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Open Letter to Jay Inslee on the Syrian Refugees

Harvey Field
Published:2015-11-23 Opinion
Open Letter to Jay Inslee on the Syrian Refugees    Print Snohomish Times    
Open Letter to Jay Inslee on the Syrian Refugees

I know Dan Evans. Dan Evans is a friend of mine. Governor, you are no Dan Evans.

You sent a letter to the New York Times comparing yourself and your position on the Syrian refugees, to Republican Governor Dan Evans in the mid '70s when Evans welcomed Vietnamese refugees to our state.

Big difference, Jay. The Vietnamese refugees had fought alongside us for 10 years against the communists. When the U.S. pulled out, those who represented a threat to communism (the educated middle class -- teachers, doctors, lawyers, engineers, military) fled for their lives. When they arrived in our state, they took humble jobs and raised their children to embrace the American Dream. None of the Vietnamese who risked their lives crossing the sea has ever posed a threat to our national security.

Recently, Governor Evans said, “Welcoming them was the right thing to do. The same would be true today if we didn't have the problems of terrorists. So I think we have to be a lot more careful than we were then. All it takes is a handful of terrorists determined to wreak havoc....”

Americans are the most open and generous people in the world. This country’s sons and daughters have fought and died for oppressed people everywhere. Most Syrians are victims of a wicked leader and evil ISIS (and an Obama/Clinton foreign policy that has left the Middle East in chaos). Most of the Syrian refugees would not seek to harm us. But the Paris attacks prove that even a few “refugees” will zealously slaughter innocents.

Republicans in Congress have asked for a “pause” in the refugee process. You say you’ve “spoken with federal officials ... and they feel confident about the ... process that is in place.” Oh, so perhaps you’ve even spoken to the President, who just one day before the attacks said that ISIS was contained? Are we to believe that this government can protect us when the President has continually underestimated the threat of the ISIS “JV team”?

Given the sadness, anger and alarm Americans feel after the Paris attacks, why would a caring leader show contempt for his citizens instead of caution? And even worse, why are you lecturing us about new refugees when you have not cared for those we already have?

Jay, in your own state, hundreds of refugees from war-torn Muslim countries have begged for better schools to give their children a chance. Instead, their sought-for charter schools have been abruptly shut down by WEA-funded judges. You could have fought for refugee children, but you have not -- because the powerful WEA funded your election too.

Americans believe this country is vulnerable to a Paris-style attack. We want leaders who will protect us, not lecture us.

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