Taking Care of Our Own

Jeremiah Cuevas
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Posted: Dec 02, 2015 11:13 AM
Taking Care of Our Own

The Syrian refugee crisis is the only issue many people in the media are talking about today, and many on social media are crying, “If you don’t let the terrorist in, the terrorists win.” But does the United States really have a refugee crisis, or has the Obama administration created this controversy?

Over the past 100 years, America has often served as the watchdog for freedom in the world, but is acting as the world’s police officer really the right course of action in these troubled times, or are we too unstable ourselves? How can we help others if we can’t even save ourselves from comparatively simple problems, such as the nation’s debt crisis?

Refugees from Iraq and Syria are storming the Western world, and ISIS has promised it would sneak in terrorists along with refugees traveling to safe-haven nations. Many former leaders in the intelligence community have expressed concerns as to whether or not these people can be properly vetted. The head of the FBI has already admitted before congress that two Iraqi War refugees were arrested for terror-related crimes and that the vetting processes were less thorough than they ideally should have been.

Our government leadership outside the White House has expressed an uneasiness with simply letting these unknown refugees into our country haphazardly. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan is trying to enact a controversial piece legislation called the Safe Act in an attempt to ensure that refugees are thoroughly vetted. Over half of the nation’s state governors are saying “no” to letting refugees into their states. Proponents of the refugee resettlement program proclaim the 27 state governors have no right to deny refugees entry into their states, but isn’t that just an afterthought considering that in a recent Bloomberg poll 53 percent of Americans said that we should halt the Syrian refugee resettlement plan the White House is presently pursuing.

In a poll conducted in November, as many as one-quarter of the Syrian refugees were open to the possibility of being recruited by ISIS. Factoring in this poll, which has been conveniently ignored by the mainstream media, with the number of refugees the Obama administration wants to bring into the country, and you end up with some disturbing possibilities: Obama’s plan could bring in as many as 2,500 potential ISIS recruits.

If an estimated 13 percent of these refugees have, at the very least, a negative outlook of the United States, then why are we bringing them here? What motivation could they have for wanting to live here if they view America negatively? If many of these refugees have a positive outlook on ISIS and many of them are military age males, then what is stopping them from picking up arms and fighting for ISIS in their new American homeland?

Many people, including Vice President Joe Biden, has said it is against our long-held American values to turn these people away, as he was leaving a speaking engagement in Texas last week. Many others proclaim that to turn them away is unconstitutional and is in violation of their First Amendment rights. When did it become intolerant to care for the safety of Americans? Isn’t that the primary responsibility of the federal government?

True, the liberties listed in the Bill of Rights do apply to all people everywhere, as they are endowed by our creator. However, neither asylum nor citizenship are listed among those rights. True, America often finds itself in the position of being the world’s policeman and standing for the persecuted, but this watchdog role cannot and should not be taken at the expense of the safety of the nation’s own citizens.

To let anyone into our country without properly vetting them would at this point be totally and utterly irresponsible. Syrians and Iraqis are not the problem; radical Islam is. Although many in the Middle East are trying to re-establish the caliphate as a dominant power in the modern world, they are not a nationality; they are a totalitarian religion. This war on terror is not a war against a country, but it is war on radical ideals that can be adopted by anyone at any time in any place. With that in mind, how could we just let people into our country—men, women, or even children—whether they be Syrian, Iraqi, or Canadian, without knowing who they are?

When I myself was serving in Iraq as a gunner in a gun-truck tasked with convoy security, there was a period we started seeing children in small villages throwing hand-sized rocks into wells from various distances around the wells during our missions. It was soon after that we found just what exactly these children were doing: We started getting reports of casualties that were caused by children throwing hand grenades into the holes of gunner’s turrets of the gun-trucks we were using.

It may not be the politically correct thing to say, but it appears to me that the only true refugee crisis the United States will experience will occur if we take in thousands of refugees without knowing who they are.