Nearly every day since the tragic terror attacks in Paris, news has surfaced about U.S. politicians turning their backs on Syrian refugees attempting to gain entry into the United States.
Although admission into the country is granted at the discretion of the federal government and not the states, more than half of U.S. state governors are against letting Syrian refugees into their respective states, according to CNN. Without the cooperation of the opposing states, the acceptance process can be more difficult.
The House of Representatives also recently voted to ban both Syrian and Iraqi refugees from entering the United States “until tougher screening measures are in place.”
Politicians are afraid that ISIS terrorists will use an opportunity for asylum in America as a method of entering our country in order stage attacks from within.
Although the origin of their fear is understandable, based upon the extent of the recent attacks, banning the refugees is not a viable solution. Therefore, the refugees should not be discriminated against.
If the politicians really wanted to close off access to the United States due to the Paris terror attacks, they should shift their attention to Belgium and France, not the entire Syrian refugee community. According to the Los Angeles Times, five of the six attackers were French. Moreover, three of the five French terrorists were living in Belgium.
However, most would agree that barring immigration to the U.S. from Belgium and France is unreasonable, because their citizens are not the roots of the threat. Just as Belgians and the French should not be banned, Syrians should not be banned either.
The L.A. Times also reports that French investigators are in the process of verifying whether the Syrian passport found near one of the suicide bombers is legitimate, since it is possible that is not genuine. However, even if it is legitimate, and one of the terrorists entered Europe through the crowds of war refugees, it is not right to leave the refugees helpless.
What the Islamic State wants is to increase hostile environments for Muslims throughout the world so that they have no other place to come other than their “caliphate.” Banning and discriminating Syrians is helping their cause.
According to Yahoo, UN spokesman Sephane Duarric urged politicians to not discriminate “on the basis of religion, ethnicity or any other factor when it comes to resettlement of refugees.”
I am not saying that safety measures should not be put in place as a reaction to the recent tragedies. Significant screening and safety measures should indeed be put in place. However, barring refugees in total can even be seen as inhumane.
The UN refugee agency UNHCR has a process to make sure that all countries hosting the refugees have all the necessary information about the future resident. This is a solid start to protect us against terrorists.
Politicians and countries should work together as a whole to both protect themselves and help others seek asylum. Banning an entire community at risk as a whole, because of possible terrorists, is the same logic as not driving a car at all because one might get in an accident.