So how much would it cost to house 50,000 Syrian immigrants in luxury for as long as it takes to be sure they are safe?

Nothing, compared to our humanity.

This entire issue is being presented as an either/or “I’m right and you are wrong” issue. We absolutely should take a share of world-wide refugees on a continuous basis over time. That should be a general policy of every stable free country the even pretends to be a member of the community of nations.

Ah, but we do have some specifics to consider.

If they happen to be from a region (neither ethnicity nor race nor religion) where it seems likely persons with bad intentions will infiltrate the refugee pool, I don’t find it innately offensive that we take our sweet time getting the innocents completely free into our society.

Done poorly it could be offensive.

Done well it could be a model for civilization.

Oh, and by the way: Some folks are trying to liken this to the almost certainly illegal detention of citizens of Japanese extraction in World War II. If you are paying attention, that should not pass the laugh test for more reasons than I’ll try to enumerate. But I will give you a few off the top of my head:

First, the WWII interment included citizens as opposed to petitioners for entry.

Second, the WWII interment probably expropriated wealth from citizens without due process.

Third, the WWII interment (whether for lack of resources or wanting to punish persons of Japanese extraction for the bombing of Pearl Harbor whether or not they had anything to do with it or both) involved facilities that could be generously described as austere.

Okay. I hope that is enough that you will actually laugh out loud if someone tries to convince you that detaining #SyrianRefugees for a while has any correspondence with the WWII interment of citizens of Japanese extraction.

What we should be proposing for the #SyrianRefugees should be so good and laden with features (such as education, cultural opportunities, and entertainment) that the candidates for entry will be disappointed upon release from the screening facility. It should be so good that someone who infiltrated with bad intentions will exit into society with a new world view. Finally: Give the #SyrianRefugees who are candidates for entry to the US a legitimate opt-in, opt-out choice for alternative placement in some other country. We’ll know our program is not good enough if there are not plenty of candidates for entry into other countries who will leap at the chance to come here knowing they may face a protracted stay at the screening facility.

Dear Congress:

Do the right thing. I’m pretty doggone sure you can find some money for this in defense and intelligence budgets. It will probably cost less than one fighter jet. And if you’re more interested in adding up the financial ledger than doing the right thing as its own reason, get your staff to estimate the public relations (okay, propaganda) value of this approach over those shouting “Death to America.” And please remember: Most of the refugees are just plain folks running away from trouble they had no means to fight against. If we take 50,000 or 100,000 it would be a difficult task for the bad authorities in the currently bad places these fellow humans are fleeing to place more than one or two infiltrators. So let’s treat all of them extremely well as we provide them a safe haven. And release them carefully.


About rsiz

Father and Husband, Oracle Technology Scientist and Consultant, planning to end poverty for citizens and legal US residents Lebanon, NH · http://www.rsiz.com See my wife's puzzles at thingamajigsaw.com
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