Just facts, no opinions. Brutal facts.
Today, the President of the United States issued an order that stops our country from admitting this boy as a refugee. This is Omran Daqneesh, a five year old Syrian boy who was almost killed last summer when Syrian warplanes bombed his house in Aleppo. This picture was taken by medics who pulled Omran from the rubble after the attack. Omran’s brother was killed in the bombing. You probably saw this on the news last summer, when the attack on Omran and his family received a lot of coverage.
The reason the President issued an order that bars our country from providing sanctuary to Omran is that, according the order, Omran might be a terrorist. Among the risks the President is concerned about, according to the order–Omran, and others the order bans from America, might commit crimes against women. This President is concerned about that.
The President’s order does not allow our government to make an assessment of whether Omran is a terrorist or not, because all Syrians are banned from entering our country without any assessment of any kind. The President’s order does not allow our government to make an assessment of whether Omran is an innocent civilian whose life may be saved if he is granted sanctuary in the United States. In fact, there is nothing in the order that allows the American government to decide that Omran, Syrians, or those from other countries who are also banned, are perfectly innocent human beings who might well die if we do not grant them sanctuary.
It would not matter under the order if Omran or the others banned are as innocent as you and me. It would not matter if Omran is terrified that he might be killed. Under the order, Omran is not welcome in America. Period. And the naked reason for this is because Omran, and the other people banned from America, are Muslims against whom this administration intends to foster hate.
Of course I chose this picture because it is hard to look away. Of course I chose this picture because if you have a heart, you cannot bear the idea that our country has no place for this boy, who suffered so much at the hands of grown men with no souls. And the truth is that there are tens of thousands of victims of violence who are just as innocent as Omran, and whose lives are just as sacred, who are in just as much danger, and who this order will ban from America and leave to suffer and die.
More facts. Each one of us who is an American can decide if this is OK. We can decide whether our country is a country that will tell Omran that he is not welcome in America. We can decide whether our country is a country that will tell thousands of innocent people seeking sanctuary from the exact same terrorists we are fighting—or from regimes led by monstrous men– that they are not welcome in America. We can tell others in government that this order is wrong because it bans our country from granting humanitarian sanctuary to innocent people whose lives are at risk.
And now an opinion. It is unforgivable for a nation with our power and our abundance to be so afraid that we would tell this wounded little boy, and other human beings who are just as vulnerable, that they cannot come to America.