I have struggled this week in many ways. I’m trying to keep my mouth shut on social media because what I believe is rather controversial. There is growing hate in the United States and I don’t like it. There is an “us” against “them” mentality that can’t be diffused as easily as everyone wishes that it would be or maybe there are some who wish it was never diffused.
So I’ve decided to keep my opinions to myself. I know some would call this cowardice, but I say it is preserving my own mental health. I can’t fight with people who don’t want to see all the sides of an argument. It takes too much out of me. It makes me feel drained and I will never change their minds. That is the thing about opinions, everyone has one and no one will ever see any differently. It makes us humans.
So I will say my piece in my own way, with writing.
My heart is heavy for Syrian children at this moment. The people of the United States are refusing them safety. We are lucky, we don’t know what it is like to grow up in a war-torn homeland. We don’t know what it feels like to wonder about whether or not you will survive the next moments and if your children will be safe. We don’t know these things because it doesn’t happen here. We are a sovereign nation that basically lives in its own little part of the world and ignores the others, unless they have something we want. Syrians don’t have anything we want and therefore are expendable and can only be trusted if they are of the right religion or don’t look too much like terrorists.
Americans would be appalled if these were our children we were trying to find refuge for and others were turning us away. We would be offended, because that is what Americans always seem to be nowadays. We would demand that other countries take our children with no question about what faith they were or what god they believed in. We would demand the national community do something to save our children.
I’m reminded of the Jewish refugees we turned away in the 30s and 40s, ultimately sending them to their deaths and the Japaneses we decided to imprison in our own country after the bombing of World War II. These were American citizens and we still did these things because we are so threatened by people who are not like us. If they don’t look white then maybe they are bad and if they look like the people who did harm to us, then they are really, really bad.
Those who claim to be pro-life once again are the loudest opponents to saving lives. They want to throw soldiers and bombs as something to make them feel safer. Where is their pro-life stance when someone’s son is dying in the name of their country? When there are orphans and children with no homes? When a woman can’t feed her child? It’s buried in rhetoric about how people should work for things and not get handouts and we have to go to war to save ourselves from the evil of the world that they deem is the appropriate evil.
I would hope that if my young children were in the same situation, someone would offer them a warm place to sleep and food to eat. They would be afforded a safe place to play with their toys and be children, not the bastard children of a country that is torn apart by war with no help in sight.
I would hope that we were better than the people they were fleeing, but maybe, just maybe, we aren’t.
Until next time ….