What differentiates America from other countries? At the core is faith that everyone has the capacity to improve themselves and contribute to their community, cultural inclusivity and the imperative of loving and helping our neighbors – especially in their hour of need.
Recent statements by political figures about keeping Syrian refugees out are deeply troubling, as they contradict the very principles that define us as a nation. Rejecting these refugees because of where they are from or what they happen to believe is both morally noxious and deeply un-American.
Our great nation has a long history of accepting and embracing desperate and unwanted peoples from around the world. We did it when Ireland was starving and when fascist anti-Semitism ripped through Europe. Each time there were calls to keep the “others” out, but these peoples were ultimately integrated into the fabric our society.
We have done this before and now we must again – lest we discard a fundamental and virtuous piece of our identity as Americans.