Originally posted in CS Monitor
Regarding the Nov. 19 online article “House defies Obama on Syrian refugees, as larger threat emerges” (CSMonitor.com): I am an American Ahmadi Muslim. Born in Pakistan, I immigrated to America in 1998 and was granted asylum based on religious persecution.
When I read that many US governors have refused to settle Syrian refugees in their respective states and the majority of politicians have voted in favor of the House bill to suspend the program accepting Syrian and Iraqi refugees, I felt very sad. I understand that keeping our citizens safe from any potential terrorist threat is of utmost importance, but it can be assured by making the refugee vetting process even more rigorous.
All those who have based their decision to deny embracing Syrian refugees on the recent Paris terrorist attacks must not forget the greatest gift that the French people gave us – the Statue of Liberty. The inscription on it states, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” As Americans, these are the values we stand for. Let us show compassion to suffering humanity and not allow fear of Islamic State to steer us away from our true American values.