Washington, DC | www.adc.org | November 17, 2015 – The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is deeply troubled that many American politicians have used the tragic terror attacks in Paris, France as a justification to promote xenophobia against Syrian refugees.
ADC condemns the lack of moral fortitude of the U.S. governors who announced their opposition to accepting Syrian refugees in the wake of the tragic terrorist attacks in Paris, France. ADC urges elected officials to remember that the vast majority of Americans are the descendants of immigrants and refugees. The United States must not give in to fear or hate motivated bias by turning our back on our nation’s fundamental commitment to refugee protection and human rights.
We as Americans do have a choice, and we must reflect on our own humanity and exhibit compassion and understanding through our actions. We should not give in to propaganda and fear mongering that has exploited the tragedy of the terrorist attacks in France to perpetuate anti-Arab sentiment, Islamophobia, and xenophobia. Now is precisely the time to stand up for our democracy’s core values.
As the world’s greatest country, America should be a beacon of hope and a leader in responding to humanitarian crisis through refugee resettlement.
The Syrian refugees need our support now more than ever:
We must unite as a community to stand against this anti-Arab rhetoric and support the millions of people have been forced to flee their homes in Syria since 2011.
Right now there is a bipartisan Congressional effort to provide more aid to both Syrian and Iraqi refugees. Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) have proposed emergency funding that would provide $1 billion in emergency funding to the State Department’s Migration and Refugee Assistance account. This would allow the U.S. to better respond to the refugee crisis. The bipartisan bill could potentially support the resettlement of 100,000 Syrian and Iraqi refugees in the next two years.
Update: Senator Graham has abandoned his support for the refugee bill due to fear of “radical Islam” and has called for a “time out” on Syrian refugees. The bill now needs a new Republican cosponsor in order to have a realistic chance of passing.
In September, ADC urged the Obama Administration to accept at least 100,000 Syrian refugees in fiscal year 2016. Currently, the United States only plans to welcome 10,000 Syrian refugees during the same time period. By contrast, Germany has said it will accept 800,000 refugees in 2016 and is willing to accept 500,000 more each year after that for the next few years.