“I don’t think they should be brought here, period!”
(citizen activist Brenda Arthur)
As I told you a few days ago a Charleston ‘Interfaith’ group was planning a rally to push for the resettlement of Syrian refugees to the state capitol. And, as I mentioned then, I am struck by the fact that the rally for refugees was so specific about Syrians when we bring refugees from all over the world (and resettlement contracting agencies don’t get to pick only those ethnic groups they prefer).
Why are they so concerned about Syrians? Why is the Charleston, West Virginia group so discriminatory against other ethnic groups?
And here are my bigger questions: Where is Alex? Where is Shelley? Where is Joe?
Considering that the controversy about the resettlement of Syrian refugees in American towns is one of the major issues that pushed Donald Trump over the finish line last week, shouldn’t we expect elected officials like Rep. Alex Mooney (R) in whose district this rally occurred and US Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R) and Joe Manchin (D) to have the guts to say where they stand on the issue!
Are they for or against this plan from Washington?
One story about the rally is here. There was a counter-rally, so no one can say any longer that there is no opposition to the plan to expand the resettlement of Syrian Muslims (99% of all Syrians entering the US are Muslims) in to West Virginia.
See some of the opposition’s arguments reported at the Charleston Gazette-Mail:
During last year’s rally supporting Syrian refugees, Brenda Arthur stood across the street in protest. She learned of the rally only hours before it was scheduled to begin. She was then one of only two people protesting against it.
This time, she brought a few friends. To them, the reasons to not bring refugees seem endless.
“We had the June flooding disaster, we’ve lost jobs, there have been cuts in school funding and then there’s the drug epidemic,” Arthur said. “We’ve got all of these major problems to deal with. How does it even make sense to bring people here from halfway around the world that are going to need every form of government assistance?”
Arthur, 65, gathered with about a dozen other people in protest of the rally. Their main complaints about settling refugees in Charleston is the fear that they might be sent by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and that tax money would be used to resettle them.
But even if it didn’t cost taxpayers anything to bring refugees to West Virginia, and even if officials could be completely sure that the refugees weren’t sent by ISIS, Arthur still doesn’t want them here.
“I don’t think they should be brought here, period. We should take care of them in their homeland,” Arthur said. “A lot of these people, you know, they’ve been in their tribal land for thousands of years, and now they’re uprooted, brought to a new culture — in many cases a culture that has nothing to do with them. Our values are antithetical to a lot of things that they believe.”
See our complete archive on the West Virginia controversy by clicking here.