We as a nation will be judged by how we treat those who need help the most. And on that day, how will our response to the current refugee crises be adjudicated?
From Iraq to Syria, Afghanistan, Honduras and Guatemala, hundreds of thousands of people are running for their lives from war and gangs of kidnappers and certain death. Right now, these crises provide us an opportunity as Americans, as a nation, to lead.
If you haven’t been paying attention, just read Humans of New York for a week, and you’ll read tragic stories about people being killed and those how aren’t murdered, fleeing for their lives. Lives are being destroyed right now. The time to act is now. Not in a year. Not after the election. The time to help these people is now – they desperately need it. These mothers, daughters, sons and fathers need a safe place to live so that they can begin to rebuild their shattered lives. These are human beings that need comfort and support.
In ten years, we will look back at this time, like we do at previous tragedies which we failed to react with grace and dignity, like the genocide in Rwanda in 1994. But our history isn’t a total failure to act. After we helped destroy Vietnam and Cambodia, the global community, and the US, successfully resettled millions of people. It can be done, but we have to choose to do it. The only dignified response to this crisis, or any crisis, is to hold our arms open wide and say, “Please, come to America. We will help you.”