neighborhood and never learned English. On my father's side, I have ancestors who fled religious persecution in England and came to the US around 1630 (and by all accounts wore funny clothes). And then there's my Cherokee ancestor, who was forced from his home by invading religious zealots. I'm pretty sure there's some Irish potato famine scum mixed in there too.

Yet here I am, speaking English, well educated, self-sufficient, contributing to society, and my kids are proud of their mixed heritage and excited to share in the 2nd grade "where do you come from" project.

Other than great-grand Poppy, everyone else in my bloodline came to the US as a refugee, migrant, or immigrant... Like the other 98% of the (non-Native American) population of the US. I don't see where they have the right to object to others getting the same benefits their ancestors did...

yyc-phil

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #36 on: November 20, 2015, 09:38:50 PM »
Maybe countries with more directly related interests can step up to the plate too.

You mean some countries have more direct interests in the Middle East than the USA? ;)
No matter where you go, there you are...

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mrpercentage

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #37 on: November 20, 2015, 10:31:08 PM »
gillstone beat me to it
absolute truth... prison guard that has seen shanks does not makes 45k a year managing bullshit tech that was outsourced for what?.... cheaper tech and less taxes... probably

Kris

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #38 on: November 20, 2015, 11:00:33 PM »
Thought you might enjoy this...
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I weren't under such heavy sedation."   - David St. Hubins, This is Spinal Tap

Paul der Krake

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #39 on: November 21, 2015, 05:40:58 AM »
I don't have a problem with them coming here, going through whichever screening process, whatever. Generally speaking I'd like it if we could stop being the default country to lead every effort on every corner of the globe. Maybe countries with more directly related interests can step up to the plate too.
Are you kidding? We're talking about 10,000 syrian refugees for a country of 300 million. Germany alone is taking hundreds of thousands, and they have a population of 80 million. France is taking 30,000, and the country has a population of 65 million, and their economy is a lot weaker.

fallstoclimb

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #40 on: November 21, 2015, 10:11:57 AM »
Thank you, OP.  This refugee backlash has been so troubling, and I am not sure how any can stand behind politicians who are acting so xenophobic and cowardly.  My governor is one who has requested no refugees, and I am ashamed.  (Of course, I didn't vote for him, never stood behind him, and do not understand how he was elected in the first place.)

Shane

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #41 on: November 21, 2015, 10:30:06 AM »
Our governor spoke up a few days ago to say something sensible like, "Yeah, of course we'll be willing to accept Syrian refugees in our state. We'll do whatever we can to help out these people in need."

People have come out of the woodwork with hate filled letters to the editor against the governor's statement. Apparently, the governor has received death threats as well based on his simply saying that we would accept refugees.

It's really sad.

brainfart

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #42 on: November 21, 2015, 12:34:42 PM »
> It's really sad.

Yes. Especially when one considers the historic background, where this extreme kind of Islamism originated, how it spread across many nations and what other nations used it for geostrategic reasons, and finally, where, by whom and under what circumstances ISIS was founded, who directly and indirectly supports them...

Shane

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #43 on: November 21, 2015, 11:12:12 PM »
When I was a kid Catholic extremists used to regularly blow people up in Northern Ireland. Just because there were some Catholic terrorists in Ireland fighting against what they believed was an illegal occupation by Great Britain, didn't mean that Catholics everywhere were terrorists.

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #44 on: November 22, 2015, 01:02:28 AM »
When I was a kid Catholic extremists used to regularly blow people up in Northern Ireland. Just because there were some Catholic terrorists in Ireland fighting against what they believed was an illegal occupation by Great Britain, didn't mean that Catholics everywhere were terrorists.

Similarly, just because Protestant extremists / terrorists carried out sick atrocities against catholic communities in Northern Ireland doesn't mean all Protestants are terrorists!

I get your point and don't agree with the atrocities carried out by the IRA but wanted to add that it took two to tango in Northern Ireland....the Protestant terrorist members of the UVF/UDA/LVF groups are not without blood on their hands.


PaulMaxime

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #45 on: November 22, 2015, 09:25:07 AM »
I don't have a problem with them coming here, going through whichever screening process, whatever. Generally speaking I'd like it if we could stop being the default country to lead every effort on every corner of the globe. Maybe countries with more directly related interests can step up to the plate too.

Lots of european countries are taking hundreds of thousands of refugees. Germany, for example is welcoming many.

And as far as our role in the world, the US chose to project its power around the world with more military might than the rest of the countries combined. It's the price we pay to be the only superpower. You get cheap oil prices and you have to be responsible for the effects you have around the world.

"When my information changes, I alter my conclusions. What do you do, sir?" - John Maynard Keynes

Abe

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #46 on: November 22, 2015, 02:02:56 PM »
My family were also immigrants/refugees fleeing a war-torn country, and luckily I meet at least one of Matumba's criteria.  My opinion is that people smart enough and hard-working enough to manage to get through our strict refugee screening process, regardless of their score on a discredited "IQ" test, probably have something worthwhile to contribute. That being said, the ultimate goal of most refugees is to return home, and the international community's efforts to resolve the conflict in Syria will be of all peoples' overall best interests. Likelihood of us following our best interests is approximately 0%, based on history.

going2ER

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #47 on: November 23, 2015, 12:30:00 PM »

If every single refugee turned out to be a terrorist, and millions of them succeeded in tearing down this country, that would be tragic.  A great nation would be lost.  By denying them entry we do not protect our great nation, we prove that it was never great at all.


In the thousands of refugees they admit there may be some who are a threat to security. Hower, there are probably more who are  a threat born on american soil. After all, in the mass shootings it has been Americans shooting Americans, not a refugee shooting Americans.

irishbear99

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #48 on: November 23, 2015, 04:23:15 PM »

I guess political refugees fleeing wars don't deserve human rights unless they are smart and wealthy.

I have met genuine refugees in my home country. They crossed the border to the first safe country. The refugees who want to come to the US (or, say, Germany), will cross the borders of several safe countries on the way. To me, they are not genuine refugees, they are economic migrants and should be evaluated and admitted (or refused) as such.

That's not how it works. The UNHCR assigns refugees to countries that participate, after a lengthy (18-24 month) screening process.

gillstone

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Re: Syrian Refugees
« Reply #49 on: November 24, 2015, 01:19:47 PM »
One more bit of context.  The current panic is about the US accepting 0.2% of the refugee population of Syria.  Over 96% of the 4.2 million people displaced by the conflict are currently in the neighboring countries.