Saturday, September 3, 2016

Washington Post challenges Americans to accept more Syrian refugees

Saturday morning, the Post has a lead editorial, “10,000 is not enough; the problem’s scale and America’s capacity demand that we accept more Syrian refugees”,  .  Online, the title is, “America has accepted 10,000 Syrian refugees.  That’s still too few.”

But Stephanie Dinan of the Washington Times reports that the US will go beyond the 10000, and that 7% are denied admission, here.

The biggest obstacle, of course, is the popular perception that accepting more refugees would require Americans to accept an existential risk personally.  Syrian refugees are carefully vetted, although Donald Trump et al maintain that real vetting from that part of the world is impossible,  The practical risk is certainly much less than what we live with all the time (like Mexican drug cartels reaching into the US – Post story Saturday by Peter Hermann).

Syrian refugees are normally housed in commercial apartment buildings (or with relatives who know them), and supervised by social service agencies and lots of volunteers per family.  That’s not the case with asylum seekers, where the personal risk taking by hosts may be much greater, and a subject that needs more thoughtful exposition.  In Canada, private sponsorship sometimes leads to more private hosting of refugees (as in Europe sometimes), but there is a history of private “radical hospitality” in the past with the Mariel boatlift from Cuba in 1980.

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