Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Sticks and Stones

And Names do Hurt Me.

       There should be no place in the political dialogue of debating policy calling people "UnAmerican" or "shameful" or other slanders because they, upon reasoned judgment disagree with a strategy, policy or government position. Of course it is compassionate to be immigrant friendly and in the American character, but there are sound reasons to make exceptions.

Currently there is a reasoned debate on whether allegedly Syrian refugees should be admitted in the tens of thousands in American States and over half the States are having some pause and saying in light of the Paris attacks, perhaps we might rethink this.

   Sound Reasons to not allow in allegedly Syrian refugees include:

1. High level FBI people have said the sort of usual vetting is either not possible or unreliable because the sort of records and documents that are used to establish identity don't exist. Travel documents from people without passports were created in Greece for large numbers of them, who may or may not have given real information and there is no way to tell.

2. There have been large numbers of immigrant refugees who have in fact been arrested by the FBI in connection with previous ISIS terror plots or aiding and abetting.

3. We don't have effective gun control measures to stop people who are suspected terrorists or even those on terror watch lists from getting weapons in this country. Kids in a candy store.

4. ISIS has said they are coming to Washington to inflict more terroristic attacks in DC. Take them at their word. Do we want to give them a red carpet and food stamps?

So people who don't want refugees from allegedly Syria coming should not be demonized for being "safe not sorry" when dealing with mass casualty possibilities even if perhaps too safe.

Let me say a word about tone.
These are sensitive emotion laden debates. When emotion runs hot facts tend to run out the door.
It serves no legitimate purpose to demonize people who are trying their best to think through solutions given evolving facts.

National Security should not be a partisan issue. Refugee relocation isn't just about "widows and orphans" when we know the majority of refugees are the fit males who survived the passage across the Med. Further, if anyone thought widows were incapable of being terrorists, they didn't read about the woman strapped to a suicide vest who just today died in St. Denis.

National Security is serious business. It shouldn't devolve into Partisan PR epithet-throwing from either side. Our current vetting procedures and current gun restriction legislation look dangerously, lethally even, insufficient to tell us which refugees are ISIS affiliated and would shoot up the Capital given the first gun show they can get to. No Syrian birth, marriage, tax, residency, ID records or any personal identification exists for most of them and documentation was created for them once they got to Europe.

ISIS would not disguise themselves as Christians and it would be too easy to detect them as such. So Christians would be definitionally safer than Muslims to enter the country. That sort of "religious test" is not unAmerican-it is smart strategy. Christians are not terrorists, they are victims of terror in that part of the world. No Christian is strapping a suicide vest to themselves, using their theology to yell "Jesus Rules" and gunning down a concert hall. A national policy that allows in Christians and puts a hold on Muslim ones is a smart strategy because ISIS disguises themselves as moderate Muslims, not cross wearing Christians. This is not "islamaphobic' or "bigoted" or any other epithet the slander happy party wants to throw at people with whom they disagree (note the same strategy was used on people opposing gay marriage-just slander them into the ground with aspersions of "bigot" and the like.)

Slander is not an effective debate tool. It makes the person using it look small. It's not leadership-it has a bullying tone to it. Lets all start acting like grown ups and look intelligently at all the facts.

Here are some facts. Note-NONE of the below people are Christian.

An immigrant brought here by his family from Kuwait at a young age, and who was later approved for U.S. citizenship, carried out the Islamist attack that recently killed 4 military personnel in Chattanooga. (July 2015)
- An Uzbek refugee living in Idaho was arrested and charged with providing support to a terrorist organization, in the form of teaching terror recruits how to build bombs. (July 2015)
- An immigrant from Ghana, who applied for and received U.S. citizenship, pledged allegiance to ISIS and plotted a terrorist attack on U.S. soil. (June 2015)
- An immigrant from Yemen, who applied for and received U.S. citizenship, along with six other men, was charged with conspiracy to travel to Syria and provide material support to ISIS. (April 2015)
- A Kazakhstani immigrant with lawful permanent resident status conspired to purchase a machine gun to shoot FBI and other law enforcement agents if they prevented him from traveling to Syria to join ISIS. (February 2015)
- A Bosnian refugee, along with his wife and five relatives, donated money and supplies, and smuggled arms, to terrorist organizations in Syria and Iraq. (February 2015)
- A college student who immigrated from Somalia who later applied for and received U.S. citizenship, attempted to blow up a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Oregon. (October 2014)
- A Moroccan national who came tot he U.S. on a student Visa was arrested for plotting to blow up a university and federal court house. (April 2014)
- The Boston bombers were invited in as refugees. The younger brother applied for citizenship and was naturalized on September 11th, 2012. The older brother had a pending application for citizenship. (April 2013)
- Two immigrants form Pakistan, who later applied for and received U.S. citizenship, were sentenced to decades-long prison sentences for plotting to detonate a bomb in New York City. (2012)

Read more:

And what might these characters be up to:

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