Tuesday, January 31, 2017

immigration and refugees

It is difficult to rationally discuss the recent immigration brouhaha. The media and some political partisans (from both parties) have gone so far over the top that to actually look at what was done becomes impossible as it's tangled in hyperbole, political correctness, hysteria, and righteousness vs. evil. Worse, it involves real human lives-- in our country and around the world.

The first question that Americans must consider regarding immigration is this: should anyone who wants to come to the United States be permitted entrance and citizenship? 

For most people to visit here or really any country for a vacation or work involves a passport and to be in a [Visa waiver program]. This is an agreement between most of the developed world to make travel easier. It enables the person to stay up to 90 days. If you go to the link, you will note that some countries were not included in the program-- some very familiar names actually. For them, more research was required. To permanently immigrate to the US, there are requirements: [How US Immigration works].

None of that relates to those who come claiming refugee status. They must declare and politically have agreement that for them to return to their country would endanger their lives. This is where the Syrian refugees have come in but many more than them. [Refugees]
As our country found right before the end of Obama's Presidency, a President can unilaterally impact immigration rules through Executive orders. Obama did it with relatively little fanfaire by changing what had been a rule for Cubans who had previously been given refugee status as soon as their feet touched American soil. Haitians, with an economically deprived region in which to live, were sent back. 

Obama also could decree how many refugees from Syria could be admitted and cared for until they could establish themselves and become self-sufficient. A President has that power and Trump just used it-- despite some claiming it was unconstitutional what he did.

Recently, Europe let in pretty much anyone who got there from Syria. Syria is obviously a very dangerous situation with a civil war and terrorist offense raging. The concern, for Europe and the US, involved being sure those who came were not hiding under the cover as refugees when they were in reality terrorists in the making.  

Trump ran on saying he would temporarily suspend entrance from certain countries as a way to be sure those who came were not affiliated to terrorist organizations. He wanted to be sure vetting was being done well. He signed the action this week-end using the countries Obama administration had declared terrorism supporters. And literally all hell broke loose with the left using this as one more excuse to call him a racist and say he's an illegitimate President. Did anyone, who protested this, vote for the man?  

So now in the media, we are being inundated by how the United States should take in all who want to come and the wall is another example of Trump's cruelty to the poor of the world. The Statue of Liberty, which was originally about liberty not about immigration, has been brought into this imbroglio. Anyone who believes in a border is a racist and cruel. No country with wealth has a right to ban the poor of the world from entering, and on it went.

Some claim that these demonstrations are funded by the billionaire George Soros, but it doesn't take funding. I have seen plenty of it at Facebook from tenderhearted people who fear Trump is another Hitler and that anyone who supports anything he does is a bigot or at the least brainwashed.

I believe it comes down to what I wrote about earlier-- globalism or nationalism. Where someone falls on that debate will impact a lot of whether they want open borders in the US or their own country elsewhere. Very few countries have open borders-- except for refugees; and with the world in such a horrible time of violent turmoil and more trouble possibly coming if climate change makes some regions uninhabitable, it would behoove humans in any country to figure out how they stand on humanitarian issues like refugees. It's not going to be easy.

Complicating it further is the aspect of terrorism, of radical jihadists who are being encouraged to blend with the innocent people as a way to get where they can wreak violence. The argument put forth by many left wingers is these nations, despite the violence in their countries, haven't done any terrorism acts in the United States. Some have in Europe but leaving that aside-- how does anyone know when the violence might be directed against individuals? When there is no physical difference between a devout Muslim and a terrorist wantabe, how do you figure it out? That's where the vetting was to come in-- except some want no vetting as it's unAmerican? Seriously??? 

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